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Posted on | June 2, 2013 | No Comments
Norma Raybourn was outside her Santa Fe Avenue home Sunday, celebrating with friends and relatives at a birthday party, when she heard the train.
“It was noisy and it just kept getting noisier,” she said. “Then it was vibrating and it just kept getting worse.”
Raybourn and her family ran to the front of the yard in time to see several cars of a freight train derail, crashing into one another and into a self-storage facility in a massive cloud of dust.
A video taken by Tom Stevenson, who was taking photos at the party, shows the dust enveloping the area before clearing to show cars leaning to the side near the front of the train and off the tracks and crumpled into one another farther back.
No injuries were reported in the accident, which occurred at 4:55 p.m. at East Zeering Road and North Santa Fe, Stanislaus County sheriff’s Sgt. Anthony Bejaran said. And the train, heading north, wasn’t carrying hazardous materials, a concern that had Raybourn and her family hustling back into the rear yard after running out front to see what was happening.
All but three of the train cars were empty, Bejaran said, and Burlington Northern Santa Fe investigators were checking the manifest to make sure everything had been accounted for. Firefighters opened storage units to make sure no hazardous materials had been spilled and nobody had been hurt.
The cause of the accident had not been determined.
Authorities closed the tracks along Santa Fe between East Monte Vista Avenue and East Keyes Road. Bejaran estimated that investigators would be there a few days. He had no estimation of when the tracks would be reopened to freight trains or Amtrak’s passenger service, because some of the rail was damaged.
Amtrak dispatched a bus to carry passengers expecting to get on the train Sunday evening. That included Fabiola Rubio of Delhi, headed back to the University of California at Davis and planning to get on the 7:10 p.m. train. She called Amtrak after a friend who lived in Denair told her about the derailment.
At Raybourn’s home, friends and family stood around and talked about the unbelievable scene they’d witnessed. Some said they at first thought it was a car accident, as one had happened a few years before.
“Everybody was just shaking,” Raybourn said. “We were like, ‘Are you kidding? This is happening in front of our eyes.’ “
Posted on | June 1, 2013 | No Comments
There’s a “new” workout routine that is gaining in popularity across the country and it has to do with ditching your standard gym and embracing nature.
It’s called “the caveman workout,” also known as Paleo Fitness, or “the natural movement.”
Shape magazine called the workout one of the top 13 fitness trends to watch for this year.
We must warn you that attempting some of what others have done with the workout is highly dangerous and you can get seriously hurt. For example, a video on YouTube shows a man running along the edge of a bridge testing his balance at a death-defying height.
The people who are taking on the caveman workout are generally bored with the repetitive lifestyle of gym workouts. They are ditching the elliptical machines, treadmills and barbells and embracing the challenges of scrambling around in trees, power lifting rocks, logs or tires.
Most modern fitness programs focus on muscle isolation and cardio-conditioning, but one fitness trainer who loves the caveman workout says the body does not work in isolation; it works synergistically, as a unit. The more varied the movements, the better for health, fitness, and resiliency.
Participants have said with the paleo workout, your mind and body do not get bored, so you avoid fitness plateaus.
There’s even a caveman diet that goes along with this too, focusing on meat, veggies, fruits, and nuts; and giving up dairy, grains, refined sugar, and anything processed.
Posted on | May 31, 2013 | No Comments
The flyer says it’s a night of entertainment. The organizer said it’s to benefit Stockton’s children. What could be the problem?
“I think the city should really reconsider your involvement in such an event and look into who they’re promoting as role models for our kids,” said Motecuzoma Sanchez at last week’s city council meeting. “New York from Flavor of Love? Stockton has enough ghetto.”
The event was approved and scheduled for June 8. It’s both a youth conference to discuss career and community options, and a fundraiser for the Boys & Girls Club and I Am Ready Foundation. It’s also a chance to meet celebrities.
“These are producers, these are comedians, these are personalities and models,” event organizer Jason Lee said.
The question is whether or not they are good role models for children, especially when some have displayed questionable behavior on television. Mayor Anthony Silva said he doesn’t know.
“I don’t know who they are,” Silva said. “I have no clue, to be honest with you.”
Well, two are reality TV stars.
At the center of the flyer is America’s Next Top Model Cycle 3 winner Eva [Pigford] Marcille, known as a trash talker and back stabber on the show. Tyra Banks told Marcille in the first episode, “about 80 percent of the girls who come in here have something negative to say about you.”
And then there’s New York, a woman featured on the reality dating show Flavor of Love, competing to win the heart of rapper Flava Flav. When asked around Stockton if people heard of her, the reaction went something like this:
“Didn’t she punch someone?” one resident said.
“Oh yeah, that girl spit in her face!” another resident said.
Clips of New York on the show can be found on YouTube cursing, hitting and badmouthing the other competitors.
Despite what they’ve done on TV, Silva, Lee and some teens still think they’re worth bringing to Stockton and have something to offer youth.
“Stockton is very diverse and there is a certain clientele for these type of performers that get their attention and motivate these young men and women that we have on the streets of Stockton,” Silva said. “If this is something that is going to get them off the streets and get them motivated, than I’m willing to try anything.”
High School junior Jamerson Hunt said he looks forward to meeting musical producer Drumma Boy, to hopefully learn insight into a music career. Hunt also defends New York as an entertainment personality.
“From what I hear, she’s a really nice person,” said Hunt, who’s never met the reality star. “She’s here to help educate and inspire the youth of our city. She’s not going to act like she does on that show.”
The youth conference and comedy roast of Silva takes place on June 8.
Proceeds from the event will be split by the Stockton Boys & Girls Club and the I Am Ready foundation.
Posted on | May 31, 2013 | No Comments
With signs in hand, people with the group Project VERITAS posing as homeless set out to reveal the supposed hypocrisy of California legislators’ on their views homelessness but the media learned Thursday that their investigation turned out to be a bust.
In a YouTube video produced by Project VERITAS, the undercover report explains the group did the investigation to see how assembly member Roger Dickinson, author legislation known as the Homeless Bill of Rights, would react to the homeless being in front of his home.
The exchange with Paladin Private Security in the video showed the officer asking the undercover reporters with Project VERITAS to leave the neighborhood.
The Project VERITAS report also implied Dickinson called police on them.
“I saw them while I was still in the house eating breakfast. Did nothing about it. They’re standing outside. Not typical, they’re standing outside of the house. Then I left for work and I did not do anything about it,” Dickinson said.
Investigative reporters learned no one called police May 8. A private security company responded to the scene in front of Dickinson’s home.
“Assembly Member Dickinson is not the person who called us that morning. A good citizen – a Good Samaritan who was out walking his dog is actually is the one who made the call,” said Matthew Carroll, the V.P. of Operation for Paladin Private Security.
Dickinson had this to say about the undercover investigation that tried to nail him to the wall:
“We have lots of homeless that traverse our neighborhood because we are right off the American River Parkway so you know this is obviously an attempt to score some cheap points and the truth lost out in that effort.”
Posted on | May 27, 2013 | No Comments
The video below was shot with a cell phone in Twain Harte on Memorial Day 2010:
From myMotherlode.com :
There will be many ceremonies here in the Mother Lode, to honor fallen military service members.
-In South Tuolumne County, there will be a 10am service at the Divide Oak Grove Cemetary.
-A Memorial Day Salute will begin at 11 at the Columbia Public Cemetary. It is presented by the Columbia Foot Dragoons and the Grenadine Bells.
-At 11:30 at the Twain Harte arch there will be the 10th annual Memorial Day Parade and Flag Raising ceremony. It will be followed by a Hot Dog lunch in the park.
-Coming up this evening at 6:30 there is a Memorial Day Concert at Murphys Community Park put on by the Calaveras Community Band.
Posted on | May 25, 2013 | No Comments
A 4-month-old Chihuahua puppy with a special talent is up for adoption at the Sacramento SPCA shelter.
Bitty was a stray found in Elk Grove and turned over into the SPCA’s care, SPCA spokesperson Tracie Popma said.
A customer at the shelter saw Bitty and said she used to have a similar dog who could say, “I Love You.” Popma said the customer said, “I Love You” to the puppy and Bitty mimicked her.
If you are interested in adopting Bitty, you can come down to the shelter on 6201 Florin Perkins Road, Sacramento.
Posted on | May 24, 2013 | No Comments
A couple who purport to be psychics have been arrested on suspicion of fleecing almost a quarter-million dollars from customers, including at least one they had promised to rid of negative spirits, San Bernardino County sheriff’s officials said.
Cindy Uwanawich, 57, and Nick Uwanawich, 56, of Twin Peaks, have been charged with three counts each of felony grand theft after eight customers came forward and said they were scammed out of more than $238,000 in total. Both have pleaded not guilty.
The couple had been conducting psychic readings since January 2010 at a business called The Psychic Door in Crestline that previously operated in Idyllwild, and at The San Bernardino Psychic, according to San Bernardino County sheriff’s deputies.
They also did readings at their homes in Crestline and San Bernardino, and at high-end hotels, sheriff’s officials said. Cindy Uwanawich told the woman during a psychic reading that a negative sprit from a previous life was attached to her, bringing negative energy that threatened her personal and professional life and her family’s safety, sheriff’s officials said.
The woman said Uwanawich told her she would clear the spirit if the woman paid Uwanawich nine pennies, nine nickels, nine quarters and $9,000 over nine days. Uwanawich said she would return the money after nine days, but she never did, according to the sheriff’s statement.
Uwanawich was arrested at the time on suspicion of grand theft and embezzlement, but she posted bail before charges were filed.
She also was found to be running an unlicensed psychic business in the mountain community of Crestline.
Following her arrest, seven more victims came forward to report they were scammed, with the loss totaling more than $238,000.
Felony grand theft warrants were issued for the couple this month. They were arrested Monday, May 20, and booked at the Central Detention Center, with bail set at $500,000 each.
They also were found to be running another unlicensed business in Yucaipa.
Posted on | May 24, 2013 | No Comments
In 2008, Barack Obama said he could see many of our nation’s unbroken line of fallen heroes, “…in the audience here, today”.
Posted on | May 22, 2013 | No Comments
The mystery behind a fallen turbine blade at the Ocotillo Wind power plant east of San Diego has led the manufacturer to curtail operations at select wind farms around the world.
Siemens, a global leader in wind-turbine manufacturing, confirmed Monday that it has convened a team of experts at a wind farm outside the desert town of Ocotillo, where a 170-foot blade broke loose and fell to the desert floor. Residents of Ocotillo noticed the fallen blade on Thursday morning.
“Siemens does not yet know the root cause of this incident and is working to determine if and how this is related to a recent similar incident in Iowa,” the company said in a written statement. “Out of an abundance of caution, Siemens is taking the step of curtailing all turbines with the B53 blade type globally.”
On April 5, a blade broke on the same model turbine at MidAmerican Energy’s 200MW Eclipse wind farm in Iowa’s central Audubon and Guthrie counties.
The B-53 blade type is used on a turbine model with about 700 units in operation worldwide — 600 of those the United States.
The curtailment meant some turbines remained in operation at slower speeds. Ocotillo Wind, an array of more than 90 turbines forming a crescent around the like-named town, remained shut down on Monday, according to Pattern Energy, the developer and operator.
“Each and every turbine is being evaluated,” said Matt Dallas, a spokesman for Pattern, a San Francisco-based wind and transmission developer with offices in La Jolla.
The fallen blade ignited new safety concerns among critics of the plant, who posted photos and videos to the Internet of the crumpled white tube amid sparse desert undergrowth, along with the idled turbine above, missing one of its three arms.
Much of Ocotillo Wind, 70 miles east of the City of San Diego, is on public land overseen by the Bureau of Land Management and remains accessible to hikers and off-road vehicles.
The blade apparently detached during the night — late Wednesday or early Thursday — meaning no one may have seen it break and fall.
The turbine blades at Ocotillo are made of a glass fiber-reinforced epoxy resin and are attached to a rotor suspended about 240 feet from the ground.
San Diego Gas & Electric buys electricity from Ocotillo under a 20-year contract at undisclosed prices. California utilities are ramping up clean-energy production under a state law requiring retailers to provide one-third of electricity from renewable sources by 2020.
Posted on | May 22, 2013 | No Comments
On the viral YouTube video that propelled him to a measure of fame, the disheveled itinerant dubbed “Kai the hatchet-wielding hitchhiker” describes himself as a “home-free” surfer and musician with roots in West Virginia.
“I don’t have any family,” he tells a television reporter after describing how he stopped an attack on a utility worker in Fresno, Calif., by striking the assailant with an ax. “As far as anyone I grew up with is concerned, I’m already dead.”
But 24-year-old Caleb McGillivary, as he is legally known, isn’t from West Virginia. He was born and raised in Canada, where his estranged parents reacted with horror to the allegations their son fatally bludgeoned a 73-year-old New Jersey lawyer, Joseph Galfy, last week.
In their first interviews since McGillivary’s arrest in Philadelphia Thursday night, the parents told The Star-Ledger (New Jersey) their son has long struggled with behavioral problems and spent years in hospitals and treatment homes.
“Caleb had a real tough life,” said Gil McGillivary, 57, a former probation officer who lives in Hawkesbury, Ontario. He and Caleb McGillivary’s mother, Shirley, divorced when their son was 4.
“He was in treatment homes until he turned 18 and then they cut him loose and washed their hands of him,” Gil McGillivary said. “Caleb made accusations that he was physically and mentally abused at one of the homes. The system let my son down.”
The suspect’s mother, who spoke on the condition her last name be withheld, acknowledged her son’s behavior problems but disputed his father’s claim that he has attention deficit hyperactivity disorder. He graduated from high school, Shirley said, and took college classes. As a little boy, she said, he was a “delight.”
She said she hasn’t spoken to her son since last fall. At the time, he was still living in Canada. She said she does not know how or when her son illegally crossed the border to travel around the States.
She wept while watching McGillivary’s notorious television interview, which was uploaded to YouTube in February and swiftly drew several hundred thousand hits. Since the arrest, the number of views has climbed to nearly 4 million.
Shirley, who lives on a farm in St. Paul, Alberta, said her son’s claim his family didn’t care about him isn’t true.
“He has a family that misses him,” she said. “He has a family that loves him. There have been some attempts, but we have no way of contacting him. He knows my number. My number hasn’t changed. If he calls and wants our help, we’re there for him.”
McGillivary has been in a Pennsylvania jail, held without bail, since he was arrested Thursday at a Philadelphia bus station. The Union County Prosecutor’s Office is seeking to extradite him to New Jersey, where he will face murder charges in the death of Galfy, a Clark resident and partner in a Rahway law firm.
The two met by chance in Times Square May 11, then returned to Galfy’s home, Prosecutor Theodore Romankow has said. McGillivary allegedly beat Galfy to death Sunday evening.
Authorities have not released a motive. In a Facebook post, McGillivary claimed he was drugged and sexually assaulted, but did not provide specifics. Romankow has called the comment “self-serving.”
On May 10, McGillivary wrote a disturbing Mother’s Day essay on his Facebook wall in which he alleged that he was beaten by family members from the age of 2 and locked alone in a room for 20 hours a day. When he acted out, according to the essay, he was hit with brooms and pushed into cold showers.
His mother said the claims are untrue and the essay was a manifestation of her son’s mood disorders. She said she did not want to elaborate on the nature of his behavioral health issues.
In a YouTube video posted yesterday by a Kai supporter, there is a montage of archived interview clips in which McGillivary describes his troubled past and states that he was raped at age 17.
(Warning: Disturbing Subject Matters And Accusations)
Meanwhile, a petition called “Free Kai Caleb Lawrence” has been created on Change.org.
“It’s innocent until proven guilty,” Gil McGillivary said about his son. “Where’s the murder weapon? When did it happen? These are the questions that boggle my mind.”
He said he was stunned when he first heard his son’s name in connection with the killing.
“I tried to put Caleb on the straight-and-narrow growing up, but this situation here, I can only tell him I still love him. He’s been wandering around lost because he hasn’t given his life to the Lord.”
Gil McGillivary said that prior to his divorce, he and his son spent time together camping, attending air shows and going for motorcycle rides.
“He loved to play guitar and play the drums at the music stores. He was a really talented musician. That was his dream, I thought, to be a rock star.”
Gil McGillivary lost custody of his son after the divorce. He said the boy spent his teen and preteen years hospitalized for behavioral problems.
He said he last saw his son in December 2010. “He showed up to the door unannounced to spend Christmas with us,” said the father, who is remarried with two daughters and a son.
“When Caleb came over here, he wanted me to run away with him to have some sort of father-son relationship.
“I believe that Caleb didn’t like the fact that I remarried, that I didn’t rescue him from the treatment home, that I have three kids from my present wife,” Gil McGillivary said. “But my children, they love their brother, and they’re shocked at what has happened.”
The father said he last spoke to his son in February after the television interview went viral.
“Caleb didn’t want to have anything to do with me,” he said. “He thought I was trying to get into the public notoriety of his rise to fame because of being his dad. That wasn’t the way it was going to happen, but I respected his wishes because he’s an adult.”« go back — keep looking »