Monday, January 20
Suspicious device prompts closures by LA freeway
LOS ANGELES (AP) — A suspicious device found on a bus forced authorities to close a Los Angeles freeway connector road and a nearby street as the bomb squad investigated.
The Los Angeles Times says the closure backed up traffic on the southbound 110 Freeway through downtown.
Police said the bomb squad determined late Sunday night that the device wasn't dangerous device and the roadways were reopening.
Earlier, Sgt. Herb Chang said that the bus driver discovered the device on the empty bus Sunday night as he was about to begin his shift.
Because the bus was parked on a street that leads to State Route 110, the California Highway Patrol closed the connector with several off ramps and police shut down a street near the bus.
City News Service said the device appeared to be a pipe bomb but X-rays showed it didn't contain explosives.
DEPUTY SHOOTS TEEN
Calif. deputy shoots, wounds hammer-wielding teen
HIGHLAND, Calif. (AP) — Authorities say a deputy shot and wounded a 16-year-old boy armed with a hammer and a sharp object in a confrontation that has sparked outrage in the teen's Southern California neighborhood.
San Bernardino County Sheriff's detectives said gunshots were fired in Highland Saturday night when the boy attempted to attack the deputy.
The teen's family told KCAL-TV the boy was shot three times and suffered damage to his liver, kidney and stomach. They said the teen and his brother were in a heated argument, and a relative called 911 to help break up the fight.
The teen's aunt Joanna Bonilla, who said she witnessed the shooting, said he was carrying a hammer but insisted he never threatened the deputy.
The family is calling for an independent probe of the shooting.
Seahawks star makes big play, talks bigger
SEATTLE (AP) — Seconds after making the game-saving play to send Seattle to the Super Bowl, cornerback Richard Sherman proved he was just warming up.
Sherman deflected a pass intended for San Francisco's Michael Crabtree near the corner of the end zone with less than a minute left, and into the arms of Seattle teammate Malcolm Smith to seal the Seahawks' 23-17 win.
Sherman was subsequently whistled for unsportsmanlike conduct on the play, after exchanging words with Crabtree and making what appeared to be a choking gesture.
Asked about the incident afterward by FOX reporter Erin Andrews, Sherman stole the show and lit up Twitter with a rant that began: "I'm the best corner in the game. When you try me with a sorry receiver like Crabtree, that's the result you gonna get. Don't you ever talk about me!"
PRODUCERS GUILD AWARDS
Producers pick '12 Years a Slave' and 'Gravity'
BEVERLY HILLS, Calif. (AP) — For the past six years, every feature film chosen by the Producers Guild of America for its top honor has gone on to win the best-picture prize at the Academy Awards. Sunday night, "12 Years a Slave" and "Gravity" tied for the guild's highest honor.
The rare PGA split keeps the Oscar race wide open in one of the tightest three-way battles in years, with "American Hustle" shut out by the producers but very much alive following a week of big showings at the Golden Globes, Oscar nominations and Screen Actors Guild Awards.
Other trophies presented Sunday night at the guild's 25th annual awards ceremony in Beverly Hills, Calif., included "Frozen" for animated feature and (asterisk)We Steal Secrets: The Story of WikiLeaks" for documentary film.
New Calif. law squeezes recyclable collectors
(Information in the following story is from: Los Angeles Times, http://www.latimes.com)
LOS ANGELES (AP) — A new California law that tightens the state's recycling redemption rules is squeezing people who cash in bottles and plastic to get by.
The Los Angeles Times reports that as of Nov. 1, recycling centers started paying much less for containers including wine bottles and milk jugs that do not have a specific redemption value.
An empty beer or soda bottle can still be turned in for a nickel or dime. But under the new law, recycling centers receive only the much-lower, scrap value for containers with no specific redemption value.
That means people who scour cities to collect recyclables get much less as well.
A load of recyclables that used to be worth $200 might now only fetch $50.
Legislative deadline nears for hundreds of bills
SACRAMENTO, Calif. (AP) — Hundreds of bills that failed to pass the Legislature last year face an end-of-the-month deadline to gain initial support, including measures affecting gun owners, the oil industry and farm laborers.
It's the first significant bill deadline of 2014, the second half of the Legislature's two-year session. The bills are dead if they don't pass the house where they originated by Jan. 31, and dozens of the holdover bills already have died in committees.
Among the bills is SB241 by Democratic Sen. Noreen Evans of Santa Rosa, which would impose a tax on companies that extract oil in California. Her bill is stalled in committee, but she plans to propose new legislation that would put the oil tax before voters in 2016, an avenue that does not require the governor's approval.