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Sep 4, 2014

Escaped albino cobra recaptured in Los Angeles suburb

LOS ANGELES (Reuters) – Animal control officers on Thursday recaptured an albino cobra that mysteriously got loose in a Los Angeles suburb, leaving residents jumpy after the venomous reptile bit a dog earlier this week, authorities said.

Officials at the Los Angeles County Department of Animal Care and Control confirmed that the snake had been caught but said he was unable to immediately provide more details.

Sep 3, 2014

Drifter convicted of three cold-case Los Angeles murders

LOS ANGELES (Reuters) – A drifter and career criminal in his 70s was convicted on Tuesday of strangling three women to death and dumping their bodies in alleys near downtown Los Angeles during the 1980s in a string of cold case serial murders resurrected by DNA evidence.

A Los Angeles County Superior Court jury deliberated just two hours before finding Samuel Little, 74, guilty of first-degree murder in the deaths of all three women, who prosecutors described as having been made easy targets by their involvement in drugs and prostitution.

Aug 29, 2014

Porn productions suspended after performer tests positive for HIV

LOS ANGELES (Reuters) – A porn industry trade group has placed a moratorium on U.S. productions of adult sex films after one performer received a preliminary positive test for infection by the virus that causes AIDS.

The suspension, which began on Thursday, marks at least the third consecutive summer that porn productions have been shut down because of performers who tested positive for a sexually transmitted disease.

Aug 29, 2014

Syrian accused of making detonators with U.S. parts faces Arizona court

By Steve Gorman

(Reuters) – A Syrian man accused of procuring and assembling American-made electronic parts for roadside bombs used in attacks on U.S. military forces in Iraq made his first U.S. court appearance on Thursday in Arizona and pleaded not guilty to federal criminal charges.

Ahmad Ibrahim Al-Ahmad, 36, was arrested in Turkey in 2011 on terrorism-related charges under an Interpol warrant and detained there until his extradition on Wednesday to the United States, the U.S. Justice Department said in a statement.

Aug 28, 2014

Syrian accused of making detonators in Iraq charged in Arizona

By Steve Gorman

(Reuters) – A Syrian man accused of supplying electronic parts for roadside bombs used in attacks on U.S. military forces in Iraq made his first U.S. court appearance on Thursday in Arizona and pleaded not guilty to federal criminal charges.

Ahmad Ibrahim Al-Ahmad, 36, was arrested in Turkey in 2011 on terrorism-related charges under an Interpol warrant and detained there until his extradition on Wednesday to the United States, the U.S. Justice Department said in a statement.

Aug 27, 2014

Suspect in L.A. drive-by killings charged with two other shootings

LOS ANGELES (Reuters) – A man arrested in Los Angeles on suspicion of committing three apparently random shotgun slayings within a single hour on Sunday was formally charged on Tuesday with two other shootings, one of them fatal, police and prosecutors said.

Alexander Hernandez, 34, was first identified as a suspect by animal cruelty investigators in connection with the fatal shootings of two dogs on Saturday near his home in the San Fernando Valley area of Los Angeles, police said.

Aug 27, 2014

Suspect in L.A. killings charged with two other shootings

LOS ANGELES (Reuters) – A man arrested in Los Angeles on suspicion of committing three apparently random shotgun slayings within a single hour on Sunday was formally charged on Tuesday with two other shootings, one of them fatal, police and prosecutors said.

Alexander Hernandez, 34, was first identified as a suspect by animal cruelty investigators in connection with the fatal shootings of two dogs on Saturday near his home in the San Fernando Valley area of Los Angeles, police said.

Aug 26, 2014

Suspect in L.A. killings investigated for ties to other shootings

LOS ANGELES (Reuters) – A man arrested in Los Angeles on suspicion of committing three apparently random shotgun slayings within a single hour on Sunday is also under investigation for possible ties to several other shootings in recent months, police said on Tuesday.

Alexander Hernandez, 34, was first identified as a suspect by animal cruelty investigators in connection with the fatal shootings of two dogs on Saturday near his home in the San Fernando Valley area of Los Angeles, police said.

Aug 19, 2014

Two California youths accused of plotting high school shooting spree

LOS ANGELES (Reuters) – Police in the Los Angeles suburb of South Pasadena said on Monday they had thwarted a mass shooting plot with the arrest of two teenagers who were conspiring to kill several staffers and as many fellow students as possible at their high school.

Detectives were tipped off to the plot by South Pasadena High School administrators and arrested the two students after serving search warrants at each of their homes, the South Pasadena Police Department said in a statement posted online.

Jul 31, 2014

Crews tighten battle lines around Yosemite fire threatening Sequoias

By Steve Gorman

(Reuters) – Firefighters tightened their grip Thursday on a blaze roaring for a sixth day through drought-parched timber and brush on the western edge of Yosemite National Park as they took special measures to protect a famed grove of giant Sequoia trees.

The El Portal fire has blackened more than 3,900 acres (1,580 hectares) since it erupted on Saturday, destroying a vacation home and duplex, prompting the evacuation of dozens of other dwellings and forcing the closure of three campgrounds, fire officials said.

    • 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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