Newsletter: Shooting in Fresno leaves four dead, six wounded

Fresno shooting
Police and emergency vehicles on the scene of a mass shooting in southeast Fresno, Calif. At least 10 people are reported to have been shot, and four are dead.
(Larry Valenzuela / Fresno Bee)

Good morning, and welcome to the Essential California newsletter. It’s Monday, Nov. 18, and I’m writing from Los Angeles.

A shooting at a party in Fresno on Sunday night left at least four people dead and six others wounded. Police told the Fresno Bee that friends and family were watching football in a backyard “when unknown suspects approached the residence, snuck into the backyard and opened fire.” About 35 people were gathered at the southeast Fresno home at the time, including several children.

[See also: “Shooting at Fresno backyard party kills four, wounds six others, police say” in the Los Angeles Times]

Police said three of the victims were found dead in the backyard and a fourth died after being taken to a hospital. No suspect was in custody as of late Sunday night. The backyard attack was at least the second fatal shooting Sunday in southeast Fresno, according to the Bee.

And now, here’s a quick look at the week ahead:


Public impeachment hearings will continue Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday. Gordon D. Sondland, the United States ambassador to the European Union, will testify Wednesday morning and former National Security Council Senior Director for Europe and Russia Fiona Hill is scheduled to testify Thursday.

The 62nd Grammy Awards nominations will be announced Wednesday.

Also Wednesday: The fifth 2020 Democratic presidential candidate debate will be held in Atlanta.

Twitter’s global ban on political advertising will go into effect Friday. Your move, Facebook.

If you have a child in your life, prepare to have some new songs stuck in your head: The sequel to “Frozen” will be released widely on Friday.

And, here’s what’s happening across California:


PG&E has warned of potential power shut-offs in Northern California this week. The utility said there was an “elevated” risk of power being shut off Wednesday and Thursday in North Bay counties and the Sierra foothills amid warmer temperatures and gusty winds. San Francisco Chronicle

Meanwhile, red flag conditions will taper off in Southern California. Temperatures across L.A. County are expected to drop Monday and Tuesday, with rain forecast for Wednesday. Los Angeles Times

The range of quick actions by students and staff when gunfire erupted at Saugus High School reveals not only how detailed active shooter training has become at schools across the country, but also highlights a growing debate among school safety experts, some who are alarmed that increasingly aggressive drills have gone too far and risk becoming trauma-inducing events of their own. Los Angeles Times


Columnist Steve Lopez has a new three-part series about what happened when a homeless encampment rose in a Hollywood neighborhood. Los Angeles Times (The second and third parts are here)

Plus: A new poll shows that a broad majority of voters think the city and county have been ineffective in spending money on homelessness and that new policies are needed to address a crisis that they now equate with a natural disaster. Los Angeles Times

A $1-billion plan for Metro’s North Hollywood station takes shape: Developers and transit officials are set to apply Monday for city permission to build a $1-billion mixed-use complex that would surround the subway entrance and adjacent hub for connecting bus routes, including the well-traveled Orange Line. Los Angeles Times

Father Gregory Boyle’s “Barking to the Choir” is the L.A. Times Book Club’s next read. Boyle is the founder of Homeboy Industries. Los Angeles Times

Father Gregory Boyle in his office in 2015.
Father Gregory Boyle in his office in 2015.
(Al Seib / Los Angeles Times)

Glendale’s busiest areas may soon be off limits to sidewalk vendors. Although Glendale is far from a hotbed of vending activity, the proposed ordinance could preclude vendors from setting up mobile shop there in the future. Glendale News-Press

How to hail a ride at ever-changing LAX during the holidays (or any other time). Los Angeles Times

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The shifting Democratic 2020 field was on display at the California party convention in Long Beach. Los Angeles Times

Joe Biden and Elizabeth Warren’s absence at the convention irked some party leaders. San Francisco Chronicle

Major California endorsements for Sens. Bernie Sanders and Kamala Harris: California’s high-profile farmworkers union endorsed Harris for president on Saturday, soon after Sanders had won the support of the national nurses labor group and Los Angeles teachers. Los Angeles Times

Mayor Pete is winning the Palm Springs primary. “Palm Springs has more LGBTQ couples per household than any city in California ... and as the first openly gay candidate to launch a competitive bid for president, Buttigieg has garnered support from a wide swath of the desert resort town’s residents.” Desert Sun

Can you help govern a Northern California city from your second home in South America? A Santa Rosa City Council member is drawing sharp questions about her ability to fulfill her duties, as she splits time between the North Bay city and another home in Ecuador. The councilwoman plans to phone in to a council meeting from her part-time home in Ecuador for a third time this coming week. A spotty international telephone connection stymied her attempt to participate in a vote last week. Santa Rosa Press-Democrat


A 3-year-old boy was in critical condition after five family members, including two children, died in a domestic dispute in San Diego. San Diego Union-Tribune

To curb racial bias, Oakland police are pulling fewer people over. Will it work? San Francisco Chronicle


A nearly monthlong fire at a recycling center in the eastern Coachella Valley created intense smoke that sickened students. Residents of the unincorporated community of Thermal, where more than a third of residents live below the poverty line and more than 99% are Latino, say the mulch fires would not have been tolerated in wealthier, white cities. Desert Sun

Sirens, texts, even church bells: Without a statewide standard, California wildfire alerts and evacuations remain ad hoc. CalMatters


Hearst Castle is decked out in all its holiday finery. Here’s how you can see it. San Luis Obispo Tribune

Remembering Sammy Davis Jr.’s car accident in San Bernardino, 65 years later. Inland Daily Bulletin

How a spearfishing, freediving club creates community outside the water: OC Spearos boasts a membership of 200 spearfishers and freedivers from the South Bay to San Diego and beyond. It’s the largest club of its kind in the country. Orange County Register

Big festivals produce lots of garbage. But the “Trash Pirates” are here to take on one of the unpleasant byproducts of festival culture. New York Times

Local socialists called for a public takeover of PG&E at a Santa Rosa rally on Saturday. Santa Rosa Press-Democrat


Los Angeles: sunny, 90. San Diego: partly sunny, 84. San Francisco: sunny, 67. San Jose: sunny, 75. Sacramento: sunny, 76. More weather is here.


This week’s birthdays for those who made a mark in California:

Twitter co-founder and CEO Jack Dorsey (Nov. 19, 1976), actor-director Jodie Foster (Nov. 19, 1962), Nobel chemistry laureate and USC professor Arieh Warshel (Nov. 20, 1940), tennis legend and Dodgers part-owner Billie Jean King (Nov. 22, 1943), and the late former congressman and Oakland mayor Ron Dellums (Nov. 24, 1935).

If you have a memory or story about the Golden State, share it with us. (Please keep your story to 100 words.)

Please let us know what we can do to make this newsletter more useful to you. Send comments, complaints, ideas and unrelated book recommendations to Julia Wick. Follow her on Twitter @Sherlyholmes.