NEWS ABOUT: California

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California's Death Penalty Ruled Unconstitutional

Federal judge says systemic delays amount to cruel and unusual punishment

(Newser) - A potentially huge ruling on the death penalty out of California: A federal judge says the state's system of capital punishment is so inept that California must stop killing inmates, period, reports NBC Bay Area . The decision by US District Judge Cormac J. Carney isn't about the ongoing... More »

Wasting Water in California Will Cost You $500

So get a nozzle on your hose if you plan to wash your car come August

(Newser) - If you live in California, now may be the time to stop using drinking water in non-recirculating ornamental fountains. That's one of the practices—along with things like allowing runoff from your sprinklers, hosing down your driveway or sidewalk, or washing your car without a nozzle on the hose—... More »

'6 Californias' Breakup Plan Headed for Ballot

Measure gets 800K signatures, will likely see 2016 vote

(Newser) - A measure that will let Californians vote on abolishing California appears to be headed for 2016 ballots. Billionaire venture capitalist Tim Draper says he has gathered enough signatures for his " Six Californias" plan to go ahead and he plans to file them with state authorities today, reports Reuters . His... More »

Family to Sue After Cop Beats Grandmother

Officer caught repeatedly punching woman in the street

(Newser) - A California family says it intends to file a civil rights lawsuit after video surfaced of a California Highway Patrol officer repeatedly punching a woman in the face on the side of the highway. The woman, 51-year-old grandmother Marlene Pinnock, was unarmed. According to the arrest report, the woman, who... More »

Victim: Great White Shark Just 'Locked on My Chest'

Long distance swimmer in California is alive to tell the tale

(Newser) - We suppose that if one is going to get bitten by a great white shark, a baby one is the way to go. Long distance swimmer Steve Robles is not only alive to talk about it, he's in stable condition after being bit by a 7-foot juvenile great white... More »

Police: Autistic Boy, 11, Kept in Cage

Parents face charges of felony child endangerment

(Newser) - The parents of a severely autistic boy have been arrested after investigators determined the 11-year-old had been kept in a large metal cage, possibly to control his violent outbursts, authorities said today. The cage—similar to an extra-large dog kennel—was found in the Orange County, California, home with a... More »

Fired Live-In Nanny Refuses to Move Out

Marcella and Ralph Bracamonte say Diane Stretton stopped doing her job

(Newser) - When they first hired their live-in nanny back in March, Marcella and Ralph Bracamonte say she "was awesome." For a few weeks. But then they say Diane Stretton started refusing to work, or even leave her room except at meal times—and when they tried to fire her,... More »

Huge Bust Shows 'Dirty Old Man Stereotype' Obsolete

'Operation Broken Heart' reels in former sheriff's deputy, US Army soldier

(Newser) - "The dirty old man stereotype no longer applies." That was the pronouncement of ICE Homeland Security agent Claude Arnold yesterday, during a press conference that revealed the results of "Operation Broken Heart." Authorities announced that more than 275 people were arrested in May as part of... More »

Calif. Charges Whole Foods $800K —for Overcharging

Surprise, surprise: Grocer actually was too expensive

(Newser) - For those who have griped about Whole Foods' prices for years, California has confirmed what you've long bemoaned: The Golden State and the high-end grocer have reached an $800,000 deal to settle allegations that the latter overcharged customers. Investigators determined that Whole Foods charged for the weight of... More »

Lost Dog Back, Apparently After 2 Years in Forest

Family returned to campsite with his bed, and Murphy crawled in

(Newser) - After Nathan and Erin Braun's golden retriever went missing on a camping trip in Tahoe National Forest in 2012, they posted fliers and set up a Facebook page, but had no luck finding Murphy over two years, the Los Angeles Times reports. Earlier this month, however, when a camper... More »

California Sterilized Inmates Without Lawful Consent

Audit finds evidence of many illegal procedures

(Newser) - The California prison system illegally had dozens of women sterilized, possibly without their consent, according to a new report from the state auditor. Of the 144 inmates given tubal ligations from fiscal years 2005-06 to 2012-13, at least 39 were done without lawful consent, with physicians either failing to sign... More »

Calif. Mayor Resigns Over Bag of Dog Poop

Dennis Kneier was caught on video

(Newser) - A California mayor has really stepped in it. Dennis Kneier, mayor of San Marino, tossed a bag of dog poop into his neighbor's driveway—and, unfortunately for him, the moment was caught on video. He's resigning immediately over the incident, CBS 2 reports. "As is well known,... More »

Millions of Salmon Migrating ... by Truck

California's drought makes normal annual rite too risky

(Newser) - In drought-stricken California , young Chinook salmon are hitting the road, not the river, to get to the Pacific Ocean. Millions of six-month-old smolts are hitching rides in tanker trucks because California's historic drought has depleted rivers and streams, making the annual migration to the ocean too dangerous for juvenile... More »

California Facing Whooping Cough Epidemic

More than 3K cases reported this year

(Newser) - At least 3,458 cases of whooping cough have been reported in California this year—more than the number reported through all of last year. Facing 800 cases in the past two weeks, the state has now declared an epidemic, the San Jose Mercury News reports. "We urge all... More »

Gold Rush Barons Give Away Last of Their Land

300 acres donated to San Francisco park authorities

(Newser) - A single family has controlled large swaths of Bay Area land since the Gold Rush, but that era ended this week, the San Francisco Chronicle reports: The Pattersons have donated the last of their land—almost 300 acres—to the East Bay Regional Park District. The $10 million donation is... More »

Bad Radio Reception? Blame Pot Growers

Lights used in grow-ops are throwing interference

(Newser) - As marijuana operations proliferate, users of ham and AM radio frequencies are grumbling—if that makes any sense. Tom Thompson, 73, discovered the problem a few years ago when his ham radio chats with friends became harder to hear and he traced the issue to a local grow-op. With recreational... More »

Epic Senior Prank: Sic Mariachi Band on Principal

Santa Barbara High School's senior prank was a hit

(Newser) - When Santa Barbara High School principal John Becchio stepped into his office Tuesday morning, he was greeted by a strange sight: a four-piece mariachi band. "What are you doing here?" he asked, but by way of explanation, he had to endure an hour-plus of music as he walked the... More »

Military Jet Slams Into Calif. Homes

2 homes destroyed by Marine AV-8B Harrier but, miraculously, no casualties

(Newser) - An incredibly lucky escape in California: A military jet slammed into a street of tightly packed houses in the desert community of Imperial yesterday but there wasn't a single casualty. Officials say the pilot of the AV-8B Harrier jet from the Marine Corps Air Station in Yuma, Arizona, ejected... More »

Calif. Counties Set to Vote on Secession

The latest vote seeking to form new state of Jefferson

(Newser) - Could the 51st state be wedged between California and Oregon? Voters in two northern California counties will tomorrow weigh in on the question, Reuters reports. Activists in Del Norte and Tehama Counties want to break away from the Golden State, linking parts of northern California and southern Oregon together as... More »

Rotting Boat To Become Luxury Literary Tourist Attraction

Owner set to move it to Salinas; captain's nephew opposes plan

(Newser) - For eight months, John Steinbeck's fishing boat has been moldering in Port Townsend, Washington. Now it's likely headed for a new home—but there's some controversy about where that will be, the New York Times reports. The Western Flyer, which Steinbeck chartered in 1940, set the stage... More »

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