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December 10, 2013 | By S. Irene Virbila
Shhh --  this is what I'm getting the husband for Christmas: a steel triangle dinner bell, to signal to guests that it's time to sit down at the table. They're inevitably an unruly bunch, wandering around the garden, rubbing scented geranium leaves between their fingers, calling up to find out what's growing on the trellis, whether they can pick some tangerines. Or getting so involved in storytelling that it becomes hard to herd them toward the table mid-story. But this is the solution.  And quite a handsome one. Designed by Pat Kim of (where else?
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CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
December 10, 2013 | By Ruben Vives
Bell City Councilman Nestor Valencia said Tuesday that the guilty verdict in the Angela Spaccia corruption trial was "shameful and embarrassing" but nudges the city into the final act of the scandal that broke in 2010. Spaccia, the $564,000-a-year deputy to the disgraced former city manager of Bell, was found guilty Monday of 11 felony counts related to her role in the corruption scandal, becoming the seventh former city official convicted of enriching themselves at the expensive of the working-class residents.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
December 9, 2013 | By Jeff Gottlieb and Ruben Vives
Angela Spaccia, the city of Bell's former second in command, was handcuffed and taken into custody Monday evening, minutes after a jury convicted her on 11 counts of misappropriating public funds and other corruption charges. As the verdict was read, Spaccia's family held hands and cried. Spaccia, however, showed little emotion. She did not shed any tears, even as she was being handcuffed. The stoicism was a marked contrast to the seven days she spent on the witness stand. She cried several times then, usually when talking about family tragedies.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
December 9, 2013 | By Jeff Gottlieb and Ruben Vives
L.A. County Dist. Atty. Jackie Lacey said prosecutors will seek the maximum sentence against Angela Spaccia, the former Bell official convicted Monday on 11 counts of misappropriating public funds and other corruption charges. Prosecutors said Spaccia faces a prison term of more than 10 years. Deputy Dist. Atty. Sean Hassett said he thought Spaccia would receive a sentence similar to the 10 to 12 years L.A. Superior Court Judge Kathleen Kennedy said she would give former city manager Robert Rizzo.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
December 9, 2013 | By Jeff Gottlieb and Ruben Vives
Angela Spaccia, the former second in command in scandal-plagued Bell, was found guilty on 11  out of 13 criminal charges in the 2010 municipal corruption case. After eight days of deliberations, jurors convicted Spaccia of multiple counts of misappropriation of public funds, conflict of interest and secretion of the official record. The jury was unable to reach a verdict on one count of misappropriating public funds and found her not guilty on one  charge related to secretion of public records.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
December 9, 2013 | By Jeff Gottlieb
The jury has reached a verdict in the trial of Angela Spaccia, the former Bell assistant city administrator accused of public corruption. Court officials said the jury would be read as soon as the defendant and prosecutors were gathered in the courthouse. Spaccia is being tried on 13 counts of felony corruption, including misappropriation of public funds. Prosecutors contended she and her boss, Robert Rizzo, raided the town's treasury by giving themselves huge salaries and extraordinary retirement benefits even as the city was starting to run out of money.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
December 3, 2013 | By Ruben Vives
A Superior Court judge urged the jury in the Bell corruption case to continue deliberating Tuesday after one juror complained that another member of the panel seemed "confused" and might be struggling to understand English. In a note to Judge Kathleen Kennedy, Juror No. 12 said that the other panelist -- identified only as Juror No. 2 -- was having difficulty understanding the evidence and wanted to work alone rather than participate in group discussions. The note said that the panel had spent 7-1/2 hours on one of the 13 counts against former Bell assistant city manager Angela Spaccia but that Juror No. 2 took an additional five hours to review the count and "still didn't understand.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
December 1, 2013
Peter Kaplan Editor hired 'Sex and the City' columnist Peter Kaplan, 59, the former editor of the New York Observer who hired a then-unknown Candace Bushnell to write a column called "Sex and the City," died Friday of cancer in New York City, said his wife, Lisa Chase. He edited the Observer from 1994 to 2009. The salmon-colored weekly has a reach beyond its circulation of about 50,000 because it is read by the Manhattan-based movers and shakers it covers. Kaplan was credited with honing the paper's snarky tone and hiring writers who became influential voices.
OPINION
November 29, 2013
Re "Jurors weigh fate of Spaccia," Nov. 23 I have personal experience doing business in the cities of southwest L.A. County, including Bell and Huntington Park. With the recent Bell scandal and governing crises in nearby cities, I believe residents would be better served if these cities pooled their resources. These municipalities have fiscal challenges, and I believe they would benefit by getting together. Why don't the cities of Bell, Bell Gardens, Maywood, Cudahy and Huntington Park merge into one city to save on all the duplicated services?
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