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Dennis Rodman back in court over child support
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ORANGE  (AP) — Flamboyant former NBA star Dennis Rodman has been told he could face up to 20 days in jail unless he pays some $860,000 in child support.

His lawyer, however, says Rodman has made payments and will fight to have the contempt of court finding overturned.

Rodman appeared in an Orange County court Tuesday but sentencing was postponed until May.

Rodman's third wife, Michelle Rodman, claims he owes a fortune in child and spousal support.

Rodman's attorney, Linnea Willis, says his client never missed a payment and owes nowhere near the $860,000 amount. She plans to present evidence of payments to the judge in the case.

Willis had indicated in court documents that Rodman was broke, but she said Tuesday that he makes more than $100,000 a year through appearances.

Reward offered in LA

dog beheadings

LOS ANGELES (AP) — Los Angeles police are looking for someone who left two severed dogs' heads in a trash bin.

A $20,000 reward was offered Wednesday for information leading to an arrest.

City News Service says a man rummaging for recyclables found the heads of a Labrador retriever mix and a German shepherd last week in a bin behind a store in South Los Angeles.

Detective Hector Sanchez of the city's Animal Cruelty Task Force says the heads apparently were severed with a sharp object and there's no evidence that the animals were involved in dogfighting.

City Councilman Paul Koretz says the killer also could be a threat to people. He says the beheadings could be "the act of a murderer in training."

Stockton man killed in

 Tahoe snowmobile crash

TAHOE CITY  (AP) — Authorities have identified a 55-year-old man from Stockton, Calif., who died after a snowmobiling accident north of Tahoe City.

Placer County officials say Tuesday that James Edgar Darnall was killed after riding a Skidoo snowmobile Saturday on a trail near Mt. Watson Road. Highway Patrol officials say Darnall turned, veered off the trail and hit a tree, suffering fatal injuries.

Troopers say they were called about 4 p.m. Saturday. They are still investigating whether alcohol was a factor in the crash.

Men accused in torture

case spared prison time

SAN LUIS OBISPO  (AP) — Two men originally charged in a bizarre torture case involving a fork, hammer and blowtorch have pleaded no contest to felony assault in a deal that spared them prison time, though their accuser was sentenced separately to two years in prison.

Daniel Andrew Zeller and Philip Clyde Williams Jr. were accused of holding Travis Michael Lord captive for three days inside a rural California Valley trailer, where he was stabbed with a fork, hit with a hammer and burned with a blowtorch. Authorities were unable to get a credible account of what happened, since the men all gave conflicting stories and two said they had been on a monthlong meth binge.

Charges of torture and false imprisonment were dropped against Zeller and Williams as part of a plea deal. Lord, who was convicted in 2003 for molesting a boy in New York, was sentenced Tuesday to prison for failing to register as a sex offender.

Three teens get prison for

attacking student at school

SANTA MARIA  (AP) — Three teenage gang members tried as adults have been sentenced to prison for stabbing a fellow student in a bathroom at a California central coast high school.

The teens attacked a 17-year-old student in a Lompoc High School bathroom on March 28, 2011. The victim, who is not a gang member, survived several knife wounds.

Trial was scheduled to start next month, but the suspects entered no contest pleas on March 1.

The Santa Maria Times says 17-year-old Saul Rivera pleaded no contest to assault with a deadly weapon and gang involvement and he got seven years in prison.

Prosecutors say 17-year-old Marco Dominguez and 18-year-old Christian Ortiz pleaded to assault and gang enhancement allegations the crime. They were each sentenced last week to four years in prison.

Woman, 65, charged

with assisting suicide

SANTA ANA  (AP) — A 65-year-old woman was arrested Wednesday on a felony charge alleging she helped an elderly man kill himself last year by mixing a lethal drug dose in his yogurt.

Prosecutors charged Elizabeth Barrett with illegally assisting in the suicide of Jack Koency, an 86-year-old World War II veteran who lived in a nearby retirement complex.

The motive for Koency's suicide was not immediately released, but prosecutors said he was not terminally ill, bedridden or immobile.

"People are to some degree conditioned to hear about these cases when you have an elderly person who is terminally ill, who is in pain, who has zero standard of living or close to it," said Ebrahim Baytieh, senior deputy district attorney in Orange County. "This is not that kind of case."

Barrett was taken into custody at her home in Laguna Woods and remained jailed on $25,000 bail. She could face three years in prison if convicted. It was not immediately clear whether she had an attorney.

ACCUSED N. CALIF. SERIAL KILLER GETS LEGAL HELP: SAN RAFAEL  (AP) — A Nevada man headed for trial in the killings of four women whose bodies were found around Northern California is getting some legal help.

Joseph Naso had been representing himself in the quadruple murder case. But he showed up in Marin County Superior Court on Wednesday with his new advisory counsel, Michael Marowitz.

The Marin Independent Journal reports that the judge agreed to postpone setting a trial date until next week because of Marowitz's arrival.

The advisory counsel may not speak on Naso's behalf during the trial.

The 78-year-old Naso is accused of killing Roxene Roggasch in 1977, Carmen Colon in 1978, Pamela Parsons in 1993 and Tracy Tafoya in 1994. All four were prostitutes found strangled in rural areas.