<![CDATA[NBC Bay Area - Bay Area Local News]]> Copyright 2015 http://www.nbcbayarea.com/news/local http://media.nbcbayarea.com/designimages/nbc_bayarea_blue.png NBC Bay Area http://www.nbcbayarea.com en-us Fri, 04 Sep 2015 07:34:37 -0700 Fri, 04 Sep 2015 07:34:37 -0700 NBC Owned Television Stations <![CDATA[Family, Community to Rally After Jail Inmate's Death]]> Fri, 04 Sep 2015 07:05:04 -0700 http://media.nbcbayarea.com/images/213*120/Michael-Tyree-1.jpg

Families of Santa Clara County jail inmates, community groups and police critics plan to rally outside the jail on Friday to advocate for safer jails and to end guard violence after the death of an in-custody inmate, 31-year-old Michael Tyree.

In a news release, the families and community supporters said they will also be calling for larger systemic changes to prevent such tragedies in the jail. The group will march around the main jail beginning at noon so those “inside can see the support they are receiving from the community just outside of the walls.”

The groups include PACT, the NAACP, Silicon Valley De-Bug, the Coalition for Justice and Accountability, and other concerned community members.

The rally comes a day after three sheriff’s correctional deputies - Jereh Lubrin, Matthew Farris and Rafael Rodriguez - were arrested on suspicion of murder, conspiracy and assault resulting from Tyree’s Aug. 27 death.

At a news conference on Thursday, Sheriff Laurie Smith laid out the timeline of his death and her profound sadness at what transpired.

“The disappointment and disgust that I feel cannot be overstated,” Santa Clara County Sheriff Laurie Smith said at a news conference Thursday. “Because our investigation has concluded that three correctional deputies…are the reason for this brutal murder of Michael Tyree.” (Watch the sheriff's press conference in its entirety.)

What Smith outlined was this: Tyree was housed on the sixth floor in the 6B wing of the Main Jail, which is a spot for inmates placed in protective custody or special needs. Tyree, who had already served his 5-day sentence on misdemeanor theft and drug possession. He had agreed to enter a residential treatment program, the Momentum Crisis Residential Treatment Center, a nonprofit for substance abuse and was waiting for a slot to open up.

On Aug. 26, the correctional deputies were conducting a routine clothing search of inmates’ cells. They entered the cell of Tyree, who was alone at the time. Twenty minutes later, they left the cell, Smith said. An hour later, Lubrin re-entered the cell to check again. At this point, it was Aug. 27. Lubrin at that point called to report a “man down.” His incident report shows that Tyree’s body was found in the cell, naked and covered in feces and vomit, Smith said. Rodriguez came to drag the body out of the cell. The deputies tried to perform CPR, Smith said. Paramedics came and declared him dead.

Smith said that sheriff’s investigators began to believe Tyree’s death was “suspicious” and that he “may not have died from natural causes.” They suspected “foul play,” Smith said, and that the three deputies were possibly involved. The three were removed from the main jail and placed on administrative leave.

On Aug. 31, Santa Clara County Medical Examiner Dr. Joseph O’Hara determined that Tyree had died of internal bleeding due to blunt force trauma. At the news conference, O’Hara said Tyree also had severe cuts to his liver and spleen.

The deputies were placed under surveillance, Smith said, and arrested on Thursday. They are being held without bail. They were moved from the jail where they worked to Santa Rita in Alameda County. According to Smith, each refused to make a statement. Efforts to reach their attorneys were unsuccessful.

Tyree has long struggled with mental illness, family attorney Paula Canny said at the sheriff’s news conference - an unusual event for a victim’s lawyer to speak side by side with the agency who supervising those arrested with a homicide.

Canny personally thanked the sheriff for inviting her and for moving so swiftly.

“I am so grateful for the recognition for when someone does a wrong thing, a bad thing, even if they are a deputy to be held to the same conduct as you and I.”

“This is a tragic sad heartbreaking event,” Canny said. “Even though he was an inmate, he was a person of value and inmates are to be respected. Michael was somebody's brother, somebody's son.”
 

NBC Bay Area's Stephen Stock contributed to this report.


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<![CDATA[Jobseekers Warn of Fake Resumes from Fremont Staffing Firm]]> Fri, 04 Sep 2015 00:36:56 -0700 http://media.nbcbayarea.com/images/213*120/main-logo9.jpg

Two former trainees of Fremont-based Beta Soft Systems say the staffing company fabricated resumes and instructed them to lie to prospective employers in job interviews.

The 10-year-old, $20 million company has advertised that it has trained and placed workers in information technology jobs at Fortune 500 companies across the nation.

But some jobseekers are warning that Beta Soft takes deposits for career training, crafts fake resumes for trainees and instructs them to lie to potential employers about their work experience.

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“It’s not honest and it’s unethical,” said Laila Rahman, who signed up for the training program last winter.

The 31-year-old part time yoga instructor was seeking her first tech job after earning a certificate in business administration and posting her resume on Monster.com.

She said a Beta Soft recruiter told her that after she received about a month of training, her new skills would be marketed to prospective employers. In the past, Beta Soft has claimed on its website that it has deployed workers to major companies including Google, Apple, and Bank of America, for jobs in web development, internet marketing and quality assurance.

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“I’m thinking that this is going to be a good opportunity,” she said. “Having a staffing agency with training would be really helpful.”

So Rahman plunked down a $1,000 deposit for six weeks of training. Near the end of her training, she says she stopped cold when her trainer handed her a version of her resume she didn’t recognize.

“All the experience there—it’s all fake” she said.

She said the company added seven years of fabricated experience to her resume including skills she never learned and jobs she never had in cities she never visited.

Move the slider below to see Laila Rahman's original resume compared to the one Beta Soft made for her. See the full resume here.

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Beta Soft’s version of Rahman’s resume included jobs as business analysts at JP Morgan Chase in Delaware; Allstate Insurance in Illinois; North Shore Bank of Commerce in Minnesota and Central Mortgage Company in Arkansas.

According to the resume, her duties included acting as a liaison between developers and businesses, resolving conflicts between business and technical teams and reviewing and approving business requirement documents.

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Rahman said her trainer told her she wouldn’t be able to get tech jobs without the experience. Her real two-page resume lists her actual experience as an English tutor, online academic coach and yoga instructor.

“I was surprised that they would want us to talk about these things in an interview with an employer,” Rahman said. “They want us to act like we actually had the experience and know the knowledge that we’re supposed to. Enough to really pretend we did those things in a job.”

Earsell Lewis, a 35-year-old job seeker who wants to become a software engineer, shares a similar experience. But he says Beta Soft wasn’t the first company to provide him with a fake resume.

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“It’s pretty common nowadays. Companies from all over the U.S. are using this practice,” Lewis said. “It’s easy to convince entry level people that this is what you have got to go through.”

Last October, Lewis took a chance and moved to the Bay Area from Wake Village, Texas. He paid a $500 deposit and spent six weeks in training. He says Beta Soft paid for a Fremont apartment he shared with four other trainees for six months while the company marketed the resume they created for him.

“I would say only 10 percent of it is true,” he said.

The Beta Soft resume included jobs as a quality analyst engineer at Blackhawk Network, Inc. in Pleasanton and five years as a quality analyst at FedEx in Memphis.

“I haven’t been there before,” Lewis said. “I don’t even know anybody who has been there before.”

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He said the Beta Soft employees trained him in mock interviews to “defend his resume.” But after several failed interviews, Lewis decided to tell his story to warn other jobseekers about the risks of doing business this type of staffing company.

“I’d be crazy to do this again,” Lewis said. “What happens if my information gets out there and I bomb this completely? I’m pretty much committing career suicide with this.”

The Investigative Unit found that in many online reviews, Beta Soft appears to have defenders. There are plenty of five-star reviews on sites such as My Visa Jobs, Glassdoor. In March, a reviewer posted on My Visa Jobs that Beta Soft “was able to place me in a position that utilized all of my job skills.” In a Glassdoor review from March 2013 a person commented, “They have exceptional marketing staff, training and provide great support.”

But NBC Bay Area found other reviewers on those sites, as well as in the recommended reviews on Yelp http://www.yelp.com/biz/beta-soft-systems-fremont-2, who gave Beta Soft a one or two-star rating. Complaints that mention fake resumes date back to 2011.

The Better Business Bureau says it has received four complaints about Beta Soft in the past three years, two of which mention fake resumes. One complaint sent to the BBB in February includes “Beta Soft Systems wanted to plagiarize my resume with false information to send out to companies to employ me as a business analyst.”

Lori Wilson, the president and CEO of the Golden Gate BBB called the complaint “very serious.”

“It’s very concerning that a company would encourage them to falsify information or even ask them to,” she said.

In Oregon, the Department of Justice is investigating Beta Soft for alleged unlawful business practices in connection with its recruiting services. The company’s attorney, Harmeet Dhillon, said she expects the company will be able to successfully answer all questions in that investigation.

NBC Bay Area has extended multiple interview requests to Beta Soft since April to better understand the company’s business practices, but no one from Beta Soft would speak on the record.

Allegations of fake resumes extend beyond Beta Soft. Online reviewers of other IT staffing companies also warn of “fake documents” and “fake work experience.”

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“I think what we’re seeing at this point in time is a result of the hyper environment of [Silicon] Valley,” said Kirk Hanson, director of the Markkula Center for Applied Ethics at Santa Clara University.

Hanson says with a shortage of manpower and skilled workers in the Bay Area, “there’s a greater temptation today than maybe five years ago to misrepresent the capabilities of the employees you are placing.”

He explained that staffing companies receive fees when they contract a worker out to a client company for a short or long-term project.

“I worry about the young people whose first experience with business is to get trained by a firm which then asks them to falsify their resume,” Hanson said. “Such a firm is playing on their naiveté.”

Rahman said she finally received a refund of her $1,000 deposit only after she emailed Beta Soft to inform the company she filed a complaint with the Santa Clara County District Attorney.

Lewis never got his money back. Both are still searching for IT jobs.

“It’s just time and money lost,” Lewis said. “At this point I am back where I started.”

If you have a tip for the Investigative Unit email theunit@nbcbayarea.com or call 888-996-TIPS.

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<![CDATA[VTA ‘Ready’ for 49ers’ Regular Season Traffic ]]> Fri, 04 Sep 2015 00:51:27 -0700 http://media.nbcbayarea.com/images/213*120/11P+NEW+LEVIS+TRAFFIC+PKG+-+00004220.jpg

The 49ers played their final preseason game against the San Diego Chargers Thursday night.

It was a final tune-up for the players before the regular season starts and a chance for coaches to find room for improvement. Outside the stadium, transportation agencies like VTA were making similar adjustments.

The 49ers will host two weekday games this season. One is the season opener against the Minnesota Vikings on Sept. 14. The other against the Seattle Seahawks is Oct. 22.

VTA employees could be seen monitoring the light rail platforms, and monitoring the foot traffic.

More than 8,200 people rode VTA to Thursday’s game. That's slightly less than the 10,000 average riders for regular season games. For weekday games, those fans are in addition to the 36,000 people who commute on VTA.

"It was easier parking over there [and riding here] than trying to get through traffic over here so, it only took me about 10 minutes," Darrell Gutierrez said.

Danny Odgers agreed.

"I [rode VTA] to be able to leave and get home sooner because it takes a while to get out of here," he said. 

VTA spokeswoman Brandi Childress says the agency has increased game-day efficiency since last season. VTA will have extra trains for fans and commuters during the 49ers' two upcoming weekday games.

"We have our operation plan down and know what to expect with a full season under our belts. So we're ready for the 2015 season," Childress said.



Photo Credit: NBC Bay Area]]>
<![CDATA[French Hero Spencer Stone Welcomed With Gusto]]> Fri, 04 Sep 2015 00:28:32 -0700 http://media.nbcbayarea.com/images/186*120/spencer+stone+returns.jpg

One of three Sacramento-area men – hailed as heroes for thwarting a terror attack aboard a high-speed European train last month – returned home to California on Thursday.

U.S. Air Force Airman Spencer Stone was aboard a flight that touched down at Fairfield-based Travis Air Force Base around 8 p.m. The 23-year-old has previously worked in David Grant USAF Medical Center’s pediatric department for a year.

Military personnel and family members lined up for the chance to take pictures and shake hands with Stone who helped stop a gunman and saved the life of a passenger on a France-bound train on Aug. 21.

Stone and his two childhood friends — Anthony Sadler, 23, a Sacramento State University student, and Oregon National Guardsman Alek Skarlatos, 22 — subdued Ayoub El-Khazzani, a man with ties to radical Islam who was carrying a handgun and an assault weapon on the train.

The first to tackle the gunman, Stone was slashed in the neck and his thumb was nearly sliced off. He underwent rehab in Germany before returning to the United States.

On Thursday, people cheered for Stone while other waved flags and children held up signs reading, "Airman Stone is our hero."

Stone’s former coworker Jeffrey Copple said: "I think it was great what he did. He stepped up and did his job. He had great training in the Air Force – I guarantee it."

Sacramento Mayor Kevin Johnson plans to host a parade to honor the heroic tree on Sept. 11. French President Francois Hollande has given the three men France's highest award, the Legion of Honor. 



Photo Credit: AP]]>
<![CDATA[In Final Exhibition Loss, Some Raiders Receivers State Their Cases]]> Fri, 04 Sep 2015 00:56:35 -0700 http://media.nbcbayarea.com/images/180*120/seahawkstdvoak.jpg

Through the Raiders’ first three exhibition games, wide receiver Rod Streater hadn’t done much.

Slowed by illness this summer, Streater has been limited in training camp and preseason games, and the wideout – presumed to be the No. 3 receiver behind Michael Crabtree and Amari Cooper going into camp – hadn’t made much of a splash. He had just four short catches for 26 total yards.

But Thursday night, in the preseason finale against the Seahawks in Seattle, Streater hauled in a 28-yard pass from Matt McGloin for a touchdown in the third quarter of the Raiders’ 31-21 loss.  It was one of three balls he caught on the night, good for a total of 37 yards.

On the TD catch, Streater showed why he can be a big asset to a Raiders offense that missed him most all of last season: He made a nice adjustment on the throw by McGloin, and flashed his size and speed.

And, with another good night by receivers Seth Roberts (seven catches, 110 yards, touchdown) and Brice Butler (four catches, 62 yards), the Raiders receiving corps – a weak spot in 2014 – suddenly looks solid. The final lineup of wide receivers won’t be known until 1 p.m. on Saturday (Pacific time) when NFL rosters have to reach the 53-man limit, but Oakland could have a group of Crabtree, Cooper, Streater, Roberts and Butler.

 



Photo Credit: Getty Images]]>
<![CDATA[Killed Inmate Wasn't Supposed to Be in Jail]]> Thu, 03 Sep 2015 18:27:49 -0700 http://media.nbcbayarea.com/images/213*120/jail-death.jpg

When Michael Tyree was allegedly beaten to death in Santa Clara County Jail, he wasn't even supposed to be in jail. He had already served his time.

As the NBC Bay Area Investigative Unit has reported, Tyree had a history of mental illness, and appeared before the mental health court on various misdemeanor charges many times.

When Tyree died last week, he had already served his five day jail sentence. He was being kept in the special needs section of Santa Clara County Jail while waiting to be transferred to a residential mental health hospital nearby.

"The public defender and the judge who sentenced him, everybody else thought Michael would be safer in jail than out on the street," said Paula Canny, Tyree's family's attorney. "And the sad fact was that that was a true fact."

Thursday, the coroner's autopsy report showed Tyree died of blunt force trauma at the hands of another person. It confirms what the Investigative Unit reported two days ago, that tyree was beaten so hard he had lacerations to his liver and his spleen leading to internal bleeding.

All three officers involved in the death have been arrested and held in a facility outside of Santa Clara County.



Photo Credit: NBC Bay Area]]>
<![CDATA[Folsom Lake Water Level Dangerously Low]]> Thu, 03 Sep 2015 21:21:13 -0700 http://media.nbcbayarea.com/images/213*120/FOLSOM+SETUP+VO+-+00001704.jpg

California’s historic drought has taken a toll on Folsom Lake.

The lake, which supplies water to nearly half a million people, is nearing the so-called dead pool level. That means that its water level is nearly too low for water to be pumped out.

However, a fix is in the works.

Government-hired contractors are building 10 car-sized barges in the deepest part of Folsom Lake.The barges will be used to pump drinking water to residents if water dips below the original pumps.

Starting Friday, federal officials also plan to halve the amount of water flowing out of the lake.



Photo Credit: NBC Bay Area]]>
<![CDATA[Caltrain Board Honors Heroic Sheriff's Deputies]]> Thu, 03 Sep 2015 21:07:06 -0700 http://media.nbcbayarea.com/images/180*120/Rhea+CALTRAIN+TO+HONOR+HEROES+SOTVO+-+22241726.jpg

Caltrain officials on Thursday honored two sheriff's deputies who pulled a man out of a car mere seconds before a train slammed into it.

Lance Whitted and Erik Rueppel received certificates of recognition at Caltrain’s monthly board meeting for saving a suspected drunk driver’s life on Aug. 3 before a train plowed into his car, which was stuck on the tracks in Sunnyvale.

Caltrain also recognized Redwood City station security guard Dell Thompson who coaxed a suicidal woman off the tracks and out of harm's way.



Photo Credit: NBC Bay Area]]>
<![CDATA['The Joker' Roller Coaster Coming to Six Flags Discovery Kingdom]]> Thu, 03 Sep 2015 18:37:30 -0700 http://media.nbcbayarea.com/images/213*120/KNTV_000000012999738_1200x675_519153731908.jpg

 Weak stomachs, not welcome.

That's the warning about a new ride – titled "The Joker" -- slated to be unveiled at Vallejo-based Six Flags Discovery Kingdom in 2016.

Officials say this is the first roller coaster on the West Coast that features a "breaking-wave turn," which means riders will be rolled, flipped and turned upside down.

"The Joker” will be ready for use next spring.

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<![CDATA[Radiation-Detecting Helicopter Sparks Concern]]> Thu, 03 Sep 2015 16:50:08 -0700 http://media.nbcbayarea.com/images/213*120/choppermain.PNG

People in San Francisco, Berkeley and Pacifica may hear a stir in the air this week as a helicopter measuring radiation is scheduled to fly over the cities this week.

With this "Aerial Radiological Survey," the helicopter is helping the Department of Homeland Security, Department of Energy and Lawrence Berkeley National Lab to conduct research to help the federal government better detect nuclear and radiological material.

According to a memo sent to Berkeley's mayor and city council, the aircraft was scheduled to fly in San Francisco on Tuesday, Thursday and Friday, Berkeley on Wednesday and Pacifica on Thursday.

Berkeleyside noted that similar tests were conducted in August 2012.

Some Bay Area residents were complaining on Twitter that the choppers were flying too low. "It's so low it's "mowing the lawn," one redident told Berkeleyside.

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<![CDATA[Elk Fire at 670 Acres, 25 Percent Containment]]> Thu, 03 Sep 2015 20:53:46 -0700 http://media.nbcbayarea.com/images/213*120/Rhea+NEW+ELK+FIRE+VO+-+000000001.jpg

A fire burning in the hard-hit Lake County has grown to 670 acres as of Thursday.

According to Cal Fire officials, the Elk Fire is 25 percent contained. No evacuations are in the pipeline and people who were displaced from their homes Wednesday have been allowed to return, they said.

The blaze was reported at 2:57 p.m. Wednesday off Elk Mountain and Mount Dinger roads north of Upper Lake, officials said. 

Cal Fire said that 270 firefighters are battling the flames with the assistance of 21 fire engines, four helicopters, seven dozers and three water tenders.

The cause of the fire is under investigation, officials noted.

The Rocky and Jerusalem fires combined have burned nearly 100,000 acres in this area over the summer.



Photo Credit: NBC Bay Area
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<![CDATA[Indian Prime Minister's Visit Stirs Controversy]]> Thu, 03 Sep 2015 15:16:05 -0700 http://media.nbcbayarea.com/images/213*120/456268758.jpg

University professors across the country have cautioned the South Bay community about Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi's upcoming visit later this month.

One-hundred-twenty-five academics from different disciplines, including professors from Stanford, Santa Clara University, UC Berkeley, and UC Santa Cruz, published a "faculty statement" on Modi's visit on Academeblog on Aug. 27.

The statement pointed out questions surrounding Modi's alleged involvement with violence in Indian state Gujarat before he became Prime Minister: "We remind Mr. Modi’s audiences of the powerful reasons for him being denied the right to enter the U.S. from 2005-2014, for there is still an active case in Indian courts that questions his role in the Gujarat violence of 2002 when 1,000 died."

Modi’s first year in office as the Prime Minister has been marked by "well publicized episodes of censorship and harassment of those critical of his policies, bans and restrictions on NGOs leading to a constriction of the space of civic engagement, ongoing violations of religious freedom, and a steady impingement on the independence of the judiciary."

Also at issue is Modi's "Digital India" initiative, which the signees found problematic due to its lack of privacy safeguards for and increased potential for surveillance of Indian citizens.

"We urge those who lead Silicon Valley technology enterprises to be mindful of not violating their own codes of corporate responsibility when conducting business with a government which has, on several occasions already, demonstrated its disregard for human rights and civil liberties, as well as the autonomy of educational and cultural institutions."

Modi has scheduled a speaking engagement at SAP Center on September 27. The 18,500 attendees were given a free ticket based on a lottery system.
According to SiliconBeat, Modi's visit also includes a stop at Google and a meeting at Adobe.

“Everyone signed the [first] letter for slightly different reasons,” Stanford history professor Priya Satia told the publication. “For me the point was to provoke some kind of productive, constructive debate about Prime Minister Modi and his visit and the purposes of his visit. Before this came out, there was just uncritical fanfare.”

followup statement posted to Academeblog Wednesday responded to critics of the first letter, clarifying that it was addressed not to Silicon Valley CEOS, as has been reported in the media, but to Modi's "audiences in Silicon Valley, which includes Silicon Valley industries."

It concluded with one fundamental question: "What does 'Digital India' look like given the Modi administration’s intolerance of dissent, its poor record on freedom of expression in general, and on freedom of religion in particular?"



Photo Credit: AFP/Getty Images]]>
<![CDATA[Ex-Tesla Employee Posted Confidential Docs From Manager's Email Online: FBI]]> Thu, 03 Sep 2015 15:01:59 -0700 http://media.nbcbayarea.com/images/213*120/Tesla_Kalbasi_ComputerCrimes.jpg

A former Tesla engineer is facing charges for allegedly accessing his former manager’s work email, then posting confidential information from the account online, according to the Federal Bureau of Investigation.

Nima Kalbasi, 28, a former mechanical engineer with the Palo Alto-based company, appeared in federal court in Northern California for the first time on Thursday. He was indicted on two counts of felony computer intrusion.

After gaining access to the manager’s account, Kalbasi, a Canadian citizen, shared confidential employee evaluation forms with employees and on a public site, authorities said. Kalbasi then "tried to harm Tesla’s reputation and credibility by making false and misleading comments," according to a news release.

If convicted, Kalbasi could face a maximum of five years in prison for the felony charges.

Kalbasi was arrested in Derby Line, Vermont, by Customs and Border Protection as he crossed the border into the United States on August 24. 

A lawyer for Kalbasi declined to comment to Reuters, NBC News reported. 


 



Photo Credit: Bloomberg via Getty Images]]>
<![CDATA[Two Children, Mother Hit by Car in Pacheco: CHP]]> Thu, 03 Sep 2015 11:56:32 -0700 http://media.nbcbayarea.com/images/213*120/pleasant+hill+chopper+-+18343201.jpg

Two children and their mother  were hit by a car Thursday morning in Pacheco , according to the California Highway Patrol and the Contra Costa Fire Protection District.

The accident was reported just after 7 a.m. at Second Avenue and Contra Costa Boulevard in Contra Costa County, when the CHP said a driver trying to turn on his windshield wipers ran into the woman and three children.

Fire Marshal Robert Marshall said the children - ages 3 and 5-  were airlifted to the hospital with non-lifethreatening injuries. The mother and another child only had minor injuries.

About a half an hour later in a separate incident, a car crashed into a home in unincorporated Pacheco in the 4900 block of Pacheco Boulevard, according to CHP Officer John Fransen.
 

Bay City News contributed to this report.



Photo Credit: NBC Bay Area]]>
<![CDATA[Correctional Deputies Arrested After 'Brutal' Inmate Death]]> Fri, 04 Sep 2015 03:15:39 -0700 http://media.nbcbayarea.com/images/213*120/jail-booking-photos.jpg

Three Santa Clara County Sheriff's correctional deputies have been arrested on suspicion of murder, conspiracy and assault following the death of an inmate last week, the sheriff announced Thursday.

The deputies were identified by the Sheriff's Office as: Jereh Lubrin, Matthew Farris and Rafael Rodriguez.

“The disappointment and disgust that I feel cannot be overstated,” Santa Clara County Sheriff Laurie Smith said at a news conference Thursday. “Because our investigation has concluded that three correctional deputies…are the reason for this brutal murder of Michael Tyree.” (Watch the sheriff's press conference in its entirety)

Investigators said all three of the accused deputies have requested lawyers and declined to give a statement.

They are being held without bail and have been moved to holding facilities outside Santa Clara County so that they don't have to be behind bars at the same place where they work, Smith said.

As of Thursday morning, the Santa Clara County District Attorney did not have the case.

"That they would be recommending murder charges shows how egregious the evidence must be. This is highly unusual, not just locally, but nationally," said vocal police critic Raj Jayedev of Silicon Valley DeBug. "But the arrest is just the first step in holding these officers accountable. The DA's office carries the responsibility now, and we hope their office pursues justice, and are not deterred by the fact that these people wear a badge. The community will be watching closely. I suspect the nation will as well. I believe the safety of all the inmates currently incarcerated is also an immediate concern as the court proceedings continue."

The deputies' arrests follow the Aug. 27 death of Michael Tyree, 31, at the Santa Clara County Main Jail. He was serving a five-day sentence for a petty theft misdemeanor and had served an identical sentence last April.

Sheriff Smith said at the news conference her department wanted to express its "profound sorrow" over Tyree's death.

Tyree was waiting to be transferred to a bed at Momentum Crisis Residential Treatment Center, a nonprofit providing mental health services in Santa Clara County. His family's attorney said Tyree had a history of mental health problems.

Before Tyree died, a physical confrontation between the deputies and the inmate ensued and Tyree was badly beaten, with lacerations to some of his internal organs. The coroner said Tyree sustained multiple blunt force injuries that caused internal bleeding. He called the death a homicide.

For the last week, the Sheriff's Office has said that the guards were making a routine welfare check on Tyree when they noticed he was unresponsive and called paramedics. Sheriff Smith said Thursday the three officers were the only people to enter Tyree’s cell on the night he died.

Sheriff Smith said she has invited the FBI to help investigate Tyree’s death.

The sheriff wouldn’t comment on whether the deputies were properly trained or if anyone else might have been involved.

NBC Bay Area's Stephen Stock contributed to this report.



Photo Credit: Santa Clara County Sheriff’s Department]]>
<![CDATA[Church Is Safe Haven in Middle of Gang War]]> Wed, 02 Sep 2015 18:36:03 -0700 http://media.nbcbayarea.com/images/213*120/N6P-SJ-IMMIGRANT-CHURCH-PKG---00001116.jpg

Our Lady of Guadalupe Church in east San Jose is rich in history. It’s where Cesar Chavez launched his fight for migrant workers. But today it’s a refuge, a safe sanctuary that sits in the middle of a gang turf war.

As candles burn inside the church, outside you'll find a glaring reminder of the violence surrounding the east San Jose parish: crosses representing people killed in the Mayfair community. Gang violence is a reality here, with the church located right in the middle of the territories of rival gangs, the Norteños and Sureños.

“Gangs divided the churches and said this is our territory,” Father John Sandersfeld said. “But here is a unique place where the two gangs come together, and the line is right on the back of the parish: It borders both sides.”

Yet, for years, the rival gangs have considered this church with 7,000 parishioners neutral territory. “We could take them on retreats together,” Father Sandersfeld said.

Children of rival gang members attend first communion classes at the church together, but as a precaution, they are told not to wear gang colors.

“In essence, the parents or grandparents of the now gang members built this church,” parishioner Rachel Garcia said, “so there's a legacy,”

Parishioners hope that legacy of peace hope will one day extend beyond the walls of the church.



Photo Credit: NBC Bay Area]]>
<![CDATA[Police Arrest Sole Surviving Homicide Suspect]]> Thu, 03 Sep 2015 00:25:20 -0700 http://media.nbcbayarea.com/images/213*120/USEDuane.jpg

San Jose police said Wednesday that the sole surviving suspect wanted in connection with a deadly office shooting in August was arrested last week.

Duane Aguero, 42, a city resident charged with murder, was nabbed on Aug. 27 and is being held at the Santa Clara County Jail without bail, police said.

Matthew Castillo, Richard Jacquez and Aguero were captured on a surveillance camera entering a business on the 1800 block of Lundy Avenue on Aug. 13 where they terrorized and killed a 38-year-old ex-convict Christopher Maxwell Wren.

According to police, Aguero was carrying a weapon that resembled a "ball and chain."

Castillo, 29, and Jacquez, 40, are dead after two separate officer-involved shootings last month that occurred less than 24 hours apart.

Castillo was fatally shot by two officers on the night of Aug. 16 at a strip mall off of Senter Road near Capitol Expressway, according to police.

Jacquez led officers on a vehicle pursuit on the evening of Aug. 17 and crashed in the area Kirkhaven Court and Stoneyhaven Way, police said. Jacquez fled from the car and was fatally shot multiple times by an officer, they added.

Anyone with information on the case is asked to call police Detective Sgts. Rick Yu or Wayne Smith at (408) 277-5283.
 



Photo Credit: San Jose Police Department]]>
<![CDATA[School Provides Gender-Neutral Restrooms]]> Thu, 03 Sep 2015 00:30:24 -0700 http://media.nbcbayarea.com/images/213*120/N11P+SF+GENDER+NEUTRAL+BATHROOMS+VO+-+000011081.jpg

Officials at a San Francisco school have removed first-graders' restroom signs, making them gender neutral.

Miraloma Elementary School Principal Sam Bass says there are roughly eight first-graders who don't fit gender norms. The students range from tomboys to transgender, he said.

City and state law require schools to let students use restrooms consistent with their gender identity.

Bass plans to make the restrooms for older students gender-neutral as well.



Photo Credit: NBC Bay Area]]>
<![CDATA[Legal Mistake: U.S. Citizen Misses Mom's Funeral ]]> Thu, 03 Sep 2015 06:25:02 -0700 http://media.nbcbayarea.com/images/213*120/N11P+ICE+DETAINEE+CONFUSION+PKG+-+00001000.jpg

It took a lot of mistakes -- by the victim’s parents, by attorneys and a big one by the U.S. Department of Homeland Security’s Immigration and Customs Enforcement agency.

Add it all up and you have an American citizen facing deportation to Mexico.

Ricardo Salazar on Wednesday walked out of the West County Detention Facility in Richmond. Despite being free for the first time in four months, he is broken hearted after missing his mother’s funeral in June.

"It was hard because I didn’t get to say goodbye to her," he said.

In a tragic irony, Salazar's trouble began in May when he left his home in south Texas to travel to Mexico to buy less expensive medicines for his ailing mother.

But when he tried to return home, Salazar, who was born in Mexico but whose mother was a U.S. citizen, was only carrying his green card.

His mother made mistake number one when the family reentered the United States shortly after he was born.

"What they should've done is apply for him as a citizen," Salazar's attorney Joseph LaCome said. "What they did is apply for the entire family as lawful permanent residents."

Customs officials saw an arrest record with the most recent entry six years ago. That would not have been a problem for a U.S. citizen but posed a hurdle to Salazar because he was carrying just his green card.

Salazar told any ICE agent who would listen that he is an American citizen, but nobody listened.

"I keep telling them, 'My mom's a U.S. citizen, she was born in Texas, in Corpus Christi,'" Salazar said. "They ignored me."

That was mistake number two.

"They are supposed to interview the person, record it and take sworn testimony," LaCome said.

Meanwhile, the third mistake was made by Brownsville-area attorneys who conjured up a defense based on Salazar's green card status.

But since jails on the U.S.-Mexico border are overcrowded, Salazar was bussed to Richmond.

"I was able to figure it out in 15 minutes," said LaCome, adding that he contacted Salazar's family and got a hold of documents that proved his citizenship and helped him go home.

"The first thing I have to go see is my mom's grave," said Salazar, adding that he is considering filing a lawsuit.

In an email to NBC Bay Area, ICE officials said they take "very seriously claims of U.S. citizens being improperly detained" and have "stringent safeguards to protect against the possibility that a citizen is detained or removed."



Photo Credit: NBC Bay Area]]>
<![CDATA[Sierra LaMar Murder Trial Date Set]]> Thu, 03 Sep 2015 00:10:19 -0700 http://media.nbcbayarea.com/images/213*120/garcia-sierra.jpg

Her body has never been found, but Sierra LaMar’s suspected killer remains in a South Bay jail, and after countless delays, a trial date has finally been set.

LaMar’s family and longtime supporters were stunned and relieved on Wednesday when Judge Thang Barrett set a trial date of April 25, 2016, for Antolin Garcia-Torres.

Garcia-Torres looked composed in court Wednesday. He is accused of murdering the 15-year-old in Morgan Hill on March 16, 2012. Her body has never been found.

LaMar’s father told NBC Bay Area the judge’s decision to set a date is good news, even as the defense vows to keep fighting.

“I think it’s good, another baby step along the way,” Steve LaMar said. ”Any progress like this makes all of us in the family happy.”

Garcia-Torres’ attorney David Epps said there are some “serious problems” with the case “that have been there since the beginning.”

LaMar's family gave up searching for her body earlier this year.



Photo Credit: NBC Bay Area]]>
<![CDATA[Fresno Man Saves Ribs (And Family) From Fire]]> Thu, 03 Sep 2015 10:44:32 -0700 http://media.nbcbayarea.com/images/213*120/9-3-15-KMPH+Robert+Wright+Ribs.jpg

He’s being hailed as a true American hero.

Fresno resident Robert Wright was up cooking ribs at 3 a.m. Tuesday, when he saw that his neighbor’s apartment was on fire. Even though his ribs meant a lot to him, Wright had the presence of mind to go check up on his family.

“The fire was bursting out of the window … It was crazy man, really crazy,” Wright told KMPH Fox26 News in an on-air interview that is now going viral. "I got my kids first and I thought about my ribs, like I don't want to let my ribs burn and stuff, ‘cos I take pride in what I do.”

“I got everybody out safely ... I carried everybody out myself, man,” he said. Wright was also able to save his rack of ribs.

Wright even held them up on camera to show everyone that they were fine. “It was real frantic out there, it was real serious, but I’m going to enjoy this barbecue tonight … Hopefully they can put us up in a motel,” he said.

Wright, who says he’s from West Oakland, wasn’t injured in the fire. “Except for all that smoke in my lungs, I’m all right.” he said.



Photo Credit: KMPH FOX 26]]>
<![CDATA[Elk Fire at 450 Acres, 20 Percent Containment]]> Thu, 03 Sep 2015 00:00:42 -0700 http://media.nbcbayarea.com/images/213*120/STRINGER+ELK+FIRE+VO+1+-+00004521.jpg

A fire in Lake County jumped to 450 acres in roughly five hours Wednesday.

As of 8 p.m., the so-called Elk Fire was 20 percent contained, according to Cal Fire officials.

The blaze was reported at 2:57 p.m. off Elk Mountain and Mount Dinger roads north of Upper Lake, officials said.

Cal Fire said that 202 firefighters were battling the flames with the assistance of 16 fire engines, six dozers and three water tenders.

The cause of the fire is under investigation, officials noted.



Photo Credit: NBC Bay Area
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<![CDATA[Trial of Teens Accused of Murdering Paramedic Winds Down]]> Wed, 02 Sep 2015 18:54:13 -0700 http://media.nbcbayarea.com/images/213*120/10-29-2013-liz-quinn-boyer.jpg

An emotionally charged trial is coming to an end. Lawyers delivered closing arguments Wednesday on behalf of the two teens accused of killing a Santa Clara County paramedic.

Christian Burton, who was just 16 at the time of the killing, and 17-year-old David McNeal are on trial for the 2013 Oakland Hills murder of Quinn Boyer. Prosecutors say it was all part of a two-day crime spree by a group of teens that included carjackings, robbery and two shootings.

In court Wednesday, Burton's father spoke out for the first time. “In my family, this is not my teaching. It's not what we do,” he said.

In closing arguments, Burton’s defense attorney claimed the teen didn't take part in the crime spree at all.

The prosecutor replayed graphic video of the crime scene, saying Burton purposely aimed the gun and “hit the bull’s-eye dead on.” He told the jurors, after the shooting, the teens laughed about it and then went window shopping at Macy's: “In that one moment of malice and greed, they sacrificed a whole life they could have had.”

Boyer's widow said it's hard to imagine such young boys taking part in such brutal crimes. She said her husband dedicated his life to rescuing others only to have his life stripped away.

“I'm still scooping my life off the ground,” she said. “I'm still trying to get my head around it.”

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<![CDATA['Flintstones' House in Hillsborough Listed for $4.2M]]> Wed, 02 Sep 2015 23:57:50 -0700 http://media.nbcbayarea.com/images/213*120/flintstonehouse.jpg

Hillsborough's most recognizable piece of real estate has hit the market.

The home at 45 Berryessa Way, though relatively small by the town's standards at 2,730 square feet, is seeking a big price tag of $4.2 million.

Visible from Interstate Highway 280, the 39-year-old three bedroom, two bathroom house is striking for its amorphous dome shapes, made of wire and shotcrete.

"Everyone knows the building driving on 280, but when they come inside, they're in awe," listing agent Judy Meuschke said. 

Zillow — and lots of people — colloquially call it the "Flintstones house." In the 80s, it was also known as the "Barbapapa house," after a set of children's books that was more popular in Europe, though their cartoon shorts briefly aired in the Bay Area at the time.

According to Redfin, the last sold price was $800,000 in 1996.

Meuschke gave NBC Bay Area an exclusive tour of the home — through the brightly-hued conversation pit and into the quirky kitchen.

"We felt that's a pretty good price for a landmark," Meuschke said of the $4.2 million asking price.

Meuschke says the homeowner, who wanted to remain private, is simply "moving on" after 19 years.

"You can see by her artwork and her furnishings and the things she collected that she loved this place," she said.

Meuschke is showing the home by appointment only and doesn’t plan on hosting any open house events.

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<![CDATA[Satellite Built in Sunnyvale Launches Into Space]]> Wed, 02 Sep 2015 18:02:51 -0700 http://media.nbcbayarea.com/images/213*120/NASA-MILITARY---00061608.jpg

A rocket launched Wednesday morning in Florida with a very important satellite on board, a satellite made in Silicon Valley.

The U.S. Navy's fourth Mobile User Objective System (MUOS-4) satellite was built by Lockheed Martin in Sunnyvale.

The satellite aims to bring mobile technology, kind of like civilians use, to the U.S. military. Once securely in space, MUOS-4will help American armed forces communicate safely.

"This means, anywhere in the world, you're gonna get coverage,” said Lockheed Martin’s Mark Lewis. “High-speed voice, data, and video for secure mobile users. That's not been a possibility before."

It's the latest in a network of satellites bringing the kind of mobile technology we all use to our military – with a lot of security built in.

And as early as the launch was – 6:18 a.m. EDT – Silicon Valley employees were on hand at Cape Canaveral, wide awake and ready to see their handiwork take off.

"It's a huge sense of pride for Lockheed Martin and Silicon Valley that we can create unique communication technology,” Lewis said.

But the job’s not done yet. Another satellite in the network is being built in Sunnyvale. It will likely launch next year.



Photo Credit: NASA]]>
<![CDATA[BART Station Shooting Suspect Could Face Attempted Murder Charges]]> Wed, 02 Sep 2015 18:03:11 -0700 http://media.nbcbayarea.com/images/213*120/akshay1.JPG

BART officials on Wednesday said a man who triggered a three-plus-hour closure of the West Oakland BART station when he shot himself in the stomach Tuesday night could be slapped with attempted murder charges.

Corey Powell, 28, of Union City has a lengthy rap sheet with felony convictions for armed robbery, grand theft and selling narcotics. Officials said he is on parole for felony burglary and armed robbery and had a no-bail warrant out for his arrest.

Two officers approached Powell at about 8 p.m. because he was smoking on the platform, an activity that is prohibited in California. He was asked to put out his cigarette, officials said, adding that he provided a false name to officers upon being asked for identification and began to behave erratically.

Contrary to what was reported in a BART statement issued Tuesday, Powell did not threaten to jump in front of an incoming train. Instead, he tried to leap from the elevated BART platform to the sidewalk two stories below, officials said Wednesday.

BART police Deputy Chief Jeffrey Jennings said Wednesday that he had viewed footage of the incident from body cameras worn by the officers. The officers struggled with Powell as he threatened to harm himself and asked them to kill him, he noted.

When Powell reached for his waistband, one officer can be heard on the video calling out a warning and saying he would use a Taser stun gun on him, Jennings said.

A single gunshot can then be heard in the video just a moment before the stun gun fires, according to Jennings, who noted that the officers had not seen the weapon prior to the gunshot.

Jennings said Powell fell to the ground and reached for the weapon on the ground, shouting that officers had shot him.

That "was not true," said Jennings, who emphasized that he was "confident" the suspect shot himself and that police did not fire the weapon. Whether the gun was fired accidentally or deliberately remains unclear. Police located his weapon and bullet casing at the station.

A passenger waiting at the station witnessed the shooting and captured the moments after the altercation on his cell phone. Officers can be seen in the videos performing CPR on Powell as a crowd gathers, Jennings said.

Powell was rushed to Highland Hospital in critical condition but was said to be in stable condition Wednesday after undergoing two surgeries. He is scheduled to have two more, officials said.

The BART Police Department is considering charging Powell with attempted murder but plans to work with the Alameda County District Attorney’s Office to determine appropriate charges, officials said.

BART officials sent out several tweets about the three-hour-plus closure before announcing they had reopened the West Oakland BART station. AC Transit buses were used to shuttle commuters between the West Oakland and 12th Street stations in the interim.

"Any shooting is a tragedy, and we regret the incident having occurred," BART officials said in a statement. "BART thanks passengers and concerned residents for their patience as information was gathered."

Jennings said BART police are well aware of community suspicion following the 2009 fatal shooting of Oscar Grant by a BART police officer at Fruitvale Station and in light of recent concern over police shootings and deaths of people in custody.

BART officers have undergone extensive training in handling confrontations with suspects and the mentally ill since Grant's death, Jennings said.

"We're very cognizant of the atmosphere so we're making sure our officers are trained in the best practices," he said.

The two officers have not been placed on administrative leave because the incident is not considered an officer-involved shooting. The case is being investigated by the district attorney's office and BART's independent police auditor.

NBC Bay Area's Gonzo Rojas contributed to this report. 



Photo Credit: Akshay Dodeja
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<![CDATA[Defendant in Vallejo Kidnapping Blamed Vaccine, FBI Says]]> Thu, 03 Sep 2015 08:37:33 -0700 http://media.nbcbayarea.com/images/213*120/muller-mug.jpg

The man charged in a California kidnapping that police initially dismissed as a hoax said he acted alone, and that mental illness and a side effect from a vaccine contributed to his behavior, the FBI said in a court filing.

Matthew Muller made the comments to a television news reporter during a jailhouse interview in July, FBI Special Agent Wesley Drone said in an affidavit in support of a search warrant. The reporter was not allowed to record the interview and had been asked by Muller not to reveal his comments about acting alone and the vaccine. She did report that Muller said he felt bad for the kidnapping victim and thought the victim deserved an apology.

But the jail, which warns people that it records conversations with inmates, recorded the interview, including the portions that were off the record, Drone said. When discussing the kidnapping, Muller said there was no gang, and it was just him, according to the FBI affidavit.

The affidavit was in support of an application filed last month to search laptops, cellphones and other devices found at the South Lake Tahoe home where Muller was arrested and inside a Ford Mustang that has been linked to him.

Federal prosecutors charged Muller — a disbarred Harvard University-trained attorney — with the March kidnapping of Denise Huskins from her Vallejo, California, home after he was arrested in connection with an attempted robbery in Dublin, California, in June.

Muller's attorney, Thomas Johnson, said he had no comment on what his client allegedly told the reporter. Johnson is asking a judge to throw out much of the evidence in the case, saying it was obtained through the illegal search of a cellphone. Authorities have said they found the cellphone at the scene of the attempted robbery in Dublin.

Johnson has previously said his client will plead not guilty to the kidnapping charge and has pleaded not guilty to the home-invasion robbery in Dublin.

Huskins' boyfried, Aaron Quinn, reported that kidnappers broke into the couple's home on March 23, abducted Huskins and demanded money. His lawyers have said he awoke to a bright light in his face, and that two kidnappers bound and drugged him.

Huskins, 29, turned up safe two days later in her hometown of Huntington Beach, where she says she was dropped off. She showed up hours before the ransom was due.

After Huskins reappeared, Vallejo police said at a news conference the kidnapping was a hoax.

Palo Alto police have said Muller was also a suspect in a 2009 home invasion in that city, but they did not have enough evidence to recommend charges.

According to the FBI search warrant affidavit, Muller's wife reported him missing later in 2009. Muller said he was going off the grid, had problems beyond his mental health and was living in terror, the affidavit said.

He later called his wife from Utah, and she picked him up, according to the affidavit.



Photo Credit: Alameda County Sheriff]]>
<![CDATA[Report: City Spends $1 Million Yearly on 'Potty-Sitters']]> Wed, 02 Sep 2015 17:52:08 -0700 http://media.nbcbayarea.com/images/213*120/port-a-sitter.jpg

City officials in San Francisco say it’s a necessary job: port-a-potty attendant.

Chronicle columnists Matier and Ross dubbed them "potty-sitters" since they try to ensure that the units are used solely for their intended purposes. 

The workers are paid up to $16 an hour to patrol the city's public toilets. The city is reportedly spending $1 million a year to employ two dozen or so workers as part of the Public Works' "Pit Stop" program, which provides mobile toilets in the Tenderloin, SoMa, Castro, and Mission.

Each toilet is monitored by an attendant. Veneita Walker says when she was homeless she often didn’t have access to a restroom. Now, for $15 an hour, her job is to clean and watch for suspicious activity.

“I’m proud of my job, good at what I do,” Walker said. She says she is working for a paycheck to keep a roof over her head – and help keep the streets clean. “They know what they can and can’t do when I’m around.”

In a video posted to SFGate, mayoral candidate Stuart Schuffman claimed that San Francisco would need 500 public toilets that are open 24 hours a day in order to meet the bathroom needs of both homeless people and tourists wandering around town, but less than half of that number are open at limited Hours.

Schuffman said the city has only 200 public bathrooms "tucked away inside libraries, parks and civic buildings." Eighty-eight bathrooms aren't open past 6 p.m., and only 28 are open 24 hours a day.

Schuffman suggested the city should open up the hours of those 200 public bathrooms, invest in new ones and work to incentivize businesses to allow the public to use their restrooms in exchange for a benefit such as a tax break.

Rachel Gordon with the Public Works Department says, if funds allow, the city will continue to install more public bathrooms.

“The Tenderloin is a great example, that the number of steam-cleaning requests to clean up human waste has gone down in the areas where theses toilets are,” Gordon said.



Photo Credit: NBC Bay Area]]>
<![CDATA[Chicken, Goose Slow Down Bay Area Commutes]]> Wed, 02 Sep 2015 18:50:43 -0700 http://media.nbcbayarea.com/images/240*120/chickenmainpic.PNG

First there were reports of chickens on the Bay Bridge near the toll plaza Wednesday morning just as the early morning commute kicked off.

Then, about 7:30 a.m., a goose was seen meandering on U.S. Highway 101 at Alum Rock Avenue in San Jose. Cars slowed and swerved to avoid hitting the fowl on the freeway.

A California Highway Patrol officer on a motorcycle rode behind the goose, urging the bird to waddle back to the side of the road and into some bushes.

Initial reports surfaced that the goose was a duck, but Twitter users were quick to correct that misidentification.

The goose complied and no injuries were reported as the bird flew off to safety.

As for the chicken, or chickens, at least one appeared to have finally crossed the road to get to the other side, but it did delay commuter Jeff Chu, who snapped a photo of one bird while sitting in nightmarish traffic. CHP Officer Sean Wilkenfeld said there were reports of possibly four chickens near the toll plaza, but only one was captured by two officers about 10 a.m.

The chickens prompted the CHP to issue this warning: "Please DO NOT try and grab on the freeway. Let #CHP find out why the chickens crossed the road, it's not worth getting hit."

They also prompted this Twitter account: @BridgeChicken. Its first tweet: a rooster emoji.


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<![CDATA[Death of SF Hipsters? Article Crashes 48 Hills Website]]> Wed, 02 Sep 2015 15:49:40 -0700 http://media.nbcbayarea.com/images/213*120/markeanddragqueen.jpg

An article declaring the death of hipsters in San Francisco managed to crash 48 Hills, a donation based website from former Bay Guardian editor Tim Redmond and publisher Marke Bieschke.

Bieschke, who now serves as the publisher of 48 Hills, penned a post on Tuesday called "The San Francisco hipster is dead, y'all," naming the imminent closure of Mission District restaurant Boogaloos as the "locally sourced, hand-wrought nail in the neon coffin of a once inescapable lifestyle caricature."

"Not even a robust gap-year trust fund can withstand the skyrocketing rents here," he wrote. "And who can afford anymore to launch a Malian-Icelandic fusion food truck, organic Ayahuasca pop-up, or hand-printed line of Zombie Hannah Montana jeggings? Only bored Google wives have resources for that now, and they’re too busy with toddler yoga. I seriously waited on Valencia Street for three hours last week before I spotted a single acid-wash romper. There were pleated chinos at Zeitgeist. Elbo Room is closing. Hipster’s dead, y’all."

"It seems people move here for money now instead of ideals or at least their ideals are currency-based," Bieschke told NBC Bay Area. "I want to be wrong about that."

Within 30 minutes of publishing, the site crashed due to a flood of visits, then went up and back down intermittently for the next 10 hours.

"The reader response has obviously been overwhelming — the piece definitely struck a nerve," he said. "The biggest thing I've been struck by is how many people are talking about how they've been thinking about the same thing. There were some actually touching, nostalgic memories being shared around the piece on social media. It was like an era of history was being sweetly eulogized."

"Sure makes me glad I got a taste of the real SF and lived there before the term hipster was even created," wrote reader Lewis Foulke. "And now even that's outdated. It makes me feel a bit bummed for all those kids who don't have chance to live their feelings instead of their wallets when they roll into the Fairy City by the Bay."

Another reader, Jayinee Basu, wrote, "An old lady started playing a pan flute unprovoked on the UCSF shuttle today, I'm holding out hope."



Photo Credit: Courtesy of Marke Bieschke]]>