Results tagged “Zach Behrens”

Video of LAPD Breaking Up Large Party is Very Much a 'He Said, She Said' Situation

An apparent loud family birthday party in Pacoima drew a large police response in the early hours of Sunday morning, which was partially caught on video. Uploaded to YouTube, the description explains that officers were responding to loud noise complaints. Here's what they say happened before the video begins: The daughter, brother, mother, and a cousin were already there to speak with the police. The owner follows. The officers ask for the music to...

High Salaries Came via Legal Loophole, but Highly Paid Bell Officials will Still Resign

The three highly paid city of Bell officials have all agreed to resign, following an LA Times investigation that revealed extremely high salaries that prompted community anger and government investigations. City Manager Robert Rizzo, who is paid nearly $800,000, and Police Chief Randy Adams, paid $457,000, will resign at the end of August. Assistant City Manager Angela Spaccia, who is paid $376,288, will leave at the end of September. All three will not receive...

Memorial Walk for Silver Lake 'Walking Man' Planned for Sunday, Fans Call for Reservoir Path to Be Named After Him

Silver Lake "Walking Man" Marc Abrams walking in front of a mural dedicated to him in Silver Lake | Photo by Gelatobaby via Flickr Hundreds of people plan to honor Dr. Marc Abrams this Sunday by walking a portion his daily 15-mile route. Known as the Silver Lake "Walking Man," Abrams was a neighborhood fixture and his death on Wednesday shocked many, causing an grief and heartbreak throughout the community. A memorial Facebook page...

L.A. Declares August as Immigrant Pride Month

Photo: Salina Canizales via LAist Featured Photos on Flickr With Arizona's controversial SB 1070 law set to become law next week Friday, the city of Los Angeles today approved a resolution declaring August as Immigrant Pride Month. The city of Los Angeles is made up of 1.6 million -- that's 40% of the population -- immigrants, according to the proposal's authors, Councilmembers Ed Reyes and Jose Huizar. The move is meant to be "a...

Brush Breaks Out in the Newhall Pass, Closes Northbound 5 Fwy

A brush fire that has broken out on the eastside of the 5 Freeway in the Newhall Pass has severely slowed traffic from Los Angeles to the Santa Clarita Valley. The five-acre fire eruprted this afternoon and is threatening a dozen homes in the Newhall area, according to CBS2. The California Highway Patrol hopes to open at least one lane on the northbound 5 Freeway soon, but recommends commuters take the 14 Freeway and...

Zsa Zsa Gabor Listed in Critical Condition

Following a surgery and reports that she was doing well earlier this week, Zsa Zsa Gabor's publicist is saying that she's in critical condition and not responding to human contact, even though her eyes are open. Last Saturday, the 93-year-old Bel Air resident suffered a broken hip after falling out of bed when trying to answer the phone. Doctors fear Gabor may have suffered a stroke, something she went through in 2005. She's been...

Photos: Villains Tavern, a Steampunk Bar, Opens in Downtown's Art District

Dana Hollister has done it again. The famed interior designer and bar owner and founder 's latest venture can be found in downtown's Arts District, under the long shadows of the 4th and 6th Street Bridges and tucked into a sleepy nighttime area. Perhaps, however, this will change things. "I think it's really about the place. Whenever I work on a project, I always really get inspired by the building itself," said Hollister, who has...

Spotted in Pacific Palisades: A Mountain Lion

A local mountain lion heads into the woods | Photo by the National Park Service Authorities are on the lookout for a mountain lion reportedly seen in Pacific Palisades. Around 11:43 p.m. on Wednesday, police were alerted to a large 150 to 250-pound cat near Temescal Canyon Road and Sunset Boulevard. Shortly after, officers thought they may had cornered the cougar at Palisades Charter High School, but reports indicate it was never captured by...

WeHo Labor Protest Could Shut Down Sunset Boulevard During Evening Rush Hour [Updated]

A planned protest tonight outside the Andaz hotel could bring impacts to tonight's rush hour commute. City of West Hollywood officials are warning residents and commuters that traffic along Sunset Boulevard may be diverted temporarily between the hours of 5 p.m. to 9 p.m.

Bell City Council to Hold Emergency Meeting About High Salaries

The Bell City Council this afternoon will hold an emergency meeting to discuss the extremely high salaries that have caused controversy in the small southeastern L.A. County city, according to the LA Times. Councilmembers are asking for resignations from the City Manager, Assistant City Manager and Police Chief. Respectively, the three make close to $800,000, $376,288 and $457,000 a year, easily making their salaries some of the highest in the nation for positions of...

7-Year-Old Shot by Stray Bullet in a Norwalk Park

Photo by guamafro via Flickr A young boy riding a bicycle with his father in a Norwalk park was shot in the torso Wednesday evening. An argument between two men outside the Holifield Park ended in up to three gunshots, missing the intended target, according to ABC7. The 7-year-old boy is expected to recover follower a surgery. The suspect escaped and there's no description of him available. "You would assume somebody knows at least...

Local Winery Proposes Mixed Used Chinatown Development with Metro

The proposal would put a development between Gold Line tracks and Broadway Avenue | Photo by faria! via LAist Featured Photos As state officials figure out how to put a high speed train under or around Los Angeles State Historic Park (aka the "Cornfield"), another project surrounding the rare piece of downtown open space has been proposed. Owners of the nearby San Antonio Winery have proposed a public-private partnership with Metro, developing a mixed-use...

New 3-Day Water Rationing Scheduled Approved by LADWP

Photo by Robbie via LAist Featured Photos on Flickr Under new rules approved by the Board of Water and Power Commissioners today, Angelenos could be soon allowed to water three days a week instead of the two currently allowed. According to the plan, LADWP customers with odd numbered address would be allowed to water lawns on Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays and even-numbered addresses on Tuesdays, Thursdays and Sundays. Depending on the type of nozzle...

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Photo by bscott224 via LAist Featured Photos on Flickr A 25-year-old man apparently running on a roof of a house in Long Beach was shot and killed by the 57-year-old woman living in the home. Investigators are trying to determine if the shooting, which took place in the driveway, was justifiable -- the man was allegedly running away after committing an assault. And a man was found stabbed to death outside his Beverly Hills...

3 Students to Go on Hunger Strike at Senator Dianne Feinstein's Westwood Office

Photo by erinleafleming via Twitter After yesterday's acts of civil disobedience in Washington D.C., DREAM Act demonstrators are taking the fight back to Los Angeles outside Senator Dianne Feinstein's office today. A press conference this morning will once again urge Senate Judiciary Committee member Feinstein to push through the DREAM Act, something she supports and sponsored when the legislation was introduced in 2003. Seven years later, the proposal to give amnesty to undocumented students...

ABC and ESPN Say Don't Feel Stuck with Time Warner Cable, You Have Choices When it Comes to Providers

The contract between Disney-owned TV networks ABC and ESPN and cable provider Time Warner Cable is set to expire in some markets, including Los Angeles, on September 2nd. What that means is that negotiations are underway, but with the public pulled in. Both companies have launched websites and marketing campaigns to educate viewers about their side of the issue. Disney's I Have Choices campaign goes for the jugular, pointing out that you don't have...

With 1 in 10 Angelenos in Need of Food, City Council to Consider Food Surplus Policy Today

A reporter talks about American Idol as a man eats out of a garbage can in Hollywood | Photo by Jeff__ via LAist Featured Photos on Flickr More than many other major cities, Los Angeles has year-round access to locally grown food, but it doesn't mean hunger is a problem. And in a city known for its large events and parties, a plethora of catering companies are out there serving food, yet are also...

Photos: Checking out the California Design Biennial at the Pasadena Museum of California Art

Whether it's Apple's iPad, a new building or the latest fashion, California's artists and designers have left their mark on the world. Perhaps that's why museums around Southern California indulge in celebrating the local talent. Later this year at the Orange County Museum of Art, the California Biennial makes a comeback. But this week marked a separate biennial at the Pasadena Museum of California Art. The fourth annual California Design Biennial, Action/Reaction, brings together a...

At Malibu Family Wines in the Santa Monica Mountains, It's About Enjoying the Company

Tucked in a more rural section of Mulholland Drive on the northern side of the Santa Monica Mountains is a fairly large property where people gather daily. Whether they're just getting off from a hike or bicycle ride or just wanted to get out of the city without traveling too far, the outdoor Malibu Family Wines tasting room is one relaxing spot, especially in the summer. This is a communal spot and an opportunity to...

Video: Gay Couples Don't Benefit from Social Security, One Local Man Shares his Story of Heartbreak & Loss

When it comes to the gay marriage debate, social security is hardly brought up. But the fact is, partners who have lived together for years are face economic hardship when social security benefits are denied after their other half dies. That's why occasional LAist contributor Shawn Nee produced this short documentary video, telling Atwater Village resident Bill Bowersock's story of loss and burden.

Pencil This In: Culver City Block Party, Mass Happy Hour on the Sunset Strip & More

The Annenberg Community Beach House in Santa Monica, where Shakespeare's Merchant of Venice will be performed this week | Photo by Julie Wolfson/LAist Block Party! It's the third Wednesday of the month, which means Culver City is having their monthly summer block party. The free event is a fun way to explore downtown Culver City with live music, art, food, wine and cocktails. Goes from 5 to 9 p.m. Happy Hour Wednesday also means...

Nightclub where Last Night's Fatal WeHo Shooting Occurred has a History of Issues

Last night's shooting that left one man dead and two others injured is the latest in a saga of incidents at the Guys & Dolls nightclub in West Hollywood. As WeHo News details, the nightclub that's only been open for a little over a year has been subject investigations regarding underage drinking.

City Employee who Earns $800K Salary in One of L.A. County's Poorest Cities will Resign or Be Fired

Controversy last week erupted in the small L.A. County city of Bell [map] when the LA Times learned that it's top city official earns a nearly $800,000 salary, which possibly makes him the highest paid public official in the country. That salary a lot more Los Angeles Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa, and even President Barack Obama. Now the part-time City Council, which is under investigation for being paid nearly $100,000 a year when they should...

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In Venice | Photo by youdiejoe via LAist Featured Photos on Flickr Need a career? California is facing a doctor shortage. And add to that this about a communication gap: in L.A. County, "47 percent of the population and only 5 percent of doctors are Latino. Statewide, 18 percent of doctors speak Spanish." Despite a cap placed on the oil well in the Gulf, oil continues to leak. February 6th is now Ronald Reagon...

From Online to Paper: blogdowntown to Publish a Weekly for Downtown L.A.

Sample editions of blogdowntown Weekly in front of the 3rd Street tunnel | Photo courtesy of blogdowntown It's not often you hear about an online publication announcing its transition to print. Because it is -- although hackneyed -- usually the opposite: "print is dying." But that's not true. At all. And to prove that point, downtown's most well-known blog this morning announced that it will begin printing a weekly. blogdowntown Weekly will join LA...

No Action Taken on Extremely High Wages in City of Bell, Residents are Pissed

Despite calls for a resignation or firing of the city's top public official, the Bell City Council last night did succeed at either, setting off even more anger and disdain at the elected officials. Since the LA Times broke the news that Bell's city manager gets paid nearly $800,000 a year -- possibly making him the highest paid city official in the country -- and that the City Council gets around $100,000 a year...

Majority of Californians Now Support Gay Marriage, Poll Finds

The Day of Decision Protest in Hollywood on May 26, 2009 (more photos here) | Photo by Tom Andrews/LAist In 2008, Prop 8 banned gay marriage in California when voters narrowly -- 52% to 48% -- approved it at the ballot box. Today, the Field Poll finds (.pdf) that Californians are trending towards more acceptance of gay marriage. A survey of 1,390 registered voters in California concluded that "by a 51% to 42% margin,...

Bev Hills Attorney Accused of Bringing Heroin to Courthouse

A Beverly Hills-based attorney pleaded not guilty on Monday to charges that he brought heroin to the Criminal Courts Building in downtown. 48-year-old Michael Inman was allegedly caught with the substance last month when a drug-sniffing dog alerted authorities to him while in a secure area "to visit two defendants he was representing in a a burglary and receiving stolen property case," according to the Beverly Hills Courier. He apparently had 14.25 grams of...

Whooping Cough Claims 3rd Life in L.A. County, Disease Now Considered an Epidemic in California

With around 1,500 cases this year -- that's five times more than last year -- California health officials have declared the rise of whooping cough, officially known as pertussis, an epidemic. "We are facing what could be the worst year for pertussis in California in about 50 years,” Gil Chavez, the state’s epidemiologist, told KBPS. Today, public health officials in L.A. County announced the third death blamed on whooping cough. The death is the...

Street Food Fest Nearly Sold Out

Photo by Elise Thompson/LAist Those who experienced the last street food festival know that tens of thousands of people all waiting in line with you can make for an exasperating experience. That's why the organizers of the festival changed things up for this Summer's tasting event at the Rose Bowl. Only 5,000 tickets are being sold, and, well, save for some VIP tickets, it's just about sold out, according to Shawna Dawson, who emphasizes...

DREAM Act Protestors Take to Senator Feinstein's Office in D.C.

Protestors sit-in the lobby of the Hart Building in Washington D.C. The banner reads "Undocumented Unafraid" | Photo by theSoniaG via Twitter About 20 undocumented youths today took to Washington D.C., staging sit-ins and risking arrest at various congressional offices, including California Senator Dianne Feinstein. It's the latest in a series of nationwide protests, such as back in May when a demonstration shut down Wilshire Boulevard, to urge the passing of the DREAM Act....

Lindsay Lohan to Probably Serve 13 or 14 Days in Jail

via LASD She was sentenced to 90 days, but thanks to overcrowding and good behavior rules, Lindsay Lohan may only serve 13 or 14 days, according to the LA Times. That means her projected release date August 1st or 2nd. Although she'll be put in a special needs unit because of her high-profile status -- her cell is next to Paris Hilton's former one, now occupied by Alexis Neiers who, uh, burglarized Lohan --...

High Speed Rail Proposal Could Shut Down State Park for Several Years

With recently-released proposals showing where tracks could be placed throughout Los Angeles as part of California's high speed rail project, some residents and environmental groups are ready to fight at least one possible route. That's because it could temporarily shut down Los Angeles State Historic Park, one of the few green spaces around downtown, for several years, according to the Downtown News. The option would have trains heading towards San Francisco leave Union Station and...

Man Killed in Front of Police Station in Skid Row

Photo by CarbonNYC via Flickr A 35-year-old man was shot and killed this morning just feet from the LAPD's Central Division police station early this morning. At around 12:45 a.m., an argument between two men on the 500 block of Maple Street developed before at least one shot was fired, witnesses told police. “There were dozens of people on the street when it happened, and word travels fast in Skid Row," said Lt. Paul...

Valet Killed in Crossfire Outside West Hollywood Nightclub, TMZ Catches the Scene on Video [Updated]

A valet died when shots rang outside a nightclub on Beverly Boulevard in West Hollywood early this morning. L.A. County Sheriff's detectives believe an argument began between patrons of Guys and Dolls when a black male suspect produced a handgun and shot a gun at least seven times around 2:10 a.m., according to Commander James Lopez. Two people were wounded and a hispanic man working as a valet was fatally hit. "He was standing away...

Following Bicycle Mishap, Mayor Villaraigosa's Surgery a Success, Box Calls for Safer Streets

Villaraigosa at a 2006 sporting event (AP Photo/Kevork Djansezian) Surgery on Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa's elbow following a vehicle-bicycle incident on Saturday evening was success and he is expected to resume a full schedule this week. But now that Los Angeles' top official has a first-hand experience with how dangerous the streets can be come questions about what's next. "News of the unfortunate incident resonated throughout the community and cyclists cringed because this type of...

Mountain Lions Found Shot in Orange and San Diego Counties

via Southern California Cougar-Bobcat study State investigators are looking into separate deaths of mountain lions in Southern California, according to the OC Register. A mountain lion being tracked via GPS collar by scientists was shot and killed in Trabuco Canyon on July 3rd. Department of Fish and Game are not releasing any details until the investigation has been completed, but the paper calls the deaths questionable. Another lion was found dead, likely from a...

Santa Monica Begins Debate on Station Design for Train Station Near 3rd Street Promenade and Pier

A 4th/Colorado station rendering City officials in Santa Monica are trying to decide how the downtown Expo Line station should be developed, according to the Santa Monica Daily Press. Ideas being floated around include ground floor retail and residences above for a mixed use development or a vision to keep the station in a more park-like environment featuring open space. The end-of-the-line station at 4th and Colorado (map) is across the street from the...

Vehicle Blocking Food Trucks on Wilshire Racks up $800 in Parking Tickets

Each morning around 9 a.m., once anti-gridlock zone parking restrictions are lifted, food trucks and Museum Square workers are said to jockey for spaces along 5700 Wilshire. Food trucks do not park on the same side of Wilshire as Museum Square, which is home to a handful of restaurants. | Photo by Peggy Archer/LAist A vehicle apparently used to block food trucks from parking on the 5700 block Wilshire Boulevard has garnered $800 worth...

Two Killed in East Hollywood T-Shirt Store Shooting

A shooting inside a store in the East Hollywood area has left two people dead, according to police. At about 12:40 p.m., the LAPD was called to a t-shirt store on the 5400 block of Sunset Boulevard. Inside, two men were found with fatal gunshot wounds. Officer Cleon Joseph described it as a "possible murder-suicide." Few details were available this afternoon as the investigation was ongoing....

About that Huge Fire Earlier this Week that Left 3 Firefighters Injured

One of LAist's Featured Photo contributors on Wednesday morning was at home when he heard a loud explosion and felt his home shake. As bcmacsac1 (that's his Flickr name) explains......

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Photo by lars 5 via LAist Featured Photos on Flickr Spreading the California love: there was an earthquake felt in Washington D.C. this morning. The oil-spewing well capped by BP earlier this week is holding up so far. Schwarzenegger wanted to pay more than 200,000 employees minimum wage to fight the budget deficit. That idea is not going very far. The feds are giving California money to prevent wildfires from growing. Help design how...

With Excessive Heat, Few Power Outages in L.A., but Officials Point to Cooling Centers

If only the Toy Factory Lofts could be an official cooling center | Photo by Alan Heitz via LAist Featured Photos on Flickr It's very hot out. And it will continue to be throughout the weekend, so L.A. city officials this afternoon are pointing to places where the public can take a break and cool down indoors. They are encouraging people to take advantage of libraries, senior citizen centers, and recreation and parks facilities...

Lightning Sparks Brush Fires in Riverside County, Homes Burn

Two homes have reportedly burned after lightning sparked a brush fire in a Lake Elisnore neighborhood this afternoon. Evacuations were called for and one sheriff's deputy was injured when he rescued an elderly woman from a house. In other parts of Riverside County, a handful of small and large fires burned, some near the cities of Temecula and Sage. "We've got small fires and larger fires," a Riverside County Fire Department spokeswoman told the...

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Photo by captain sean via LAist Featured Photos on Flickr An $800,000 salary for the city manager of Bell? Wow. That's a lot more than anyone gets paid around here. Justice for downtown residents: a nearly year-old park at LAPD's headquarters is getting closer to having living grass again. A cyclist, reportedly going 40 mph in Newport Beach this morning, died in a crash this morning. The city of L.A. has purchased a large...

Weather Check: Excessive Heat, Thunderstorms & More

If there's anything to say about today, it's that you could call it a mixed bag. The Los Angles region's varied geography is showing its pretty self off today. Temperatures are expected to reach over 100 in some areas today -- most notably, the valleys -- while some areas have already seen (and others are to see) some scattered showers, according to the LA Times. Some inland areas have even seen hail, flash flooding...

Library and 3-1-1 Hours to be Cut Back on Sunday

Photo by Gibson Claire McGuire Regester via Flickr Sunday marks a big day of transition for Los Angeles, thanks to the city's budget shortfall. Both the Library and the city's 24-hour operator service shorten hours. Libraries will begin a five-day-a-week schedule on Sunday, which begins the weekly closure on Sundays and Mondays. Hours at the 73 libraries throughout the city on the Tuesday-through-Saturday schedule will vary, and are listed here (.pdf). 3-1-1 will shut...

A Guide to Kicking Your Neighborhood's Ass into Shape

Photo by nailmaker via LAist Featured Photos on Flickr When your neighborhood kind of blows, the key to putting it on the right track is persistency and not giving up after being stonewalled by the first person you try to get help from. The LA Weekly today publishes a talk with Allan DiCastro, the president of the Mid-City Neighborhood Council, and finds how he has slowly but surely taken his neighborhood to a better...

Orange County City Hires Trapper to 'Track and Shoot' Coyotes, 9 Already Killed

Photo by _organdonor_ via LAist Featured Photos on Flickr Since June 15th, nine coyotes have been killed by a city-hired trapper in Yorba Linda, and 9 others were killed last year when a trapper was hired. This is how the Orange County city is handling their coyote problem, which has increased since the Freeway Complex Fire burned through the animals' homes, as they work on a comprehensive coyote management plan, according to the Orange...

How the L.A. River was Saved

Photos of Heather Wylie on LAist led to trouble for her and her bosses, but they were also used in a federal document to support the L.A. River under the Clean Water Act | Photo by Tom Andrews/LAist Sometimes a little civil disobedience goes a long way. When it was announced by the Environmental Protection Agency last week that the Los Angeles River was considered "traditional navigable waters," it meant that it and the...

North Korean Food Truck a Fake

Since it debuted last month, it hasn't been much of a secret, but many don't know. Here goes: Pyongyang Express, the North Korean food truck that carries images of dictator Kim Jong Il and the country's flag is just viral marketing for a video game. "We don't like people truckin' with our emotions and playing us for fools," bemoaned Grub Street Los Angeles, which asks if this is a new low in corporate marketing....

LAPD, Police Union Unhappy After Early-Releasd Parolee Tries to Kill Officers

From a separate police shooting | Photo by Greg Lilly Photos via LAist Featured Photos on Flickr Javier Rueda was supposed to serve 10 years for a number of crimes, but after two years he was released in January. Crimes he was jailed for included possession of a controlled substance while armed with a gun, possession of a silencer, vehicle theft and evading a police officer. When released as a parolee, he was deemed...

Four-Block Long Civic Center Park Breaks Ground, Plans Call for Performance Spaces, Street Food & More

Thursday saw the groundbreaking of downtown's newest park venture. A $56 million project will transform Civic Center Park into a 12-acre open space that should be a celebrated space when it is completed. Ranging four sloped city blocks down Bunker Hill between the Music Center and City Hall, the park will include movable chairs, food trucks along Spring Street, pedestrian paths and performance spaces. Designed by Rios Clementi Hale Studios, the park was planned conceptualized...

National Park Rangers Use Facebook to Educate Los Angeles about the Santa Monica Mountains

Millions of people live around the Santa Monica Mountains yet few know the range and the surrounding beaches -- even as far as the Santa Monica Pier -- are included in a federal designated National Recreation Area that is administrated by the National Park Service. One of their more fun outreach tools has been Facebook, where Ranger Mike posts mystery photos from field and asks fans to identify them before he chimes in to confirm...

DUI Checkpoint in the Universal City Area Tonight

As always on the weekends, there are DUI checkpoints. Some are announced, some are not. At least one organized by the LAPD tonight will be set up in the Cahuenga Pass tonight from 8 p.m. to 2 a.m. on Cahuenga Boulevard between Lankershim and Broadlawn (map). That's right near a Metro Red Line subway station. "The summer months are a dangerous time of the year and your odds of being involved in an alcohol...

Full Trailer Released for The Social Network, aka the Facebook Movie

No, this isn't a joke trailer. It's the real deal. The full trailer for The Social Network was released yesterday and... wow. As Gabe at Videogum exclaims, "Holy shit. How is it even possible that this looks SO GOOD?" And kudos to the use of Radiohead's "Creep" (Trent Reznor is writing the music score). The movie opens October 1st....

Suspected 'Grim Sleeper' Serial Killer Could Have Been Caught Before Final Known Murder

Suspected serial killer Lonnie Franklin was supposed to be swabbed for DNA while he was on probation for a felony, but it never happened. If it did, the alleged "Grim Sleeper" may have been caught, sparing at least one woman her life, finds the LA Times.

Energy Use Spikes as Hotter Temperatures Hit the Southland

Angelenos are reacting to the hotter temperatures today by using more energy. So much, in fact, the Los Angeles Department of Water and Power sent out a note urging conservation. "Any time energy demand exceeds this level we need to begin conserving wherever possible, while not jeopardizing anyone's health or safety," said Raman Raj, LADWP Chief Operating Officer. "Saving power not only conserves energy but also reduces the possibility of strain on power system...

Weather Check: Excessive Heat Watch Issued for the Area, Temps to Break 100 in Some Neighborhoods

Get thee to the beach! | Photo by red.dahlia via LAist Featured Photos on Flickr The National Weather Service has issued an excessive heat watch for many areas of Southern California, including the valleys and mountain areas. With a very large high pressure system building over the next few days, monsoonal moisture -- that's a plume or flow of moist unstable air channeling into a particular area -- from the Gulf of Mexico has...

Fresh & Easy Announces 9 More California Locations

Photo by Benjamin Page via LAist Featured Photos on Flickr Fresh & Eash, the grocery store that wants to eventually be a dominating force with a location in every neighborhood, has announced a slew of news spots, including its 100th in California. Nine of them will open in September with four of them located in the Los Angeles region. Stores will open in Los Angeles (specifically Sylmar in the Northeast San Fernando Valley), Oxnard,...

Photos: Olivia Munn Joins PETA to Protest the Circus in Downtown

The Daily Show's Olivia Munn joined around 100 protestors Wednesday night to bring attention to the treatment of elephants at the circus, specifically Ringling Bros. Barnum and Bailey, which is performing in downtown Los Angeles through Sunday. “When you look at something like the circus and everyone’s laughing and there’s color and there’s music and everything seems so great," said Munn, "but when you go right behind that door and they’re in these crates all...

The Best Frozen Yogurt in Town? It Just Might be Yogurt Stop in West Hollywood

Pinkberry, Menchies, Yogurtland. They're the ubiquitous Los Angeles neighborhood sweet spot. But they've got nothing in taste and uniqueness on more local operations like 21 Flavors. And better yet, Yogurt Stop in West Hollywood. Gay owned and operated, the innuendo-filled joint -- you'll find flavors such as Peanut Butter Princess, I Like Boys-N-Berry and "Bottoms Up" Banana -- opened in 2009 with a rousing success. And it's not the naming gimmicks that make Yogurt Stop...

Santa Monica Residents to Vote on Upping Sales Tax to 10.25%

Shopping in Santa Monica | Photo by Malingering via LAist Featured Photos on Flickr Voters in Santa Monica will be faced with helping save the city's -- and possibly the school district's -- budget when they hit the voting booths in November. A measure approved by the Santa Moncia City Council on Tuesday night will ask voters two questions: to increase the sales tax by a half-penny, making it 10.25%, and if yes, should...

One Possible Reason Why There's Been a Surge of Random Nudeness Lately

Photos: Rose McGowan on Twitter For one, it's been hot. But another reason could be this: July 5th through 11th was Nude Recreation Week. Who knew?! Perhaps that's why there has been a random rash of nudeness recently (that link has some funny photos) or perhaps not. But talk about random from all angles. And if you were taking Amtrak or Metrolink last Saturday, you may have been mooned. Also, in West Hollywood, the...

Culver City Seeks to Increase Hotel Tax, Some Fear Local Tourism Would Decrease

The Culver Hotel | puck90/LAist Featured Photos Amid these belt tightening times, Santa Monica wants to raise the sales tax and Culver City has a similar idea, but they want to hit up tourists for some extra money instead. The City Council Monday night took steps to place a measure on the November ballot that would increase the Transient Occupancy Tax rate from 12 percent to 14 percent, according to the Los Angeles Wave....

Video: Museum Square vs. Food Trucks on 5700 Wilshire (the Ballet Version)

5700 Wilshire continues to be ground zero in the battle between food trucks and brick and mortar restaurants. For a few weeks, employees from the Museum Square building have been occupying parking spaces along the street to block food trucks (and everyone else) every weekday morning. It has become a game of musical chairs, especially before 9 a.m., when an anti-gridlock zone is enforced (if you stop, you get a ticket. You also could get towed if you don't leave immediately).

Win Tickets to Keane's July 21st Show at the Greek Theatre

It's officially summer, so that means it's time for some outdoor concerts at one of the city's favorites venues in L.A.'s premiere park. Next week Wednesday, UK trio Keane will be joined by Ingrid Michaelson and Fran Healy at the Greek Theatre in Griffith Park. The show is in support of Keane's latest album, Night Train, which includes some collaborations with Somali/Canadian rapper K'NAAN and Japanese funk singer Tigarah. To celebrate, LAist is giving...

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Photo by djjewelz via LAist Featured Photos on Flickr In addition to a brush fire in Ventura County's Camarillo Heights, two other ones are burning. A 2,700-acre blaze is 60% contained at Camp Pendleton and smaller one is burning in Walnut. Major U.S. cities, such as Los Angeles, "may be among the last entities to feel like they've emerged from the recession." Burglars hit three apartments in Silver Lake last week, taking almost everything...

Video: Community Activist & City Council Candidate Stephen Box Tells NBC His Platform is More than just Cycling

The discussions about recently-announced candidate Stephen Box for Los Angeles' fourth district has LAist readers wanting more from him about where he stands on the issues. Although Box has worked as a community activist and organizer in various fields, he's most known for his involvement in the cycling community. So is his a platform just about cycling or there more to him than that? NBC's Fred Roggins put that question to Box last night,...

Initiative to Ban Divorce in California Resurfaces

Photo by Ed Yourdon via Flickr Watch out fans of divorce, it's back! After failing to qualify for the November 2nd ballot, the California Protection of Marriage Act went into circulation on Tuesday. If 694,354 registered voters sign the petition within 150 days -- that's December 9th -- California voters may end up voting on it in 2011. Here's the Attorney General’s official title and summary: ELIMINATES THE LAW ALLOWING MARRIED COUPLES TO DIVORCE....

Michael Jackson's Neverland Ranch as a California State Park?

They did it with Hearst Castle, which is fascinatingly whacky in its own right, so why not Michael Jackson's Neverland Ranch? An idea spawned by the California NAACP and now being pushed by a Los Angeles Assemblymember could mean Jackson's former Santa Barbara County home near Los Olivos may someday be a California State Park. But can cash-strapped California afford the $100 million tab? Not when state park officials are struggling to keep the...

Developers Tease Project that Could Bring Apartments & New Grocery Store to Sherman Oaks

It looks like the developers behind a major housing and retail project next to the Sherman Oaks Galleria are gearing up to take their case to the public. On a newly launched Facebook fan page, proponents ask viewers to imagine something -- anything! -- in place of a large dirt field currently found between the corner of Sepulveda and Camarillo and the 405/101 freeway interchange. Plans for Il Villaggio Toscano call for it to be...

Olivia Munn to Protest the Circus Tonight in Downtown

Former G4 geek vixen and current Daily Show correspondent Olivia Munn (LAist Interview) is no fan of Ringling Brothers, which is in town this week. She even got nude for a billboard earlier this year to bring attention to the circus' apparent abuse of animals. Now that they're at the Staples Center, she's organizing a protest. "BOYCOTT Ringling Bros tonight at 630pm with me at Staples Center. If u have the time, it would...

Krekorian's First 6 Months Earns a Thumbs Up from Daily News

L.A. City Councilmember Paul Krekorian who represents a large swath of the San Fernando Valley -- from Sherman Oaks to Shadow Hills -- has been in office for six months now. Today the Valley-based Daily News today gave him good ratings: "In City Hall, Krekorian has proven to be a thoughtful leader. He hasn't been a grandstander or a go-along voter. He was willing to buck the City Hall machine by voting against the DWP electrical rate increase..."

Hollywood Middle School Teacher Arrested for Child Porn

A 58-year-old middle school teacher in Hollywood was arrested last week for alleged possession of child pornography, the LAPD announced today. Barry Klein, who has been teaching at Bancroft Middle School since 2001, became subject of an investigation in April and was immediately removed from campus to be put to work in a non-school location, according to Robert Alaniz, LAUSD's Director of Communications & Media Relations. In addition to the charges, which so far...

Officials Want to Better Manage Parking in Van Nuys

In downtown Van Nuys there's a parking problem. Luckily, there could be a fix and it doesn't mean building a parking structure. A L.A. city council transportation panel today met and briefly discussed two proposals that could help solve parking around the Van Nuys civic center. Although there metered spaces line the surrounding streets -- often crowded -- two city parking lots do not operate at maximum capacity. One has an average occupancy of 76% while another has a 28% occupancy.

Arrest Made in Shooting that Injured 3 Outside The Echo

A performance at The Echo | Photo: carlos ※ rossi/LAist Featured Photos Police this morning arrested an alleged biker gang member who is suspected of shooting three people shot outside a popular Echo Park music venue on June 21st. Around 2 a.m. that morning, a crowd was leaving The Echo on Sunset Boulevard when bullets were fired into the crowd. "The suspect arrived at the Echo Park club after being informed that a member...

All Lanes of Sunset Blvd. Closed After Head-On Crash

Traffic came to a halt on Sunset Boulevard this afternoon after a head-on crash prompted authorities to close all lanes. Shortly after 4 p.m., a UCLA police unit responded to a crash on the busy artery between Veteran and Bellagio, finding multiple victims trapped. "All lanes of Sunset Boulevard closed by head-on crash. Avoid this afternoon if possible," warned UCLA's Newsroom on Twitter. The road is closed for about 3/4ths of a mile between...

Extra, Extra

A sunset in Griffith Park | Photo by Renee Silverman via LAist Featured Photos on Flickr The first openly gay chief for the Riverside County Sheriff's Department will be in charge of Coachella and La Quinta. A Los Angeles-city agency on Thursday will decide on a $10.5 million parking garage in downtown that would be the foundation for Eli Broad's art museum. Former L.A. County District Attorney Gil Garcetti, father of L.A. City Council...

Reaction Mixed to City Council Candidacy of Activist Stephen Box

Box speaks at a campaign steering committee meeting | Photo via Stephen Box's facebook page For an election in 2011, the announcement that community activist Stephen Box is running for the Los Angeles City Council has picked up a lot of steam already. In many ways -- whether he planned to run or not -- he's has been preparing for this moment for years. His name is out there as someone who has been...

Need a Job? There are Plenty Available, but Do You Have the Skills or Willpower?

Inside American Apparel | Photo by Zach Behrens/LAist "Illegal immigrants take American jobs." That's one of the statements heard throughout the immigration debate as of late, but one that's currently being challenged. Why? Because others are saying there are jobs available out there but employers are having a tough time filling them. One local example is American Apparel. After being made an example of by the Obama Administration last year with an immigration raid...

Everything You Need to Know About Prop 8 in Just a Few Minutes

SFist's Matt Baume, who also runs Stop8.org, has produced this great video recapping nearly two years of the measure that banned gay marriage in California. The video comes as the world awaits the decision from the federal trial challenging Prop 8's constitutionality. When will that verdict be announced? It's anyone's guess. If you want to be one of the first to know, the American Foundation for Equal Rights, which is the organization representing the...

Questions Arise About Police Shooting in Studio City that Left Teenager Dead

Outside the Parking Lot in Studio City | Photo by Zach Behrens/LAist A deputy-involved shooting that left an 18-year-old dead has some questioning whether law enforcement should have used deadly force. On June 24th, plainsclothes officers from a multi-jurisdiction task force were meeting in a Studio City parking lot when they noticed a man apparently casing cars, including one of police's unmarked ones. A task force member approached the man, who became uncooperative, prompting...

Soil Testing Begins for Train from Culver City to Santa Monica

With hopes of being in service by 2015, soil testing on the second phase of the Expo Line has begun, finds the Santa Monica Daily Press. Drilling for soil, which will occur through July 20th, is a step the authority overseeing the project must do before construction can begin, expected to start later this year. Phase 1 between downtown and Culver City is already in progress and may be completed by the end of...

Music Industry Goes After Porn Industry

via In the VIP This time it's not news of the music industry suing college students or trying to cut your internet service, it's those who use Justin Timberlake's "Sexyback" to get down and dirty on film. A number of record companies have filed lawsuits against some porn production companies alleging copyrighted songs were used in films, according to Reuters. The claims could run into the tens of millions. In some films produced by...

More Naked Men Run Amok in L.A. Area: Whiskey in Hand, Pants Down on Melrose; Taking a Nude Stroll in Marina Del Rey

Is this the summer of nudity or what? From naked PETA protests in Orange County to random and criminal instances of nudity on the 405 Freeway, Azusa and Temecula (and let's not forget the drunk teen in Simi Valley who went to his former house -- the keys still worked! -- and went asleep in a bed nude). But that's not it. At least two men yesterday bared some or all of themselves for everyone...

Brush Fire Breaks out in Camarillo Heights Near Homes [Updated]

Photo by WallyJue via Twitter A brush fire that broke out this afternoon on the Camarillo Hills has scorched some 15 acres of land in the Camarillo Heights neighborhood of Ventura County. Reported just after 3 p.m., the blaze has prompted about 150 firefighters on the ground and two helicopters to respond to the area around Ocean View Drive, north of Loop Drive, according to the Ventura County Fire Department. Although authorities are confident...

HBO's 'Entourage' Continues Commentary on Local News Trends -- This Time, a New NFL Team in L.A.

In the "Entourage" season premiere, it was a nod to the food truck trend. In the second episode ("Dazed and Confused") Sunday night, it was the prospect of the NFL coming back to Los Angeles (spoiler alerts coming). Dallas Cowboys owner Jerry Jones (the L.A. native played himself) and other NFL big wigs met with Hollywood's top power agent Ari Gold about selling the league's TV rights. That didn't work out, but Jones had...

Cyclist Activist Stephen Box Announces Candidacy for L.A. City Council

Surprised? We're not. The seemingly omnipresent Los Angeles community activist Stephen Box has announced his candidacy for the city's fourth district, which includes Silver Lake, Hollywood, the Miracle Mile, Griffith Park, Toluca Lake and the NoHo Arts District (see map). It is currently held by Councilmember Tom LaBonge.

Roman Polanski will not be Extradited to the U.S.

Swiss authorities today announced that director Roman Polanski will not be extradited to Los Angeles to face charges for having sex with a 13-year-old girl and will no long be under house arrest, according to the New York Times. The reasoning was two-fold: some records were not sent to Swiss authorities and in September 2009 when he was arrested, Polanski had traveled in "good faith" that “the journey would not entail any legal disadvantages...

Can You See the Suspected 'Grim Sleeper' Serial Killer on Google Street View?

The alleged "Grim Sleeper" serial killer Lonnie Franklin, Jr., arrested last week and charged with 10 murders, had been arrested at least 15 times, but stayed off the LAPD's radar because DNA was never swabbed. He was eventually caught via familial DNA -- his son was arrested and swabbed, leading authorities to Franklin. It's a first for this approach in the U.S., one that has LAPD Chief Charlie Beck saying it "will change the way policing is done."

L.A. as Afghanistan: LAPD Train Marines to Teach Afghan Police

What can some of L.A.'s toughest neighborhoods teach us about patrolling Afghanistan and ridding streets of the Taliban? Apparently, a lot. About 70 Camp Pendleton Marines earlier this month embedded themselves with the LAPD to learn about policing, especially in building better community relations, according to the Associated Press. "The Marines hope that learning to work like a cop on a beat will help them better track the Taliban, build relationships with Afghans leery...

A Brief Guide to Staycationing Car-Free

“The more I explore my home ground, the more it comes alive, and I have to put to rest the illusion that I am limiting myself by doing so. Everything we need to be happy really is near at hand," Kurt Hoelting wrote in his book "The Circumference of Home." Taking cue from that, L.A.'s daily eco e-mail service Your Daily Thread recently published a nice guide to keeping it local and car free...

Check This Out: LGBT Street Posters of Past and Present at ONE National Gay and Lesbian Archives Gallery

One of the most interesting gallery shows out there right now can be found at the ONE Archives Gallery & Museum in West Hollywood. The show space is actually just a room housed in the West Hollywood Recover Center (the actual archives are on West Adams), but it's one pivotal and important room that can easily fascinate and inform you of the history of LGBT issues in Los Angeles. Out of the Closet & Into...

Alleged Drunk Driver Leads Police to Train Tanker Carrying Marijuana

Just when you thought you knew of every form of transporting or hiding illegal drugs, you're wrong. The LAPD today discovered around 3,000 pounds of marijuana stashed in a train tanker holding petroleum today The incident began Sunday evening when officers noticed someone apparently driving erratically. An attempted traffic stop turned into a pursuit that ended near a rail yard in the city of Commerce where three suspects were arrested, one for driving under...

A New Look for a Ventura Boulevard Corner in Sherman Oaks

A proposed development surrounding a redesigned Ralphs (making it into a Fresh Fare) in Sherman Oaks looks like it's coming closer to reality. At issue for those opposing the project was the height. The city's specific plan for the area (.pdf) says buildings should be no more than 30 feet, but Ralphs wanted it up to 48 feet. Looks like 11 feet of that height has been chopped. "After working with the Council Office and...

UCLA, USC & Local Companies Win Federal Money for Clean Energy Research

Photo by rchiba via LAist Featured Photos on Flickr The White House this afternoon announced $22 million in awards that will go to 11 California projects, six which are in the Los Angeles region, that will supposedly advance clean energy technologies. USC was awarded nearly $1.5 million to team up with the Jet Propulsion Lab to "develop a high-performance rechargeable battery for large-scale energy storage on the electricity grid." UCLA got a half million...

Poll: It's a Real Race for Sen. Boxer and Carly Fiorina

Following up on all the Field Polls released last week -- recreational marijuana and Jerry Brown not doing as well as some would expect -- here's the results of the third one (.pdf): "Democratic Senator Barbara Boxer is clinging to a narrow three-point lead (47% to 44%) over her Republican opponent, businesswoman Carly Fiorina, among likely voters in California’s upcoming November general election for U.S. Senate." LIke the Brown-Whitman match up for Governor, Boxer's...

HARD L.A. the Latest Outdoor Music Festival to be Canceled [Updated]

Scheduled for this weekend, HARD L.A. has now been canceled, according the LA Times. It is the second music festival to go wayside following the controversial Electric Daisy Carnival at the L.A. Coliseum, where more than 100 people were sent to the hospital, including 15-year-old who later died.

Glendale is Looking to Connect to Griffith Park via a Pedestrian Bridge

North is to the left | Image via city of Glendale It's Los Angeles' biggest park, yet accessing it is not always easy, especially on its eastern side. For over three miles, there is zero pedestrian access to it, much of it thanks to being lined by the 5 and 134 Freeways. Now as part of their L.A. River plan surrounding the Glendale Narrows Riverwalk, the city of Glendale is looking to connect the...

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