LAWYER FOR WOMAN PUNCHED BY CHP OFFICER JAILED FOR CONTEMPT: LOS ANGELES (AP) — The lawyer for a bipolar woman who was beaten by a California Highway Patrol officer has been declared in contempt of court and sent to jail until she answers questions from a federal judge.
Caree Harper was sanctioned Monday in Los Angeles for refusing to say how she met Marlene Pinnock and when she learned the woman might be mentally incompetent.
She’d earlier been ordered not to spend any more of her client’s money from a $1.5 million settlement without the judge’s approval.
Pinnock was caught on video being repeatedly punched while resisting arrest after she walked into Los Angeles freeway lanes last July.
No criminal charges were filed.
The CHP paid $1.5 million to settle a lawsuit and the officer resigned.
FRESNO GIRL WINS NATIONAL ELEMENTARY SCHOOL SPELLING BEE: LONG BEACH (AP) — A 9-year-old Fresno girl has won the 14th annual National Elementary School Spelling Bee. Her winning words: “hydrofoil” and “paucity.”
Ananya Vinay outspelled 34 other students in grades three to five to take the top spot at the event in Long Beach. Last year she placed fifth.
The fourth-grader at Fugman Elementary School took home a $1,000 prize.
The event is modeled after the Scripps National Spelling Bee held annually in Washington, D.C., but is geared toward younger students.
The second place winner was a 10-year-old from Riverside who misspelled “medallion.”
SONOMA OFFICIALS OPPOSE FLUORIDE IN DRINKING WATER : SONOMA (AP) — Sonoma’s city council is opposing a proposal to add fluoride to the city’s drinking water, after hearing concerns from residents.
Ccouncilmembers voted 3-2 Monday against the plan to add the cavity-fighting mineral to its water supply. The council will send a letter of opposition to the county’s board of supervisors.
Councilmember Laurie Gallian says she voted against sending the letter because the county was still in the process of researching the fluoridation issue.
County health officials are pushing to add fluoride to the water, saying it is one of the most effective ways to prevent tooth decay and reduce dental care costs.
Fluoride opponents call the mineral dangerous and the science surrounding water fluoridation faulty.
MAN TRIES TO ROB DINER WITH SCISSORS: CLOVIS (AP) — A man armed with scissors called police and claimed he had hostages after attempting to rob a Northern California restaurant.
The Fresno Bee reports Tuesday that 36-year-old Eric Ross was arrested Sunday night at a Clovis Denny’s restaurant.
Sgt. Vince Weibert said Ross went into the diner, shouted that he was armed and was robbing the restaurant.
Several of the roughly 30 diners ran out. Ross then changed course, approached the register, pulled out a pair of scissors and demanded cash. He counted the money and called 911. He told the operator he was a bandit holding hostages.
Officers confronted Ross while he was still on the phone with the dispatcher. Weibert said he fought with officers before he was subdued.
MAN FALLS TO DEATH FROM PARAGLIDER, TEEN DAUGHTER SURVIVES: SANTA BARBARA (AP) — Authorities say a California man fell 1,000 feet to his death in a paragliding accident while his teenage daughter, who was flying in tandem with him, survived.
A Santa Barbara County sheriff’s statement Monday says 60-year-old veterinarian Ronald Faoro died after witnesses say Faoro fell from about 1,000 feet and landed in a steep canyon area. Rescue teams found him and declared him dead.
His 16-year-old daughter continued on the paraglider for another quarter-mile and crashed into a ridge. She was spotted and lifted out by helicopter but received only minor injuries.
Paragliding resembles a combination of hang-gliding and skydiving, where a pilot launches on foot and sits below a fabric wing that catches the wind.
SAN FRANCISCO POLICE FIND RIGHT PROSTHETIC LEG: SAN FRANCISCO (AP) — Police are trying to find the rightful owner of a right prosthetic leg that was found leaning against a tree last week.
The leg, which has a brown lace-up shoe on its’ foot, is worth about $7,000.
Police say the leg is in fine shape.
An officer found the limb at Eighth and Market streets, and picked it up for safekeeping. The officer checked with a one-legged panhandler who begs in front of a San Francisco mall. He sometimes removes his leg to attract more sympathy and money.
But when police went by, the man was there begging. His leg was hooked to the back of his wheelchair.
Police say people occasionally remove their prosthetic limb to bathe or swim. The owner of the leg should contact San Francisco police.