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Newsletter: El Cajon police and the fight over a video

Protesters march following the fatal police shooting of an unarmed black man said to be mentally ill. Local officials urged calm and pledged a full investigation.
(BILL WECHTER/AFP/Getty)

Good morning. It is Friday, Sept. 30. A Mountain View company is teaching robots to make and deliver pizzas. What a delicious invention! Here’s what is happening in the Golden State:

TOP STORIES

Harassment allegations

The superintendent of Yosemite National Park is stepping down amid an ongoing investigation into allegations of a hostile work environment. Don Neubacher’s resignation is effective as of Nov. 1. Kelly Martin, now chief of Fire and Aviation Management at Yosemite, cataloged multiple incidents of alleged gender bias, including sexual harassment, that she encountered in her 32 years of federal service. Los Angeles Times

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A test for law enforcement

Last month, San Diego law enforcement agencies came together to write what they described as the nation’s first countywide policy on the release of videotapes showing police shootings. But the pioneering guidelines are facing new scrutiny this week as San Diego County deals with a real-life test: The controversial killing of a black man by El Cajon police. Critics say officials have been too slow to release the videos. This comes as police around the nation are grappling with how to deal with these situations. Los Angeles Times

Water is for fighting over

The creator of “Law & Order,” Dick Wolf, wants to sell water from a basin beneath his 70-acre Slippery Rock Ranch to neighboring cities like Montecito. The Goleta Water District has sued to stop him. “Both sides have insisted that while their own arguments are grounded in science, their opponents occasionally roam into the realm of fiction.” Los Angeles Times

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L.A. AT LARGE

Foodie community: WeChat, the Chinese messaging app, is where an underground cottage industry of amateur chefs tout their marinated duck wings, Shaanxi meat buns and stewed pork knuckles to Southern Californians in the know. Los Angeles Times

College tuition: The L.A. College Promise will provide one year of tuition-free community college to graduates of Los Angeles public schools. Its supporters hope students will focus full-time on school, making them more likely to complete a degree or transfer to a four-year college. But even with a tuition waiver, many students will have to keep working to pay for rent, food and textbooks. Los Angeles Times

Foreclosed properties: L.A. City Atty. Mike Feuer announced a $13.5-million settlement with U.S. Bank Thursday to resolve allegations the bank allowed foreclosed properties to fall into disrepair. “This significant settlement underscores my commitment that all foreclosed and vacant properties be kept up to code, so they don’t become sources of blight or magnets for crime,” Feuer said. Los Angeles Times

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Miniature city: Meet the guy who created a highly detailed miniature version of the downtown L.A. skyline using Legos. “He works nights. In his free time, he builds a Lego city.” Los Angeles Magazine

Future of print: A pioneering Los Angeles gay and lesbian magazine might cease publication. LA Weekly

POLITICS AND GOVERNMENT

Aftershocks: A triple homicide in Fullerton has sent shock-waves through the “fur community,” people who admire and dress up as animals. Orange County Register

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A hard life: The troubled, difficult life of the immigrant killed by El Cajon police in a controversial shooting earlier this week. San Diego Union-Tribune

Paying respects: Four members of California’s congressional delegation are in Israel to attend the funeral of former Israeli President Shimon Peres. They’ll join President Obama and a delegation of U.S. officials in Jerusalem Friday. Los Angeles Times

Political fundraising: Donald Trump’s rivals from the Republican primary may be backing him in the November election, but many of their donors are not. An analysis by The Times found 95% of those who gave to other GOP primary candidates are not giving money in the general election. Of those who are still giving money, many have decided to back Democratic presidential candidate Hillary Clinton. Los Angeles Times

CRIME AND COURTS

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Guilty plea: A former Marine pleaded guilty Thursday to the bizarre kidnapping of a Vallejo woman. In 2015, Matthew Muller drugged and bound Denise Huskins and her boyfriend, Aaron Quinn. He then kidnapped Huskins. Police initially believed the crime may have been some kind of hoax. Los Angeles Times

Brief reprieve: Former Undersheriff Paul Tanaka will surrender to federal authorities on Oct. 7 instead of Oct. 3. A federal judge agreed to give Tanaka a few more days of freedom so he could work on his appeal. In April, it took a jury less than three hours to convict Tanaka of conspiracy to obstruct justice and obstruction of justice. Los Angeles Times

Hate crime: A pair of swastikas were painted onto the windows of a Palm Springs convenience store. “It needs to be known it’s happening in the valley,” said the business’ owner Amiee Wyant. Desert Sun

HOUSING

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Hanging on: The eviction of a 100-year-old woman in San Francisco was delayed for at least another week. Iris Canada has lived in the same apartment since 1965. She had hoped to finish out her life there thanks to an agreement that allowed her to stay for $700 a month, but the owners of her unit say she violated that contract by allegedly living with a niece in Oakland. SFGate

DROUGHT AND CLIMATE

What’s ahead: What does this winter have in store for California? “We don’t know what exactly we’re going to get, and it’s going to be storm-by-storm dependent,” said Michelle Mead, a meteorologist with the National Weather Service. Sacramento Bee

CALIFORNIA CULTURE

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Digital revolution: How B-movie producers are trying to survive the digital revolution. Learning to battle the new streaming culture. Wall Street Journal

Honest conversations: Singer Tori Amos penned an op-ed on the lasting effects of sexual violence. “My own experience as a mother of a teenage daughter leaves me wondering how younger generations will effectively confront the role of the community and of society in this crisis,” she writes. Amos penned a song for the new documentary “Audrie and Daisy,” which focuses on assault and bullying. Los Angeles Times

Special spots: Here are some of the San Francisco landmarks ruined by social media. Basically, there is no such thing as a “secret space” anymore. SFGate

A role model: Californians should retire like Vin Scully, writes Joe Mathews. “The central principle is flexibility: the ability to mix varying levels of work with life in a way that makes both better,” he writes. Zócalo Public Square

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Breakfast suggestions: The 10 best doughnut shops in L.A. LAist

CALIFORNIA ALMANAC

San Francisco will be 65 with low clouds. Sacramento will be partly sunny and 76. It will be mostly sunny and 86 in Los Angeles. San Diego will be 81 with low clouds. It will be sunny and 93 in Riverside.

AND FINALLY

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Today’s California Memory comes from Sally White:

“When I hear about the plight of refugee children in many of the countries now torn apart by constant fighting and war, I feel tremendous empathy. I lived in San Diego during WWII and though I was not witness to actual bombings or warfare, I was constantly afraid as we were always on guard for foreign aircrafts. My 92-pound, 4’11” mother was an air raid warden. I can still remember her leaving the house during an air raid with a big flashlight in her hand and a helmet upon her head. Our windows were covered with material to block any light from escaping. In addition, I remember rationing: food, particularly sugar, shoes, gasoline and other commodities. We collected foil and rubber bands, and bought ‘war bonds’ to finance the war effort rather than ‘charge it’ as is the practice today. We did not ‘go shopping,’ but rather recycled and reused. Those are my childhood memories; I still cringe when two or more planes pass overhead, and if possible, I go outside to check them out.”

If you have a memory or story about the Golden State, share it with us. Send us an email to let us know what you love or fondly remember about our state. (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 and ideas to Alice Walton or Shelby Grad.

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