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Stories for July 24, 2013

Cyclist's Felony Manslaughter Plea First Of Its Kind In U.S.

July 24
Steve Mullis / NPR
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A bicyclist who struck and killed a pedestrian in San Francisco last year has pleaded guilty to felony vehicular manslaughter, prosecutors announced Wednesday. The conviction is said to be the first of its kind in the nation.

S.C. Court Orders 'Baby Veronica' Adoption Finalized

July 24
Nina Totenberg / NPR
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Lawyers for the biological father of a Native American child are expected to make a last-ditch appeal to the U.S. Supreme Court on Thursday, hoping to prevent the return of the child to her adoptive parents.

Full-Time Vs. Part-Time Workers: Restaurants Weigh Obamacare

July 24
John Ydstie / NPR
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Many businesses that don't offer health insurance to all their employees breathed a sigh of relief earlier this month when they learned they'd have an extra year to comply with the new health care law or face stiff penalties.

Move Over Nursing Homes -- There's Something Different

July 24
Ina Jaffe / NPR
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One thing just about everyone dreads as they age is the possibility of ending up in a nursing home. We all think we know what that's like: sharing a room with strangers, sitting slumped in a wheelchair all day, rigid schedules, bad smells. And for more than 1 million Americans, this is home. But there's an effort to change all that, and it's known as The Green House Project.

San Diego County Water Authority Gets A Court Date For Rate Challenge

July 24
By Erik Anderson
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San Diego County Water Authority managers will get their day in court more than three years after they challenged water rates set by the Metropolitan Water District: The case will go to trial December 17.

Prescription Drug Deaths And Suicides Set Records In San Diego

July 24
By Kenny Goldberg
2 Comments
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San Diego set some dubious records last year: the highest number of suicides and prescription drug overdose deaths ever recorded in the county.

Why The Latest Gulf Leak Is No BP Disaster

July 24
Christopher Joyce / NPR
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Teams of workers are mobilizing in the Gulf of Mexico to try to stem a natural gas leak at an offshore drilling rig that exploded and caught fire Tuesday. The rig off the Louisiana coast has been partially destroyed by the out of control blaze, and firefighting boats are on the scene.

How The Death Of A 12-Year-Old Changed The City Of Dallas

July 24
Lauren Silverman / NPR
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Forty years ago, thousands of Mexican-Americans in Dallas, Texas came together for a protest at city hall. Four days earlier, a white police officer had shot and killed 12-year-old Santos Rodriguez. The death of Rodriguez sparked a riot. Eventually, it later spurred change that led to political representation and more Mexican-Americans on the police force.

How A Family Copes With Schizophrenia And Suicide

July 24
Jeff Cohen / NPR
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Homer Bell was 54 years old when he killed himself in April in a very public way -- he laid down his head in front of a stopped bus in his hometown of Hartford, Conn. It was the last act in a life filled with struggle, as Bell and his family endured his schizophrenia.

Help! What can Obamacare do for me now?

July 24
By Emily Bazar / CHCF Center for Health Reporting
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Q: I am a married, 62-year-old female unable to obtain health insurance. I am retired and financially comfortable and in general good health.

Camp Pendleton Sailor Reunites With Dog After Airline 'Loses' Pup (Video)

July 24
By Beth Ford Roth
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Camp Pendleton-based Navy Petty Officer Josh Bulla considers his dog Congo more than just a best friend. He says the pup is like a son to him. Bulla recently transferred from Guam to Camp Pendleton, but when he arrived at the San Diego Airport, he discovered the airline he'd flown had lost his dog.

Third Woman Comes Forward In Filner Harassment Scandal

July 24
Midday Edition
By Amita Sharma
52 Comments
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A third woman goes public with allegations of sexual harassment against San Diego Mayor Bob Filner in an exclusive interview with KPBS.

County Supervisors To Vote To Close Gaps In Programs For Severely Mentally Ill

July 24
Midday Edition
By Megan Burke
0 Comments
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San Diego County is reviewing the public services available to people living in the county who are severely mentally ill and are resistant to treatment.

Laura's Law: A Program For Severely Mentally Ill People Who Refuse Treatment

July 24
Midday Edition
1 Comment
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People with serious mental illness such as schizophrenia and bipolar disorder often refuse treatment because they don't know they're sick. We’ll hear about an involuntary treatment program, Laura's Law, the county is considering adopting to help the severely mentally ill.

Jorge Ramos On Latinos And The Future Of U.S. Politics

July 24
NPR Staff / NPR
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Jorge Ramos anchors the top-ranked newscast on Spanish-language TV, Noticiero Univision, alongside Maria Elena Salinas. Sometimes called "the Spanish-language Walter Cronkite," Ramos has been a vocal -- and influential -- proponent of an immigration overhaul. (In recent summers, Ramos' network Univision has topped the prime-time TV ratings for all networks in the U.S. -- English- and Spanish-language -- among viewers 18 to 49, as Mandalit del Barco reported Tuesday.)

Mexico - One Plate At A Time With Rick Bayless: Oaxaca's Live-Fire Cooking

July 24
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Everything tastes better cooked over a wood or charcoal fire – at least that’s the Oaxacan credo. From soup to barbacoa, burning embers influence the flavor of Oaxaca’s food in just the right ways. For starters, Rick guides us through the “taco corridor” at the 20 de Noviembre market just off the main square in Oaxaca. We can almost taste the richly-burnished chiles and onions as they grill alongside super-thinly sliced beef and pork and robust chorizo sausages.

Another Accuser Reports Filner Behavior To State Agency

July 24
Lisa Halverstadt / Voice of San Diego
1 Comment
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A state agency that investigates sexual harassment complaints has received a second report of alleged inappropriate behavior by Mayor Bob Filner.

Live Blog: Obama's Latest Economic Address

July 24
Mark Memmott / NPR
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President Obama is this week launching another effort to lay out his vision for how to strengthen the U.S. economy. He's beginning with a midday Wednesday speech at Knox College in Galesburg, Ill., site of a similarly themed address he gave in 2005, when he was a newly elected U.S. senator.

Shark Attack Death Of California Navy Contractor Prompts Suspension Of Water Sports For Sailors

July 24
By Beth Ford Roth
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The shark-attack death of a California Navy contractor has prompted the Navy to suspend all water activities in the waters off Navy Support Facility Diego Garcia. Diego Garcia is a coral atoll in the Indian Ocean, about 967 nautical miles south of India's southernmost tip.

FRONTLINE: Life And Death In Assisted Living

July 24
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FRONTLINE: Life And Death In Assisted Living Tease photo

More and more elderly Americans are choosing to spend their later years in assisted living facilities, which have sprung up as an alternative to nursing homes. But is this loosely regulated, multi-billion dollar industry putting seniors at risk? In a major investigation with ProPublica, FRONTLINE examines the operations of the nation’s largest assisted living company, raising questions about the drive for profits and fatal lapses in care.

Menthol: Great In Aftershave, Not So Much In Cigarettes

July 24
Nancy Shute / NPR
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Menthol gives cough drops, lip balm and other drugstore remedies that cool minty taste and slight numbing quality. Now the Food and Drug Administration has taken a long-awaited step toward saying that in cigarettes, those same qualities do more harm than good.

NYC Doctors Are Now Prescribing Fruits And Veggies

July 24
Katharine O'Marra / NPR
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Doctors typically give patients prescriptions for medications. But a new program in New York City has doctors prescribing fruits and vegetables to obese or overweight patients.

Filner Not Invited To Speak At National Women Veterans Association Gala

July 24
By Claire Trageser
5 Comments
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The president of the National Women Veterans Association of America canceled Mayor Bob Filner's keynote speech over sexual harassment allegations today.

Calif. Firm Buying First Phase Of Texas Wind Farm

July 24
Associated Press
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A California-based energy company has reached a deal to buy the first phase of a 500-megawatt wind turbine farm planned for the Texas Panhandle.

Summer Vacations On Campus One Way UCSD Reaching Out To Alums

July 24
By Kyla Calvert
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Most public universities have traditionally spent less time fostering relationships with alums than private universities, but some at UC San Diego think changing that is key to the long-term strength of the campus.

'Blackfish' Doc Looks At SeaWorld's Captive Whales

July 24
Associated Press
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What the Oscar-winning 2009 documentary "The Cove" did for dolphin slaughter in Japan, "Blackfish" may do for killer whales living in captivity while performing at marine parks.

Poll: Brown Approval Dips Slightly But Still High

July 24
Associated Press
0 Comments
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A new Field Poll finds that 51 percent of California voters say they approve of the job Gov. Jerry Brown is doing and that most are inclined to re-elect him next year.

Imperial Valley, Other Southern California Colleges Given Accreditation Warning

July 24
By Kyla Calvert
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Imperial Valley College was one of six California community colleges to be given an accreditation warning earlier this month.

'Beep Baseball' A Homerun With Blind Players

July 24
Jessica Robinson / NPR
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The air smells like cut grass and barbecue at Friendship Park in north Spokane, Wash. And Bee Yang is up to bat. The outfielders get ready. Yang is known as a power hitter.

As Obama Renews Jobs Push, How Is The Economy Doing?

July 24
Marilyn Geewax / NPR
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The U.S. economy has been growing for four straight years -- each under the leadership of President Obama.

Being In The Minority Can Cost You And Your Company

July 24
Shankar Vedantam / NPR
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The racial wage gap in the United States -- the gap in salary between whites and blacks with similar levels of education and experience -- is shaped by geography, according to new social science research.