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.
(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.
(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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
WASHINGTON (Reuters) – A U.S. missionary being held in North Korea was moved from a hospital back to a labor camp last month on the same day he made a public appeal for Washington to help get him home, a U.S. State Department official said on Friday, citing a Swedish diplomat who met with the prisoner.
Kenneth Bae, 45, has been held for more than a year in North Korea after being sentenced to 15 years of hard labor for trying to overthrow the state. From last summer until January, he had been kept at Friendship Hospital in Pyongyang, the North Korean capital, his family said.
(Reuters) – The last surviving members of the U.S. Congress to have served in the Korean War have sent a letter to North Korean leader Kim Jong-un asking him to release imprisoned American missionary Kenneth Bae.
North Korea in December released 85-year-old Korean War veteran Merrill E. Newman, a former U.S. special forces soldier who had been held since October after visiting the country as a tourist, and the members of Congress mentioned that case in seeking Bae’s freedom.