By allowing ads to appear on this site, you support the local businesses who, in turn, support great journalism.
State news briefs
Placeholder Image

POLITENESS POLICY DIES AMID CITY COUNCIL BICKERING: MENIFEE  (AP) — A proposed politeness policy that asked the Menifee City Council to remain civil during meetings died after council members spent 15 minutes arguing about the idea.

The Riverside Press-Enterprise reported Thursday that council members mostly bickered about a sentence that asked them to discuss disagreements privately instead of sniping at each other at meetings.

Some members were concerned that could give the impression they were having closed-door meetings about city business.

Members then clashed over whether they should add the word "transparency" to the proposal to avoid such an appearance.

One councilwoman said that adding "transparency" would allow other councilmembers to use the policy as a political weapon.

Redistricting means the council members must run against each other in November.

Menifee is about 80 miles southeast of Los Angeles.

LA-AREA HOMELESS PEOPLE FOUND STABBED WITH NOTES: LOS ANGELES (AP) — Police are looking for a man they want to question in the stabbings of three homeless people in the Los Angeles area who were found with knives in them and notes that police describe as "death warrants."

Police Cmdr. Andrew Smith said the third attack came Thursday morning on a middle-aged woman in Hollywood. It followed the pattern of two previous attacks on homeless men.

The first stabbing came July 3 in downtown Los Angeles. The second came Tuesday, when a man was stabbed as he slept on a bench in Santa Monica.

Police say all three survived the attacks.

Smith says police are seeking a person of interest who goes by the name David Ben Keyes and may be homeless.

CALIF. WOMAN PLEADS GUILTY TO ANIMAL CRUELTY: MEMPHIS, Tenn. (AP) — A California woman has been sentenced to two years' probation after she and another woman were found in West Tennessee with more than 140 dogs and one cat in two vehicles.

Bonnie Sheehan pleaded guilty Thursday to 14 of 30 misdemeanor animal cruelty charges.

Sheehan was then sentenced by Circuit Judge Weber McCraw. Sheehan also must pay a $500 fine and is barred from having animals in her custody during her probation.

Sheehan, founder of an animal rescue group called Hearts for Hounds, and Pamela King-McCracken were arrested Jan. 17 in Fayette County. Authorities say they were driving a rental truck and towing a minivan that were packed with stacks of crates with animals inside.

One dog died and 14 others were dehydrated or suffering from skin disease and lesions.

The women said they were driving from Long Beach, Calif., to Roanoke, Va

OFFICER ARRESTED IN PROPERTY-FOR-SEX COMPLAINT :  BAKERSFIELD  (AP) — A Bakersfield police officer is on paid leave while the department investigates allegations he attempted to extort sex from a theft victim by withholding her recovered property.

Officer Patrick Lefler was arrested on several charges, including suspicion of possession of stolen property. Lefler has been with the department since 2009.

The victim reported to the Kern County Sheriff's Department in June that items had been stolen from her car. A deputy later recovered the items and Lefler is reported to have taken the property for the purpose of returning it.

Police said investigators discovered that Lefler had written sexually suggestive text messages to the woman and told her he wanted to meet her with the property and have sex with her.

EX-ARIZ. POL CHARGED WITH IMPERSONATING SON IN CA: SAN DIEGO (AP) — California prosecutors say a former Arizona legislator who went to prison in a 1990 corruption scandal used his son's identity to get a California ID card and real estate license so he could work as a broker and teach a real estate class.

U-T San Diego ( reported Thursday that Don Kenney has been charged with five felonies including perjury, forgery and impersonating his son, a Washington state attorney.

Kenney appeared in court Wednesday. His arraignment was postponed to August and he was released without bail. He declined comment when reached by the newspaper.

Kenney was chairman of the House Judiciary Committee in Arizona in 1990 when he pleaded guilty to bribery, money laundering and other felonies stemming from attempts to legalize casino gambling. He served 14 months in prison.

CALIF. WOMAN CONVICTED IN TAKING MEN FOR RANSOM: SAN DIEGO (AP) — Prosecutors say a woman who lured two men to being abducted and held for nearly $1 million in ransom by a Mexican gang has been convicted of conspiracy and kidnapping charges.

City News Service reports 24-year-old Nancy Mendoza Moreno was convicted Thursday and faces life in prison without possibility of parole at a sentencing hearing Aug. 16.

Prosecutors say the men were held for ransom by members of Moreno's gang Los Palillos.

Prosecutors say Moreno helped kidnap 58-year-old Jorge Garcia Vasquez, the brother-in-law of a cartel financier, in 2007. After He accompanied her on an errand, he was jumped.

Mendoza was also convicted of seducing wealthy Mexican businessman Eduardo Gonzalez Tostado and luring him to a Chula Vista home in 2007, where he was held for eight days.

'BEST IN SHOW' ACTOR WILLARD ACCUSED OF LEWD ACT: LOS ANGELES (AP) — Actor Fred Willard, perhaps best-known as a dog-show announcer in the movie "Best in Show," was arrested on suspicion of committing a lewd act at a Hollywood adult theater and later fired from his work on a PBS series.

Uniformed vice officers were conducting a routine investigation of the theater Wednesday night and saw Willard engaging in a lewd act, Los Angeles police Sgt. Mark Ro said. The actor appeared to be alone, he said.

Willard, 72, was booked at the Hollywood police station on suspicion of committing a lewd act in public. Ro said Willard was released after midnight without posting bail.

By Thursday afternoon, Willard had lost his job narrating "Market Warriors," which is produced by Boston public television station WGBH.

Willard's attorney Paul Takakjian wrote in an email that he was gathering more information and declined further comment. The actor said in a video posted by celebrity website TMZ that it was a misunderstanding and denied wrongdoing.