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CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
January 23, 2014 | By Ari Bloomekatz
A former Fullerton pastor was sentenced Thursday to four months in jail, lifetime sex offender registration and three years probation for sexually battering an 18-year-old female church member. A jury earlier found Joseph Angel Olvera, 55, guilty of two misdemeanor counts of sexual battery, according to the Orange County district attorney's office. Lifeline Ministries, where Olvera was a pastor, offers services to those in need, including at-risk youth, and Fullerton police have described it as a place where youth can go to turn their lives around.
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CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
January 16, 2014 | By Jessica Garrison
Air district officials filed a lawsuit Thursday seeking up to $40 million from a Vernon battery recycler accused of posing a health risk for emitting too much lead and arsenic. The South Coast Air Quality Management District sued Exide Technologies in Los Angeles County Superior Court, accusing the company - one of the world's largest manufacturers and recyclers of lead-acid batteries - of exposing tens of thousands of people to cancer-causing chemicals and failing to take timely action to address problems with pollution control systems.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
January 13, 2014 | By Paresh Dave
A Los Angeles County judge accused of shoving and injuring a woman during a dispute about her dog's waste wants the case dismissed because of what his lawyer says is her history of mental illness. City prosecutors say the altercation occurred July 18 when L os Angeles County Superior Court Judge Craig Richman saw Connie Romero place a plastic bag of animal waste on the curb next to a street. Romero, 51, accuses Richman of knocking her down from behind, leading to a cut over her left eye, a scrape on her left shoulder and swelling on her wrist.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
January 13, 2014 | By Hailey Branson-Potts
Beverly Hills police launched a battery investigation Monday involving rapper Kanye West, police said. The alleged incident was reported about 12:15 p.m. Monday in the 8800 block of Wilshire Boulevard, a commercial district, according to a statement from the Beverly Hills Police Department.  "The named suspect was identified as Kanye West by the victim and several witnesses," police said in a statement. West left the scene before officers arrived, police said.  Authorities are conducting a follow-up investigation.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
January 10, 2014 | By Jessica Garrison
After an emotional hearing that had residents of southeast Los Angeles County talking about family members who have died of cancer, air quality officials voted unanimously Friday to adopt strict new rules on emissions of arsenic, benzene and other toxic chemicals from lead-acid battery facilities. The rules, which will go into effect next month, apply to Exide Technologies in Vernon and Quemetco in the city of Industry - the only two battery recyclers west of the Rocky Mountains.
BUSINESS
December 29, 2013 | By Evan Halper
NEWARK, Del. - The thick blue cables and white boxes alongside an industrial garage here look like those in any electric-car charging station. But they work in a way that could upend the relationship Americans have with energy. The retrofitted Mini Coopers and other vehicles plugged into sockets where a Chrysler plant once stood do more than suck energy out of the multi-state electricity grid. They also send power back into it. With every zap of juice into or out of the region's fragile power network, the car owner gets paid.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
December 18, 2013 | By Jessica Garrison
The state Department of Toxic Substances Control has issued an emergency order directing a Vernon battery recycler to clean up lead and other metals that have been deposited near the Exide Technologies plant. In a letter released Wednesday, the agency said dust and soil samples with metals in concentrations at or near hazardous waste levels have been found near the facility and must be cleaned up by Jan. 31. The order is urgent, the agency wrote, because winter rains could wash the metals into the Los Angeles River.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
December 18, 2013 | By Jessica Garrison
Amid an outcry over arsenic emissions from a Vernon battery recycler, the South Coast Air Quality Management District is now raising concerns about emissions from the other battery recycler in Southern California. Officials with the air district earlier this month ordered City of Industry-based Quemetco, one of two battery recyclers west of the Rocky Mountains, to perform a health risk study of its operations after a source test in November showed elevated arsenic emissions. The issue at Quemetco comes amid a fierce public outcry over emissions from Exide Technologies in Vernon.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
December 15, 2013 | By Jessica Garrison
One by one, hour after hour Saturday in a ballroom at Cal State Los Angeles, residents, elected officials and activists from southeast Los Angeles pleaded with an air district hearing board to shut down a Vernon battery recycler accused of endangering hundreds of thousands of people because of unsafe arsenic and lead emissions. "I'm a mother, asking you, please, do something," said Sandra Martinez. "I go days without sleeping, worrying about my child dying in his sleep from asthma.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
December 13, 2013 | By Jessica Garrison
A hearing board for the South Coast Air Quality Management District is set to hold the first of several hearings Saturday on its petition to shut down a Vernon battery recycler accused of endangering hundreds of thousands of people from unsafe arsenic and lead emissions. In October, the air district asked an independent administrative law panel for an order to halt lead smelting operations at Exide Technologies "until its air pollution control systems are improved and deemed adequate" to control toxic emissions.
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