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Extra, Extra: A Little Hand Holding Never Hurt Anyone

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  • Be careful who you root for. L.A. County Federation of Labor's leader Maria Elena Durazo is taking some heat for her recent endorsement of Barack Obama, and her subsequent decision to take a leave from her post to work on his campaign.
  • Speaking of labor...today was the launch of the Los Angeles County Business Federation, a coalition of local businesses hoping to emulate--and perhaps defend against--the organizational power of unions. The group "so far includes 44 organizations that represent more than 70,000 businesses employing more than 1.2 million people."
  • It's being called vehicular homicide, and charges have been filed. In the early Monday morning hours Carlos Gutierrez killed his girlfriend by ordering her and his uncle out of his car, then fatally running her over and injuring his uncle. Gutierrez reportedly put the bodies in the backseat and drove the Honda Prelude to a gas station; while he pumped gas his uncle dragged himself out and yelled for help.
  • Got a pothole? City Councilwoman Wendy Gruel wants to fill it. This morning Gruel put on some roadworker neon and did the dirty work herself in an attempt to encourage residents to call 3-1-1 to arrange to get their potholes fixed. Gruel says the city will do the repair within 48 hours.
  • Gang violence is on the rise in the San Gabriel Valley city of Monrovia. A drive-by shooting last night is "the second gang-related slaying in four days in a city unaccustomed to such violence."
  • Hands off, you dirty ape! Actress Christina Ricci gets pawed by a chimp on the set of her latest flick, Penelope. Her primate co-star is no chump--he went right for the boob.
  • Another one bites the dust: Upscale eatery Bin 8945 closes its doors for good tonight. The last supper is going to be helmed by Hell's Kitchen cooking sidekick Mary Ann Salcedo.
  • And, in your daily (over)dose of Britney, California's 5150 law might get the unraveling Spears on a 72-hour observational hold for mental illness. Although often initiated by police, concerned friends or family members can make a call to the hospital to arrange to have her committed, which may well be what the tabloid icon needs to get some help. Hey, hand me the phone, would ya?

Photo by kpe II via the LAist Featured Photos pool on Flickr