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Bay Area briefs
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MAN HELPS ELDERLY WOMAN NAB ROBBERY SUSPECT: OAKLAND  (AP) — An Oakland carpenter is being credited with helping a 90-year-old woman catch a robbery suspect who allegedly knocked her down outside a convenience store and stole her wallet.

Police spokeswoman Johnna Watson tells the Oakland Tribune 36-year-old Robb Revelli was among several people who helped catch multiple suspects targeting women Monday.

Revelli says he witnessed the woman being attacked as he left the store. He recalls that as she screamed in pain and he came to her aid, he asked "if she wanted to go to a hospital or if she wanted to catch (the man). She said 'let's catch him.'"

Revellis says he got into the woman's car with her and captured the man several blocks away, holding him until officers arrived. Police identified the suspect as 27-year-old Damarea Johnson.

Officer Watson commended the Good Samaritans while stressing that individual safety should always come first.

FEDS LOOKING INTO FIRE THAT SHUT DOWN BART SERVICE: OAKLAND. (AP) — Federal authorities are investigating last week's fire that shut down Bay Area Rapid Transit service between San Francisco and Oakland for more than 13 hours.

The June 14 blaze in West Oakland destroyed a retirement home that was under construction, causing $25 million in damage. It's been labeled suspicious.

Authorities say three men were seen moments before the fire, and they apparently chased off a security guard.

A 22-person team from the federal Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives began sifting through four stories of rubble on Wednesday

The fire also damaged equipment at a nearby BART station. The resulting service shutdown left thousands of riders scrambling to find other ways across the bay.

SF BICYCLIST PLEADS NOT GUILTY TO MANSLAUGHTER: SAN FRANCISCO (AP) — A bicyclist who fatally struck a 71-year-old man in a San Francisco crosswalk has pleaded not guilty to vehicular manslaughter.

The San Francisco Chronicle says 36-year-old Chris Bucchere entered the plea Wednesday. He's free on $150,000 bail but faces up to six years in prison if convicted.

Bucchere struck Sutchi Hui in March.

Prosecutors say he'd run several stop signs and was trying to beat a personal speed record on a ride that began in the Marin Headlands.

His attorney, Julie Salamon, issued a statement saying the biker is cooperating with authorities.

1 DEAD, 2 INJURED IN BERKELEY FIRE: BERKELEY  (AP) — A house fire in Berkeley has left one woman dead and two other people injured.

Authorities say the fire began around 2:30 a.m. The woman was pulled from the attic of the multi-story house, but did not survive.

One of the injured suffered smoke inhalation. The other had minor burns.

The cause of the fire is under investigation.

STOLEN WIRES, AMTRAK CABLES FOUND AT RECYCLERS: SAN FRANCISCO (AP) — Authorities say raids on metal recyclers in Northern California have turned up AT&T wiring, Amtrak cables and a 6-foot metal ramp stolen from a freeway project.

The San Francisco Chronicle says photos of some items were displayed Wednesday at a news conference in Martinez — a day after raids on seven recycling yards in Contra Costa County.

Authorities say they found apparently stolen metal at each yard and the owners could face fines or criminal charges.

Authorities say thefts of copper, aluminum and other metals cost taxpayers a fortune.

Some scrap-yard owners say they try to determine if metal offered to them is stolen but that can be difficult.

WEIGHTED BODY IN OAKLAND WATERS IS SUICIDE VICTIM: OAKLAND  (AP) — Police say a man found dead in the Oakland Estuary with weights attached to his body apparently committed suicide.

The San Francisco Chronicle says he's been identified as 27-year-old Christopher Lattie of Susanville.

A fisherman called authorities Tuesday morning after seeing the clothed body in the water off a pier.

Lattie's car was parked nearby.

Authorities say his body may have been in the water for several days.

PRIEST ASSAULT TRIAL HALTED FOR DAY; LAWYERS MEET: SAN JOSE . (AP) — The trial of a man accused of beating a priest that he claimed molested him decades ago was put on hold Thursday as the judge and lawyers discussed an undefined legal issue.

The judge dismissed the jury moments before the former priest, Jerold Lindner, was to testify for a second day.

Santa Clara County Superior Court Judge David Cena made the announcement after meeting privately with prosecutors and attorneys representing William Lynch, who had pleaded not guilty to assaulting Lindner in 2010.

Prosecutors and lawyers declined to comment about the legal issue outside court. During testimony Wednesday, Lindner denied sexually assaulting Lynch and his younger brother, a statement that appeared to be perjury after prosecutors had said the former priest did molest Lynch but expected him to lie.

Immediately after Lindner's denial, Lynch's attorney asked the judge to admonish the priest in front of the jury about his right to counsel.