Newsletter: Essential California: If another riot broke out, how would the LAPD respond?

Two Korean Americans who are now adults have gathered memories into their own stories about the L.A. riots. Trump wants to enact a tax reform of historic proportions. L.A. businesses are bracing for a writers’ strike. Co-opt it; don’t crush it. That

Good morning, and welcome to the Essential California newsletter. It’s Thursday, April 27, and here’s what’s happening across California:


How the LAPD would respond to a riot today

Over the past quarter-century, police and others have analyzed what went wrong on April 29, 1992, and how officials would deal with unrest the next time around. “My belief is it’s a failure of the institution,” current LAPD Chief Charlie Beck said of what happened 25 years ago, in an interview this week. Los Angeles Times


Korean Americans remember

Justin Chon was 10 and Carol Park 12 when the city began to riot. They were children then, confused and scared, unsure of why their parents and all they had worked for had become targets of so much rage, or why they heard little to nothing of their Korean friends and neighbors’ experience of the riots in the ensuing years. Los Angeles Times

Plus: Check out this oral history of the L.A. riots 25 years on. LA Weekly

And: Here’s all the big pieces of the L.A. Times’ coverage of the anniversary so far. Los Angeles Times


Goodbye to all those new national monuments?

President Trump signed an executive order Wednesday that could lead to the reduction or elimination of some national monuments.The order, which Trump signed in a ceremony in the office of Interior Secretary Ryan Zinke, instructs Zinke to review monuments created by Presidents Clinton, George W. Bush and Obama under the 1906 Antiquities Act, which gives presidents the power to limit use of public land for historic, cultural, scientific or other reasons. Los Angeles Times

Plus: Here are the national monuments that could be in trouble as a result of this executive order. Los Angeles Times

Gearing up for a strike

The ancillary businesses that make the film industry hum are bracing for a writers strike. The work stoppage could begin as early as May 2 if the union can’t agree to a new contract with the Alliance of Motion Picture and Television Producers. Picture Car Warehouse rents vehicles to film and TV productions, and its owner decided a few months ago to auction off about 200 of his 600-car fleet partly to cull his inventory in anticipation of a dearth of work. Los Angeles Times

A crazy real estate market

One homeowner did her best to sum up the Southern California residential housing market: “This is insane,” Elizabeth Rodriguez said. A report out earlier this week from CoreLogic shows the Southern California median home price jumped 7.1% in March from a year earlier, hitting $480,000 in the six-county area. And despite low inventory, sales rose 7.8%. Los Angeles Times



So there, North Korea! An unarmed intercontinental ballistic missile was launched just after midnight Wednesday from Vandenberg Air Force Base as part of an operational test to show the country’s nuclear deterrent capability, according to the U.S. Air Force. Los Angeles Times

Baca is in trouble: Federal prosecutors are going to try to put former Los Angeles County Sheriff Lee Baca in prison for two years when he is sentenced next month for obstructing a probe into abuses at county jails, according to court documents. Los Angeles Times

The next phenom: Hunter Greene, a pitcher at Notre Dame High in Sherman Oaks, has made the cover of Sports Illustrated. Greene, 17, hits baseballs 450 feet and throws them 102 mph. He also is likely to be the first selection in the MLB draft. Sports Illustrated


Got his eye on the court: President Trump said in an interview Wednesday that he has “absolutely” considered proposals that would split up the 9th Circuit Court of Appeals, where judges have blocked two of his executive actions relating to his proposed travel ban. Washington Examiner


Setting the record straight: Officials at University of California campuses changed their responses and dropped criticism of the UC Office of the President after it contacted them, instead offering more positive reviews of its effectiveness, according to documents released as part of a scathing audit of the administration. Los Angeles Times

Train project withstands court challenge: A judge has refused an effort to block spending on California’s bullet train. The injunction had been filed by opponents of the project who want to stop the state rail agency from spending bond money approved by voters in 2008. Los Angeles Times


Under construction: One of Sacramento’s oldest freeways, Highway 160, will close intermittently for repairs this spring and summer. The $6.9 million project includes repairs on a section of the Capital City Freeway, also known as Business 80. Sacramento Bee


See you in court: Fifteen residents who escaped the flames last month in the deadly inferno at a West Oakland halfway house sued the landlords and nonprofits Wednesday, claiming they allowed numerous fire code violations in the deteriorating property that led to the fire. The Mercury News

Cold case less cold: New tips in the December 2009 slaying of a prominent civil litigation attorney at his home in Rolling Hills Estates have prompted investigators to ask for the public’s help in solving the case. Los Angeles Times

Suspects identified: BART has identified some of the estimated 40 to 60 juveniles suspected of commandeering a train and robbing riders at an Oakland train station and is working to obtain warrants for their arrest, agency officials said Wednesday. San Francisco Chronicle

Bittersweet surprise: Weeks after he was brutally beaten, Evan Jimenez surprised his San Pedro High baseball teammates by throwing out the first pitch at their game Tuesday evening. The Daily Breeze


The coast disappears: Beachfront is being gobbled up by elevated water levels in costal areas, a clear sign of the calamitous effect climate change is having on California. “A knee-buckling new state-commissioned report warns that if nothing changes, California’s coastal waters will rise at a rate 30 to 40 times faster than in the last century.” Cal Matters

First in Southern California: A startling new report asserts that the first known humans arrived in North America much, much earlier than scientists thought and maybe they were Neanderthals. There’s a site in Southern California that shows evidence of humanlike behavior from about 130,000 years ago. Los Angeles Times


New Sony CEO soon? Sony Pictures Entertainment is zeroing in on former Fox Networks head Tony Vinciquerra to replace Michael Lynton as its chief executive officer. Vinciquerra led Fox Networks under Rupert Murdoch’s News Corp. for about a decade, building its cable networks and international distribution, until he stepped down in early 2011. Los Angeles Times

Mark your schedule: One of New York’s most popular dessert festivals is making its way to Los Angeles. On June 17, Dessert Goals will be held at the Cooper Design Space. LAist

Head out to the desert: Go check out the Marrakesh Country Club in Palm Desert — a country club that’s chic again. New York Times

Open your checkbook: Here’s what $2,200 rents you right now in Los Angeles. Apartments in South Pasadena and Sherman Oaks are among the options. Curbed LA


In yesterday’s newsletter, we indicated that the South Korean-born shopkeeper who shot Latasha Harlins was a man. In fact the shooter was a woman. We regret the error.


San Diego and Los Angeles area: partly cloudy Thursday and Friday. San Francisco area: cloudy Thursday, partly cloudy Friday. Sacramento: partly cloudy Thursday, cloudy Friday. More weather is here.


Today’s California memory comes from Larry Goldzband:

“As a member of Gov. Wilson’s staff, I flew down to L.A. with him on the afternoon of the second day of the riots after Mayor Bradley asked him to send in the National Guard. After sunset we used helicopter gunships without running lights to get to Parker Center to avoid the kind of gunfire that had closed LAX. There, Gov. Wilson convened the first meeting ever, from our understanding, of the mayor, chief of police, president of the Board of Supervisors, and the sheriff. Soon after, Wilson asked President Bush to supplement the Guard with active-duty troops for a host of reasons. Vivid memories of my three days there are traveling at high speeds on weirdly empty streets and freeways, feeling the anger of just about every L.A. resident with whom I spoke no matter their race, and talking with soldiers who desperately wanted to avoid using their weapons. But my most depressing, confusing and ironic memory is seeing the burnt-out shell of the Watts Labor Community Action Council building. Ten years earlier it was the nation’s largest anti-poverty direct services organization and I had interned there as a Coro Fellow.”

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 Benjamin Oreskes and Shelby Grad. Also follow them on Twitter @boreskes and @shelbygrad.