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Stories for March 26, 2013

DOMA Challenge Tests Federal Definition Of Marriage

March 26
Nina Totenberg / NPR
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After weeks and months of public debate and speculation about the legal fate of same-sex marriage, the second round of arguments takes place at the U.S. Supreme Court on Wednesday.

City Council Calls On Cable Companies To Resolve Padres Dispute

March 26
City News Service
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The City Council today unanimously passed a resolution calling on Time Warner Cable and Fox Sports San Diego to resolve a dispute so that residents of northern parts of the city can watch Padres games this season.

Opponents of Raising Minimum Wage Say It Would Mean Job Loss

March 26
Amy Quinton, Capital Public Radio

Opponents of a bill that would increase California’s minimum wage have released a study that says the measure would mean job losses for many of the state’s small businesses.

At Arguments, Supreme Court Takes Halting Steps Into Gay Marriage Issue

March 26
Nina Totenberg / NPR
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At the U.S. Supreme Court on Tuesday, the moment had finally arrived. After four years of litigation in the lower courts, the Supreme Court was hearing a challenge to California's ban on same-sex marriage. But minutes into oral arguments, it became clear that the justices may not give either side the clear-cut victory it wants.

Regulations Could Lead To End of Flame Retardants in Furniture

March 26
Amy Quinton, Capital Public Radio
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The California Department of Consumer Affairs is proposing regulations that could lead to the end of flame retardant chemicals in furniture.

MASTERPIECE CLASSIC: Mr. Selfridge

March 26
MASTERPIECE CLASSIC: Mr. Selfridge Tease photo

Jeremy Piven (ENTOURAGE) stars as a wheeling-dealing American who shows early 1900s Londoners how to shop. Based on the life of colorful retail magnate Harry Gordon Selfridge, the new eight-part series is created by Emmy Award-winning writer Andrew Davies (PRIDE AND PREJUDICE, "Bleak House"). Also starring are Frances O’Connor ("Madame Bovary"), Aisling Loftus ("Page Eight"), Zoe Tapper ("Zen"), Amanda Abbington (CASE HISTORIES), and Samuel West ("Any Human Heart"). Who knew shopping could be like this!

Fines Slashed In Grain Bin Entrapment Deaths

March 26
Howard Berkes, Jim Morris
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The night before he died, Wyatt Whitebread couldn't stand the thought of going back to the grain bins on the edge of Mount Carroll, Ill.

San Diego Trial Begins for Alleged Drug Gang Leaders

March 26
By Adrian Florido

The defendants are alleged members of a splinter group of Tijuana's Arellano-Felix cartel.

Food Fraud Database Lets Us All Play Detective

March 26
Nancy Shute / NPR
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By now we know that not every food is what it seems.

Man Sentenced To 30 Months For Pointing Laser At Airplane

March 26
Scott Neuman / NPR

A man in California has been sentenced to 2 1/2 years in prison for pointing a laser at a small jet as it approached the runway at Burbank airport.

TRANSCRIPT & AUDIO: Supreme Court Arguments On California Gay Marriage Ban

March 26

The Supreme Court on Tuesday heard oral arguments on California's voter-approved gay marriage ban, known as Proposition 8. Audio of Tuesday morning's arguments is available above and a transcript, as prepared by the court, follows.

Governor Orders Flags Lowered For Fallen California Green Beret

March 26
By Beth Ford Roth
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Governor Jerry Brown ordered flags above the State Capitol lowered to half-staff to honor fallen Army Sgt. 1st Class James F. Grissom of Hayward, California.

LIVE FROM LINCOLN CENTER: Kristin Chenoweth: The Dames Of Broadway? All Of 'Em!!!

March 26
By Jennifer Robinson
LIVE FROM LINCOLN CENTER: Kristin Chenoweth: The Dames Of Broadway? All Of 'Em!!!  Tease photo

Effortlessly able to transition between stage, television and film, Emmy- and Tony Award-winning actress and singer Kristin Chenoweth presents a special concert from Lincoln Center’s American Songbook series. “The Dames of Broadway…All of ’Em!!!” offers Chenoweth singing beloved songs of the Broadway stage.

San Diego DA Zeroes In On Stalkers

March 26
Midday Edition
Evening Edition
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One in 12 women will be stalked in their lifetime. San Diego County's District Attorney has released an online podcast featuring information on how to avoid being a victim.

Survey: California's LGBT Students Feel Unsafe

March 26
Midday Edition
Evening Edition
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A survey of California's LGBT students reveals many feel unsafe due to high levels of harassment and anti-gay slurs from students and staff. Do San Diego county schools make the grade when it comes to implementing programs and resources for its LGBT students?

An Old Globe Musical Puts An Aristocratic Spin On Murder

March 26
Midday Edition
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"A Gentleman's Guide to Love and Murder" is musical-comedy about deadly intentions and unfortunate relatives.

Fallen Marine Who Surprised Family At Christmas Awarded Bronze Star (Video)

March 26
By Beth Ford Roth
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Fallen Twentynine Palms Marine Lance Cpl. Jason Barfield was posthumously awarded the Bronze Star this month for heroism in combat. Home Post readers may remember Barfield as the Marine who surprised his little sister at school before Christmas 2010, less than a year prior to his death in Afghanistan.

Gunwalking Report Shows Homeland Security Knew Of Operation

March 26
By Michel Marizco
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The report shows agents in the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives tried to keep rival agents in Homeland Security from discovering they were letting guns into Mexico.

Camp Pendleton Marine Could Face Death Penalty In Navy Vet Killing (Video)

March 26
By Beth Ford Roth
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Camp Pendleton Marine Cpl. Kevin Coset, 23, will stand trial for the murder of 24-year-old Alvin Bulaoro, a Navy veteran and Army reservist.

Drug-Sniffing Dog Case Fails Supreme Court's Smell Test

March 26
Randy Lilleston / NPR

The U.S. Supreme Court turned up its nose a bit Tuesday on the use of drug-sniffing dogs, ruling that the Fourth Amendment limits the ability of police to use the animals near a home.

USS Thatch Called Back To San Diego Early Due To Sequestration

March 26
By Beth Ford Roth
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The Navy has announced the USS Thatch will be called back to its homeport of San Diego in April, cutting short its deployment due to sequestration cuts. In addition, the San Diego-based USS Rentz and USS Jefferson City have had their April deployments cancelled.

Happening Now: Supreme Court Hears First Of Two Gay-Marriage Cases

March 26
Mark Memmott / NPR
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The Supreme Court on Tuesday held the first of two high-profile hearings on laws concerning same-sex marriage (today's focuses on California's Proposition 8 ban on gay marriage; Wednesday's focuses on the Defense of Marriage Act).

Man Crushed To Death In Roadside Mishap

March 26
Toni McAllister / Temecula Patch

A man who was apparently attempting to make a roadside repair Monday afternoon was crushed to death after the vehicle he was working on fell off a carjack, the Riverside County Coroner's Office is reporting.

Some San Diego Voters Head To Polls For City Council District 4 Race

March 26
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A special election will be held today in which nine candidates are competing to fill the San Diego City Council's vacant District 4 seat.

San Diego Council Votes To Direct Filner To Sign TMD Agreement

March 26
By Claire Trageser and City News Service
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The San Diego City Council today approved a resolution requiring Mayor Bob Filner to sign a TMD agreement, even though a judge has ruled the mayor can withhold his signature.

Universal Executives See Different Agency Reactions To Investigation

March 26
By Brad Racino
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Executives from Universal Protection Service watched last week as San Diego's transit agencies reacted to a recent KPBS & inewsource investigation.

Community College Enrollment at 20-Year Low

March 26
By Kyla Calvert
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California community colleges hit a 20-year enrollment low thanks to state funding cuts.

Ex-Political Watchdog Chief Seeks California Fundraising Reform

March 26
By Amita Sharma
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Current rules allow special interests to write checks to lawmakers minutes before key votes.

Quarry Creek Up For A Vote

March 26
By Alison St John
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A controversial new housing development in North County promises a big turnout at a Carlsbad City Council meeting tonight.

San Diego Biotech Firm A World Leader In Sustainability

March 26
By Erik Anderson
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An area global biotechnology firm has made the list of the world’s 100 most sustainable large companies because of its actively shrinking carbon footprint.

UC San Diego To Go Smoke Free

March 26
By Kenny Goldberg
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While UC San Diego will go smoke free this fall, SDSU's policy is still up in the air.

'American Winter' Families Struggle To Survive Fall From Middle Class

March 26
Karen GrigsBates / NPR

It's a visual no parent wants to picture: a child describing what it's like to live in a house with no power for lights, heat or cooking. For many middle-class American parents, it's hard to imagine their family ever facing a situation like that. But a new HBO documentary suggests that many seemingly prosperous parents are only a few misfortunes away from dark houses and empty refrigerators.

Arkansas Medicaid Expansion Attracts Other States' Interest

March 26
Julie Rovner / NPR

Since the Supreme Court made the Medicaid expansion under the federal health law optional last year, states' decisions have largely split along party lines. States run by Democrats have been opting in; states run by Republicans have mostly been saying no or holding back.