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Stories for June 3, 2013

Why Chase Tornadoes? To Save Lives, Not To 'Die Ourselves'

June 3
Mark Memmott / NPR
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The deaths Friday of veteran storm chaser Tim Samaras, his son Paul and their friend Carl Young when a tornado near El Reno, Okla., pummeled their vehicle has raised some questions:

Seminar Brings Perspective On Risks Of Nuclear Power To San Diego

June 3
By Alison St John
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As the future of the San Onofre nuclear power plant hangs in the balance, a public seminar on nuclear power is planned for Tuesday in San Diego County Chambers. It is billed as an alternative to the public meetings hosted by the Nuclear Regulatory Commission.

Mississippi Man Indicted On Charges Of Mailing Ricin Poision

June 3
Bill Chappell / NPR

James Everett Dutschke, the Mississippi man arrested in April on suspicions that he sent letters containing the poison ricin to President Obama and other officials, has been indicted on five federal charges, from sending threats in the mail to knowingly making and possessing "a biological agent... for use as a weapon."

White House-Issa Fight: Nasty But Normal In Washington

June 3
Frank James / NPR
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Anyone searching for the place where the friction between the Obama White House and congressional Republicans is throwing off the most angry sparks need look no further than the clashes between the administration and Rep. Darrell Issa.

Supreme Court Rules DNA Can Be Taken After Arrest

June 3
Nina Totenberg / NPR
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The U.S. Supreme Court ruled Monday that police can routinely take DNA samples from people who are arrested but not yet convicted of a crime, and see if the DNA matches any samples from unsolved crimes in a national database.

Miss. Turns To 'Cord Blood' To Track Down Statutory Rapists

June 3
Jeffrey Hess / NPR
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Mississippi lawmakers have embarked on a controversial campaign to discourage older men from having sex with teenagers.

Hulu Web Drama Targets Latino Teen Audience

June 3
By Adrian Florido

"East Los High" follows the lives of Latino teenagers in East Los Angeles, and the pressures they face from sex, violence and bullying.

Bradley Manning Court-Martial Begins In WikiLeaks Case

June 3
Bill Chappell / NPR
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Starkly different views of Army Pfc. Bradley Manning were presented Monday, the first day of his court-martial on charges that he aided the enemy when he gave a large batch of classified data to WikiLeaks that was then

Calif. Firefighters Rush To Get Ahead Of Early Fire Season

June 3
Nate Rott / NPR
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Fire season is off to an early start in the West. Across California, a hot and dry spring has fire crews on alert. Northeast of Los Angeles, thousands of firefighters are making progress toward controlling the so-called Powerhouse Fire, which has burned more than 30,000 acres and destroyed several homes.

June 1 Was Deadly Day For US Troops In Afghanistan (Video)

June 3
By Beth Ford Roth
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The first day of June was a deadly one for U.S. troops in Afghanistan. Three soldiers died in three separate incidents, including Army Spc. Kyle P. Stoeckli, 21, who was killed in an IED attack.

San Diego School Trustees To Vote On Adding Meat-Free Meals To Cafeterias

June 3
City News Service
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The San Diego Unified School District Board of Education is scheduled tomorrow to consider whether to implement meat-free menus at school cafeterias on Mondays, beginning this fall.

Death Of Soldier In Afghanistan Under Investigation

June 3
By Beth Ford Roth
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The Department of Defense announced it is investigating the death of Army Pfc. Mariano M. Raymundo, 21, who died in Sharan, Afghanistan on June 1.

Powerhouse Fire Now 40 Percent Contained, Officials Say

June 3
Bill Chappell / NPR
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Firefighters were able to double containment of the huge Powerhouse wildfire north of Los Angeles to 40 percent Monday, as cooler weather helped them against the blaze that has scorched more than 45 square miles. No deaths have been reported as a result of the fire, which caused some 1,000 homes to be evacuated.

The Irish Rovers: Home In Ireland

June 3
The Irish Rovers: Home In Ireland  Tease photo

Filmed entirely on location in Northern Ireland, "The Irish Rovers: Home In Ireland" celebrates 45 years of the hits made famous by the rollicking Irish Rovers. Known for such folksy jigs as "The Unicorn," "Wasn't That a Party," "Grandma Got Run-Over by a Reindeer," "Whiskey on a Sunday" and "The Black Velvet Band," their songs have become anthems of revelry and joy for generations of fans.

StoryCorps In San Diego To Record Veteran's Stories

June 3
Midday Edition
Evening Edition
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A visit to San Diego by StoryCorps kicks off today at the USS Midway Museum. The Military Voices Initiative will record the memories of veterans and their families.

Soldier From California Killed In Afghanistan

June 3
By Beth Ford Roth
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Army Spc. Ray A. Ramirez, 20, of Sacramento, California, was killed June 1 in Wardak Province, Afghanistan from injuries suffered when his vehicle was attacked with an improvised explosive device.

Lautenberg Death Sets Off New Jersey Senate Scramble

June 3
Liz Halloran / NPR
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The traditionally collegial U.S. Senate was never a natural fit for Frank Lautenberg, the wealthy New Jersey businessman whose headstrong, CEO-style could rankle.

Food Foraging Movement Taking Root In San Diego

June 3
Midday Edition
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A foodie movement in San Diego is moving from beyond locally-grown and into the wild.

Wal-Mart Pledges Fresher Produce By Cutting Out The Middleman

June 3
Allison Aubrey / NPR

The nation's largest retailer announced Monday that it will be delivering produce from farms to stores faster by buying fruits and vegetables directly from growers.

Willful Defiance Suspensions Vary Widely Among San Diego County Districts

June 3
By Kyla Calvert
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In San Diego County, 42 percent of students suspensions in the last school year were for willful defiance. But districts vary widely in how often they used the category.

More Children Poisoned By Parents' Prescription Drugs

June 3
Nancy Shute / NPR
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Dad takes a cholesterol-lowering statin so he'll be around to see the kids grow up. But statins, like Lipitor and Zocor, as well as some other common adult prescription drugs are causing a rise in poisonings among children, a study says.

San Diego Mayor Bob Filner Discusses TMD, City Unions, Revised Budget & La Jolla Cove

June 3
Midday Edition
Evening Edition
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Do you have a question for Mayor Bob Filner? He joins KPBS Midday Edition today at noon to discuss the Tourism Marketing District controversy, the five-year agreement with city unions, revised budget and cleaning up La Jolla cove.

Army Staff Sgt. Joe Nunezrodriguez Killed In Afghanistan

June 3
By Beth Ford Roth
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Army Staff Sgt. Joe A. Nunezrodriguez, 29, died May 30 in Wardak Province, Afghanistan. He was killed when the vehicle he was riding in was hit by an Improvised Explosive Device.

Boy Scouts March In Uniform At Utah Gay Pride Parade

June 3
Mark Memmott / NPR
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Ten days after their national organization voted to allow openly gay boys to be members, a handful of Boy Scouts marched in uniform on Sunday at the Utah Pride Parade in Salt Lake City.

Why Do People Live In Twister-Prone Oklahoma?

June 3
Dana Farrington / NPR
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In covering the devastating tornadoes in Oklahoma, we've been asking a lot of questions about safety and preparedness. On Saturday, a meteorologist told NPR's Wade Goodwyn that "there is no universal, one-size-fits-all guidance or safety rules for tornadoes."

Supreme Court Upholds Warrantless Collection Of DNA

June 3
Mark Memmott / NPR
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By a 5-4 vote, the U.S. Supreme Court has upheld a Maryland law that allows police to collect DNA, without first getting a warrant, from persons who are arrested.

Sen. Frank Lautenberg Dies

June 3
Mark Memmott / NPR
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New Jersey Sen. Frank Lautenberg died early Monday, his office says in a statement sent to reporters.

San Diego Councilwoman-Elect Myrtle Cole To Be Sworn In

June 3
City News Service

SAN DIEGO (CNS) - Councilwoman-elect Myrtle Cole was sworn into office today, filling a five-month vacancy on the nine-member San Diego City Council.

Unvaccinated People Highly Susceptible To Chickenpox

June 3
By Kenny Goldberg
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People who haven't been vaccinated against chickenpox are vulnerable to the disease, as demonstrated by a recent outbreak in a Carlsbad elementary school.

San Onofre: How Did It Come To This?

June 3
By Alison St John
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San Diego is heading into its second summer without the San Onofre nuclear power station. We take a look at what has led up to this point, as questions swirl over whether the plant will ever restart.

Tribes, Enviros Fight Uranium Mining Near Grand Canyon

June 3
By Laurel Morales
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Mineral experts say the land surrounding the Grand Canyon contains some of the richest uranium ore deposits in the country. Countries like India and China are clamoring for the ore, as they expand their nuclear energy industries. Back in March Fronteras brought you a story about uranium mining from the industry’s perspective. But environmentalists and Indian tribes oppose mining near the canyon.

A Clinical Trial To Lure Doctors Where They're Needed

June 3
By Megan Burks
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A City Heights clinic is starting a residency program to help lure new doctors away from hospitals and specialty care.

Death Toll From Latest Oklahoma Tornado Rises Further

June 3
Mark Memmott / NPR
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There are now reports that as many as 16 people died from injuries they received Friday when the latest in a weeks-long series of tornado-spawning storms tore through parts of Oklahoma.

Cooler Temps Aid Crews Fighting Calif. Wildfire

June 3
Associated Press
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LANCASTER, Calif. (AP) -- Cooler temperatures and rising humidity allowed firefighters working in darkness to build significant lines around one edge of a wildfire feeding on old brush that forced nearly 3,000 people from two foothill communities north of Los Angeles.

Calif. State Parks System Launching On A Makeover

June 3
TRACIE CONE / Associated Press
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SACRAMENTO, Calif. (AP) -- The California state parks system, beset by financial problems and scandal, is launching a study commission that leaders hope will reshape the system and restore public confidence and financial stability.

A Boston Family's Struggle With TB Reveals A Stubborn Foe

June 3
Richard Knox / NPR
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Thanks to gold-standard tuberculosis treatment and prevention programs, cases of TB in the United States have declined every year for the past two decades -- to the lowest level ever.

Cash-Strapped Cities Struggle To Bury Their Unclaimed Dead

June 3
Quinn Klinefelter / NPR
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Shrinking government budgets are changing not only how people live, but also how some municipalities deal with death. In Detroit, funding is so tight that when a homeless person dies, it can take a year or more to receive even a simple pauper's burial.

Intent To Harm At Center Of Bradley Manning's Trial

June 3
Carrie Johnson / NPR
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In the three years since his arrest, Bradley Manning, the slight Army private first class with close-cropped blond hair and thick military glasses, has become less of a character than a cause.

Barrier-Breaking Surfer's Legacy A Reminder Of Work To Do

June 3
Karen GrigsBates / NPR

The Saturday morning fog was burning off above the part of Santa Monica's beach known as the Inkwell. It's the stretch of sand to which black Southern Californians were relegated by de facto segregation until the 1960s.

Air Force Trains Special Lawyers For Sexual Assault Victims

June 3
Larry Abramson / NPR

Many victims of sexual assault in the military say only one experience comes close to the pain of the actual crime, and that's going to court to bring charges against the attacker.

Surf Air Offers 'All You Can Fly' For A Monthly Fee

June 3
Wendy Kaufman / NPR
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A new airline with an innovative, "all you can fly" business model is about to take off. Federal regulators have just given California-based Surf Air permission to begin passenger service.