Giants Win Division Series, Move Onto Next Round Of Playoffs

AT&T Park erupted into jubilation Tuesday night as the San Francisco Giants defeated the Washington Nationals 3-2, advancing to the National League Championship Series where they will face the St. Louis Cardinals in a bid to make their third Word Series appearance in five years.

After relief pitcher Santiago Casilla got Wilson Ramos to ground out in the top of the ninth inning to end the game, Giants players and coaches ran onto the field, swarming the mound and triumphantly jumping up and down on the infield.

In the stands, fans roared their approval with thunderous cheering and applause, and San Francisco Giants players ran around the perimeter of the field, some giving high fives to supporters leaning down from the stands, savoring the victory.

Before the game, outfielder Hunter Pence spoke about the feeling in the Giants clubhouse during this round of the playoffs.

“There’s a lot of emotions, these games are extremely important, extremely intense, and it’s a strong desire to win,” Pence said.

“We’re coming out with everything we’ve got to win. Our goal is to win the World Series, and to do that we have to win this series.”

The atmosphere around the ballpark leading up to the game was festive, with streams of fans wearing team colors orange and black coming into the stadium, excitedly chattering and cheering, while in traffic on the Third Street bridge, people honked their car horns and others chanted “Let’s Go Giants!” in response.

AT&T Park was spruced up for the special occasion, with red, white and blue bunting wrapped around the stadium, and crisp postseason Major League Baseball logos painted on the field.

After San Francisco resident and singer Chris Isaak performed the national anthem, fans frantically waved their orange rally towels in anticipation of the first pitch, and kept the level of noise and excitement high throughout the remainder of the game.

Pitcher Ryan Vogelsong, who started the game for the Giants, summed up his feelings about the team and their resilience after the win.

“Nothing surprises me anymore about this team, especially at this time of year.”

Relief pitcher Sergio Romo echoed that sentiment.

“To be part of this is pretty special for me. The ups and downs of the season, they help us grow,” said Romo.

“Being able to handle certain things and in a sense being able to come through for my team today or when I’m called upon, it’s very fulfilling. It’s fun too!”

Longtime Giants fan Patrick Kutsch, 39, of Boulder Creek, was elated following the win and on-field celebrations.

“That was an amazing game and a hard earned win. It was fantastic to see the team and the fans pull together after such a tough season! This is one of the best feelings in the world!”

Game 1 of the NLCS takes place on Saturday in St. Louis, Missouri.

Supes Vote In Favor Of Short-Term Rental Ordinance

The San Francisco Board of Supervisors voted in favor of an ordinance Tuesday that will create a regulatory system for short-term rentals in the city.

Board of Supervisors President David Chiu introduced the ordinance, which he said, aims to fairly address issues surrounding the increase in short-term rentals bolstered by the creation of online companies such as Airbnb and Vacation Rentals By Owner, also known as VRBO.

Many of the proponents of homesharing were individuals who say they host a variety of guests from around the world and the extra income helps them pay their bills, subsidizes their retirement or allows them to stay in the city. They championed “hosted homes,” in which the host remains at the residence for the duration of the guests’ stay.

Due to a pushback from groups such as advocates of affordable housing and tenants rights, as well as the hotel and tourist industry among others, Chiu proposed legislation to address what he said is the “explosion” of short-term rentals in San Francisco.

The ordinance, recommended by the Board’s Land Use and Economic Development Committee, allows permanent residents to lease out their homes on a short-term basis. But the ordinance also stipulates circumstances in which it remains illegal.

With the adoption of the ordinance, a 90-day cap will be placed on short-term rentals per year, not counting those stays where the resident is home during the guests’ visit.

The ordinance also requires hosts to register with the city and disclose the number of days per year they rent their property on a short-term basis.

Any host who is found in violation of the new ordinance will be fined $1,000 per day with that fine increasing for future offenses.

Supervisor Scott Weiner, who voted in favor of the ordinance, said that while he supports short-term rentals, he expressed concern that

“homesharing is happening in the shadows.”

The ordinance passed Tuesday brings the act of homesharing into the sunlight, he said.

Supervisor London Breed, who voted in favor of the ordinance, said Tuesday that the Airbnb phenomenon is one more instance in San Francisco in which private industry is moving faster than government. She said that as legislators, she and her fellow supervisors have a responsibility to ensure the safety of both hosts and guests.

Supervisor David Campos, who voted no, urged his fellow supervisors to address the need for companies such as Airbnb, which facilitate short-term rentals, to pay taxes.

The Board of Supervisors voted 7-4 in favor of the ordinance.

A second vote on the ordinance is scheduled for the Board of Supervisors meeting on Tuesday, Oct. 21. Once the Board affirms its initial vote, the legislation will go to San Francisco Mayor Ed Lee for his signature.

Food Pantry’s Van Stolen In Burglary

The van used by a Hayward food pantry to pick up donations every day was stolen in a burglary over the weekend.

The white van was missing when staff arrived at the South Hayward Parish at 27287 Patrick Ave. Monday morning. Someone broke in to the parish between 4 p.m. Sunday and 8 a.m. Monday, parish executive director Betty DeForest said.

On Tuesday morning, enough volunteers with pickup trucks showed up to keep the pantry running, and while many plan on coming back, DeForest said she fears that arrangement isn’t sustainable.

The parish serves food to about 100 families a day, four days a week, amounting to about 2,200 meals every week, DeForest said.

The interfaith parish, which has been operating for about 50 years, also provides other drop-in services for homeless people, putting them in touch with needed services, offering showers and even free GED classes.

The thieves probably broke in on Sunday night, DeForest said, not only stealing the keys to the van but also cash that was set aside to buy books for GED students and about 20 bus passes to be distributed to homeless people for help getting to job interviews and doctor’s appointments.

“We’re not talking about an enormous cash loss, but it hurts people,” DeForest said.

Hayward police Sgt. Ryan Cantrell said that the department is concentrating on finding the missing van and then potentially using fingerprints to track down the thieves.

But without the van, he said investigators so far have few leads.

The van was described as a white 2008 Dodge Sprinter 3 with a dent in the passenger door and California license plate number 8M86059.

“That’s the most important thing in the world to us and it’s gone,” DeForest said.

Without the van, the parish is looking for donations and help in recouping its loss. Donations can be directed to the parish at 27287 Patrick Ave., Hayward by mail, or other arrangements can be made by calling (510) 785-3663, DeForest said.

Anyone who spots the van or has information about the burglary has been asked to call Hayward police at (510) 293-7000.

Jailed Ex-Prostitute Testifies Against Brother Charged In Murder Of Monte Sereno Man

A jailed former prostitute with a plea deal in the 2012 homicide of an affluent Monte Sereno man testified Tuesday in the trial of a gang member charged with murder whose lawyer sought in vain to strike potentially incriminating statements from the record.

Members of a jury in Santa Clara County Superior Court in San Jose sat in rapt attention as Katrina Fritz described her 12-year relationship with 66-year-old Raveesh Kumra prior to when he choked to death during a robbery of his Monte Sereno home on Nov. 29 and Nov. 30, 2012.

Fritz admitted that she knew in advance of and assisted in plans by her brother DeAngelo Austin to rob Kumra’s home, where she said she had been to “hundreds, thousands” of times since 2000 with “a combination” of men and women to be paid money by Kumra for sex.

Fritz, who has been in the county jail since her arrest in Kumra’s murder in February 2013, is testifying for the prosecution in the trial of Oakland gang member Marcellous Drummer, who has been charged along with Fritz and two other men in Kumra’s murder.

She testified in September in preliminary hearings against her brother and Javier Garcia, who are being tried separately in the Kumra murder-robbery, and in Drummer’s preliminary hearing on the charges in May.

Prosecutors claim that with Fritz’s help from afar by phone, the three men, all Oakland gang members, invaded Kumra’s home, tied and gagged him, beat up and tied his wife Harinder, then stole cash, jewelry, valuable coins and other items from their home after Kumra had suffocated from the duct tape over his mouth.

On Sept. 18, prosecutors offered Fritz a deal in which she agreed to plead guilty to robbery and false imprisonment felonies with gang enhancements but would serve no more than 17 years in prison if she were to testify fully and truthfully against her three co-defendants at their trials.

Under questioning Tuesday by Deputy District Attorney Kevin Smith, Fritz admitted entering into the plea deal to no longer be charged with murder, thus avoiding a potential sentence of life in prison.

She began seeing Kumra in 1999, while serving as a street prostitute with a pimp in San Francisco but in 2000 quit the pimp to do sex work on a frequent basis for Kumra, meeting him at his house or at the Los Gatos Lodge hotel in Los Gatos, she said.

But their relationship had cooled in late 2011 and she did not see him at all in 2012, she testified.

She said that one day after Thanksgiving Day in November 2012, Austin, who has a lengthy criminal record since he was a juvenile, phoned and told her that “he was thinking about going out there” to Kumra’s home, which she said she knew meant “that he was going to go to rob him” because “that’s pretty much what he always goes to jail for.”

Fritz admitted that, after trying to convince her younger brother not to, she finally told him that Kumra probably kept money and valuables at the Monte Sereno estate, then gave him driving directions, a diagram of the layout of the home and told him how to sneak in through a door from the garage.

Judge Michele McCoy allowed the jury out early and Fritz’s testimony will resume today when she will speak more to Drummer’s alleged involvement in the murder-robbery, Smith said.

After the jury left, McCoy heard arguments from Smith and Drummer’s lawyer Blackman about statements made by Fritz to investigators about Drummer that Blackman wanted kept out of the case as hearsay.

Fritz said that Drummer allegedly stated to her “I was just sitting there” while Kumra was tied up at the Monte Sereno home and that after assuring her that they “got rid of everything” taken from the home, Drummer reassured her by saying “don’t trip,” or become fearful they would be caught.

McCoy overrode Blackman’s objections and allowed Fritz’s recollections of conversations with Drummer to be used by the prosecution before the jury.

Suspects In Walmart Shooting And Robbery Are Charged

One shoplifting suspect has been charged with attempted murder and another has been charged with robbery for a shooting at a Walmart store in San Leandro on Sunday night, police said.

No one inside the store at 1919 Davis St. was injured by the gunfire in the incident, which began at about 11:40 p.m. on Sunday when plainclothes security officers spotted the two suspects, who live together in San Leandro, putting merchandise under their clothes, San Leandro police spokesman Lt. Robert McManus said.

The Alameda County District Attorney’s Office charged 39-year-old Oscar Cruz with attempted murder, robbery using a firearm and being an ex-felon in possession of a firearm, McManus said.

Edward Lovato, 18, was charged with robbery using a firearm, according to McManus.

The two men were arraigned in Alameda County Superior Court in Hayward on Tuesday and are scheduled to return to court this morning to possibly enter pleas.

Cruz is being held without bail and Lovato is being held in lieu of $200,000 bail.

McManus said Cruz was on probation for a domestic violence conviction and has a criminal history that includes felony convictions for various crimes.

He said Lovato also has a criminal record and has a pending court case in a separate matter involving an auto theft and possession of stolen property arrest last Thursday.

Lovato was released from jail on that case on Friday.

McManus said that as Cruz and Lovato left the front door at Walmart on Sunday night the security guards who had spotted them confronted them and asked them to step back inside. But while they were walking back inside, Cruz tried to escape, according to police.

The security guards grabbed the two men, but a violent struggle broke out between the suspects and the security officers and Cruz pulled a gun from his waistband then fired multiple shots towards the guards, police said.

A San Leandro police officer heard the shots as he pulled into the Walmart parking lot. He ran inside and found the suspects and the security guards struggling over the gun, McManus said.

The arriving officers then arrested Cruz and Lovato.

Investigators found the suspects’ car in the Walmart parking lot and searched it, finding a loaded high-caliber handgun, police said. Police are looking into whether the two recovered guns were stolen.

U.S. Appeals Court Overturns Gay Marriage Bans In Idaho And Nevada

A day after the U.S. Supreme Court declined to review rulings allowing same-sex marriage in five states, a federal appeals court in San Francisco on Tuesday overturned bans in Idaho and Nevada.

A three-judge panel of the 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals unanimously ruled the Idaho and Nevada laws violated the constitutional guarantee of equal treatment by discriminating on the basis of sexual orientation.

Circuit Judge Stephen Reinhardt, the author of the ruling, said the state bans on same-sex marriage “impose profound legal, financial, social and psychic harms on numerous citizens of those states.”

In the Idaho case, the panel upheld a federal trial judge’s ruling striking down the state law, while in the Nevada appeal, it overturned a trial court decision that had affirmed that state’s law.

The 9th Circuit decision came one day after the Supreme Court on Monday refused without comment to hear appeals of rulings in which three other regional federal appeals courts — the 4th Circuit in Richmond, Virginia, the 7th Circuit in Chicago and the 10th Circuit in Denver – overturned gay marriage bans in five states.

Because the other circuit court rulings are now final and binding on all states in those regions, they have the effect of overturning the bans in six more states in those circuits.

Including those states, Idaho and Nevada, there are now 32 states where same-sex marriage is legal, according to Shannon Minter, a lawyer with the National Center for Lesbian Rights in San Francisco.

If the 9th Circuit ruling survives a possible further appeal to the Supreme Court, it will result in invalidation of bans in three other western states in the circuit – Alaska, Arizona and Montana – and will bring the number of gay marriage states to 35.

“The past few days have been transformative,” said Minter, who was one of several lawyers representing couples in the Idaho case.

In Tuesday’s decision, the 9th Circuit panel did not directly discuss the high court action, but briefly cited the now-final 4th, 7th and 10th Circuit rulings, among other cases, as precedents for its decision.

Idaho Gov. C.L. “Butch” Otter issued a statement saying the decision was “disappointing but not unexpected.” He said he and other state officials have not yet decided whether to appeal to the Supreme Court.

The 9th Circuit, which has jurisdiction over nine western states, previously ruled on same-sex marriage in a 2012 decision by Reinhardt striking down California’s Proposition 8 ban.

But that decision was taken off the books when the U.S. Supreme Court ruled in 2013 that Proposition 8 supporters had no standing to appeal. The high court action had the effect of reinstating a trial court decision that allowed same-sex marriages in California.

Police Identify Man Found Dead Monday In Park

Petaluma police have identified the man who was found dead in Shollenberger Park Monday afternoon as 62-year-old Douglas Stewart Hall.

Hall, a transient, had been reported missing by a friend on Oct. 1, Lt. Dan Fish said. The friend, however, said he had not seen Hall since mid-September, Fish said.

Hall’s body was found around 2:50 p.m. in what appeared to be a small encampment in the underbrush out of view of a walking and bicycling trail, police said.

A passerby who went off the trail noticed the body and notified boaters on the Petaluma River who then called police, Fish said.

Hall had some personal belongings that included a pillow and a bicycle, Fish said. There were no obvious signs or foul play or trauma and an autopsy was performed Tuesday, Fish said.

City Council To Mull Proposal To Redirect Chevron Funding To Hospital

Richmond’s City Council was scheduled to consider a proposal Tuesday night to redirect $20 million in funding from Chevron meant for community programs to Doctors Medical Center in San Pablo, which has had to radically downsize in recent months amid an ongoing fiscal crisis.

City Councilman Corky Booze authored the proposal to ask Chevron to redirect $20 million from a $90 million funding package destined for city programs under the company’s Environmental and Community Investment Agreement with the city.

The agreement, made in exchange for allowing Chevron to build its $1 billion refinery modernization project, allocates $90 million for an array of community programs, including $30 million for greenhouse gas reduction programs.

If Booze’s proposal passes, the city would request that Chevron amend the agreement to divert $19 million from green transportation programs and a solar farm project and $1 million from Richmond Promise, a scholarship program that aims to send every graduating student from public high schools in Richmond to college.

Booze noted that the $20 million he’s proposing be redirected to DMC would amount to roughly 20 percent of the $90 million Chevron has agreed to pay the city over the next decade.

Hospital executives say that DMC, which this summer stopped emergency ambulance service and downsized to 50 inpatient beds as staff dwindled, is now on track to close by the end of February.

The hospital had been slated to shut its doors by the end of the year, but Gov. Jerry Brown last month approved a state senate bill that will give the hospital $3 million.

With DMC’s annual operating deficit of $18 million, the proposed $20 million in funding would be enough to keep the hospital open for a little more than a year.

In a letter to the Richmond City Council signed by hospital CEO Dawn Gideon and West Contra Costa Healthcare District Chairman Eric Zell, the hospital officials say that each month the hospital stays open, “even at our smaller size, results in a meaningful and important impact on lives and health of our community.”

Chevron spokeswoman Melissa Ritchie said in an email Tuesday that while the company is willing to discuss the community investment agreement with the City Council, it “will not entertain changes to the total funding level, the length of the funding period and the implementation date.”

Booze is proposing the city find a lender in order to provide the $20 million to DMC up-front with plans to reimburse the lender once Chevron begins its scheduled payments to the city.

However, the money won’t be distributed until construction starts on the refinery project, which can only happen once “all legal challenges to the modernization project are resolved,” including court challenges brought against the project by environmental groups Communities for a Better Environment and Asian Pacific Environmental Network, according to Ritchie.

If the court challenges are dropped, construction could begin sometime in the first quarter of 2015 at the earliest, according to Ritchie.

Protester Arrested In Occupy ‘Move-In Day’ March Gets $40k Settlement

A woman arrested during an Occupy Oakland march two years ago has been awarded a $40,000 settlement for a lawsuit alleging that police officers hit her, knocked her to the ground and wrongfully arrested her.

The Oakland City Council unanimously approved the settlement for Joanne Warwick in a closed session last month, which includes $25,000 to be paid to Warwick herself and $15,000 in fees for Warwick’s attorney, Bill Simpich.

In approving the settlement, the city admitted no wrongdoing. The City Council was scheduled to take a second vote to finalize the settlement in open session Tuesday evening.

Warwick participated in the Jan. 28, 2012, “Move-In Day” protest by Occupy Oakland. Weeks after the encampment in Frank Ogawa Plaza had been dismantled, protesters aimed to take over the vacant Henry J. Kaiser Convention Center near Lake Merritt to use as a community space.

The protests, led by small groups carrying makeshift shields, turned confrontational as protesters approached Lake Merritt. Police used tear gas on the large crowd and eventually more than 400 people were arrested in downtown Oakland.

Warwick was arrested near the Lake Merritt BART station during the initial march. According to her complaint filed last year, she arrived at the march by bicycle at Frank Ogawa Plaza, briefly left and then rejoined the protesters near 11th and Madison streets.

Shortly after rejoining the march, Warwick said she was pushed in the back and said she saw other protesters being pushed.

She yelled, “I think Judge Thelton Henderson needs to see that,” taunting police with the name of the judge overseeing longstanding, federally ordered reforms as part of a settlement for allegations of police misconduct more than a decade ago.

The march became chaotic, with police pushing demonstrators using batons. Warwick said she was pushed to the ground by Officer Rodney Kirkland, falling on her left hand. She alleged that when she got up, police continued to push her and would not allow her to get her bicycle.

She was then arrested and, according to Warwick, a police officer accused her of hitting a police officer, which she said she did not do.

Warwick was held in the Glenn Dyer Jail in Oakland for the next three days, where she said she was forced to take a pregnancy and tuberculosis test and had to wrap herself in toilet paper to stay warm.

At her arraignment she was issued a stay away order for Frank Ogawa Plaza, one of twelve people arrested that day to receive such an order, and was charged with blocking the sidewalk and resisting arrest, according to prosecutors.

Those charges were later dismissed, according to the complaint.

Victim Shot In Elbow On West Oakland Street

A victim was shot in the elbow while standing with a group on a West Oakland street on Tuesday, police said.

The victim was standing with a group in the 1100 block of Adeline Street at about 12:43 p.m. when someone approached them and opened fire, police said.

He was hit in the left elbow and taken to a hospital where he was in stable condition Tuesday afternoon, police said.

A car was also struck by the gunfire. No one else was injured.

20-Year-Old Man Charged With Murdering His Mother With Scissors

A 20-year-old University of California at Santa Cruz student was charged with murder Tuesday for allegedly fatally stabbing his 57-year-old mother with scissors at her home in Hayward on Saturday evening.

Joseph Badiali was scheduled to be arraigned in Alameda County Superior Court in Hayward Tuesday afternoon on the charge that he murdered Rosemary Badiali at a single-story home at 27548 La Porte Avenue shortly before 6:50 p.m. on Saturday.

Prosecutors also charged Joseph Badiali with three counts of cruelly wounding an animal for allegedly killing three Chihuahua dogs at the residence.

Hayward police Officer Ryan Sprague said in a probable cause statement that a neighbor called police to report that Badiali’s grandmother had come to his door and told him that Badiali had killed his mother.

The neighbor said that as he was talking to the grandmother Badiali walked up and had blood on him and admitted to the neighbor that he had killed his mother.

Sprague wrote that when he arrived at the scene he found Badiali in the middle of the street with blood on his hands, legs and shorts and he arrested him.

Sprague said that when he asked Badiali where his mother was, Badiali said, “She’s gone” and when he asked for an explanation Badiali said, “She’s dead.”

Officers then searched the residence and found Rosemary Badiali lying in a pool of blood at the back of the house, according to Sprague.

She was face down and had multiple stab wounds to her head, Sprague said. Hayward firefighters pronounced her dead at 7:10 p.m. on Saturday, he said.

Three dead dogs were then located in the backyard, according to Sprague. They had blood coming from their heads and appeared to have suffered severe trauma, Sprague said.

Badiali graduated from Dougherty Valley High School in San Ramon, according to his Facebook page.

Coast Guard Responds To Capsized Vessel Report This Afternoon

Crews from the U.S. Coast Guard station in Bodega Bay responded Tuesday afternoon to a report of a capsized vessel south of Fort Ross.

A man onshore reported seeing a capsized vessel near Fort Ross around 1 p.m., Petty Officer Frank Carpenter said.

The Coast Guard searched the area with a 47-foot motor lifeboat for about an hour but found no sign of the vessel or any debris, Carpenter said. A crew with Sonoma County sheriff’s helicopter Henry-1 also searched the area, he said.

Coast Guard crews also responded Monday to a distress call south of Fort Ross.

Coast Guard Sector San Francisco received a distress call that was relayed via 911 from the California Highway Patrol around 11:20 a.m. Monday.

The vessel had no propulsion because of a battery problem about a mile offshore, according to the Coast Guard.

The Coast Guard’s Bodega Bay station launched a rescue boat and the San Francisco station launched a helicopter. The Bodega Bay crew towed the vessel to Bodega Bay.

The three people on board the boat, one of them from Sacramento, had left Bodega Bay in the morning to fish, Carpenter said.

The vessel did not have visual distress signaling devices or other means of communication besides a cellphone onboard, Carpenter said.

Cmdr. Matt Thompson, search and rescue coordinator for Coast Guard Sector San Francisco, said boaters should have a properly operating VHF-FM radio on board and monitor channel 16 for safety advisories and assistance.

VP Biden Visiting Today, President Obama In Town Friday For Dnc Fundraisers

Vice President Joe Biden was in San Francisco on Tuesday evening for a Democratic fundraising event, three days before President Barack Obama is scheduled to be in town for the same purpose.

Biden was scheduled to attend a 7 p.m. event Tuesday at an undisclosed residence in San Francisco to raise money for the Democratic National Committee.

The vice president was in Los Angeles on Tuesday morning and also had a stop at California State University, Bakersfield planned on Tuesday afternoon before coming to San Francisco, according to a schedule provided by the White House.

Obama is then coming to the city for a DNC event on Friday at the W Hotel.

The event, with musical guest Maxwell, has tickets that start at $500, according to an invitation on the DNC’s website at

Obama was most recently in the Bay Area in July, also to raise money for fellow Democrats.

Health Official Briefs Supes On County’s Preparedness For Ebola

The Ebola virus could infect up to 1.4 million people in three countries in West Africa by the end of January and while the threat of an outbreak in Santa Clara County is low, “we absolutely need to be prepared,” a top health official told the county’s Board of Supervisors on Tuesday.

Dr. Sara Cody, the county’s health officer, in a visit that was not on the agenda for Tuesday’s Board of Supervisors meeting, said she decided to update the board on the county’s response to the potentially deadly Ebola disease that has spread “much more than people could have anticipated.”

The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, using models of “rough numbers” of cases recorded in Liberia and Sierra Leone, has now estimated that Ebola could infect 550,000 to 1.4 million people by the end of January in those two nations and in Guinea, Cody said.

But the risks of contracting Ebola in the county are low because the number of people born in the three countries who live in the county “are relatively small” and “the chances that there is transmission from family visiting family in our county are relatively low.”

Still, the county has “an incredibly diverse and active population, we have groups who are providing aid, who are residents of our county and come back, we have businesses with operations in those countries, and so we absolutely need to be prepared,” Cody said.

She spoke about the response by the health system in Dallas two weeks ago to a man who contracted Ebola while in Liberia and soon after arriving in the city suffered from its symptoms and could have spread the virus to others from his body fluids.

The hospital the man went to while he had symptoms of the hemorrhagic fever did not recognize he had the disease and sent him home for two days before admitting him.

Also, the holdup in identifying him as an Ebola patient meant delays for public health officials in identifying people Duncan contacted and arranging to safely quarantine them, she said.

The public health department has distributed guidelines provided by the CDC to the county’s hospitals about handling potential Ebola patients, she said.

The staff is focusing on making sure the county’s health care delivery system is prepared for Ebola cases and is assessing the levels of preparedness of hospitals, Cody said.

But Cody admitted there are “gaps” so far in the county’s plans, including no contract yet with a hazardous materials company to supply protective suits to prevent transmission and no arrangement for the removal of infectious wastes that could affect the spread of the disease.

Supervisor Dave Cortese asked Cody to give the county a written report on its response and plans concerning Ebola.

Gas Leak At Taco Bell Sickens Three People

A gas leak at a Taco Bell restaurant in Novato sent three people to a hospital Tuesday morning, a Novato Fire Protection District spokeswoman said.

The patients complained of a headache and scratchy voice, fire spokeswoman Sandy Wargo said.

A customer in the restaurant at 930 Seventh St. informed the manager of a gas smell around 10:20 a.m., Wargo said. Firefighters responded, shut down the gas and electric power and called PG&E.

Firefighters opened all of the windows in the restaurant and ventilated the interior with fans, Wargo said.

A PG&E employee discovered a gas valve in the heating and air conditioning system in the restaurant was stuck in the open position, allowing the gas to get inside the dining area, according to Wargo.

Two Hospitalized Following Crash In Western Addition

Two people were hospitalized following a collision in San Francisco’s Western Addition neighborhood late Tuesday morning, a police spokesman said.

The crash was reported at about 11:45 a.m. at Fulton and Laguna streets and involved two moving cars and two parked cars, San Francisco police spokesman Officer Gordon Shyy said.

The two people hospitalized are expected to survive their injuries, Shyy said.

The cause of the collision is under investigation, he said.

Firefighters Rescue Man, Dog In Blaze At Boarded-Up Home

Vallejo firefighters rescued a man and a dog Tuesday morning from a fire in a boarded-up home near Dan Foley Park west of the Solano County Fairgrounds that has been frequented by squatters, a fire department spokesman said.

The 8:20 a.m. fire was mainly on the second floor of a single-family home at 118 Luann Court, Vallejo fire spokesman Mark Libby said.

Firefighters had extinguished a small fire at the same home last week, Libby said.

The man inside the home Tuesday morning appeared to be suffering from smoke inhalation. He was brought out and taken to a hospital as a precaution, Libby said. The dog was not injured.

There was some furniture and bedding inside the structure that might have been left behind by former residents. Trash and debris were burning on both floors when firefighters arrived, Libby said.

Libby said the second floor was gutted and the fire is considered suspicious. It was extinguished in about 30 minutes, he said.