SF News

Bay Area Men Identified As Victims In Butte County Plane Crash

Two Bay Area men have been identified as the victims in a fiery plane crash near Chico last week, according to the Butte County Sheriff-Coroner's Office.

Alamo resident Matthew Moody, 26, and 54-year-old Frederick Lewis of Fairfield were identified through dental records as the two occupants of the two-seat aircraft that crashed and burst into flames in a remote canyon east of state Highway 99, according to sheriff's officials.

Crews responded to reports of the crash around 11:35 a.m. on Aug. 12 and found the plane badly damaged by the crash and fire, according to the sheriff's office.

The victims were pronounced dead at the scene.

PG&E spokesman Paul Moreno said the pair were doing contract work for the utility and were surveying the unincorporated area at the time of the crash.

The crash is under investigation by the Federal Aviation Administration and the National Transportation Safety Board, he said.

 

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Events In SF, Oakland To Mark Anniversary Of March On Washington

Events are planned in San Francisco and Oakland this evening to commemorate the upcoming 50th anniversary of the March on Washington, at which Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. gave his famous "I Have a Dream" speech.

The University of San Francisco is hosting an event at 6 p.m. today and will honor Clarence Benjamin Jones, a former speechwriter, attorney and adviser to King, who gave the famous speech in front of the Lincoln Memorial on Aug. 28, 1963.

Jones is USF's first diversity scholar and was given an honorary doctoral degree by the school in 2011.

He has taught the undergraduate course "From Slavery to Obama" on campus since the fall of 2012.

Mayor Ed Lee will attend the event, as well as Joseph Marshall Jr., a city police commissioner and executive director of the nonprofit Omega Boys Club.

The event will take place at USF's McLaren Conference Center at 2130 Fulton St. and is open to the public.

Also at 6 p.m. today, a rally will be held at the Fruitvale BART station in Oakland to kick off a statewide bus tour in the week leading up to the anniversary of the March on Washington.

The rally is being spearheaded by the group Oakland Community Organizations, which works with congregations and schools throughout the city.

The group will send off riders on the bus tour to educate the public on how certain policies disproportionately affect people of color.

The tour, which will end in Los Angeles on Saturday, is in solidarity with a national bus tour also taking place in advance of the 50th anniversary.

 

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Tuesday Midday News Roundup

Great White Sighting At Stinson Beach Prompts Five-Day Swim Ban In Marin

A great white shark was spotted near Stinson Beach on Monday afternoon, prompting a five-day ban on swimming and surfing there, a National Park Service spokeswoman said.

The shark, estimated to be between 10 and 15 feet long, was seen multiple times in the water near the northern part of the beach, spokeswoman Alexandra Picavet said.

There was one reported sighting around 1:30 p.m., and a lifeguard then spotted the shark along the surf line around 3 p.m., she said.

The shark was seen not far from the spot on the beach where a baby fin whale was found Monday morning, Picavet said.

The whale died later that morning.

"There is reason to believe that the whale was an attractant for shark, bringing it closer to shore," she said.

There have been reports that the shark may have attacked a seal in the water off the beach, but Picavet said she could not confirm that.

The swimming and surfing ban went into effect on Monday, but people are still allowed to walk on the beach, she said.

Red Flag Warning Extended, More Lightning Expected Today

The National Weather Service has extended a red-flag warning for parts of the Bay Area, as more lightning is expected to strike this afternoon and later into the evening, a forecaster said.

The warning will be in effect for the East Bay and Santa Cruz Mountains through midnight, forecaster Steve Anderson said.

The weather service has recorded over 15,000 lighting strikes in and around the Bay Area since Monday at noon, he said.

Ninety percent of those strikes were reported about 100 miles offshore in the Pacific Ocean, Anderson said.

The lighting is caused by a low-pressure system that is hovering in the area, he said.

"This is the typical weather that Phoenix and other desert areas experience, without the heat," Anderson said. "The low pressure will spin off through today and slowly start moving northeast Wednesday afternoon," he said.

Santa Rosa Supervisor Efren Carrillo Apologizes, Admits Alcoholism

Sonoma County Supervisor Efren Carrillo made a lengthy public apology this morning at the first supervisors' meeting he has attended since he entered an alcohol treatment program after his arrest for prowling outside a woman's apartment last month.

Carrillo, 32, who represents the 5th District that includes southwest Santa Rosa and western Sonoma County, also admitted that he suffers from alcoholism.

"To each and all whom I have hurt, I apologize. Could I give up everything I own to turn back the clock on the early morning of July 13 for a just a few moments? Of course I would. But I cannot not turn back time," Carrillo said. "Instead, I have spent the last five weeks on an effort to turn back a disease I have had for some time, and have denied and disregarded to the detriment of others and myself," he said. 

"I never faced the reality that my alcoholism was a disease, a disorder of serious magnitude, and that to face it would take a lifetime of hard work," Carrillo said. "I regret that it took the absurdity of my behavior in July to end any question about the depth of my problem," he said.

At about 3:40 a.m. on July 13, a woman who lives near Stony Point Road and West Third Street in Santa Rosa called 911 to report that someone had tried to enter her bedroom through a window.

She then called police again and said a man had knocked on her front door and identified himself as a neighbor, then ran away.

Officers responded and arrested Carrillo -- who was wearing only socks and underwear and carrying a cellphone -- on suspicion of prowling and burglary, police said.

Police said the screen on the bedroom window had been torn enough so that someone could reach in and try to open the window.

The woman said she was awakened by the sound of blinds moving.

At the time of the incident, Carrillo lived nearby in the 300 block of Brockhurst Drive, but he said this morning that he has moved to a new home in order to avoid causing the woman any further discomfort.

The state Attorney General's Office is investigating the case, and a decision on possible charges is expected by Carrillo's next hearing, which is scheduled for Aug. 30 in Sonoma County Superior Court.

Carrillo said he is now in an outpatient treatment program offered by Kaiser Permanente.

"This is a robust eight-week program designed to address chemical dependency," he said.

He said he was never under the influence of alcohol while performing his duties as supervisor, and that his alcoholism "manifested itself in binge drinking."

"There is no one to blame but myself, and I take full responsibility for my situation. I do hope that people will recognize that I am taking serious steps to conquer what is a serious and sometimes deadly disease," Carrillo said.

Board members made no comments after Carrillo read his statement.

San Jose Man Dies After Triple-Shooting At Vietnamese Restaurant

One of three men who were shot at a Vietnamese restaurant in San Jose on Monday night died early this morning, a police spokesman said.

The shooting happened around 10 p.m. at the Hoang Hon Bar and Restaurant at 2852 Alum Rock Ave.

The three men were all taken to hospitals, and one was pronounced dead at about 2 a.m. today, San Jose police Officer Albert Morales said.

Morales said the shooting "appears to be a random act at this time," and does not seem to be gang-related.

The two other victims' injuries are not considered life-threatening, Morales said.

Investigators are still working to determine the circumstances of the shooting, according to police.

No arrests have been made in the case.

San Jose Swearing-In Ceremony Tonight For Supervisor Cindy Chavez

Cindy Chavez, the newly elected member of the Santa Clara County Board of Supervisors, will be sworn in this evening at a ceremony at the county government center.

Chavez, who has already attended her first board meeting, will take her oath of office during the 6 p.m. ceremony in board chambers at 70 W. Hedding St., a county spokeswoman said.

Rep. Zoe Lofgren, D-San Jose, is among those expected to attend, according to county spokeswoman Gwen Mitchell.

A reception will follow at 6:30 p.m., Mitchell said.

Chavez defeated rival Teresa Alvarado in a July 30 special runoff election to represent District 2 and serve out the term of former Supervisor George Shirakawa, who resigned in March.

She will to serve as chair of the Children, Seniors and Families Committee and vice chair of the Housing, Land Use, Environment and Transportation Committee.

Fremont Big-Rig Crash Sends Driver To Hospital With Serious Injuries

A driver was seriously injured this morning when a big-rig traveling east on Auto Mall Parkway in Fremont jumped the center median and struck a westbound vehicle, a police sergeant said.

The female driver of the car that was hit was transported to a local trauma center for treatment.

The big-rig's driver suffered only minor injuries, according to police.

Fremont police received multiple 911 calls reporting a crash on westbound Auto Mall Parkway shortly after 5:15 a.m., police Sgt. Jeff Swadener said.

The westbound lanes were closed between Fremont and Grimmer boulevards, Swadener said.

Motorists traveling on southbound Interstate Highway 680 connecting to Interstate Highway 880 were advised stay on the freeway and avoid the area.

Tour Bus Driver Pleads No Contest To DUI Charges

A man accused of driving a double-decker tour bus while drunk in San Francisco last month has pleaded no contest to DUI charges, a prosecutor said today.

Leon Maynard, 60, of San Bruno, pleaded no contest on Monday to a charge of driving under the influence with a blood-alcohol content of .08 percent or higher, district attorney's office spokesman Alex Bastian said.

Maynard was arrested near Stockton and Post streets at about 1:15 p.m. on July 5 while driving a San Francisco Deluxe Sightseeing tour bus, prosecutors said.

His blood-alcohol content at the time of the arrest was 0.21 percent, and he was also cited for an open container infraction, prosecutors said.

Maynard was sentenced to three years' probation, ordered to spend six days in the sheriff's work alternative program, participate for six months in a first offender program and will have his commercial driver's license suspended for a year, Bastian said.

SFMTA Adds More Crossing Guards to Patrol Safety Around Schools

Monday was the first day of school not only for many San Francisco students, but also for many new crossing guards.

The San Francisco Municipal Transportation Agency has added 45 new guards to its School Crossing Guard Program.

"Our school crossing guards have proven to be effective and proactive measures that ensure the safety of our children and create a positive presence in the community," SFMTA Transportation Director Ed Reiskin said in a statement.

The program now has 195 personnel to patrol safety around public and private schools in the city.

The new staff will help the agency improve safety citywide.

"Having more school crossing guards on our streets will help make our streets more safe for our youngest pedestrians, and will help more parents join the growing numbers of San Francisco families choosing to walk, bike or take transit to school safely," Mayor Ed Lee said in a statement.

18-Year-Old Driver Arrested After Fleeing Scene Of Crash That Injured Passenger

An 18-year-old driver was arrested Monday after fleeing the scene of a rollover crash that seriously injured a passenger in his car, police said.

Officers responded to reports of a rollover in the 400 block of Cabot Road at about 3:15 p.m., South San Francisco police Sgt. Bruce McPhillips said.

A preliminary investigation indicated that the driver of a Toyota 4Runner -- later identified as Juan Antonio Garcia, of South San Francisco -- was attempting to make a U-turn when his vehicle flipped over, McPhillips said.

Witnesses saw Garcia running away from the scene with two of his three passengers, MchPhillips said.

Arriving officers found the third passenger, a man in his 20s, still inside the vehicle, McPhillips said.

He had suffered major head trauma and was taken to a hospital.

Garcia and the two other passengers were found hiding in some bushes near the Bay, McPhillips said.

Garcia was arrested on suspicion of felony hit-and run and driving without a license.

He was booked into San Mateo County Jail on $50,000 bail.

Pittsburg Mom Beaten, Kids Unharmed During Home Invasion Robbery

A woman was beaten as her two young children were sleeping in another room during a home invasion robbery in Pittsburg on Monday night, police said today.

Around 10 p.m., two male intruders forced their way into a home in the 1100 block of Bending Willow Way through a second-story window, police Lt. Ron Raman said.

Police said the suspects demanded money from the 35-year-old woman, whose children, ages 6 and 3, slept nearby.

The woman complied with the suspects' demands but at one point pushed a "panic button" on her alarm system.

That prompted a struggle with the suspects during which they hit her several times in the face and upper body, Raman said.

The victim called 911 after the suspects fled through the front door.

She was taken to a hospital and treated for bruising to her face and arm.

Police said the suspects kept the hoods of their sweatshirts over their faces during the home invasion to conceal their identities.

They did not appear to have any weapons.

According to police, a silver SUV similar to a Chevrolet was seen in the area at the time of the robbery.

Both suspects remain at large, and anyone with information about them is asked to call Pittsburg police (925) 646-2441.

Danville Police Trying To Identify Pedestrian Critically Injured By Suspected DUI Driver

Police are asking for the public's help in identifying a woman who was critically injured when she was hit by a suspected drunken driver in Danville on Monday night.

The woman was walking near Camino Tassajara and Tassajara Lane at about 9 p.m. when a driver heading east on Camino Tassajara struck her, police said.

The victim was taken to John Muir Medical Center in Walnut Creek with life-threatening injuries.

Police said the driver, 50-year-old Samuel Herrick of Danville, was arrested on suspicion of DUI causing injury and was booked into county jail in Martinez.

The victim wasn't carrying any ID at the time of the collision, and police been unable to identify her. She is described as a white woman in her 50s or early 60s who is roughly 5 feet 4 inches tall and weighs about 105 pounds, Danville police Sgt. Scott Dickerson said.

She was wearing khaki shorts and a gray T-shirt at the time of the collision.

Dickerson said this morning that police have not received any information about the woman's identity, nor any missing-person reports, and plan to analyze the victim's fingerprints in the hopes of learning her name.

Anyone with information about the victim's identity or the collision is asked to call Danville police immediately at (925) 314-3700.

Orinda Fire Prompts Reminder About Red Flag Warning

Crews put out a fire that burned an outbuilding and some vegetation in Orinda on Monday and threatened to spread to a nearby home, Moraga-Orinda fire district officials said today.

Neighbors on Muth Drive called the fire district around 1:20 p.m. to report a blaze that was burning an outbuilding and deck and had spread to adjacent brush, Interim Fire Chief Stephen Healy said.

Crews were able to bring the fire under control in less than 15 minutes and no homes were damaged, Healy said.

The cause of the fire is under investigation.

Healy said staffing had been beefed up because of the red flag warning currently in effect, allowing crews to respond more quickly and aggressively to the fire.

Fire officials are reminding residents not to mow any vegetation while the fire warning is in effect, and that any open flame can spark a large fire.

 

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Red Flag Warning Extended, More Lightning Expected Today

The National Weather Service has extended a red-flag warning for parts of the Bay Area, as more lightning is expected to strike this afternoon and later into the evening, a forecaster said.

The warning will be in effect for the East Bay and Santa Cruz Mountains through midnight, forecaster Steve Anderson said.

The weather service has recorded over 15,000 lighting strikes in and around the Bay Area since Monday at noon, he said.

Ninety percent of those strikes were reported about 100 miles offshore in the Pacific Ocean, Anderson said.

The lighting is caused by a low-pressure system that is hovering in the area, he said.

"This is the typical weather that Phoenix and other desert areas experience, without the heat," Anderson said. "The low pressure will spin off through today and slowly start moving northeast Wednesday afternoon," he said.

 

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18-Year-Old Driver Arrested After Fleeing Scene Of Crash That Injured Passenger

An 18-year-old driver was arrested Monday after fleeing the scene of a rollover crash that seriously injured a passenger in his car, police said.

Officers responded to reports of a rollover in the 400 block of Cabot Road at about 3:15 p.m., South San Francisco police Sgt. Bruce McPhillips said.

A preliminary investigation indicated that the driver of a Toyota 4Runner -- later identified as Juan Antonio Garcia, of South San Francisco -- was attempting to make a U-turn when his vehicle flipped over, McPhillips said.

Witnesses saw Garcia running away from the scene with two of his three passengers, MchPhillips said.

Arriving officers found the third passenger, a man in his 20s, still inside the vehicle, McPhillips said.

He had suffered major head trauma and was taken to a hospital.

Garcia and the two other passengers were found hiding in some bushes near the Bay, McPhillips said.

Garcia was arrested on suspicion of felony hit-and run and driving without a license.

He was booked into San Mateo County Jail on $50,000 bail.

 

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Tour Bus Driver Pleads No Contest To DUI Charges

A man accused of driving a double-decker tour bus while drunk in San Francisco last month has pleaded no contest to DUI charges, a prosecutor said today.

Leon Maynard, 60, of San Bruno, pleaded no contest on Monday to a charge of driving under the influence with a blood-alcohol content of .08 percent or higher, district attorney's office spokesman Alex Bastian said.

Maynard was arrested near Stockton and Post streets at about 1:15 p.m. on July 5 while driving a San Francisco Deluxe Sightseeing tour bus, prosecutors said.

His blood-alcohol content at the time of the arrest was 0.21 percent, and he was also cited for an open container infraction, prosecutors said.

Maynard was sentenced to three years' probation, ordered to spend six days in the sheriff's work alternative program, participate for six months in a first offender program and will have his commercial driver's license suspended for a year, Bastian said.

 

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Tuesday Morning News Roundup

Two Survivors Describe Moments Leading Up To Deadly Limo Fire In Redwood City

Two of four women who survived a deadly limousine fire in May described in statements released Monday the final tense moments before five women perished after the vehicle came to a halt on the San Mateo-Hayward Bridge.

Amalia Loyola, 48, of San Leandro, told investigators the bridal shower group had just opened a bottle of Champagne when she felt the vehicle hit a bump, then saw black smoke coming from beneath her feet Loyola, seated in the rear of the passenger compartment, told everyone about the smoke and moved up past the bride-to-be's presents to the front of the limo to join three other passengers.

She then immediately saw flames burst out in the rear next where the other five women sat.

"Nobody followed me after," Loyola said of the five women. "They were just sitting there. I don't know if they passed out or what. But the thing is nobody followed me. I was the only one that moved. They were just sitting there."

Mary Guardiano, 42, of Alameda, had saved herself after squeezing through the burning limo's narrow privacy partition when she ran over and opened both rear doors to free the others trapped inside.

But "flames shot out of the doorway and she was unable to go inside to grab anyone," reported a California Highway Patrol officer who took her statement. "She said she stepped back and the doors shut automatically. She said the (limo) driver just stood with his cellphone."

The women's statements were released Monday with the announcement by authorities that the limousine fire was caused by a mechanical problem and that no criminal charges would be filed in connection with the tragedy.

The announcement was made by the CHP, the San Mateo County coroner's and district attorney's offices and other agencies at a news conference Monday afternoon at the CHP's Redwood City office.

The limousine, driven by Orville Brown, 46, had a failure of its rear air suspension system, causing the vehicle's driveshaft to shift and make contact with the floorboard.

The metal-to-metal friction generated heat that sparked the fire, according to a report released by the CHP.

"The overall nature of this tragedy was not something that was foreseeable," CHP Cmdr. Mike Maskarich said.

Investigators determined that Brown was not on his cellphone when the fire started, District Attorney Steve Wagstaffe said.

Wagstaffe said his office looked into manslaughter, criminal negligence or other possible charges before determining that no charges would be filed against the driver or TownCar SF, the company that owned and operated the limo.

"Some tragedies are crimes and some are not. This tragedy was not," Wagstaffe said.

Investigators also learned that the limo, a Ford Lincoln produced in 1998 that had more than 200,000 miles on it at the time of the fire, had been reported stolen on Sept. 9, 2004, and found days later stripped of parts.

The vehicle was repaired in Southern California for about $14,000 by a now-closed business but it was not clear how much of it had been refurbished compared to its original state, the CHP reported.

Oakland Police Identify Suspect In Telegraph Avenue Shooting Saturday 

Oakland police have identified a suspect Monday who allegedly shot at several witnesses to a car burglary downtown on Saturday afternoon.

Police arrested 20-year-old Demetrius Lashun Ward Monday morning, according to court records.

Police said that Ward allegedly broke into a car in the 1700 block of Telegraph Avenue at about 4 p.m., stole items and ran away.

Several witnesses chased after him and recovered the stolen property.

But Ward allegedly came back on a bicycle minutes later and opened fire, wounding two women and two men before he fled again.

All four victims suffered gunshot wounds that are not considered life-threatening, according to police.

Police said Ward is facing charges of attempted murder, three counts of assault with a semi-automatic firearm, a count of second degree auto burglary and violation of probation.

Ward is being held without bail and scheduled to be arraigned on Wednesday afternoon, according to court records.

Oakland Blues Singer Seeks $5M In Damages For Attack At Music Festival 

The city of Hayward and the Bay Area Blues Society are partially responsible for a woman's attack on blues singer Lester Chambers after he dedicated a song to Trayvon Martin at blues festival last month, Chambers' attorney alleged Monday.

Oakland civil rights attorney John Burris, who represents Chambers, a 73-year-old Petaluma man, said the blues society should have done a better job of providing security at the Hayward Russell City Blues Festival on July 13 and the city should have done a better job of supervising the event.

Dinalynn Potter, a 43-year-old woman from Barstow, has been charged with felony assault and felony elder abuse for allegedly attacking Chambers after he announced he would sing Curtis Mayfield's song "People Get Ready" in honor of Martin, a 17-year-old black youth who was fatally shot by neighborhood watch volunteer George Zimmerman in Florida last year.

Chambers dedicated the song several hours before jurors in Zimmerman's trial acquitted him of all charges.

Burris said he's filing a $5 million claim on Chambers' behalf against the city of Hayward and a lawsuit against Potter and the blues society seeking an identical amount.

The lawsuit alleges that Potter rushed the stage after Chambers said he would sing the song, throwing herself on him, punching him repeatedly with her fists, calling him names and "making derogatory slurs implicating his race."

Chambers is black and Potter is white.

The suit also alleges that security personnel whose services were retained for the concert were on a smoking break when the attack occurred.

Speaking at a news conference in his office, Burris said security personnel should have been paying more attention because "it was a highly volatile time" because of the jury's deliberations in Zimmerman's case and many police agencies were on high alert.

Chambers said Potter's attack was "totally unexpected" and left him "in total shock" because he had dedicated the song as a goodwill gesture of "peace, love, joy and a desire to make a change" and he didn't condone any violence.

Chambers said he suffered bruises, cuts and other injuries to his ribs, hands and face and has been forced to postpone a tour he was planning to promote a CD he's in the process of completing.

He said, "It's still a nightmare and I'm shaking all the time" and he's had difficulty sleeping.

Hayward City Attorney Michael Lawson said he has no comment on the claim because the city just received it.

He said the city has 45 days to process the claim.

Bay Area Blues Society officials couldn't be reached for comment.

Burris said, "There's no doubt this was a hate crime" and he believes the Alameda County District Attorney's Office should have charged Potter with a hate crime in addition to assault and elder abuse.

District attorney's office spokeswoman Teresa Drenick didn't comment directly on the decision not to charge Potter with a hate crime, saying only that, "We charged that which we felt appropriate to charge based upon all of the evidence reviewed."

Antioch Police Arrest Suspect In Fatal Stabbing At Gas Station

Police have arrested a suspect in a fatal stabbing at a gas station in Antioch on Saturday night.

A 34-year-old man from Antioch was arrested for allegedly stabbing another man at a Chevron gas station at 3201 Delta Fair Blvd., Sgt. Tony Morefield said Monday.

At about 7:40 p.m. Saturday, the victim was found by police suffering from several stab wounds.

He was taken to a hospital where he died, according to police.

The victim has been identified by the Contra Costa County coroner's office as 49-year-old Antioch resident Kann Cendejaf.

The suspect was found at the scene, taken to the Police Department for questioning and was arrested the same night, Morefield said.

Police are not yet releasing the name of the suspect, pending a review of the case by the Contra Costa County District Attorney's Office.

Anyone with information about the stabbing is asked to call Antioch police at (925) 779-6894.

Trial Begins For Former Sheriff's Deputy Accused In Dirty DUI Case

A prosecutor told a federal jury in San Francisco Monday that a former Contra Costa County sheriff's deputy metaphorically "sold his badge" when he allegedly arranged so-called "dirty DUI" arrests for a private investigator.

Monday was the first day of trial for Stephen Tanabe, 50, of Alamo, on seven federal charges related to his role in the drunken driving arrests of three husbands of clients of former investigator Christopher Butler in Danville in late 2010 and early 2011.

Tanabe allegedly received cocaine and an expensive Glock gun from Butler in exchange for the arrests, which were intended to strengthen the wives' positions in divorce and custody cases and which came after employees of Butler enticed the men to get drunk.

"To put it more bluntly, he sold his badge," Assistant U.S. Attorney Philip Kearney told the jury during his opening statement in the court of U.S. District Judge Charles Breyer.

"In selling his badge, he let loose intoxicated drivers on the street of Danville, a town he was sworn to protect," Kearney said. "He violated his duty to provide honest services," the prosecutor charged.

Butler's driving-under-the-influence operations were part of a wide-ranging Contra Costa County police corruption scandal centered on Butler and former drug squad commander Norman Wielsch.

Both Butler, who is slated to be a key prosecution witness against Tanabe, and Wielsch have pleaded guilty to an array of charges including drug offenses, conspiracy and civil rights violations.

Butler was sentenced to eight years in prison and Wielsch, the former commander of the now-disbanded Central Contra Costa County Narcotics Enforcement Team, was sentenced to 14 years.

Among other crimes, Butler admitted to staging drunken driving arrests and extorting protection money from employees of an illegal massage parlor that he and Wielsch founded.

Both men admitted to selling marijuana and methamphetamine that Wielsch stole from CNET evidence lockers; conducting phony stings in which they stole property and cash from prostitutes who were rivals of the massage parlor employees; and staging a phony arrest of a teenager whose mother wanted him to stop selling drugs.

Tanabe's trial is expected to last about two weeks.

Defense attorney Tim Pori told the jury during his opening statement that he plans to attack the credibility of Butler and other prosecution witnesses, including Carl Marino, a top Butler aide.

"The evidence will show this case is based on lies, lies, and more lies," Pori said.

"These are people who built their careers on lies, deception and destroying people," the defense attorney said.

"Chris Butler is a masterful manipulator and one of his favorite things to do was to frame people," said Pori, who charged that Butler will be seeking to aid prosecutors when on the stand in a bid to have his prison term reduced.

Pori said he didn't dispute that Tanabe participated in the three arrests, but said officers in the low-crime town had performance objectives that included making DUI arrests, and said it was normal for them to wait outside bars to watch for intoxicated drivers.

He said the alleged cocaine payment was never found and that while a Glock gun was found in Tanabe's home, there was no proof he received it in exchange for the arrests.

Pori said Butler admitted to staging a total of 12 dirty DUI arrests in various Bay Area locations, and contended Butler didn't need to pay Tanabe because he didn't pay the officers in the other cities.

Jury Begins Deliberations At Joseph Naso Trial

Jurors began deliberations Monday afternoon after hearing evidence for two months in Marin County Superior Court at former commercial photographer Joseph Naso's trial for allegedly killing four prostitutes.

The prosecution presented 70 witnesses and Naso called seven witnesses to the stand.

He is charged with strangling the women whose bodies were found off the side of rural roads in Marin, Contra Costa and Yuba counties between 1977 and 1994.

Deputy District Attorney Rosemary Slote told the jury in her closing argument Naso picked up the women in his car, took them home, strangled them and dumped their bodies.

The prosecution presented DNA evidence it claims links Naso to the murders of Roxene Roggasch, 18, of Oakland and Carmen Colon, 22, an East Bay resident.

Roggasch's body was found on Jan. 11, 1977, near Fairfax in Marin County and Colon's body was discovered off Carquinez Scenic Drive near Port Costa in Contra Costa County.

The other victims are Yuba County residents Pamela Parsons, 38, of Linda, and Tracy Tafoya, 31.

Parsons's body was found on Sept. 19, 1993, in Yuba County and Tafoya's body was found in Yuba County on Aug. 14, 1994.

Naso, 79, of Reno, has been representing himself.

During his five-hour closing argument on Friday and Monday, Naso asked the jury to ignore the prosecution's attempt to "mislead" them with illegal circumstantial evidence and "inflame" them with photographs of the women's bodies.

Naso told the jury if they disregard the prosecution's "tattletales" about his alleged past sexual offenses, they will be convinced he is not guilty of all four murders.

Naso said he had no motive to kill anyone because he had a good family life and was involved in community service.

He admitted he picked up Parsons hitchhiking and photographed her but said he didn't kill her.

Regarding the prosecution's contention that his DNA was found in some semen in the pantyhose Roggasch was wearing inside out when her body was found, Naso said that would only prove he might have had sex with her.

"But I don't remember," he said.

Naso's wife Judith's DNA also was found in a pair of pantyhose that was wrapped around Roggash's neck, according to the prosecution.

The prosecution also introduced diaries Naso kept that purportedly give accounts of women he raped in several cities between 1950 and 1970, and a handwritten list the prosecution believes refers to at least seven women, including the four murder victims, and where he dumped their bodies.

Naso said his "date diaries," and the list do not contain the names of the alleged victims or time and place of any murders or alleged sexual assaults.

"I'm not on trial for sexual assault," he told the jury several times during his closing statement.

"This case is about murder not about events and activities that have never been charged as crimes," Naso said.

Rather than refuting what Slote said the prosecution proved, Naso told the jury what was not proved.

"The prosecution can't prove I am capable of lifting over 30 pounds due to a bad back and torn rotator cuff in my left shoulder and a fracture in my left elbow," Naso told the jury.

"The prosecution can't prove I'm capable of killing four people and transporting them long distances and dumping their bodies," he said.

Oakland Death Of Father, Daughter Ruled Murder-Suicide 

The death of a father and daughter at an Oakland home early Monday morning has been ruled a murder-suicide by investigators, a police spokeswoman said.

The father was identified as 88-year-old William Roberts, who fatally shot his 57-year-old daughter Marian and then killed himself, Oakland police Officer Johnna Watson said.

They were found by officers who responded at 4:32 a.m. to the home in the 4100 block of Fruitvale Avenue, Watson said.

No other information about the case was immediately available Monday afternoon from police.

Oakland Protesting Truckers Block Port Terminals

A protest by as many as 120 truckers forced some terminals at the Port of Oakland to close temporarily Monday but Oakland police are working to try to keep all the terminals operational, a port spokeswoman said.

All but one of the five terminals at the port were able to conduct at least some type of operation Monday morning but the situation was "fluid" and sometimes terminals were closed and sometimes they were open, according to port spokeswoman Marilyn Sandifur.

At one point all the terminals were blocked by protesting truckers who blocked their gates, but Oakland police later came to the scene to make sure that trucks can get in and out of all the terminals, Sandifur said.

She described the protesters as "a group of truckers" but said she didn't know the reason for the protest.

Sandifur said there wasn't any protest activity during the lunch hour.

Sandifur estimated that about 100 to 120 truckers participated at the peak of the protest.

She said that's a small percentage of the total of 6,800 registered truckers who do business at the port.

Man, Woman Shot In Visitacion Valley

A man and a woman were shot Monday afternoon in San Francisco's Visitacion Valley neighborhood, according to police.

Officers responded to the corner of Sunnydale Avenue and Bayshore Boulevard at 4:58 p.m.

They found a man in his 40s and a woman suffering gunshot wounds and both were taken to San Francisco General Hospital.

The man's injuries are considered life-threatening and the woman's are not, police said.

Police are looking for a suspect, a man between 20 and 25 years old who fled in a burgundy sedan, according to police.

Weather Forecast For The San Francisco Bay Area

Mostly cloudy skies and patchy fog are expected in the Bay Area this morning, with a slight chance of showers and thunderstorms.

Highs are likely to be in the 50s to upper 60s, with southwest winds up to 20 mph.

Mostly cloudy skies are expected this evening with patchy fog and a slight chance of thunderstorms after midnight.

Lows are likely to be in the mid 50s, with southwest winds up to 20 mph.

Cloudy skies and patchy fog are likely Wednesday morning, with a slight chance of showers and thunderstorms.

Highs are expected to be in the 50s to upper 60s, with westerly winds up to 20 mph.

 

 

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Weather Forecast For The San Francisco Bay Area

Mostly cloudy skies and patchy fog are expected in the Bay Area this morning, with a slight chance of showers and thunderstorms.

Highs are likely to be in the 50s to upper 60s, with southwest winds up to 20 mph.

Mostly cloudy skies are expected this evening with patchy fog and a slight chance of thunderstorms after midnight.

Lows are likely to be in the mid 50s, with southwest winds up to 20 mph.

Cloudy skies and patchy fog are likely Wednesday morning, with a slight chance of showers and thunderstorms. Highs are expected to be in the 50s to upper 60s, with westerly winds up to 20 mph.

 

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SFMTA Adds More Crossing Guards to Patrol Safety Around Schools

Monday was the first day of school not only for many San Francisco students, but also for many new crossing guards.

The San Francisco Municipal Transportation Agency has added 45 new guards to its School Crossing Guard Program.

"Our school crossing guards have proven to be effective and proactive measures that ensure the safety of our children and create a positive presence in the community, SFMTA Transportation Director Ed Reiskin said in a statement.

The program now has 195 personnel to patrol safety around public and private schools in the city.

The new staff will help the agency's improve pedestrian and school area safety citywide in addition to supervising intersections of concern.

"Having more school crossing guards on our streets will help make our streets more safe for our youngest pedestrians, and will help more parents join the growing numbers of San Francisco families choosing to walk, bike or take transit to school safely," Mayor Ed Lee said in a statement.

 

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Berkeley Rescuers Looking For Owner Of Dog Found Stranded In SF Bay

A free-spirited pooch found stranded in the middle of the San Francisco Bay Monday afternoon is in the loving care of her Berkeley rescuers while the search for her owner continues.

The dog was paddling in the water near Angel Island when Adam Cohen, of Berkeley, on his small boat he takes to commute into San Francisco, saw four windsurfers with their sails down, Cohen's wife Lisa Grodin said today.

"They did a heroic thing out there," Grodin said today from her family's Berkeley hills home. "Everyone who was out there took a risk trying to make sure the dog got saved."

The surfers were attempting to put the struggling dog onto their boards and when Cohen arrived it was determined getting her onboard was the most immediate and efficient plan.

Grodin said her husband said that the dog was tired as he brought her to shore.

He then called Grodin and told her, "Hey looks like we have a visitor."

The professional violinist who works at Berkeley's Crowden Music Center said she prepared towels and hot water bottles and that it took nearly two hours for the young dog to warm up.

Eventually the dog pushed through her watery ordeal and Cohen and Grodin said the young dog that seems to be less than a year old didn't look abused and was in good health.

She has a collar but no tags, Grodin said.

The dog appears to be a brown-haired Italian mastiff and is taking well to her temporary home with Grodin, Cohen and their two sons.

"She's amazing, somebody has taken some care of her," she said.

The family hopes to find the dog's owner and understand how the puppy ended up in the middle of the bay.

"I'm really quickly falling for her and it's only been a couple days," she said. "I would be hard-pressed to part with her."

She said the playful pup is adjusting to her new surroundings, including the family's dog, and that the large puppy already follows Grodin everywhere.

She said the dog is somewhat trained and that it's "really clear that she's used to looking at somebody for direction."

"She's very chummy," Grodin said. "This dog is really adorable. She's completely irresistible."

Grodin has been staying at home with the dog that the family has dubbed "Richard Parker" after the tiger in Yann Martel novel, "The Life of Pi" that similarly was stranded in the ocean.

A self-described dog person, Grodin said taking care of the dog has been a joy and she's honored to be part of the rescue effort.

She cannot fathom how the dog ended up in the water.

She listed possible scenarios including someone abandoning her, the dog somehow swimming from land, or falling off a boat.

As of Wednesday afternoon no one had claimed the puppy, however according to staff at the Berkeley Dog and Cat Hospital there have been at least two inquiries about adopting her.

A steady stream of visitors have come to visit Richard Parker at the Grodin-Cohen home, including two of the windsurfers that initially spotted the dog.

One brought his daughter to see the puppy, Grodin said.

Berkeley-East Bay Humane Society and dog and cat hospital officials are working with the family to get the word out about the rescued dog and trying to locate the owner.

If finding the owner proves impossible, the dog may go up for adoption.

"If we feel like we can part with her, we want to make sure she has a loving home," Grodin said.

Anyone with information about the dog's owner is asked to contact the hospital at (510) 848-5041.

 

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Bicyclist Hits Pedestrian In Golden Gate Park

A bicyclist hit a pedestrian in San Francisco's Golden Gate Park this morning, sending both to the hospital, a police spokeswoman said.

The collision was reported at 10:39 a.m. on John F. Kennedy Drive near the Conservatory of Flowers.

Neither the bicyclist nor the pedestrian suffered life-threatening injuries, police spokeswoman Officer Tracy Turner said.

Police have not yet released additional details on the incident.

 

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CCSF Teachers Laud Department Of Education Letter Questioning Accrediting Commission

City College of San Francisco teachers and their advocates said today that a decision to revoke the school's accreditation should be overturned after the U.S. Department of Education issued a letter Tuesday finding fault with the regional panel that made the decision.

The Accrediting Commission for Community and Junior Colleges announced on July 3 that City College's accreditation would end in July 2014, saying the school had fully addressed only two of the 14 recommendations the commission made when it sanctioned the school last year.

However, a letter sent Tuesday by the Department of Education to commission president Barbara Beno cited multiple issues with the ACCJC's accrediting process.

The letter stated that the accrediting commission was unclear in "what a recommendation represents -- an area of noncompliance or an area for improvement."

The letter said, "This lack of clear identification impacts the agency's ability to provide institutions with adequate due process."

The letter also took issue with a lack of faculty members on the teams that evaluated City College in 2012 and earlier this year, as well as a possible conflict of interest in having Beno's husband serve as a member of an evaluation team.

Members of City College's faculty union and a statewide teachers' union lauded the department's letter today and argued that it should prompt the ACCJC not to revoke accreditation.

"It's a clear justification for reversing the decision," said Alisa Messer, president of American Federation of Teachers Local 2121, the school's faculty union.

"We all agree there are things to work on at City College," Messer said. "What we don't agree on are the punitive actions and inconsistent actions that have wreaked more havoc" on the school. 

Joshua Pechthalt, president of the California Federation of Teachers, said the federal letter "confirms what we have known for some time, that the ACCJC has operated as a rogue agency."

The state teachers' union in May filed a nearly 300-page complaint against the accrediting commission with the Department of Education, accusing the ACCJC of intimidation, a lack of due process and other violations.

The ACCJC issued a response to the letter on its website Tuesday, saying the commission "will be responding formally to the department's letter and will, of course, make necessary changes to appropriately address the department's concerns."

The ACCJC said its response to the letter will be submitted in December as part of the review of its recognition by the department as an accrediting agency.

Meanwhile, City College plans next week to send in a request of a review by the commission of its accreditation decision, Messer said.

If the ACCJC declines to overturn its decision, the school will then be able to formally appeal, while Pechthalt said his organization is also considering legal options against the commission.

Messer said she is glad the letter has "the spotlight turned on (the commission's) own documents and procedures" and said it has brightened the mood at the school, which has seen decreasing student enrollment during the uncertainty over its accreditation.

"It's a tremendous relief for faculty," she said. "We've known all along that there's a problem with the process."

Today was the first day of the fall semester at City College.

 

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State High Court Declines To Review Prop 8 Sponsor's Petition

The California Supreme Court today turned down a petition in which the sponsors of Proposition 8 sought to have the ban on same-sex marriage put back into effect in most of the state.

The court, in an order issued in San Francisco, declined to grant a hearing on the petition, which was filed July 12.

The court made no comment in the order, which was signed by Chief Justice Tani Cantil-Sakauye.

Today's court action appears to bring an end to pending litigation seeking to stop gay and lesbian weddings in the state, at least for the time being.

Previously, the high court on July 15 turned down the sponsors' request for an immediate stay of same-sex marriages while the panel considered the petition for review.

Then, on July 23, the court turned down a similar request for a stay by San Diego County Clerk Ernest Dronenburg, who asked the court to dismiss his separate petition for review a few days later.

The court in a second order today granted dismissal of Dronenburg's petition.

An earlier request by the Proposition 8 sponsors for a U.S. Supreme Court stay was rejected by Justice Anthony Kennedy on June 30.

In their petition, the sponsors of the 2008 voter initiative claimed that a federal court injunction blocking enforcement of Proposition 8 should apply only to the marriages of the two couples who challenged the measure.

Gov. Jerry Brown and state Attorney General Kamala Harris contend that the injunction, issued by U.S. District Judge Vaughn Walker of San Francisco in 2010, applies statewide.

Same-sex marriages resumed in California on June 28 after the 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals lifted a stay of the injunction.

Two days earlier, the U.S. Supreme Court had left the injunction in place when it ruled that the Proposition 8 supporters had no standing to appeal it.

Walker ruled that the measure violated the constitutional rights of equal treatment and due process, and ordered state officials not to enforce it.

If the California Supreme Court had agreed to review the Proposition 8 backers' quest to reinstate the ban in most of the state, the process would have taken several months and would have included a hearing and preparation of a full written opinion.

Because the court had previously denied a stay, gay weddings would have continued during that process.

The court grants review of only a small percentage of the petitions it receives.

 

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Wednesday Midday News Roundup

Family Of Daphne Webb Going On 'Love Walk' For Missing Toddler

Family members of missing toddler Daphne Webb are gathering in Oakland for a "Love Walk" in her honor this afternoon.

At least two dozen people are set to start walking at 1 p.m. from police headquarters at the corner of Broadway and Seventh Street to City Hall in Frank Ogawa Plaza, said Roslyn Robinson, Daphne's great-aunt.

Concerned members of the public are invited to join the walk.

"We just want to keep her name in the public eye, we want to keep her face out there," said Robinson. "We don't want it to die down and we don't want to lose hope." 

Today's event comes five weeks after 21-month-old Daphne was reported missing by her father, who told police she had vanished from his parked car on July 10 outside the Gazza Supermarket at 7838 International Blvd.

The father, 49-year-old Oakland resident John Anthony Webb, told police a stranger abducted his daughter from the car, where she had been sitting with her 87-year-old grandmother, who suffers from dementia.

Since Daphne's disappearance, her family has canvassed neighborhoods throughout Oakland and Alameda, knocking on doors and handing out fliers, Robinson said.

She said that so far, police have not relayed anything new, but that the family remains hopeful that someone has information about Daphne's whereabouts.

"We figure somebody has seen something, somebody knows something, even though they might not have seen the headlines when it first happened," Robinson said.

Representatives from KlaasKids Foundation, which was established in 1994 after the kidnapping and murder of 12-year-old Petaluma girl Polly Klaas, have also been helping with the search, she said.

"They're trying to do whatever they can to keep baby Daphne on the radar and gather public support to push law enforcement to solve this case," said KlaasKids founder Marc Klaas, Polly's father, who has helped counsel Daphne's family since her disappearance.

Klaas said that recently, Webb's disappearance has been eclipsed by the case of missing San Diego County teen Hannah Anderson, who was found safe in Idaho with her captor, James DiMaggio, on Saturday.

Authorities believe DiMaggio murdered Anderson's mother and brother.

"I probably took 100 phone calls last week and only one of them was asking about baby Daphne," he said.

"This is still ongoing, nobody knows what happened to this child, and just as much as Hannah Anderson deserved to return home and be found, so does baby Daphne," Klaas said.

Daphne is described by police as black with short, curly black hair and a deformity in her left ear.

She is 2 feet tall and weighs 30 pounds.

She was last seen wearing orange two-piece pajamas with pink hearts.

Anyone with information about Daphne's whereabouts is urged to call the Oakland Police Department's Missing Persons Unit at (510) 238-3352 or 911.

Bart Trains Getting Back On Schedule After Transbay Tube Stall

BART service is back on track after a train lost power in the Transbay Tube earlier this morning, causing major delays.

The train, bound for San Francisco International Airport, became disabled in the tube around 8:25 a.m., BART spokeswoman Luna Salaver said.

When the train stalled, power went out in the front car, leaving some riders in the dark, Salaver said.

The incident caused lengthy delays systemwide.

Salaver said the operator went to the back of the train and used the rear-car control room to move the train back to West Oakland in manual mode.

The passengers were let off and took a different train into San Francisco, she said.

The tunnel was cleared shortly before 9 a.m. but residual delays lingered.

As of 10:45 a.m. service was nearly back to normal but some trains were a few minutes late.

Many BART riders posted about the experience on social media.

One Twitter user said, "Being stuck in a BART train in the transbay tube for 30 minutes this morning was pretty close to my worst commute ever."

Another rider tweeted, "On a BART train stuck in the TransBay tube, lights out, no power. This...this means that the first Kaiju attack is happening, right?"

David Brown, 25, who works at the San Francisco Massage Supply Company on 10th Street in San Francisco, opened the shop late because his train that he caught at the Ashby Station in Berkeley was stopped at West Oakland behind the stalled train for more than 30 minutes.

He said his fellow riders took the delay in stride and that the operator kept passengers informed on what was happening every few minutes.

"Nobody was huffing and puffing," he said. "People were keeping to themselves."

Bicyclist Dies After Collision With Big-Rig In SOMA

A bicyclist struck a pedestrian in San Francisco's Golden Gate Park this morning, a fire department spokeswoman said.

The collision was reported at 10:39 a.m. on John F. Kennedy Drive near the Conservatory of Flowers, fire spokeswoman Mindy Talmadge said.

Both the bicyclist and pedestrian are being taken to the hospital, Talmadge said.

She did not yet have information about the extent of the injuries to either person.

Project Homeless Connect Marks 50th Event Today With Free Resource Fair

Project Homeless Connect is holding its 50th event in San Francisco today, and is celebrating the milestone by offering a slew of free services for homeless residents.

The program, which has been providing services and resources for thousands of the city's homeless since 2004, is holding a special event at the Bill Graham Civic Auditorium at 99 Grove St. from 10 a.m. until 3 p.m.

The event is a free resource fair and a "one-stop shop" for the homeless, where they have access to medical services, food, shelter information and personal hygiene supplies.

Organizers said that since the program's inception, 55,326 pounds of food has been given away.

To mark the 50th event, program officials are aiming to get 5,000 new followers on social media sites Facebook and Twitter.

For each new online follower, San Francisco Citizens Initiative for Technology and Innovation, or sf.citi, is donating $1, event spokesman Kevin McCormack said.

The money will pay for dental services for the homeless, he said.

He explained that dentures are a coveted item but one that is costly for residents struggling to pay for housing and other necessities.

San Francisco Mayor Ed Lee spoke this morning at the start of the fair and thanked the numerous volunteers -- nearly 22,000 volunteers have signed up over the years -- who have allowed the program to continue into its ninth year.

Former Mayor Gavin Newsom launched the program, which holds events every few months.

The next event is in December.

Certain fairs target specific populations such as veterans, homeless families or LGBT residents, McCormack said.

Information is also available today about the services offered through a 24-hour, seven-day-a-week hotline the city calls "Every Day Connect."

The hotline can be reached at (855) 588-7968.

The hotline offers help with a range of needs, starting with the most basic such as finding a pair of jeans for a job interview or making an appointment at the DMV, McCormack said.

Organizers are also attempting to raise $50,000 through the "Real Change" program, which encourages supporters to donate spare change to pay for dentures, eyeglasses, hygiene items, and other items for needy residents.

Project Homeless Connect is supported by corporate sponsors, volunteers, nonprofits, and a collaboration of city agencies including the departments of public health and human services.

Mother Of Teen Murdered In 2006 Passing Out Fliers Today

The mother of a teenage boy who was gunned down in San Francisco's North of Panhandle neighborhood seven years ago today will be handing out fliers in the area to try to gather new leads in the case.

Aubrey Abrakasa, 17, was fatally shot at about 3:15 p.m. on Aug. 14, 2006, at Grove and Baker streets.

Abrakasa played high school basketball and was about to start his senior year at Raoul Wallenberg Traditional High School when he was killed.

His mother, Paulette Brown, will be in the area of Grove and Baker streets at 3 p.m. today along with members of the Police Department's homicide detail to hand out information about the case in the hopes of developing information that will lead to an arrest.

The mayor's office has authorized a reward of up to $250,000 for information leading to an arrest and conviction in the case.

Anyone with information about Abrakasa's death is asked to call the homicide detail at (415) 553-1145.

People wishing to remain anonymous can call the tip line at (415) 575-4444 or send a tip by text message to TIP411 with "SFPD" in the message.

33-Year-Old Man Shot To Death In San Lorenzo

Alameda County sheriff's deputies are investigating a shooting in San Lorenzo early this morning that left a 33-year-old man dead, a sheriff's spokesman said.

The shooting was reported on Robscott Avenue near Ginger Avenue at 12:07 a.m.

Several neighbors called the sheriff's office after hearing multiple gunshots, sheriff's spokesman Sgt. J.D. Nelson said.

Deputies found the victim lying in the street.

He was pronounced dead at the scene.

Nelson said the victim is an Alameda County resident but that investigators do not believe he lived in the neighborhood where he was shot.

The Alameda County coroner's bureau is working to confirm the victim's identity.

Nelson said investigators have no suspects in the case yet.

"We've got a whodunit," he said.

Marin High School Community Mourns Loss Of Employee Who Died On Camping Trip

Students and staff at a Mill Valley high school are grappling with the loss of a popular attendance clerk who died during a camping trip in Sequoia National Park last week.

The Tulare County coroner's office identified the victim as 65-year-old San Rafael resident Johnnie Jean Daniel.

Daniel had been camping at the Cold Springs Campground in the Mineral King area, according to the National Park Service.

A family member reported her missing to Sequoia and Kings Canyon National Parks staff on Thursday.

The family member said she had been expected back three days earlier.

An extensive ground and air search began Friday in areas that were part of her intended itinerary, including the Franklin, Crystal and Monarch lakes areas and along the Sawtooth Trail, National Park Service officials said.

Her body was recovered Saturday in the Mineral King area, about 1,000 feet above Monarch Lake just below a portion of the Sawtooth Trail, said Matt Fagan, spokesman for Sequoia and Kings Canyon National Parks.

A Tulare County coroner's office spokesman said an autopsy has been conducted but that the office is awaiting the results of toxicology tests to determine Daniel's cause of death.

Daniel had worked as an attendance clerk at Tamalpais High School in Mill Valley since 1999, said Mary O'Leary, an administrative assistant at the 1,300-student high school.

Daniel also filled in as a health specialist at the school and planned to retire in December, O'Leary said.

"She was very loved and a dear employee. She was very energetic. She rode her bike everywhere. She loved the Mineral King area of Sequoia National Park," O'Leary said.

O'Leary said Daniel had climbed Mt. Whitney and Mt. Shasta.

"It was not unusual for to her to on a trip by herself," O'Leary said. "We're going to miss her," she said.

Oakland School For The Arts Offering Figure Skating Program

The Oakland School for the Arts will debut a new figure skating program this school year with the hopes of giving students a unique artistic outlet.

The program already has three admitted students for this year, and another three students planned to audition on Tuesday afternoon, the school's executive and artistic director Donn Harris said.

Students need to have some experience in figure skating to apply, whether it be recreational or professional training, Harris said.

The new emphasis is one of 10 art concentrations the school offers.

The others include dance, digital media, circus arts and production design.

"In terms of discipline and commitment, I really do think you learn that kind of strong inner self that gets built through exploring these different art forms," Harris said.

The school hopes to eventually admit 15 students into the figure skating program, Harris said.

Ten people have applied for the program so far.

The applicants are a combination of students already admitted to the school and external students.

Classes will be taught by instructors at the Oakland Ice Center, located across the street from the school, which is housed in the Fox Theater.

Gov. Jerry Brown founded the charter school in 2002, when he was then Oakland mayor.

The school serves more than 600 students in grades 6 through 12.

Students also take classes in English, math, science and social studies.

Once they reach high school, students additionally study a romance language.

 

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Project Homeless Connect Marks 50th Event Today With Free Resource Fair

Project Homeless Connect is holding its 50th event in San Francisco today, and is celebrating the milestone by offering a slew of free services for homeless residents.

The program, which has been providing services and resources for thousands of the city's homeless since 2004, is holding a special event at the Bill Graham Civic Auditorium at 99 Grove St. from 10 a.m. until 3 p.m.

The event is a free resource fair and a "one-stop shop" for the homeless, where they have access to medical services, food, shelter information and personal hygiene supplies.

Organizers said that since the program's inception, 55,326 pounds of food has been given away.

To mark the 50th event, program officials are aiming to get 5,000 new followers on social media sites Facebook and Twitter.

For each new online follower, San Francisco Citizens Initiative for Technology and Innovation, or sf.citi, is donating $1, event spokesman Kevin McCormack said.

The money will pay for dental services for the homeless, he said.

He explained that dentures are a coveted item but one that is costly for residents struggling to pay for housing and other necessities.

San Francisco Mayor Ed Lee spoke this morning at the start of the fair and thanked the numerous volunteers -- nearly 22,000 volunteers have signed up over the years -- who have allowed the program to continue into its ninth year.

Former Mayor Gavin Newsom launched the program, which holds events every few months.

The next event is in December.

Certain fairs target specific populations such as veterans, homeless families or LGBT residents, McCormack said.

Information is also available today about the services offered through a 24-hour, seven-day-a-week hotline the city calls "Every Day Connect."

The hotline can be reached at (855) 588-7968.

The hotline offers help with a range of needs, starting with the most basic such as finding a pair of jeans for a job interview or making an appointment at the DMV, McCormack said.

Organizers are also attempting to raise $50,000 through the "Real Change" program, which encourages supporters to donate spare change to pay for dentures, eyeglasses, hygiene items, and other items for needy residents.

Project Homeless Connect is supported by corporate sponsors, volunteers, nonprofits, and a collaboration of city agencies including the departments of public health and human services.

 

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Mother Of Teen Murdered In 2006 Passing Out Fliers Today

The mother of a teenage boy who was gunned down in San Francisco's North of Panhandle neighborhood seven years ago today will be handing out fliers in the area to try to gather new leads in the case.
Aubrey Abrakasa, 17, was fatally shot at about 3:15 p.m. on Aug. 14, 2006, at Grove and Baker streets.
Abrakasa played high school basketball and was about to start his senior year at Raoul Wallenberg Traditional High School when he was killed.
His mother, Paulette Brown, will be in the area of Grove and Baker streets at 3 p.m. today along with members of the Police Department's homicide detail to hand out information about the case in the hopes of developing information that will lead to an arrest.
The mayor's office has authorized a reward of up to $250,000 for information leading to an arrest and conviction in the case.
Anyone with information about Abrakasa's death is asked to call the homicide detail at (415) 553-1145.
People wishing to remain anonymous can call the tip line at (415) 575-4444 or send a tip by text message to TIP411 with "SFPD" in the message.
 

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Bart Trains Getting Back On Schedule After Transbay Tube Stall

BART service is getting back on track after a train lost power in the Transbay Tube earlier this morning, causing major delays.

The train, bound for San Francisco International Airport, became disabled in the tube around 8:25 a.m., BART spokeswoman Luna Salaver said.

When the train stalled, power went out in the front car, leaving some riders in the dark, Salaver said.

The incident caused lengthy delays systemwide.

Salaver said the operator went to the back of the train and used the rear-car control room to move the train back to West Oakland in manual mode.

The passengers were let off and took a different train into San Francisco, she said.

The tunnel was cleared shortly before 9 a.m. but residual delays lingered.

As of 10:45 a.m. service was nearly back to normal but some trains were a few minutes late.

Many BART riders posted about the experience on social media.

One Twitter user said, "Being stuck in a BART train in the transbay tube for 30 minutes this morning was pretty close to my worst commute ever."

Another rider tweeted, "On a BART train stuck in the TransBay tube, lights out, no power. This...this means that the first Kaiju attack is happening, right?"

David Brown, 25, who works at the San Francisco Massage Supply Company on 10th Street in San Francisco, opened the shop late because his train that he caught at the Ashby Station in Berkeley was stopped at West Oakland behind the stalled train for more than 30 minutes.

He said his fellow riders took the delay in stride and that the operator kept passengers informed on what was happening every few minutes.

"Nobody was huffing and puffing," he said. "People were keeping to themselves."

 

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Bicyclist Strikes Pedestrian In Golden Gate Park, Both Hospitalized

A bicyclist struck a pedestrian in San Francisco's Golden Gate Park this morning, a fire department spokeswoman said.

The collision was reported at 10:39 a.m. on John F. Kennedy Drive near the Conservatory of Flowers, fire spokeswoman Mindy Talmadge said.

Both the bicyclist and pedestrian are being taken to the hospital, Talmadge said.

She did not yet have information about the extent of the injuries to either person.

 

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Bart Train Stuck In Transbay Tube Removed; Residual Delays Continue

A BART train that became disabled inside the Transbay Tube this morning has been removed and service is getting back to normal, a BART spokeswoman said.

The train was bound for San Francisco International Airport when it stopped functioning and got stuck in the tube at about 8:25 a.m.

"We do not know why the lead car stopped operating," BART spokeswoman Luna Salaver said.

The incident caused major delays systemwide, and many riders took to social media to tweet about being stuck.

Salaver said the operator went to the back of the train and "took the train via manual mode back to West Oakland."

The Transbay Tube was cleared shortly before 9 a.m. but there were still residual delays.

 

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Major Bart Delays Reported After Train Gets Stuck In Transbay Tube

A San Francisco-bound BART train has become disabled in the
Transbay Tube, causing major BART delays this morning.

Efforts are under way to move the train, but as of 8:40 a.m. it
remained stuck and a BART employee said other trains might have to begin
single-tracking around it.

 

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Paid for by Phil Ting for Assembly 2012. FPPC ID# 1343137