LA jury gets case in killing of aspiring model
LOS ANGELES (AP) - The case has gone to the jury in the murder trial of a woman accused of strangling an aspiring young model and actress in her Santa Monica apartment.
City News Service reports the jury deliberated briefly Wednesday and was set to resume Thursday in the trial of 47-year-old Kelly Soo Park, who is charged with killing 21-year-old Juliana Redding in 2008.
Prosecutors said Park strangled Redding with her bare hands and left "overwhelming" DNA evidence on the body and around the apartment.
They say she received a six-figure payment from a doctor who had dated Redding and had tried and failed to negotiate a business deal with Redding's father.
Defense attorney George Buehler said Park lacked the "brutal, evil intent" the crime required and someone else must have killed Redding.
OC to pay $2 million to settle retaliation suit
SANTA ANA, Calif. (AP) - Orange County has agreed to pay $2 million to settle a lawsuit by a former sheriff's lieutenant who was demoted after running against ex-Sheriff Mike Carona.
The Orange County Register says a settlement was signed last week to end Bill Hunt's 6-year-old case. Most of the money will cover Hunt's pension and reimburse his legal fees.
Hunt was demoted to patrol duty after losing the 2006 election for sheriff but retired instead. In December, a judge awarded him reinstatement and granted him back pay, saying Carona had engaged in a campaign of retaliation.
Carona was sheriff for nine years before he was indicted for corruption in 2007. He's serving a 5 ½-year federal sentence for witness tampering.
Calif. to announce health insurance plans, prices
SACRAMENTO, Calif. (AP) - Californians will get their first look at the health plans to be offered through the state's new insurance exchange and how much that coverage will cost them.
Covered California, the state agency running California's health insurance marketplace, is expected to announce the plans on Thursday.
Enrollment on the exchange will begin in October, with full coverage starting in January. That's when virtually everyone in the country will be required to have health insurance or pay a penalty.
The goal of the exchange is to offer individuals and small businesses a choice of private health plans similar to what workers at large companies already receive.
An estimated 5.3 million Californians will be able purchase insurance through Covered California. Of that, some 2.6 million will qualify for federal subsidies.
Gov. Brown continues climate change crusade
MOUNTAIN VIEW, Calif. (AP) - Gov. Jerry Brown is set to continue his climate change charge, joining scientists releasing a 20-page call to action on environmental problems including pollution, extinctions and population growth.
Brown plans to address Silicon Valley leaders, as well as climate scientists from University of California, Berkeley, Stanford University and NASA, on Thursday morning at a conference at NASA Ames Research Center.
The governor has repeatedly called for changes in public policy to better address the impacts of the changing climate on the world's economy and environment.
Berkeley professor Anthony Barnosky, a featured speaker, says the earth is now at a tipping point, and what decisions makers do now "will determine whether or not human quality of life declines over the next few decades."
NUCLEAR PLANT 'TREK' VIDEO
San Onofre execs made 'Star Trek'-themed video
SAN JUAN CAPISTRANO, Calif. (AP) - Managers at the San Onofre nuclear generating plant made a "Star Trek"-themed safety video two years before the plant was shut down because of damaged water pipes.
UT San Diego says the two-minute segment was filmed in 2010 and starred the plant's former chief nuclear officer dressed as Capt. James T. Kirk. It cost $800 and was staged in a control room training simulator.
The video, aired Tuesday by KGTV-TV, shows Kirk talking about safety hazards and the need for team communication.
Southern California Edison says the video was intended for an employee recognition event but it was never completed or used.
The nuclear plant was shut last year after a small radiation leak led to the discovery of damage to hundreds of steam generator water tubes.
Nation's largest firefighting planes to leave Cal
VICTORVILLE, Calif. (AP) - The nation's two largest firefighting planes are moving out of California.
The Riverside Press-Enterprise says the firm that owns them, 10 Tanker, will move its corporate headquarters from Victorville in Southern California to Casper, Wyo., in the next month or two.
That's about a two-hour flight for the converted DC-10s, each of which holds 11,600 gallons of fire retardant.
The planes were based at Victorville since 2005 but state budget problems prompted the end of an exclusive state contract. The owners are getting work with the U.S. Forest Service.
The planes will move around to where they're needed. They'll also continue to fight California fires under a "call when needed" state contract.
CALIFORNIA SINKING SUBDIVISION
Northern California landslide stabilizes
LAKEPORT, Calif. (AP) - Officials say a Northern California subdivision that partly sank into a hilltop has stabilized after several homes, roads and sections of a sewer system were damaged.
Lake County's Deputy Administrator Chris Shaver says the landslide has shown no significant movement since May 14. Prior to that, Shaver said, it had been moving a foot or two a day.
The Santa Rosa Press Democrat says seven homes in Lakeside Heights have been deemed uninhabitable and 10 others have been issued voluntary evacuation notices since the slide began in late March.
The Board of Supervisors declared the neighborhood a local emergency and requested state and federal funding earlier this month. Gov. Jerry Brown has not yet responded to the request.
Swallows lawsuit may delay Petaluma bridge work
PETALUMA, Calif. (AP) - A lawsuit accuses state and federal regulators of causing the death of dozens of migratory cliff swallows by placing nets on a Sonoma County bridge during a highway widening project.
The San Francisco Chronicle reports the suit filed by a coalition of conservation groups claims transportation agencies refused to remove netting or do anything to save the birds, which workers were trying to prevent from nesting on the Petaluma Bridge.
Wildlife advocates say more than 100 cliff swallows have been killed.
The 5-inch-long, brownish birds form colonies that seek out overhanging structures near water.
The lawsuit is threatening to delay a 3-year, $82 million project to replace the bridge structure.
The California Department of Transportation, the U.S. Department of Transportation and the Federal Highway Administration are named in the filing.
Copyright 2013 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.