Category Archives: california

No More Gun Shows At SF’s Cow Palace If CA Sen. Scott Wiener Gets His Way

SAN FRANCISCO (KPIX) – A new California senate bill would put an end to gun shows at the Cow Palace, an issue that has been the subject of debate for years. Known as SB281, the measure would also transfer ownership of the event space to a new board made up of local representatives.

The Cow Palace has been a fixture in the Bay Area since it opened almost 80 years ago, and one group says if the bill passes, it would effectively lead to the arena being torn down.

A local cheerleading competition occupied the main amphitheater at the Cow Palace on Saturday, as cheers and pop music echoed through the concrete hallways. It’s one of hundreds of small community events held her every year.

“It promotes shows here that can’t afford Oracle arena. This cheerleading event can’t afford the Chase Arena because it’s a cheerleading event, not the Warriors,” says Kevin Patterson. He is the Executive Director of the Coalition to Save the Cow Palace. He also organizes the Dickens Christmas Fair at the Cow Palace every year.

Patterson is concerned for the future of the Cow Palace because of SB 281.

The measure was introduced by state Senator Scott Wiener, last month. It would transfer ownership of the Cow Palace from the State Department of Agriculture to a joint-powers authority, made up of representatives from San Francisco, Daly City and San Mateo County.

Wiener says the Cow Palace has outlived its usefulness. He says the site needs millions of dollars of maintenance and repairs to be a viable events space moving forward, adding there are plenty of alternative locations for these types of community events.

“This is about making sure that the local community can actually have a say in what happens at the Cow Palace and what the future holds,” said Sen. Wiener, a Democrat from San Francisco.

One of the main reasons there is so much interest in the property is its size. Almost 70 acres, the Cow Palace has 250,000 square feet of events space and a 14,000-seat amphitheater.

“It’s right now being very under-utilized. The community has wanted something to happen with that property for a long time. Housing, mixed use development,” said Wiener.

Patterson worries if a local board takes control, they will only look at the value of the real estate. He thinks the board may not consider the importance of the Cow Palace as an affordable community events space. Each year it hosts everything from the Grand National Rodeo, to dog shows, to the Christmas Fair.

He also points out the history of the Cow Palace. There are dozens of signatures on the box office wall from some of the greatest artists of our time, like Elvis Presley, who performed at the Cow Palace in 1970.

“It’s not the place to solve the housing crisis, that’s for sure. There are lots of other places to build houses. You don’t need to bulldoze history and an important community asset,” said Patterson.

Senator Wiener says the bill does not dictate what happens with the property. That will be up to you he newly created joint powers authority board. He said there could be a compromise.

“You can have the Cow Palace there, and also take a portion of this mega-massive parking lot and turn it into housing and retail,” said Wiener.

If the SB281 passes, it would pass ownership of the Cow Palace to the local board on January 1, 2021.

There is a sub-committee hearing scheduled next Wednesday to discuss the bill.

Gov. Newsom, California Mayors Push For More Money To Help Homeless

SACRAMENTO (AP) — Gov. Gavin Newsom and California’s big city mayors pushed Wednesday for more money to help the homeless on top of the $500 million the state already is spending on one of its most vexing problems.

The new Democratic governor and the mayors touted the state’s Homeless Emergency Aid Program, which gives cities flexible grants to address homelessness with emergency shelters, supportive housing, navigation centers, housing vouchers and other services including mental health treatment. Sacramento Mayor Darrell Steinberg, chairman of the 13-member Big City Mayors group, said they’re seeking another $500 million and maybe “a little bit more” for the program in next year’s budget.

But Assembly Budget Committee chairman Phil Ting, who sought the money being spent during this current fiscal year, said he can’t commit even to the same amount, let alone an expansion, until revenue numbers become more clear as the June budget deadline approaches. He noted that revenues are $2 billion below projections, though officials think the income will rebound.

Newsom’s proposed budget includes $500 million for emergency shelters, navigation centers and other supportive housing. But he said he will revise his budget after meeting with the mayors for 45 minutes.

“It’s not just about more money. It’s about reprioritizing some of those investments,” he added.

Newsom, who once was San Francisco’s mayor, left the news conference abruptly without taking questions, and the mayors would not say what changes he intends. The $500 million is part of Newsom’s proposed $1.75 billion housing plan.

The mayors said they asked for changes in how the money can be spent and how long cities have to spend it.

The federal government says California has a quarter of the nation’s homeless population but 12 percent of the country’s overall population. Homelessness has increased by 9 percent in California since 2010 even as it dropped by 13 percent nationwide.

California has far fewer homes than are needed for its nearly 40 million people, with rising costs and rents. California has the nation’s highest poverty rate when housing is taken into account.

Aside from Steinberg, the mayors include Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti, San Diego Mayor Kevin Faulconer, San Jose Mayor Sam Liccardo, Fresno Mayor Lee Brand, Long Beach Mayor Robert Garcia, Oakland Mayor Libby Schaaf, Bakersfield Mayor Karen Goh, Anaheim Mayor Harry Sidhu, Santa Ana Mayor Miguel Pulido and Riverside Mayor Rusty Bailey. San Francisco Mayor London Breed and Stockton Mayor Michael Tubbs did not attend.


© Copyright 2019 The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

Report: Marin County Residents Healthiest In All Of California

(CBS SF) — A report released Tuesday found that Marin County residents are the healthiest and live the longest of residents of any county in California.

The 2019 County Health Rankings by the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation evaluate counties across the U.S. on the health of residents and
how long they live.

The rankings are based on a number of categories such as length and quality of life, health factors and access to health care, socio-economic factors, and physical environment.

Marin County residents had the highest life expectancy of any county in California, followed closely behind by San Mateo and Santa Clara

While Marin County scored high on most health measurements, its health profile suffers from weaknesses in housing affordability, high rates of substance use, income inequality and racial disparities in health, according to county officials.

According to the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation, the burden of high housing costs is tied to poor health.

The California counties which rounded out the bottom of the list of 58 were Modoc, Siskiyou and Lake counties.

© Copyright 2019 CBS Broadcasting Inc. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed. Bay City News Service contributed to this report.

Constitutional Amendment Proposed To Change California’s Death Penalty Laws

SACRAMENTO (CBS13) — A California Assembly Member has introduced a constitutional amendment to end the death penalty in our state.

Assembly Member Marc Levine of the 10th District proposed the change on Wednesday.

ALSO: Gov. Newsom Signs Moratorium On Executions, Calling Death Penalty ‘A Failure’

This comes just a day after Governor Newsome signed a moratorium on executions in California.

Amendments to the California Constitution must be voted on by voters.

How Much Does A Death Row Inmate Cost?

SACRAMENTO (CBS13) — Of the 737 inmates on death row, 49 are from the Sacramento area including Scott Peterson, who was convicted of killing his pregnant wife Laci Peterson in 2002. Also on death row is Lonnie Franklin, aka the Grim Sleeper, who was convicted in 2016 of killing nine women and a teenage girl in Los Angeles.

The last person executed in California was Clarence Ray Allen in 2006.

One of the driving factors to get rid of the death penalty is the high cost of inmates on death row. Many studies over the years found the death penalty system costs more than life in prison as the maximum penalty, but no one seems to know specifically how much more an inmate costs on death row.

READ: Gov. Newsom Signs Moratorium On Executions, Calling Death Penalty ‘A Failure’

The Governor’s office says the state spends $150 million a year for people on death row, but they could not say how that cost compares for the same inmates moved into the general prison population.

Instead, the office pointed to an analysis of a 2016 ballot measure which found the state could save around $150 million annually by abolishing the death penalty, but said that number could vary by “tens of millions” pending various factors.

The Department of Corrections said they don’t know the cost difference either. The state only tracks the average cost of all inmates, combining death row and the general population.

ALSOMom Arrested After Holding Middle School Girl Back, Encouraging Fight

Last year, the average inmate cost around $80,000 to $700,000 a year. That cost includes security, housing, food, and medical care.

Medical costs for aging inmates also have to considered as well. Those can get so high that Governor Brown signed a bill making it easier to parole inmates over the age of 60. Analysts found they cost two to three times more than the average inmate.

Death row inmates will not be eligible for parole, but the longer they live in prison, they will cost exponentially more. According to the most recent death report, the average life expectancy for death by natural causes for inmates was 62-year-old. The oldest inmate to die that year was 91.

List: Bay Area Inmates On San Quentin Death Row

SAN FRANCISCO (CBS SF) — On Wednesday, California Gov. Gavin Newsom signed an executive order placing a moratorium on the death penalty in the state.

There are currently 737 inmates on the state’s death row, the nation’s largest. Among the condemned inmates, here are some of the Bay Area’s notorious killers.


Nathan Burris (CDCR)

Nathan Burris
Burris gunned down his ex-girlfriend, bridge toll-taker Deborah Ross, 51, and her friend Ersie “Chuckie” Everette, 58, a Golden Gate Transit driver on the Richmond-San Rafael Bridge toll plaza in 2009 because he believed they romantically involved. He spent his trial mocking and cursing the victims family members in court.


Joseph Cordova (CDCR)

Joseph Cordova
In 1979, Cordova raped and strangled eight-year-old Cannie “Candy” Bullock in San Pablo after her mother, with whom Cordova had a relationship with, left her home alone to out drinking. The case went unsolved for 23 years until newer DNA evidence was obtained.


Richard Davis (CDCR)

Richard Davis
Davis kidnapped and murdered 12-year-old Polly Klaas in 1993, abducting her from her home in Petaluma. He was convicted in 1996 and his case helped fuel support for passage of California’s “three-strikes” law for repeat offenders. In 2006, he survived an opiate overdose in his cell.


Melvin Forte (CDCR)

Melvin Forte
Forte was condemned to death for 1981 kidnap, rape and murder of 23-year-old Ines Sailer, a young German woman and San Francisco resident. Her body was found in East San Jose. Forte was convicted in 2010 based on new DNA evidence while he was serving a life sentence for a 1982 San Francisco carjacking murder.


Alexander Hamilton (CDCR)

Alexander Hamilton
After robbing a Wells Fargo branch inside a Raley’s supermarket with an juvenile accomplice in Pittsburg in 2005, the two crashed their car in a police chase. As Pittsburg police officer Larry Lasater chased the two, he was ambushed by Hamilton who shot and killed him along the Delta de Anza Regional Trail.


David Mills (CDCR)

David Mills
Mills pleaded no contest to involuntary manslaughter for killing 28-year-old Troy Gardner in Oakland in 1997. Eight years later in 2005, Mills murdered James Lee Martin, 28, of Hayward, Dale Griffin, 36, of San Pablo, and Rebecca Martinez, 22, of Oakland in a dispute over a gun. A fourth victim survived the multiple shooting and testified against him.

Carl Molano (CDCR)

Carl Molano
Molano raped and strangled his neighbor, 33-year-old Suzanne McKenna in her home in Hayward in 1995. He was also convicted of rapng two other women and assaulting his ex-wife, who came forward with information implicating him in McKenna’s death. In 2003, new DNA evidence connected him to the crime.


Joseph Naso (CDCR)

Joseph Naso
Naso was sentenced to death in 2013 for the murders of three Northern California women and to a life prison sentence for the murder of a fourth. The murders were dubbed the “Double Initial Killings” because the victims – Carmen Colon, 22; Pamela Parsons, 38; Tracy Tafoya, 31; and Roxene Roggasch, 18 – all had matching first and last initials.


Charles Ng (CDCR)

Charles Ng
Ng is a serial killer who is believed to have raped, tortured and murdered up to 25 victims along with San Francisco native Leonard Lake at Lake’s cabin in Calaveras County. In 1985, Ng fled to Canada after being caught shoplifting in South San Francisco and Lake killed himself by swallowing cyanide pills when he was arrested. After his capture and extradition from Canada in 1991 after a years-long dispute, Ng was finally convicted in 1999 in the murders of six men, three women, and two male infants.


Rodrigo Paniagua (CDCR)

Rodrigo Paniagua
In 2005, Paniagua stabbed to death his pregnant girlfriend Leticia Chavez and their two young daughters 3-year-old AnaLisa and 6-year-old Adrina in their San Jose home in their bedroom where they were sleeping. He then set their bodies on fire and went out to smoke a cigarette. The three had endured years of physical abuse by Paniagua.


Scott Peterson (CDCR)

Scott Peterson
In one of the most notorious murder cases in the Bay Area, Peterson’s case began when he reported his wife, Laci Peterson, missing on Christmas Eve in 2002. Laci Peterson was seven-and-a-half months pregnant at the time. The investigation revealed inconsistencies in Peterson’s story, and it was soon revealed he had been involved in extramarital affairs. In 2003, the decomposed remains of Laci and her unborn son were found at Richmond’s Point Isabel Regional Shoreline park. Peterson arrested days later and it appeared he was set to flee the country. He was convicted in 2004 of the first-degree murder of Laci and in the second-degree murder of his unborn son, Connor.


Irving Ramirez (CDCR)

Irving Ramirez
Ramirez emptied a clip from his handgun into San Leandro Police officer Nels “Dan” Niemi in 2005 after Niemi responded to a disturbing the peace call, standing over him and shooting him six more times after the initial shot. Ramirez had guns and drugs on him and feared going back to jail on parole violations. Niemi was the first San Leandro police officer killed in the line of duty in four decades.


Ramon Salcido (CDCR)

Ramon Salcido
In 1989 Salcido went on a murderous rampage in the North Bay, first slashing his daughters’ throats; killing four-year-old Sofia and 22-month-old Teresa while 3-year-old Carmina survived. He then drove to Cotati, killed his mother-in-law and two daughters, then returned to his home in Boyes Hot Springs where he shot his wife, Angela Salcido. He then went to the Grand Cru winery where he worked and killed a co-worker. Salcido fled to Mexico but was arrested and extradited back to the U.S. Salcido told police in Mexico he committed the mass murder because he believed his wife was having an affair.


Cary Stayner (CDCR)

Cary Stayner
In February 1999, Stayner murdered three people near Yosemite National Park: 42-year-old Carole Sund; her daughter, 15-year-old Juli Sund; Juli’s friend, 16-year-old Argentine exchange student Silvina Pelosso. Stayer, a Yosemite area motel handyman, persuaded Sund to let him into their room to fix a leak. Stayner was among motel employees interviewed by police but he was not considered suspect since he had no criminal history and remained calm during the interview. Months later, Stayner killed Yosemite naturalist Joie Ruth Armstrong and when investigators linked him to the crime he then confessed to the other murders.


Marcus Wesson (CDCR)

Marcus Wesson
In 2004, police in Fresno were called to what was described as a child custody issue at a squalid family compound and a standoff ensued. In the aftermath, police found Wesson had shot and killed two of his daughters along with seven children fathered by incestuous relationships with Wesson. He was convicted of nine counts of murder and 14 sex crimes involving the rape and molestation of his underage daughters.


Darnell Williams (CDCR)

Darnell Williams
Williams shot and killed eight-year-old girl Alaysha Carradine in 2013 while she was sleeping over her friend’s apartment in Oakland. Williams had fired the shots into the apartment in revenge for the fatal shooting of a friend. Two months later, Williams shot and killed 22-year-old Anthony Medearis III in Berkeley during a robbery, in part because he believed Medearis had “snitched” to police in 2011. He was convicted in 2016.

PHOTOS: Work Crew Dismantles San Quentin’s Death Chamber

SAN QUENTIN (CBS SF) — It was a simple sentence posted on the door to San Quentin Prison’s death chamber, but its impact sparked a debate across California and the nation.

Gov. Gavin Newsom signed a moratorium Wednesday, putting an end to executions within the state. Hours later, a sign was posted on the heavy metal door to the death chamber — “Gas Chamber CLOSED per Executive Order 11-09-19.”

With that the clock stopped ticking toward the demise of some of California’s most infamous killers. Among the most well-known in the Bay Area were Scott Peterson, Richard Allen Davis, Ramon Salcido, Charles Ng and Cary Stayner.

RELATED: Gov. Newsom Calls Death Penalty ‘A Failure’; Halts State Executions

Currently, there are 737 inmates on California’s Death Row, the largest number in the country by far. Clarence Ray Allen was the inmate put to death at San Quentin at 12:20 a.m. on Jan. 17, 2006.

Prison workers immediately began the process of dismantling the death chamber — removing the heavy metal green chair used to strap in inmates for one final time.

The equipment was then loaded on to a truck to be taken to a state warehouse.

Meanwhile, Twitter was abuzz with comments about Newsom’s decision.

California Gov. Gavin Newsom to place moratorium on the state’s death penalty, source says

California’s death row is crowded with inmates, many of whom have been there for decades. Newsom is expected to say on Wednesday that he believes capital punishment to be costly and burdensome.