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Articles written by Brian Melley

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Report highlights utility failures in biggest US gas leak

LOS ANGELES (AP) — An investigation into the cause of the largest-known release of methane in the U.S. faults a California utility for the way it maintained its natural gas storage field before the massive 2015 blowout. The report released Friday...

 

Parents who starved and shackled children sentenced to life

RIVERSIDE, Calif. (AP) — The eldest son and daughter of a couple who starved and shackled 12 of their children spoke publicly for the first time Friday, alternately condemning and forgiving their parents before a judge sentenced the pair to up to...

 

Judge dismisses porn star's hush money suit against Trump

LOS ANGELES (AP) — A federal judge on Thursday tossed out porn actress Stormy Daniels' lawsuit against President Donald Trump that sought to tear up a hush-money settlement about their alleged affair. U.S. District Court Judge S. James Otero in...

 

Robert Durst defense: Evidence could be 'game over' for heir

LOS ANGELES (AP) — New York real estate heir Robert Durst is charged with one count of murder, but will have to defend himself in three killings at trial later this year in California. Los Angeles prosecutors won a victory Tuesday in persuading a...

 

In smoldering wildfire ruins, life goes on for a hardy few

PARADISE, Calif. (AP) — Brad Weldon lost his home to fire when he was a kid, so when a deadly wildland blaze came roaring toward his ranch house in the pines where he lives with his 89-year-old blind mother, he wasn't going to let disaster strike...

 

California hopefuls blame incumbents as farm towns struggle

HURON, Calif. (AP) — A rooster signals the start of the day as workers wearing sombreros emerge from the shadows and shuffle past boarded-up businesses in this tiny farm town. They converge on a dimly lit dirt lot outside Panaderia de Dios, a...

 

North Korean charged in crippling Sony hack, WannaCry virus

LOS ANGELES (AP) — A computer programmer working for the North Korean government was charged with devastating cyberattacks that hacked Sony Pictures Entertainment and unleashed the WannaCry ransomware virus that infected computers in 150 countries...

 

Hatred, DNA link California man to gay student's slaying

NEWPORT BEACH, Calif. (AP) — A Southern California man was ordered Tuesday to stand trial on charges that he murdered a gay University of Pennsylvania student in a hate crime after prosecutors linked him to the stabbing through DNA and showed he...

 

Huge Los Angeles gas leak leads to $120 million settlement

LOS ANGELES (AP) — A Southern California utility reached a nearly $120 million settlement over a massive blowout at a natural gas storage field that became the nation's largest known release of climate-changing methane and forced thousands to flee...

 

States vow to continue fight against Trump's car fuel rules

LOS ANGELES (AP) — State prosecutors who pre-emptively sued months ago to block anticipated efforts by the Environmental Protection Agency to weaken car fuel-efficiency standards blasted the Trump administration Thursday for doing so and vowed to...

 

Fire victims: 2 firefighters, great-grandmother, children

REDDING, Calif. (AP) — Two young children and their 70-year-old great-grandmother died in the wildfire that swept into the city of Redding with devastating speed, their family said Saturday, and a bulldozer operator who died working to contain the...

 

California fires burn boats, threaten Gold Rush-era relics

REDDING, Calif. (AP) — Even a lake didn't provide safe harbor from erratic California wildfires. With flames exploding around Whiskeytown Lake, an effort to save boats at a Northern California marina by untying them from moorings and pushing them...

 

'Terrifying' tornados of flame burn California city; 2 dead

REDDING, Calif. (AP) — A wildfire that roared with little warning into a Northern California city claimed two lives as thousands of people scrambled to escape before the walls of flames descended from forested hills onto their neighborhoods,...

 

California judge affirms ruling for coffee cancer warnings

LOS ANGELES (AP) — A Los Angeles judge has issued a final ruling requiring coffee to carry cancer warning labels in California. Superior Court Judge Elihu Berle issued his decision Monday that Starbucks and other coffee companies failed to show...

 

Ex-cop arrested in sadistic crime spree from '70s and '80s

SACRAMENTO, Calif. (AP) — A man once sworn to protect the public from crime was accused Wednesday of living a double life terrorizing suburban neighborhoods at night, becoming one of California's most feared serial killers and rapists in the 1970s...

 

Trump lawyer told put up or shut up to slow porn star suit

LOS ANGELES (AP) — President Donald Trump's personal lawyer must declare in writing that his Fifth Amendment right against self-incrimination may be jeopardized if legal proceedings aren't delayed in a lawsuit filed by porn actress Stormy Daniels,...

 

APNewsBreak: California Judge: Coffee needs cancer warnings

LOS ANGELES (AP) — A Los Angeles judge has ruled that California law requires coffee companies to carry an ominous cancer warning label because of a chemical produced in the roasting process. Superior Court Judge Elihu Berle wrote in a proposed...

 

Buzzkill? Coffee cancer warnings could go beyond California

LOS ANGELES (AP) — It's fair to say that a lot of people awoke Friday to a headline that might have jolted them more awake than a morning cup of joe: A California judge had ruled that coffee sold in the state should carry a cancer warning. Here...

 

Bizarre battle over body of Charles Manson won by grandson

LOS ANGELES (AP) — A grandson of cult leader Charles Manson won the bizarre California court battle Monday over the killer's body. Kern County Superior Court Commissioner Alisa Knight ruled that Jason Freeman can retrieve Manson's remains, which...

 

Prosecutor: Parents starved kids until they stopped growing

RIVERSIDE, Calif. (AP) — A California couple tortured a dozen of their children for years, starving them to the point that their growth was stunted, chaining them to their beds for months at a time and forbidding them from showering more than once...

 

Missile-alert error reveals uncertainty about how to react

HONOLULU (AP) — When Jonathan Scheuer got an alert on his phone of a ballistic missile headed for Hawaii, he and his family didn't know what to do. They went to their guest bedroom, then decided it would be safer on the ground floor of their...

 

911 hoax call suspect faces felony after Kansas man's death

LOS ANGELES (AP) — A Los Angeles man suspected of making a hoax emergency call that led to the fatal police shooting of a Kansas man told a judge Wednesday he would not fight efforts to send him to Wichita to face charges. Tyler Barriss, 25, was...

 

California starts recreational pot sales, clients jam stores

SACRAMENTO, Calif. (AP) — From a pot shop in Santa Cruz that hung a banner proclaiming "Prohibition is Over!" to one in San Diego handing out T-shirts showing the first moon landing and declaring a "giant leap for mankind," the Golden State turned...

 

Anticipation high as California rolls out retail pot sales

LOS ANGELES (AP) — Californians may awake on New Year's Day to a stronger-than-normal whiff of marijuana as America's cannabis king lights up to celebrate the state's first legal retail pot sales. The historic day comes more than two decades after...

 

California suburbs again under siege from wind-driven fires

VENTURA, Calif. (AP) — For second time in two months, wind-driven fires tore through California communities in the middle of the night, leaving rows of homes and a psychiatric hospital in ruins Tuesday and sending tens of thousands of people fleein...

 

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