California Sun

Good morning. It's Monday, March 30.

Health officials brace for a crucial week ahead.
Mansion-building continues under stay-at-home order.
And NRA sues the governor over gun store closures.



The Navy hospital ship Mercy arrived in San Pedro on Friday to increase the local health care capacity.

Mario Tama/Getty Images

The number of coronavirus patients in intensive care units in California doubled in a single day, from roughly 200 on Friday to more than 400 on Saturday, Gov. Gavin Newsom said. Hospitalizations also jumped roughly 40 percent. The numbers may seem small in a state the size of California, but the percentage increase is troubling. Those numbers "are the first thing I look at when I get up in the morning," Newsom said. S.F. Chronicle

Health officials braced for a crucial week ahead. A.P.


First cases in Kings County, 12 patients at a nursing home in San Bernardino County, and five more deaths across L.A. County. Here are the latest coronavirus totals, according to tallies by the S.F. Chronicle and N.Y. Times:

Confirmed cases:
141,995 in U.S.
6,300 in California
1,903 in Bay Area
3,690 in Southern California

2,486 in U.S.
132 in California

Cumulative cases and deaths in California:

See trackers of cases in California, the U.S., and worldwide.


In 2006, California spent $214 million on a massive emergency medical reserve, including mobile hospitals, ventilators, and N95 respirators. Then the ambitious effort hit a wall: a recession, falling state revenues, and a fiscally minded governor in Jerry Brown. The stockpile collapsed and the hospitals were defunded. Reveal

California let nearly a quarter of its public health labs close since 1999. Sacramento Bee


Dr. Sara Cody has been leading the Bay Area's coronavirus response.

Melina Mara/Washington Post via Getty Images

Meet Dr. Sara Cody, the doctor who ordered the nation's first coronavirus lockdown. Santa Clara County's public health officer, Cody got a call at 6:49 a.m. on Jan. 31. "You've got your first positive," a voice said. Since then, Cody's colleagues say, she has seldom hesitated in a furious race against the virus. Mercury News


Even as millions of people stay home in the Bay Area, construction sites have continued to hum along thanks to carve-outs in the shelter-in-place order. Among the projects: multimillion-dollar mansions, high-rise waterfront condos, and a stately Victorian — all deemed "essential" in San Francisco and Silicon Valley. Washington Post


People sat on a hill overlooking Dodger Stadium on what was supposed to be opening day last Thursday.

Mario Tama/Getty Images

An analysis of tracking data from smartphones showed that Californians, overall, have performed admirably under stay-at-home orders, reducing their average distance traveled by a whopping 48 percent between February and March. Results varied by county. Napa and Mono counties, for example, were among the most conscientious. Modoc, Siskiyou, and Lassen counties: Not so much. Sacramento Bee

In the Seattle area, where the first U.S. cases were reported, evidence suggests that containment strategies are paying off. Experts cited hopeful signs in the Bay Area too. N.Y. Times | S.F. Chronicle


Sonoma County is under a strict shelter-in-place order. So what was the county's top emergency management official doing at the beach with his family over the weekend? Asked about the transgression, Chris Godley didn't have an answer. "Any reasoning or justification is going to sound thin," he said. Press Democrat

Outdoor options shrank further as officials closed vehicular access to all state parks and shuttered campgrounds on Forest Service and BLM land.


"Go ahead and arrest me," said a surfer to a lifeguard in Manhattan Beach Saturday morning. So the lifeguard saw to it. Summoned to the beach, the police issued the surfer a citation that carries a fine of up to $1,000 for violating a Los Angeles County order closing most beaches and parks to the public. Easy Reader News

Beaches across Southern California were mostly empty over the weekend as police enforced closures from helicopters and cruisers. L.A. Times | O.C. Register


Customers lined up for guns in Burbank on March 17.

Sarah Reingewirtz/Pasadena Star-News via Getty Images

The NRA sued Gov. Gavin Newsom and the sheriff of Los Angeles County over gun store closures. Newsom has given county sheriffs discretion over whether to close the stores, a step taken by Sheriff Alex Villanueva over concerns about crowding during a rapidly spreading pandemic. But what's really going on, the NRA explained, is a partisan scheme "to disarm you and your loved ones." Mercury News | CNN


"Y'all, we are not Louisiana. We are not New York state. We are not California."

That was Alabama's governor explaining why she would not be ordering a stay-home order. In raw numbers, it's true that Alabama has fewer cases than the vastly larger California. But in terms of the spread, the data suggest the coronavirus is barreling through Alabama even faster. Washington Post

"The coronavirus isn't just a blue state problem." FiveThirtyEight


Other coronavirus developments:

The federal government sent California 170 ventilators — but none of them worked. A Silicon Valley company is fixing them. L.A. Times
With everyone sheltering in place, coyotes have been spotted roaming San Francisco's empty streets.
"As the president fiddles," Speaker Nancy Pelosi said, "people are dying." Sen. Lindsey Graham responded: "That's the most shameful, disgusting statement by any politician in modern history." The Hill



Lonnie Franklin Jr. in a Los Angeles courtroom in 2016.

Al Seib/L.A. Times via Getty Images

The Grim Sleeper is dead. Lonnie Franklin Jr., a small-time car thief turned convicted serial killer, was found unresponsive in his cell at San Quentin State Prison, officials said. He was 67. Franklin preyed on women in South Los Angeles for more than two decades. "We can now be at peace," a victim's stepmother said. L.A. Times | A.P.


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The California Sun is written by Mike McPhate, a former California correspondent for the New York Times.

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