Slain photographer Nob Hill then and now
Twist in prosecuting his murder It’s quiet up there for a reason
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Morning Wrap: 7/12/11

Tuesday, July 12, 2011

PG&E blames others for San Bruno disaster, a 14-year-old’s deadly sleepover, Amazon turns political to fight tax, alleged Richmond District apartment scammer on the lam, plus the last Bay Bridge piece ships out of Shanghai, and more after the jump.

Top of the morning’s news
  • In a move not likely to boost its already battered image, PG&E says in a new court filing that it shouldn’t have to pay victims who’ve sued the company over the San Bruno disaster because the blast was caused by third-party damage to a “state of the art” pipeline. Chronicle
  • Cisco Systems, the San Jose tech giant that has faltered badly, could eliminate as many as 10,000 jobs, or 14 percent of its workforce by August, Bloomberg reported, citing two people familiar with the matter. Reuters
  • Jaycee Dugard’s memoir “A Stolen Life” hit the No. 1 spot on Amazon’s bestseller list on the eve of its release today. Galleycat
  • Rupert Murdoch’s News Corp. is beset by scandal and the ripple effects could be enormous; a collection of links at PaidContent.
  • Amazon launched a ballot initiative campaign with the aim of overturning a new law that would require the company to collect sales tax on items sold in California. AP
  • GOP members of Congress are trying to redirect $1.5 billion in high-speed rail funds—much of it destined for California—to the Midwest for disaster relief. McClatchy Newspapers
  • Ramona Hahn, the matriarch of an L.A. political family, died Monday on the eve of today’s special runoff election for Congress in which her daughter, former L. A. councilwoman Janice Hahn, faces a GOP challenger. LA Times 

  • Takeimi Rao, 14, died and three other girls became violently ill after sheriff’s deputies said the girls drank what is believed to have been vodka mixed with soda during a sleepover near Santa Rosa. Press Democrat
  • Former Assembly Speaker Fabian Nunez infuriated the Concord family of the college student whose death resulted in a manslaughter conviction for Nunez’ son, suggesting they were wasting taxpayer money by suing to try to have former Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger’s commutation of the sentence overturned. Chronicle
  • San Francisco officials released a dense, 1,600-page draft environmental report related to America’s Cup, and immediately ducked attempts to say anything meaningful about it. ABC7
  • The final segments of the new Bay Bridge east span were loaded onto a ship in Shanghai Monday for transport to San Francisco Bay. Chronicle 
  • Richard Earl Singer, 44, of Tiburon, pleaded guilty in federal court to conspiring to have someone burn down Oakland’s residential Hotel Menlo, which he owns, to collect insurance money. Chronicle
  • Former Cincinnati Bengals running back David Lee “Deacon” Turner was shot to death by a Kern County deputy after an alleged altercation outside a Bakersfield convenience store. AP
  • An arrest warrant was issued for Rachael Marie Smith, 30, after she failed to show up in court on charges that she bilked would-be apartment renters in the Richmond District out of thousands of dollars apiece. Chronicle
  • Clear Channel Communications plans to ramp up its own music streaming service to compete with Oakland-based Pandora. AP
  • A group began an online petition campaign aimed at forcing the National Park Service to stop limiting the number of permits it issues for hikers ascending the last 400 feet to the top of Half Dome. Chronicle
  • A bill to outlaw the sale of beer laced with caffeine cleared the Assembly. AP 

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