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Mar 11, 2014

Joe McGinniss, author of ‘Fatal Vision,’ dies at 71

March 10 (Reuters) – Journalist Joe McGinniss, an author who
got up close to his subjects for revealing books such as “The
Selling of the President” and “Fatal Vision,” died on Monday at
age 71, his friend and attorney said.

McGinniss died of complications from prostate cancer at
UMass Memorial Medical Center in Worcester, Massachusetts,
lawyer Dennis Holahan said in an email. The author had announced
last year that he was in the advanced stage of the disease.

Mar 6, 2014

Los Angeles urban swath to test Obama’s ‘promise zone’ plan

LOS ANGELES (Reuters) – Waiting for a bus in her heavily immigrant Los Angeles neighborhood, cleaning lady Yesenia Hernandez looked up at a new apartment block across the street that will boast such luxuries as a rooftop pool and dog park, with rents far beyond her reach.

“I want to move,” said Hernandez, 38, standing in the shadow of another sleek residential building, the Wilshire Vermont Station. “The houses are being fixed but the rent is going higher. So people can’t afford it.”

Mar 5, 2014

Yosemite bears turn health nuts with junk food off menu

LOS ANGELES (Reuters) – Bears in Yosemite National Park in California have adopted the wildlife version of a health food diet after increased safety measures largely blocked them from scavenging for food in campgrounds over the last 15 years, a study showed on Tuesday.

An estimated 350 to 400 black bears roam Yosemite, one of the most popular U.S. tourist destinations. Interactions between the park’s bears and people reached a record level in 1998 as the animals raided campgrounds and broke into cars in search of groceries and leftovers, according to Yosemite spokesman Scott Gediman.

Feb 27, 2014

Amanda Knox’s former boyfriend distances himself in Italian murder appeal

By Alex Dobuzinskis

(Reuters) – The ex-boyfriend of Amanda Knox is distancing himself from the U.S. former exchange student, convicted of murdering her British roommate in an Italian university town, as he pursues his own appeal in the case, his U.S.-based lawyer said on Wednesday.

Italian Raffaele Sollecito was convicted of murder along with Knox at a retrial last month in the 2007 stabbing death of Meredith Kercher, in a decision that reversed an earlier appeal judgment that cleared the pair. The case is expected to conclude next year before Italy’s highest court.

Feb 26, 2014

Golden Gate Bridge hits milestone in 2013 with 46 suicides

By Alex Dobuzinskis

(Reuters) – San Francisco’s Golden Gate Bridge marked a milestone in 2013 as 46 people leaped to their deaths in what appears to be the deadliest year for suicides at the California landmark, a watchdog group said on Tuesday.

The Bridge Rail Foundation, which tracks fatalities at the 4,200-foot-long (1,280-meter) span, said the high number of suicides demonstrates the need for a safety net to be installed to make it more difficult for would-be jumpers to take their own lives there.

Feb 20, 2014

Two men plead guilty in 2011 Dodger Stadium beating

LOS ANGELES (Reuters) – Two men were sentenced to prison on Thursday after pleading guilty to charges stemming from the severe beating of a San Francisco Giants fan outside Dodger Stadium in Los Angeles on opening day of the baseball season in 2011.

Bryan Stow, a 45-year-old paramedic and father of two from Northern California, was left with brain damage from the attack in the stadium’s parking lot after a game between the Dodgers and Giants on March 31, 2011.

Feb 20, 2014

Archdiocese of Los Angeles to pay $13 million in sex abuse settlement

LOS ANGELES (Reuters) – Seventeen people who brought sexual abuse lawsuits against the Roman Catholic Archdiocese of Los Angeles have won a $13 million legal settlement, with most of the allegations involving a priest who left the country as an investigation got under way, attorneys said on Wednesday.

The settlement, reached last week, averted a trial that would have centered largely on abuse allegations against Father Nicolas Aguilar-Rivera, who in 1988 left his Los Angeles parish for Mexico as a probe was being mounted against him. His whereabouts are unknown.

Feb 14, 2014

Ex NFL player Darren Sharper accused of drugging, raping women

LOS ANGELES (Reuters) – Former professional football player Darren Sharper, a star defensive back turned television sports analyst, was charged on Friday with drugging four women and raping two of them in the Los Angeles area, prosecutors said.

Sharper, 38, was scheduled to appear for arraignment in Los Angeles Superior Court on Friday in connection with the alleged incidents, which prosecutors said occurred in October and January.

Feb 13, 2014

Comic great Sid Caesar of “Your Show of Shows’ dies at 91

LOS ANGELES, Feb 12 (Reuters) – Sid Caesar, who pioneered TV
sketch comedy during the 1950s as the star and creative force of
“Your Show of Shows,” a launch pad for the likes of Mel Brooks,
Carl Reiner and Woody Allen and an inspiration to generations of
comedians, died on Wednesday. He was 91.

Caesar, in failing health for at least a year, died at his
home in Beverly Hills, where he had continued to receive
visitors, reminisce and tell jokes, according to friends and
collaborators, including Reiner.

Feb 12, 2014

Comic legend Sid Caesar dead at age 91, says friend Carl Reiner

LOS ANGELES (Reuters) – Comic showman Sid Caesar, a pioneer of American television sketch comedy as the star and creative force of “Your Show of Shows” during the 1950s, died on Wednesday at age 91, according to his friend and former collaborator Carl Reiner.

Reiner told Reuters he learned of Caesar’s death from a mutual friend, actor and writer Rudy De Luca, who had recently visited Caesar at his Los Angeles-area home. He said the veteran entertainer had been ill for at least a year.