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POSTED September 24, 2013 9:17 p.m.

GETTING CALIF. CONCEALED WEAPONS PERMITS VARIES: LODI  (AP) — Obtaining a concealed weapon permit in California is a roll of the dice as the standards vary wildly from agency to agency, according to a report.

The Lodi News-Sentinel reports that almost no continuity exists among the dozens of law enforcement agencies authorized to issue concealed weapons permits in the state.

In most states, law enforcement agencies issue permits based on a statewide standard.

But in California, each agency, from the tiniest police force to the largest sheriff's department, develops its own standard. It can be based on politics, population, personal opinion, budget cuts — and at any time, for any reason, an agency can change policy.

The newspaper reported Tuesday that some California lawmakers believe reform is needed.

More than 55,000 Californians are permitted to carry concealed weapons.

'LAW & ORDER: SVU' RETURNS WITH CLIFFHANGER: LOS ANGELES (AP) — NBC's "Law & Order: Special Victims Unit" picks up on last season's cliffhanger when it returns for its 15th year.

In Wednesday's episode airing at 9 p.m. Eastern, New York City police Detective Olivia Benson is being held at gunpoint by a rapist. Mariska Hargitay stars as the imperiled Benson.

Executive producer Warren Leight says that as the season unfolds, the NBC crime drama will be paying tribute to its "ripped-from-the-headlines" heritage.

That will be evident right from the start. Another new "Law & Order: SVU" episode airs Wednesday at 10 p.m. Eastern and features a story line about kidnapped girls that echoes the Ariel Castro case in Cleveland.

50-ACRE S. CAL WILDFIRE NOW 70 PERCENT CONTAINED: AZUSA  (AP) — A 250-acre wildfire in the San Gabriel Mountains east of Los Angeles was reduced to a few flaring hotspots Tuesday and calm weather helped crews as they chopped their way along brushy ridges.

The fire was 70 percent contained and crews needed to cut only a few miles of fireline to completely surround it, said Nathan Judy, a spokesman with the U.S. Fire Service.

Winds were light and the fire barely moved through the day, instead snapping up leftover brush inside the scorched area.

The nearest towns were miles away, and by early afternoon no homes were threatened, Judy said.

Evacuation advisories were lifted early Tuesday for residents of three foothill homes closest to the blaze, said Shawn Rollman with the Forest Service.

At the fire's height, about 450 firefighters were aided by aircraft, which included drops by Super Scoopers and heavy helicopters. One firefighter was treated for a minor leg injury, Judy said.


ARRESTS AFTER 2-YEAR-OLD FATALLY MAULED : COLTON  (AP) — Authorities have arrested the uncle and grandmother of a 2-year-old boy who was fatally mauled by as many as five dogs in San Bernardino County.

Colton police Sgt. Jim Jolliff says 23-year-old Marco Zamudio and 42-year-old Eustolio Zamudio were booked Tuesday on child endangerment charges.

Police say the attack took place about 5:30 p.m. Monday in the backyard of a home in Colton, where the boy was staying.

Officers answering a call of a dog attack found the boy had been severely bitten on his upper body. He was taken to a hospital, where he was pronounced dead.

Jolliff says detectives were trying to determine how the boy, Samuel Zamudio of nearby Rialto, got out of the house.

Animal control authorities took five pit bull mixed breeds from the home.

BILL NYE TREATED AFTER 'DANCING' INJURY: LOS ANGELES (AP) — Bill Nye "The Science Guy" is also the injured guy.

"Dancing With the Stars" producers say the TV personality is receiving medical attention Tuesday after he was hurt during his most recent performance. No other details were provided.

Nye and his professional dance partner performed a paso doble routine on Monday's episode that received 17 out of 30 possible judges' points.

Injuries have been fairly common during the show's 17 seasons. Olympian Misty May-Treanor had to withdraw from the show after tearing her Achilles tendon during rehearsals. Melissa Gilbert gave herself whiplash and a mild concussion during a high-energy paso doble last year.

 

GOVERNOR SIGNS BILL TO DETER PAPARAZZI: SACRAMENTO  (AP) — Paparazzi and others who harass the children of public figures will face tougher penalties under legislation that California Gov. Jerry Brown signed Tuesday.

The bill from state Sen. Kevin de Leon, D-Los Angeles, will boost penalties for actions that include taking photos and video of a child without consent and in a harassing manner.

Celebrities such as actresses Halle Berry and Jennifer Garner urged lawmakers to support SB606. Berry testified before several legislative committees that her daughter has been intimidated by aggressive photographers who follow them daily, often shouting as they snap pictures.

The measure also will help protect the children of police officers, judges and others, who might be susceptible to harassment or unwanted attention due to their parents' occupations, de Leon said.

"Kids shouldn't be tabloid fodder nor the target of ongoing harassment," de León said. He added that the new law "will give children, no matter who their parents are, protection from harassers who go to extremes to turn a buck."

Under the legislation, which goes into effect in January, violators could face up to a year in county jail and a fine of up to $10,000. Fines would increase for subsequent convictions.

The bill also allows for parents to bring a civil action against violators to seek damages and attorney's fees.

1 DEAD IN SMALL PLANE CRASH IN NORTHERN CALIF.: WILLIAMS  (AP) — Authorities say the pilot of a small plane died when his aircraft crashed in a rural area north of Sacramento.

The crash occurred Monday night near the town of Williams in Colusa County. Williams is about 60 miles northwest of Sacramento.

Additional details about the crash were not immediately available. The victim has not been identified.

 

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