Antioch man sentenced to federal prison in gun case resulting from Richmond police chase

OAKLAND — A 24-year-old man was sentenced to three years and five months in federal prison in connection with a June 2020 police chase in Richmond where he was found to be in possession of a loaded pistol. Vandrick Jones, who is listed as a resident of Antioch, was sentenced Tuesday by U.S. District Judge Jeffrey White. After the prison sentence, he will be placed on supervised release for three years. Jones was arrested after he crashed his car during a police chase with Richmond officers on June 26, 2020. A pistol with a modification that allowed it to fire fully automatic was found in the car, loaded with 19… Read More

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Robot arranges 100,000 dominoes into a Super Mario Bros. mural in one day

Engineer and YouTuber Mark Rober has created a robot that can make domino murals at lightning speed, and has shown it off with a video of it arranging 100,000 dominoes into a Super Mario Bros.-themed mural in just over 24 hours. Rober says it would take a team of seven humans a week to do the same thing. The robot, named the “Dominator,” achieves this by putting down 300 dominoes at a time — which are, of course, loaded into it by another robot. Rober says in the video that the current version of the Dominator is the culmination of years of work from him and his team, and he… Read More

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It’s another banner day at the pool for Katie Ledecky, U.S. swimmers in Tokyo

Katie Ledecky had the race of her Olympics on Wednesday night to help the United States win a silver medal in the 800-meter relay in one of the Tokyo Games’ most dramatic finishes at the pool. Ledecky, 24, anchored the Americans in a race in which the heavily favored Australians finished third and surprising China setting a world record time of 7 minutes 40.33 seconds for the gold medal. The United States was 0.40 of a second behind China, followed by Australia. Stanford’s Ledecky started her final leg in third place after Cal’s Katie McLaughlin hit the wall with a strong swim. Ledecky came out charging immediately closing in on… Read More

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Simone Biles grateful for ‘love and support’ after withdrawing from all-around

It’s been an unexpected and emotional few days for Simone Biles. The undisputed GOAT of gymnastics decided to withdraw from both the Olympic team final and the all-around competition to focus on her mental health, which prompted an outpouring of love and support among fellow athletes, fans, politicians, and celebrities.  Biles used social media to make her first comment following her all-around withdrawal on Wednesday. She’s grateful for the outpouring of solidarity and understanding, and revealed how all of that support has affected her mental outlook.  the outpouring love & support I’ve received has made me realize I’m more than my accomplishments and gymnastics which I never truly believed before.… Read More

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Fire near San Jose State displaces seven people

SAN JOSE – More than half a dozen people were displaced by a fire Wednesday near San Jose State University, authorities said. The blaze was reported at 3:10 p.m. on the second floor of a two-story apartment building at 375 East Williams Street, the San Jose Fire Department said in a social media post. The fire was knocked down by 3:35 p.m. and placed under control by 3:55 p.m., the fire department said. Two units suffered “significant damage,” and others had smoke and water damage, the fire department said. No injuries were reported, but a total of seven residents were displaced by the fire, the fire department said. They were… Read More

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Water shortages and drought are California’s most important environmental threat, new poll shows

After the two driest consecutive years in much of California in nearly half a century, reservoir levels are dropping. Lawns are brown. Water restrictions are increasing. And Californians are getting worried. Asked to name the environmental issue they are most concerned about, more California residents cited water shortages and drought than any other, according to a new poll released Wednesday by the Public Policy Institute of California, a non-partisan research organization in San Francisco. Overall, 25% of California adults named water shortages and drought as the most important environmental issue currently facing the state. Not far behind, 17% named wildfires, followed by 13% who cited climate change and 6% who… Read More

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How do you photograph baby golden eagles in Utah desert? Very carefully

Deseret News photojournalist Spenser Heaps stands on a ledge below a golden eagle’s nest in a remote area of Box Elder County while photographing a story on Hawkwatch International scientists on May 20, 2021. | Spenser Heaps Photojournalist describes lengths one has to go to tell the story of biologists and the birds they hope to save Dangling from a taught climbing rope with 30 feet of air between my feet and the sloping desert floor below, I watch through my camera’s viewfinder as Dustin Maloney awkwardly crawls through a tangled mass of sticks the size of a queen mattress. We’ve both come to this place to find a special… Read More

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Golden eagles are dying. This unlikely partnership is trying to help

Hawkwatch International field biologist Max Carlin returns a golden eagle nestling to its nest after his team collected samples and data from it in a remote area of Box Elder County on Thursday, May 20, 2021. | Spenser Heaps, Deseret News Populations are struggling in Utah, the West Dustin Maloney is in sagebrush country in remote northern Utah west of Snowville on a grueling hiking trip full of dust and heat and sweat. He’s got one eye looking for snakes and the other on the ground so he doesn’t lose his step and take a perilous fall. A team is with him. They have plenty of water, plenty of energy,… Read More

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A bird’s-eye look at 5 stunning facts about the golden eagle

An adult golden eagle circles overhead as Hawkwatch International researchers prepare to enter its nest to collect data and samples from a nestling in a remote area of Box Elder County on Thursday, May 20, 2021. | Spenser Heaps, Deseret News Iconic bird faces peril in Utah It is seen, not often heard, in the western desert of Utah and along the expanse of the Great Salt Lake’s Antelope Island, where cliffs provide a towering view of the buffalo, the jack rabbits, and people biking and hiking. The golden eagle uses these cliffs as a crib to raise its young, safely away from human threats and as a natural nursery… Read More

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San Francisco man who shot at random people because he was high sentenced to federal prison

SAN FRANCISCO — A San Francisco man who was charged with illegal gun possession after being arrested in connection with a nonfatal downtown shooting spree was sentenced last week to five years in federal prison, court records show. Alvin Merrite, 48, was sentenced July 21 by U.S. District Judge Charles Breyer, months after Merrite pleaded guilty to being a felon in possession of a firearm. Authorities say Merrite was arrested after he fired at three strangers around 10 p.m. on Oct. 2, 2020, near Market Street and Montgomery Street. The victims, who were not struck by gunfire, were simply walking past Merrite. Merrite’s attorney, assistant public defender Elisse LaRouche, offered… Read More

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