• TOE DISPUTE PROMPTS ARREST OF BEAUTY CONTESTANT: RIVERSIDE (AP) — Officials say a 22-year-old beauty pageant contestant has been arrested in California after being caught on video walking comfortably in high heels while collecting workers’ compensation benefits after saying she had a broken toe.
The state Department of Insurance said Tuesday that Shawna Lynn Palmer claimed she fractured a toe while working at a supermarket.
A doctor issued her crutches and an orthopedic shoe, and she collected workers’ comp. However, the agency says in a release that Palmer was later videotaped walking with no discomfort while competing to become Miss Toyota at the Long Beach Grand Prix.
Jail records show Palmer was arrested Friday in Riverside on three felony counts of defrauding an insurance company. She was released on $5,000 bail.
• ANCHOVY DIE-OFF HITS NORTHERN CALIFORNIA CITY: FOSTER CITY (AP) — A San Francisco Bay Area city is the latest in California to get hit with a huge, stinky anchovy die-off.
Thousands of the fish have died around Foster City, and public works crews have been clearing their carcasses from waters and beaches over the past several days.
A similar anchovy die-off occurred earlier this month in Santa Cruz. The high numbers of dead, floating fish forced the harbor to shut down some boat ramps.
Experts say the die-offs stem from a higher-than-normal population of anchovies exhausting oxygen in the water and suffocating. They say it is natural.
• MADERA TRAFFIC STOP LEADS TO LARGE DRUG BUST: MADERA (AP) — Authorities in Central California say a traffic stop led to two men being arrested following a large drug bust.
Madera County Sheriff’s spokeswoman Erica Stuart said officials netted 18 kilograms of cocaine, 16 pounds of methamphetamine and eight pounds of heroin as well as $7,000 in cash on Wednesday.
A California Highway Patrol officer made the arrests along Highway 99 just south of Madera.
Stuart says the two suspects appeared nervous after being stopped by the officer. A subsequent canine search found the illegal drugs stashed inside the vehicle’s roof.
Thirty-nine-year-old Juan Carlos Esparza and 29-year-old Raydel Estrada Gomez, both of Sacramento, were taken into custody. They are being held in the Madera County jail on $5 million bail apiece.
• BERKELEY MAN CHARGED IN RANDOM STABBING ON AC BUS: BERKELEY (AP) — A man accused of randomly stabbing a fellow passenger aboard an AC Transit bus has been charged with attempted murder and assault with a deadly weapon.
Alameda County prosecutors announced the charges against 24-year-old Eric Palmer on Wednesday.
Berkeley police said Palmer was riding on the bus Monday night when he walked down the aisle, pulled out a knife and said “watch this” before stabbing a 21-year-old woman.
Police said a witness tried to stop Palmer by striking him with a skateboard, but Palmer continued stabbing the woman and seriously injuring her.
Palmer got off the bus when it pulled over, and was arrested by an officer who was flagged down by a passenger.
Police said Palmer didn’t know the victim and there was no apparent motive for the attack.
• MOM ACCUSED OF LEAVING BABY IN HOT CAR: ATWATER (AP) — A Central California mother is facing charges after police say she left her infant son in a hot car.
The Merced Sun-Star reports that 26-year-old Amanda Sagmiller is scheduled to appear in court on Wednesday for a bail hearing. She has pleaded not guilty to a felony count of child endangerment.
Atwater police arrested Sagmiller on Aug. 5 after they say she left her 3-month-old son in a hot minivan while she went grocery shopping. The temperature outside at the time was above 90 degrees.
Police say the boy was lethargic and covered in perspiration when officers found him.
• PLANE STOWAWAY GETS JAIL FOR PROBATION VIOLATION: LOS ANGELES (AP) — A woman who authorities say flew from San Jose to Southern California without a ticket was sentenced to 177 days in jail Wednesday after acknowledging that she violated her probation by returning to the Los Angeles airport.
Marilyn Jean Hartman, 62, was found wandering through airport terminals after a judge ordered her to stay away from the facility, said Frank Mateljan, spokesman for the city attorney’s office.
While ordering the sentence, Los Angeles Superior Court Commissioner Alan Rubin scolded Hartman for wasting law enforcement resources at an airport that accommodates more than 65 million travelers a year.
“Recently we had shootings here, somebody killed here at LAX. There have been in the past bombing attempts,” Rubin said. “I want and I intend to have police resources to be used in those kinds of matters. Not this.”
Hartman’s public defender Larissa Cesareo did not immediately respond to requests for comment.
Hartman previously made repeated attempts to sneak aboard flights at other airports, according to authorities.