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Mar 3, 2015

Homeless man shot dead by LAPD had served time for bank robbery: source

LOS ANGELES (Reuters) – The homeless man shot dead by Los Angeles policemen on Sunday during a skid-row scuffle in which police say he grabbed at an officer’s gun had previously served time in federal prison for armed bank robbery, a law-enforcement source said on Tuesday.

The Los Angeles Times, citing records and its own sources, said the man was identified as Charley Saturmin Robinet, 39, a French national, who was accused of pistol-whipping a bank teller during the 2000 holdup of a Wells Fargo Bank branch.

Mar 3, 2015

Federal agents raid 20 suspected ‘maternity hotels’ in California

LOS ANGELES (Reuters) – Federal agents raided about 20 Southern California locations on Tuesday suspected of involvement in “maternity tourism” schemes offering travel and lodging services to pregnant foreign women seeking to give birth in the United States, U.S. immigration officials said.

Authorities say the so-called maternity hotels targeted in the sweep catered largely to women from China who paid $15,000 to $50,000, depending on services provided, in hopes of obtaining U.S. citizenship for their children.

Mar 3, 2015

Video shows fatal Los Angeles police shooting of homeless man

LOS ANGELES (Reuters) – Los Angeles police shot and killed a homeless man who grabbed at an officer’s gun during a videotaped scuffle, authorities said on Monday, in an incident highlighting the often volatile interactions between law enforcement and mentally ill residents of the city’s skid row.

The man, known by the street name Africa, had been living for weeks in a tent outside the Union Rescue Mission building where Sunday’s shooting occurred and had a history of violent, erratic behavior, the mission’s director said.

Mar 2, 2015

Video shows fatal shooting of homeless man by Los Angeles police

LOS ANGELES (Reuters) – Los Angeles police officers trying to subdue a robbery suspect in the city’s skid row section shot and killed the man as he tried to grab an officer’s gun during a scuffle that was captured on video, police said on Monday.

The dead man was reported by the Los Angeles Times to have been a homeless man known by his street name, Africa, who according to witnesses at the scene had been living in a tent for a few months after a period in a mental health facility.

Feb 25, 2015

Measure to kill California plastic bag ban qualifies for Nov. 2016 ballot

LOS ANGELES (Reuters) – A referendum to overturn
California’s first-in-the-nation statewide prohibition of
single-use plastic grocery bags qualified on Tuesday for the
November 2016 ballot, preventing the ban from taking effect
before then.

Opponents of the bag ban were certified by California’s
secretary of state as having collected well over the 505,000
valid petition signatures needed to earn a place on the state
ballot for their repeal measure, election officials said.

Feb 23, 2015

Oscar host Neil Patrick Harris runs gamut, in his tux and undies

LOS ANGELES, Feb 22 (Reuters) – Love him or hate him, Neil
Patrick Harris proved to be one of the hardest-working hosts in
Oscar history on Sunday night, singing, dancing and even
sprinting in his underpants onto the stage of the Dolby Theatre.

But the 41-year-old Broadway and television talent who came
to prominence as the child star of “Doogie Howser, M.D.,” also
confronted a major elephant in the room, opening the show with a
fleeting but pointed jab at the homogenous field of Oscar
nominees.

Feb 23, 2015

Oscars host Neil Patrick Harris salutes movies, pokes Oscars on race

LOS ANGELES (Reuters) – First-time Oscars host Neil Patrick Harris opened Hollywood’s biggest night of the year on Sunday with a fleeting but pointed jibe at the homogenous field of Academy Award nominees, before launching into a spirited musical salute to the magic of movies.

“Tonight we honor Hollywood’s best and whitest, sorry, brightest,” Harris enthusiastically dead-panned to hearty laughter that seemed to break the usual pre-show jitters among the movie royalty packing the auditorium of the Dolby Theatre.

Feb 21, 2015

Tentative deal reached for U.S. West Coast ports; relief for trans-Pacific trade

LOS ANGELES, Feb 21 (Reuters) – A group of shipping
companies and a powerful dockworkers union reached a tentative
labor deal late on Friday after nine months of negotiations,
settling a dispute that disrupted the flow of cargo through 29
U.S. West Coast ports and snarled trans-Pacific maritime trade
with Asia.

The agreement, confirmed in a joint statement by the two
sides, was reached three days after U.S. Labor Secretary Thomas
Perez arrived in San Francisco to broker a deal with the help of
a federal mediator who had joined the talks six weeks earlier.

Feb 21, 2015

Contract negotiators for U.S. West Coast ports reach tentative deal

LOS ANGELES (Reuters) – Shipping companies and the dockworkers union reached a tentative labor deal on Friday after nine months of negotiations, settling a dispute that disrupted the flow of cargo through 29 U.S. West Coast ports and snarled trans-Pacific maritime trade with Asia.

The deal, confirmed in a joint statement by the two sides, was reached after U.S. Labor Secretary Thomas Perez arrived in San Francisco on Tuesday to broker a deal with the help of a federal mediator who joined in the talks six weeks earlier.

Feb 20, 2015

No deal yet in U.S. West Coast port dispute; talks to continue

SAN FRANCISCO (Reuters) – Shipping executives and union leaders for dock workers at 29 U.S. West Coast ports remained locked in a dispute on Friday as talks, brokered by the U.S. labor secretary, headed into a fourth straight day.

Negotiations ended late Thursday with no deal, two sources close to the talks told Reuters Friday, adding that there is more work to do in discussions set to resume in the morning.

    • About Steve

      "Joining Reuters in 1994 as a member of the broadcast/online desk in Washington, Steve later moved to Los Angeles, where he spent 10 years covering the entertainment industry, and the past two years as a general news correspondent. Steve began his career at United Press International in Washington. He also spent three years on Capitol Hill as editor of a weekly news journal published by a congressional caucus, the Environmental and Energy Study Conference."
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