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January 6, 2014 | By Ruben Vives
A baby girl became the first newborn in 2014 to be safely surrendered in Los Angeles County over the weekend at a Culver City hospital, officials announced Monday. The newborn also became the 114 th baby to be delivered safely since the Safe Surrender program started nearly 13 years ago, according to Los Angeles County Supervisor Don Knabe's office. “There is no better way to start the new year then to learn of the healthy and safe surrender of a newborn baby girl,” Knabe said in a statement.
January 4, 2014 | By Emily Alpert Reyes
A 7-year-old girl who was abducted at gunpoint Friday evening in front of her Bay Area home has been found unharmed and her suspected abductor taken into custody, authorities said. Natalie Calvo of Antioch was abducted outside her home in the East Bay city of Antioch about 6:45 p.m. Friday, authorities said. Hours later, the alleged suspect's gold Toyota Camry was spotted by at the Antioch Marina, according to a report by KGO-TV in San Francisco. Police found Natalie when they arrived at the scene.
January 1, 2014 | By Maher Abukhater
RAMALLAH, West Bank -- The newly appointed Palestinian ambassador to the Czech Republic died Wednesday shortly after he was injured by an explosion when he opened an old safe in his Prague residence, according to a statement by the Palestinian Foreign Ministry. Jamal Jamal, who assumed his post in October, opened the safe after it was moved from the previous site of the Palestinian mission, the ministry said. He was taken to a hospital in critical condition and later pronounced dead.
December 31, 2013 | By Molly Hennessy-Fiske
Pascal Tessier, 17, had aspired to rise to the rank of Eagle Scout since he was in the sixth grade. "It shows to everyone that I'm a capable person - that I'm worth something," said Tessier, of Kensington, Md. He knew it would be an arduous process to achieve Scouting's highest honor: earn 21 merit badges, play a leadership role in the troop, complete a service project and undergo a board of review. Tessier also knew there was one requirement that he could never meet: being straight.
December 31, 2013 | Steve Lopez
Good morning, and let's be honest - your New Year's resolutions are probably only good for a week, maybe two. Instead of trying to give up chips and salsa or joining a gym, you would be better off aiming not to be one of the millions who will land in emergency rooms in 2014 for entirely avoidable mishaps. And I just happen to have some pointers from ER doctors who have seen it all. In November, after writing about federal judge and WWII veteran Harry Pregerson's continued good deeds for his fellow servicemen and women, I got a book in the mail from the judge's nephew, Dr. Brady Pregerson.
December 27, 2013 | By Benjamin H. Friedman and Christopher Preble
A recent Pew Research poll finds that historically high numbers of Americans want their government to do less abroad. That worries many foreign policy elites, who fear that bad wars and growing debt are reviving old-fashioned isolationism. But the public is neither isolationist nor misguided when it comes to foreign policy. Americans do not want to withdraw from the world; they just prefer not to try to run it with their military. A security strategy made to match those preferences - what we and others call restraint - would keep us out of avoidable trouble and husband our resources, ultimately making us safer and richer.
December 27, 2013 | By John Horn
Movie crews can number as many as 300 people. And yet amid all that hubbub, film directors can craft the most personal moments: Joaquin Phoenix confessing his love for an operating system in "Her"; Robert Redford facing his mortality in "All Is Lost"; James Gandolfini realizing he's too old to have his heart broken again in "Enough Said. " In the fifth annual Directors Panel, six of the year's most distinguished filmmakers discuss how they carve intimacy out of chaos, what it feels like sitting across from actors dying in auditions and what they wish they had learned before they started making movies.
December 24, 2013 | By Lauren Beale
If you thought Southern California mansions could hardly get more outlandish, consider the latest must-have feature: A moat encircling the property. Other exclusive amenities include dental chairs, botox stations and wine "cellars" that somehow made their way into the kitchen. It's all part of growing competition among designers, architects and developers for the attention of ultra-wealthy buyers. Moats are making their biggest splash since medieval times. At Jennifer Lopez's former home in Bel-Air, which recently resold for $10 million, an arched footbridge and a cobblestone driveway cross a stone-lined waterway that encircles the French-style villa.
December 21, 2013 | By Steve Chawkins
The stunned Navy pilot was gripped in pain, blood was pouring down his face and a good part of his warplane was destroyed. But worst of all, Ensign Kenneth Schechter couldn't see. An enemy shell had smashed into his Skyraider and fragments pierced his eyes. Hurtling over the Korean coast at 200 mph, Schechter was suddenly enveloped in blackness. "I'm blind! For God's sake, help me!" he cried into his radio. "I'm blind!" FOR THE RECORD: Kenneth Schechter: A news obituary in the Dec. 22 California section on Kenneth Schechter, a former Navy pilot who flew 100 miles and landed safely despite being temporarily blinded by enemy fire, misstated the final rank of Howard Thayer, the Navy pilot who guided Schechter from another plane.
December 18, 2013 | By Mary MacVean
Fewer adolescents think smoking pot is risky than a decade ago, but the use of other drugs, including “bath salts,” Ecstasy and tobacco, dropped in the same period, according to an annual nationwide survey. The Monitoring the Future survey, funded by National Institute on Drug Abuse, has measured drug use and attitudes among 12th-graders for 38 years and among eighth- and 10th-graders since 1991. For the first time, the percentage of students in all three grades who said they smoked a cigarette in the last month was under 10%. That compares with 16.7% in 2003 and 24.7% in 1993.
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