Play Live Radio
Next Up:
Available On Air Stations
Watch Live

San Diegans react to Trump’s guilty verdict

 June 3, 2024 at 5:00 AM PDT

Good Morning, I’m Debbie Cruz….it’s Monday, June 3rd.


San Diegans react to former president Donald Trump’s guilty verdict. More on that next. But first... let’s do the headlines….


The rolling strike by U-A-W academic workers arrives at UC-SD today (Monday).

The strike is a response to the University of California's recent actions involving protests in support of Palestinians on its campuses.

Eight-thousand academic researchers, post-doctoral scholars, and graduate student workers are expected to walk off the job at UC-SD.

Sarah Van Dijk is one of the head stewards.

“Students at our campus are going to be standing up to strike which means we will be withholding all labor that brings value to the university…that includes things like grading, teaching, and our research.” 

U-A-W members at U-C Santa Barbara also plan to strike today (Monday).

The union says academic workers at U-C Irvine will walk out on Wednesday.


The former superintendent of Poway Unified School District has filed a lawsuit against the district.

Marian Kim Phelps was fired in April after an investigation into her apparent bullying of Del Norte High School students.

Phelps allegedly targeted members of the softball team after her daughter did not receive adequate applause at an athletic awards ceremony.

In her lawsuit filed late last week, Phelps denies these allegations, and claims she wasn’t given a fair hearing by the school board.

The complaint asks the court to set aside the termination.

A spokesperson for Poway Unified did not respond to a request for comment before our deadline.


After years of delays, the mastermind behind one of the largest bribery and fraud schemes in military history is set to be sentenced this November.

Former Navy contractor Leonard Glenn Francis pleaded guilty to bribery and fraud charges in 20-15.

He wasn’t sentenced at the time because he was the government’s star witness against dozens of Navy officials facing bribery and conspiracy charges.

He escaped from house arrest in San Diego and fled to Venezuela in 20-22.

He returned to the U-S in a prisoner swap in December, and is in custody in San Diego.

In court Friday judge Janis Sammartino set Francis’ sentencing for November 5th.


From KPBS, you’re listening to San Diego News Now. Stay with me for more of the local news you need.


The verdict for former president Donald Trump is guilty on all 34 felony counts of falsifying business records.

Reporter Melissa Mae got local reactions.

MM: San Diegans weighed in on the guilty verdict of former President Donald Trump. MM: Oscar Castellanos is a Republican, Trump supporter and says the verdict is dangerous and scary.  OC “I was very upset. I was very sad. Like I said, I'm a very strong Trump supporter. Republican supporter. I was very upset of everything.” MM: Democrat Jared Zachary says he is both excited and surprised about the guilty verdict against Trump.  XV “I think so far him as an official has shown that he can get away with a lot and so I didn't really think that anybody or jury was really going to, like, keep him accountable. And so I was surprised that he was found guilty on all accounts. .” MM: Sentencing for Trump is set for July 11th and he could face up to four years in jail. Legal experts say Trump going to jail is unlikely, especially for this type of crime. Melissa Mae KPBS News.


San Diego is one of three cities in the state chosen for a grant program that aims to reconnect communities divided by freeways.

But metro reporter Andrew Bowen says the program is in jeopardy.

AB: When Caltrans built Interstate-805 in the 1970s, the freeway devastated and divided neighborhoods on either side. The state's Reconnecting Communities program is meant to heal those wounds. But under the latest budget proposal out of Sacramento, the grant program would be cut to $50 million — a third of its original size. Leslie Reynolds leads Groundwork San Diego, a nonprofit advising local officials on how to spend the funds. LR: "What really we need to be aspiring to is equitable investments to create some sort of equality amongst these communities with the resources that are abundant in other communities." AB: The governor and state lawmakers have until June 15 to adopt a budget that closes an estimated deficit of $27 billion. Andrew Bowen, KPBS news.


Road safety advocates say Mayor Todd Gloria's proposed budget addresses just eight of the 15 deadliest intersections in San Diego.

Reporter Katie Anastas has more on what they want at the others.

CHANT What do we want? Safe streets. When do we want it? Now. Advocates rallied Friday at Market and 19th Streets. It’s one of the 15 deadliest intersections in San Diego. Mayor Todd Gloria’s proposed budget puts $33 million toward eliminating traffic deaths. But advocates say seven of the fatal 15 aren’t on the list. They’re asking the city to make sure all 15 have crosswalk stripes, countdown signals, and sounds telling pedestrians to walk or wait. Anar Salayev is the CEO of Bike San Diego. SALAYEV The simple fixes recommended here, by Families for Safe Streets, by Circulate San Diego, by Bike San Diego, would add a mere $700,000 to the fiscal year 25 budget – mere pennies for the preservation of the lives of San Diegans. San Diego City Council takes a final vote on the budget on June 11. Katie Anastas, KPBS News.


Vaccines bring a measure of protection from influenza, but the flu mutates so quickly it can render vaccines ineffective.

Sci-tech reporter Thomas Fudge tells us about a molecule being tested in San Diego that might stop all strains of the flu.

The molecule created in the labs of Scripps Research may be a way to stop not just one but many different strains of the flu. In lab experiments, it has disabled a part of the virus that works like a key that allows the flu to enter our cells. Dennis Wolan, a biologist at Genentech, began his work on the compound while running his lab at Scripps. This molecule, what it does, is it’s very broadly neutralizing. Meaning it can target all the different subtypes of the different flus.  This is because the molecule binds with a part of the virus that is the same in many strains of the flu. Scripps Research biologist Ian Wilson says it would be very valuable to have a flexible flu medication on the shelf for future pandemics. We’re currently worried at the moment for these new H5 ones that are spreading through the world. They started in wild birds but they’ve been spreading to mammals. If all goes right, the therapeutic molecule could be taken as a pill, not a shot. But so far all research has been done in vitro. Animal trials will be the next step. SOQ. 


A new program is buying produce from local farmers to feed nutrition insecure San Diegans.

To understand the impact, reporter Katie Hyson followed a radish from ground, to grocery bag.

On a Tuesday morning in May, Byron Nkhoma pulls up radishes. I ask him to taste test. Spicy. Crunchy. Definitely quite juicy. He moved from Zimbabwe in 2015 and started Hukama Produce, a four-acre farm in Ramona. For me, it's like a dream. His mission is to feed the community the best food possible. It is so fresh. Sometimes when it's warm outside, we actually do not even harvest during the day. We like, harvest at midnight. Right? We are out here working at night when it's so cool, the crop is fresh and alive. The taste in the end is so different. Farm sector debt is at a record high. The USDA says one fourth of U-S farms carry debt. And it’s even harder for small to midsize farms like Nkhoma’s. It's a battle in the reds. We were barely, um, having our nose above water. Then in January, the food bank Feeding San Diego partnered with him. Their weekly nearly-$500 dollar order helps stabilize the farm’s finances. Providing steady income that’s hard to get from unpredictable farmers markets. That lets him plan investments. He hopes to hire more labor. Buy shade netting. Nkhoma washes radishes as the delivery truck pulls up. They load up, *nat pops* and I follow them to the Feeding San Diego warehouse in Mira Mesa. There, Byron’s radishes join boxes from 45 other small to mid-size farms in the county. Many run by women and farmers of color. Produce from small farms costs more for buyers like Feeding San Diego. About $2 per pound instead of 20 cents. The USDA’s new local food program aims to even that playing field. It funds local governments to buy from local growers. Leticia Rodriguez sources the produce for Feeding San Diego. She says buying local is better for the environment. Instead of outsourcing sourcing it from another county or another state, we're able to use less fuels, less emissions. And it avoids hundreds of thousands of dollars in shipping fees. Rodriguez says offering fresh produce, not just canned or boxed food, is vital. Food is medicine, and a lot of the communities that we serve, they do have more health issues. They're more vulnerable. So this allows them to have access to produce that they normally may not be able to purchase. And she says recipients prefer the smaller farm produce. Typically in our normal program, we get staples like potatoes, onions, cucumbers. With this program, It's very much farmer's market type of produce, like Swiss chard, shiitaki mushrooms, bok choi, very culturally preferred produce that we normally would not be able to get. And it's extremely fresh. Nearly 1,000 people come to their produce distribution every week. I watch them line up the following Saturday. A rainbow fills the long tables – watermelons, peppers and more, all the way to Nkhoma’s radishes. Volunteers pass out thousands of pounds of food. I hope to speak with a radish recipient. But I discover most people in line have limited English. Feeding San Diego doesn’t track demographics of their produce recipients. Volunteers say there are a lot of immigrants. Especially from the Philippines. The Hunger Coalition estimates one in four people in San Diego County are nutrition insecure. Disproportionately people of color. Finally, Nkhoma’s radishes in her bag, one woman agrees to talk. Ofelia West. What do you think you'll do with the radishes? I'll just make it a salad. I like fresh vegetables and fruits. I think of Nkhoma’s dream to feed his community good food. The program is funded through July of next year. Katie Hyson, KPBS News.


That’s it for the podcast today. As always you can find more San Diego news online at KPBS dot org. Join us again tomorrow for the day’s top stories. I’m Debbie Cruz. Thanks for listening and have a great Monday.

Ways To Subscribe
Former President Donald Trump listens as he speaks with reporters while in flight on his plane after a campaign rally at Waco Regional Airport, in Waco, Texas, Saturday, March 25, 2023, while en route to West Palm Beach, Fla.
Evan Vucci
Former President Donald Trump listens as he speaks with reporters while in flight on his plane after a campaign rally at Waco Regional Airport, in Waco, Texas, Saturday, March 25, 2023, while en route to West Palm Beach, Fla.
San Diego County residents react to former President Donald Trump’s criminal conviction. In other news, a San Diego program that aims to reconnect communities divided by freeways is in jeopardy. Plus, we follow bunches of radishes from the ground to the grocery bags of nutrition insecure San Diego residents.