OAKLAND COUNCIL SUPPORTS HAMMER BAN AT PROTESTS: OAKLAND (AP) — The Oakland City Council has given tentative approval to a ban on hammers and other so-called tools of violence at demonstrations.
The council's vote in favor of the ban early Wednesday came more than two weeks after a waiter was struck in the face with a hammer during a raucous demonstration against the Trayvon Martin trial outcome.
The proposed ban includes hammers, wrenches and firecrackers.
The council must vote on it again in September before it can become law. Los Angeles already has such a ban.
Protesters smashed store windows and sprayed graffiti on businesses during protests over the acquittal of George Zimmerman in the fatal shooting of Martin earlier this month.
A similar ban was proposed last year during Occupy Oakland protests but it got nowhere after demonstrators claimed it would violate their free speech rights.
SAN FRANCISCO LOANS WILL HELP POLICE BUY HOMES: SAN FRANCISCO (AP) — San Francisco will offer home loans to police and firefighters who work in the city but can't afford to live there.
The San Francisco Chronicle says officials on Tuesday announced details of a program designed to help first responders to live in the city they serve.
The program, approved by voters last year, will allow active sheriff's deputies, firefighters, police and paramedics to apply for up to $100,000 in down-payment loan assistance. The loans won't have to be repaid for 30 years.
To qualify, applicants must earn less than about $200,000 a year for a family of four.
More than 45 people already have expressed interest in applying.
WOMAN CONVICTED IN CRASH THAT KILLED LOVED ONES: SAN JOSE (AP) — A Gilroy woman who caused a rollover crash while driving high on drugs and alcohol has been convicted of murdering her husband and daughter.
The Santa Clara District Attorney's office said 47-year-old Stacy Lonnberg was convicted of second-degree murder and child endangerment Tuesday.
Prosecutors said Lonnberg was intoxicated on Oxycodone mixed with more than half a dozen alcoholic drinks when she drove her family to a wedding reception in January 2012. She sideswiped another vehicle in Los Gatos, causing her pickup truck to veer and flip six times.
Lonnberg's daughter died after being thrown from the vehicle. Her 57-year-old husband died in a hospital.
Her one-year-old grandson was in a car seat and survived.
Lonnberg faces 36 years to life in prison when she is sentenced in October.
OAKLAND APPROVES ONE-STOP SURVEILLANCE CENTER: OAKLAND (AP) — Oakland officials have approved plans to build a one-stop surveillance center for police and firefighters that critics worry could threaten privacy.
The Oakland Tribune (http://bit.ly/19xjSRL) says the City Council voted early Wednesday to accept $2 million in federal grants to fund the Domain Awareness Center, which will consolidate hundreds of camera feeds and surveillance tools across the city.
Authorities say the hub will improve emergency response efforts, but opponents say that stockpiling and centralizing so much intelligence gives authorities newfound surveillance power that could be abused.
The ease those concerns, council members required that footage not be recorded or stored at the center until privacy safeguards are adopted. Additionally, the surveillance feeds only will be from city and port cameras.