Today’s Headlines: California hate crimes soared 20% in 2022, report shows

California Atty. Gen. Rob Bonta holds a news conference.
California Atty. Gen. Rob Bonta speaks at the Los Angeles Central Library on Tuesday to announce the release of the 2022 Hate Crimes Report and ongoing efforts to combat hate and extremism.
(Luis Sinco / Los Angeles Times)

Hello, it’s Thursday, June 29, and here are the stories you shouldn’t miss today:


California hate crimes soared

Hate crimes soared in California in 2022, with year-over-year rises recorded in crimes targeting virtually every demographic group, according to a report released Tuesday.

All told, there were 2,120 reported hate crimes, a 20.2% jump from the year prior, figures from the California Department of Justice show.


The unorthodox quest to find Kristin Smart’s body

It’s been 27 years since Kristin Smart disappeared after an off-campus party. Paul Flores was convicted in October of murdering her in 1996. But her body has never been found.

Smart’s parents, Stan and Denise Smart, say the guilty verdict wasn’t enough. They want to be able to lay their daughter’s remains to rest.

Border Patrol officials complained of ‘overuse of hospitalization’ as an 8-year-old died

As an 8-year-old was dying in Border Patrol custody last month, officials at the Texas detention center where she had been held were complaining about the facility’s “overuse of hospitalization,” according to an internal report obtained by The Times.

The little girl, who suffered from sickle-cell disorder and a heart condition, had developed a 101.8 degree fever during the five days she was at the detention facility in Donna, Texas. A nurse had denied the mother’s initial requests for an ambulance or a hospital visit on the day the girl died.

Watch ‘Merman,’ the remarkable story of André Chambers


“Merman” delves into the remarkable life and challenges of André Chambers, a queer Black man who grew up amid societal clashes in a Southern California beach town. (This film contains language that may be offensive to viewers.)

It was filmed in seven hours in the beautiful city of Palm Springs. From the style of cinematography to the handheld guerrilla run-and-gun filmmaking, the California sunshine comes through on the screen.

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Yokut people stand at the edge of a lake and participate in a ceremony.
Yokut people from throughout the San Joaquin Valley make offerings at the water’s edge during a ceremony welcoming the return of Tulare Lake. Read more: “California tribe calls for preservation of Tulare Lake
(Robert Gauthier / Los Angeles Times)


He raised millions to turn manure into green energy. It was all a load of cow dung. Ray Brewer, 66, duped investors out of nearly $9 million claiming he could turn cow manure into green energy. He was sentenced to over six years in federal prison for the Ponzi scheme.


Pregnant workers have new federal protections. What are your rights in California? Pregnant and postpartum workers now have access to “reasonable accommodations” after the Pregnant Workers Fairness Act went into effect on June 27. State laws, such as California’s, that are more protective of workers are not preempted.

LAPD condemns officer’s email on a ‘hush hush’ plan for mass arrests at an encampment cleanup. City Controller Kenneth Mejia vowed to investigate after an email circulated on alleged plans for mass arrests at a cleanup of a homeless encampment.

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Netflix turns to South Korean writers and crews as Hollywood strikes. But they feel exploited too. Like their U.S. counterparts, creatives throughout South Korea’s entertainment industry are increasingly questioning the Netflix business model and raising concerns that the country is becoming little more than a bargain bin for the global streamer.

‘I have over 30 threats to rape, kill, or assault me’: Being a doctor on social media. A new survey of physicians and biomedical scientists in the U.S. found that nearly two-thirds experienced harassment on social media during the COVID-19 pandemic.

The pope’s ‘favorite nun’ defends migrants. So why did she agree Texas could bus them to L.A.? Sister Norma Pimentel’s willingness to work with Gov. Abbott casts light on the turbulent moral landscape that aid workers have had to navigate in recent years.



Madonna is hospitalized in ICU and forced to postpone her tour. Madonna’s career-spanning Celebration tour has been postponed after the singer developed a severe infection requiring hospitalization, according to her management.

Column: Is it time to boycott Netflix? How streaming consumers could shape the strike. “As beneficiaries of the streaming invasion, consumers may want to consider their responsibilities — to those who wrote their favorite shows, but also to all the cities now detrimentally affected by the work stoppage,” Mary McNamara writes.

A fire tore through Mission San Gabriel. Its museum now tells a more inclusive story. The museum reimagined itself to present a more historically accurate and inclusive picture of the Catholic mission and the Indigenous communities it colonized. The mission was built by indigenous people, with about 5,600 Native Americans buried there, but the Native experience had not previously been represented in the museum.

Column: There’s no movie star like Harrison Ford. And there never will be again. “Setting aside his talent, Hollywood is no longer capable of creating a career like Ford’s, a journeyman actor with a movie-star smile who loves what he does but understands that it is work,” writes Mary McNamara.

Meryl Streep, Jennifer Lawrence, Glenn Close and other stars urge union to seek ‘transformative deal.’ “A strike brings incredible hardships to so many, and no one wants it,” the letter said. “But we are prepared to strike if it comes to that.” They added: “This is not a moment to meet in the middle.”


SiriusXM shuts down Stitcher podcast app amid industry consolidation. The company on Tuesday said it would end the service on Aug. 29 in an effort to drive more users to its own app and put all its content in one place.

Costco cracks down on membership sharing. The big-box chain, known for its beloved $1.50 hot dog combo and towering aisles of bulk goods, is making it a little harder for people who haven’t bought a membership to take advantage of those sweet deals.


Ken has taken over Barbie’s Malibu Dreamhouse. And it’s listed on Airbnb. Airbnb announced Monday that the hot-pink, beach-side mansion inspired by the toy home of the same name will be available to book for a limited time next month — with a twist.


Trevor Bauer withdraws defamation suit after the Athletic amends story. The former Dodgers pitcher withdrew his defamation suit against the Athletic on Tuesday after the website publicly stated it “did not intend to state or imply” that a woman who accused the pitcher of sexual assault two years ago suffered a fractured skull.

Commentary: Soccer rules expert Christina Unkel unafraid to call it like it is — just ask her husband. And if anyone questioned her ability to call ‘em as she saw ‘em, those doubts were erased in one of her first appearances on an MLS broadcast when she had a different opinion on a call than the center referee had. That referee was her husband, Ted.

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Column: Please don’t offer to fly me to Alaska in exchange for a plug in my column. “It’s astonishing that newspapers like The Times are stricter about ethics than the Supreme Court, which is required to report some financial dealings each year but otherwise has no compulsory code of ethics at all,” Robin Abcarian writes.

Opinion: How California’s law against red states is hurting Black academic freedom. A California law targeting states that discriminate against LGBTQ+ people has harmed Black academics, who are barred from traveling to the South, where many do their research.



A man is photographed lying on a mahjong sofa.
Jason Potter, owner of Den, a store specializing in the sale and restoration of 20th century furniture and design, is photographed on a mahjong sofa produced by Roche Bobois. The material is a mix of velvets, boucle and mohair.
(Mel Melcon / Los Angeles Times)

There’s no better place to shop for Midcentury Modern furniture than Los Angeles.

Here we offer a list of 18 stores where you can bring your tape measure, inspect the goods and sample the seating.


Bernard Madoff arrives at Manhattan federal court
Bernard Madoff, the financier who pleaded guilty to orchestrating the largest Ponzi scheme in history, arrives at Manhattan federal court on March 12, 2009, in New York.
(Associated Press)

On June 29, 2009, Bernie Madoff received up to 150 years in prison for operating the largest Ponzi scheme in history.

As news that Madoff’s high-flying money management business apparently was nothing more than a Ponzi scheme made its way around Wall Street, the near-universal reaction was utter disbelief.


Not disbelief that someone could brazenly rip off innocent investors. And not even disbelief at the scope of the crime, though at an estimated $50 billion, Madoff’s definitely would be a scam for the record books.

“Madoff was always one of the ‘good guys’ in the dicey financial world, someone who championed the interests of the small investor. His career on Wall Street famously began with $5,000 he saved from his job as a lifeguard in Brooklyn,” Eric J. Weiner wrote about Madoff’s betrayal for The Times in 2008.

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