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WORLD
April 10, 2014 | By Robyn Dixon
PRETORIA, South Africa - The prosecutor in the murder trial of South African Olympic athlete Oscar Pistorius accused him of repeatedly lying to the court and offering versions of events so improbable that "nobody would think it is reasonably or possibly true. " Pistorius, on trial in Pretoria's high court on a charge that he murdered his girlfriend, Reeva Steenkamp, denied Thursday that he pulled the trigger of a gun that went off in his hand in a crowded upscale South African restaurant in early 2013, a contention the prosecution described as impossible.
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CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
April 9, 2014 | By Ryan Menezes
A mistrial was declared Tuesday in the trial of a father accused of killing his 6-month-old son in East Compton. Jurors failed to reach a unanimous verdict on two counts against David Gomez, 26. The jury was split 8-4 on the charge of second-degree murder and 10-2 on child abuse causing death, the prosecutor on the case said. On Oct. 4, 2012, Abel Gomez was admitted to Miller Children's Hospital in Long Beach with skull fractures and brain injuries. Earlier that night, David Gomez knocked on a neighbor's door holding an injured Abel, who was short of breath.
WORLD
April 8, 2014 | By Aamera Jiwaji
British businessman Shrien Dewani has been extradited to South Africa to stand trial on murder charges in the death of his Swedish bride. His arraignment in a Western Cape High Court earlier Tuesday, where he was formally charged with the murder of his wife, Anni, could spell the start of a second emotionally wrought murder trial for South Africa, spellbound already by revelations in the case against Olympic athlete Oscar Pistorius. The 28-year-old Anni and her husband were on a slum tourism trip through a Cape Town township during their 2010 honeymoon when they were carjacked at gunpoint.
WORLD
April 7, 2014 | By Robyn Dixon
PRETORIA, South Africa - Two distinct portraits are emerging at the Pretoria High Court murder trial of South African Olympian Oscar Pistorius. The prosecution's portrayal of Pistorius as an aggressive, gun-loving, controlling man with a quick temper was countered Monday by the athlete, who testified for the first time in the month-old trial. Pistorius described himself as a serious, deeply religious good Samaritan, racked with crippling remorse about fatally shooting his girlfriend, Reeva Steenkamp, in the early hours of Valentine's Day 2013.
WORLD
April 6, 2014 | By Robyn Dixon
PRETORIA, South Africa - Johan Gerber is a shy, neat man with iron-gray hair, a ready smile and a quiet voice. But on the streets, he has taken to carrying an open pocket knife with a mean 4-inch blade, concealed in an envelope and ready to use. Last month, three men accosted him in broad daylight, one of whom hit him in the stomach and grabbed his cellphone. A few years back, eight men surrounded him, held a knife to his throat and stole his wallet. His car and two trailers also have been stolen.
NATIONAL
April 1, 2014 | By Michael Muskal, This post has been corrected. See the note below for details.
It's a decorous shoe that a woman would wear for a night on the town: a size 9 navy pump. Even the 5-inch heel doesn't seem out of place. But then there is the blood, which carries a different message. Jurors in Houston on Tuesday got their first real look at what prosecutors say was a murder weapon and defense lawyers argue was Ana Trujillo's only way of defending herself from her on-again, off-again boyfriend. Trujillo, 45, is charged with using her stiletto heel 25 times to pound Alf Stefan Andersson, 59, to death.
NATIONAL
March 31, 2014 | By Matt Pearce
Until Monday, Michelle Byrom was set to become the first woman executed by Mississippi in 70 years -- for a murder her son reportedly confessed to committing. The Mississippi Supreme Court halted Byrom's execution, threw out her murder conviction and ordered a new trial in one of the nation's most closely watched capital-punishment cases. In the decision handed down Monday, the court called its own move "extraordinary and extremely rare," at least compared to similar death-penalty appeals, few of which result in new trials.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
March 27, 2014 | By Howard Blume
A groundbreaking, two-month trial challenging teacher job protections in California concluded Thursday with both sides asserting that the interests of students are at stake. The case, Vergara vs. California, seeks to overturn a set of laws that affect how teachers are fired, laid off and granted tenure. The Silicon Valley-based group Students Matter brought the lawsuit on behalf of nine plaintiffs, contending that the regulations hinder the removal of ineffective teachers. The result is a workforce with thousands of "grossly ineffective" teachers, which disproportionately hurts low-income and minority students, attorneys said.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
March 26, 2014 | By Adolfo Flores
An Anaheim councilwoman is being asked to resign following her online remarks that the fatal police shooting of a 21-year-old man had "saved us a trial. " Lucille Kring, who is running for mayor in the resort city, quickly apologized for her comments, but some residents said it was too late and urged her to step down instead. The relationship between police and residents in the densely packed core of Orange County's largest city has been strained for years and came to a head in the summer of 2012 when a series of shootings ignited days of street protests and angry demonstrations.
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