• ABANDONED CROC CAPTURED AT ROSEVILLE STRIP MALL: ROSEVILLE (AP) — This is one crocodile that didn’t want to become a handbag.
Police in the Sacramento suburb of Roseville captured a 4-foot-long crocodile Wednesday near a T.J. Maxx store in a strip mall.
Police spokeswoman Dee Dee Gunther says the animal apparently escaped from a box left in front of a reptile shop called The Serpentarium with a sign saying “Nile Crocodile. Contact Rescue.”
Authorities say the crocodile is feisty but had duct tape wrapped around its jaws.
California Department of Fish and Wildlife Lt. Patrick Foy says the agency is “reasonably sure” the animal is indeed a Nile crocodile. It’s looking for a zoo or other facility to take it.
Foy says the crocodile appears to have broken teeth, perhaps from biting wire cages.
California bans ownership of crocodiles.
• NEWBORN GIRL FOUND DEAD IN APARTMENT DUMPSTER: CORONA (AP) — The body of a newborn girl has been found in a Southern California dumpster and police say the mother led them to the body.
Corona police say the woman showed up at a Riverside hospital Tuesday evening and said she’d been injured. But an examination indicated she’d probably given birth.
Authorities say the woman told police she’d delivered at home that morning but thought the girl was stillborn and dumped her.
Sgt. Kim Velasco says the woman lives with her parents and apparently had tried to hide her pregnancy.
Police found the infant wrapped in plastic bags in the bin outside the mother’s apartment complex.
Coroner’s officials will try to determine the cause of death. Velasco says that will determine whether charges are filed against the mother, who wasn’t arrested.
• LA MOTORCYCLE OFFICER INJURED IN CRASH DIES: LOS ANGELES (AP) — A Los Angeles policeman has died, days after he was injured in a crash involving a driver who was allegedly high on cocaine.
Chris Cortijo, a 26-year veteran, died Wednesday afternoon at the hospital where he’d been in critical condition.
Authorities say Cortijo’s motorcycle was stopped at a traffic light in Sun Valley Saturday when an SUV rear-ended it, pinning him to a car in front.
Cortijo was twice LAPD officer of the year. Police Chief Charlie Beck calls him a true friend.
The chief says during his career, Cortijo arrested more than 3,000 drivers for driving under the influence and it’s ironic that an alleged DUI driver took his life.
That driver, Qaneak Cobb of Pacoima, has pleaded not guilty to cocaine possession and driving under the influence.