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POSTED March 6, 2012 9:03 p.m.

MAN ARRESTED AFTER CANNON KILLS GIRLFRIEND: SAN DIEGO (AP) — San Diego County authorities have arrested a man whose homemade cannon fired through the side of his mobile home in a remote community, killing his girlfriend.

Sheriff's Sgt. David Martinez said Tuesday that 39-year-old Richard Fox was arrested for investigation of exploding a device resulting in death. He's been booked into jail after treatment for shrapnel wounds to his right leg.

The cannon fired early Tuesday in the mountain community of Potrero, about 40 miles east of San Diego on the U.S.-Mexico border.

Shrapnel killed his 38-year-old girlfriend, who was in the home with three other adults and a 4-year-old girl. The victim was earlier identified as the man's wife.

SCHWARZENEGGER TO PAY $30K FOR CAMPAIGN COMPLAINT: SACRAMENTO (AP) — Former Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger has agreed to pay $30,000 to the California Fair Political Practices Commission to settle a nearly three-year-old complaint by the campaign finance watchdog agency.

The commission says Schwarzenegger violated state campaign laws by spending $1.1 million from a ballot measure campaign to advocate for his position on the state budget. The panel will consider the settlement at its March 15 meeting.

The Republican governor, who left office last year, spent the money on advertising during a dispute with Democrats in July 2009.

RECORD $287M PAID TO CALIF. LOBBYISTS IN 2011: SACRAMENTO (AP) — California businesses, labor unions and other interests paid a record $287 million on lobbyists last year to sway lawmakers on decisions for spending taxpayer money and favorable legislation.

The Los Angeles Times says a record 2,768 entities hired lobbyists, leading to the 6.8 percent increase in lobbyist spending.

The lobbyists and entities that hire them say the budget crisis has forced them to be more aggressive.

The California Teachers Association spent the most — $6.5 million.

Besides seven in-house lobbyists, the teachers union entertained elected officials and their staffs with meals and helped pay travel and lodging costs for hundreds of teachers that converged on Sacramento for a May "week of action" on the budget crisis.

The lobbying activity is disclosed in quarterly reports to the secretary of state.

CHP releases dozens arrested at Capitol protest
SACRAMENTO (AP) — Nearly all of the 72 people arrested during this week's protests over funding for higher education at the state Capitol have been released, the California Highway Patrol said Tuesday.

Police cited 66 of the 68 protesters who occupied the Capitol rotunda Monday night for trespassing and released them about three hours later at a 24-hour Walmart in West Sacramento, CHP Officer Sean Kennedy said Tuesday.

Kennedy said they were dropped off at the store just before midnight because police wanted to give them a chance to get a snack after being barricaded inside the Capitol for up to 12 hours.

Search suspended for man in Sacramento River

SACRAMENTO (AP) — Authorities have called off the search for a man who reportedly was calling for help in the Sacramento River.

Witnesses told authorities that they saw a man struggling on a small raft around 4:30 a.m. Tuesday and screaming for help near Tower Bridge.

A man living on a nearby boat told police that he went out to help but all he found was a coat in the water.

Sacramento firefighters arrived in a water rescue boat and searched the area, but found nothing. They suspended the search around 5:30 a.m. because of the strong current, determining that no one could have survived in the 40-degree water for that long.

 

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