California Sun

Good morning. It's Tuesday, Nov. 12.
Today's edition: 12 items, < 4 minutes

The convicted criminals in California police forces.
Gavin Newsom's lucrative relationship with PG&E.
And a backlash to the California invasion of Boise.



Criminal cops represent a fraction of the force, but they would likely have been ousted in other states.

After U.C. Berkeley journalists obtained a list of criminal convictions of California law enforcement officers, the state's attorney general warned them to destroy it or face legal action. Instead, they collaborated with newsrooms across the state to investigate the document. Among the findings:

More than 80 officers working today are convicted criminals. Yet thanks to lax policies for punishing misconduct, they were allowed to keep carrying a gun and patrolling the streets. IRP/Bay Area News Group
Brutalizing your loved ones doesn't necessarily cost you your job — or your gun — if you work in law enforcement in California. A crucial variable in whether a cop loses his job? If the case was covered in the press. IRP/Bay Area News Group

They hired an officer who pulled a gun on his stepdaughter's friends. Another recruit was investigated for child porn, and a third got mixed up in a burglary ring. McFarland, a small farming town north of Bakersfield, has many cops with dubious backgrounds. "Second chance PD," they call it. Department leaders said that with starting pay of $20 an hour they haven't have the luxury of making squeaky clean hires. Sacramento Bee


Gov. Gavin Newsom surveyed a home destroyed in the Kincade Fire on Oct. 25 in Geyserville.

Karl Mondon/Mercury News via Getty Images

Gov. Gavin Newsom has excoriated PG&E for mismanaging funds that he says should have gone to infrastructure upgrades. But over the past two decades, Newsom and his wife accepted more than $700,000 from PG&E, its foundation, and its employees as the utility supported his political campaigns, his ballot initiatives, his inauguration festivities, and his wife's foundation, according to a review of records. Washington Post

Some elected officials and experts say decades of chumminess between regulators and PG&E has played a part in the wildfire crisis California finds itself in. Sacramento Bee


The downtown Boise skyline.

Joe Jaszewski for The Washington Post via Getty Images

A candidate in Boise's recent mayoral election ran on a simple platform: Stop the California invasion. A stream of Californians drawn to Idaho's leafy and more affordable capital has locals bristling. "If you come here and love it, everything's fine," a local homeless advocate said. "If you come here and fly that California flag in your driveway and have stickers on your car that say, 'Santa Cruz,' there's going to be some hard feelings." L.A. Times


Northern California


Google is collecting and analyzing health records from tens of millions of Americans across 21 states through a deal with the country's second-largest health care system. The data includes names, dates of birth, lab results, diagnoses, and other information — without patients being informed. A U.S. senator called it "beyond shameful." Wall Street Journal | Reuters


Dara Khosrowshahi handed his critics some fresh ammunition.

Philip Pacheco/AFP via Getty Images

Dara Khosrowshahi, Uber's CEO, offered a charitable take of the Saudis' role in murdering journalist Jamal Khashoggi: "I think that people make mistakes, it doesn't mean that they can never be forgiven." Saudi Arabia is Uber's fifth largest shareholder. Khosrowshahi later apologized for the comments, but they had already pumped fresh life into a boycott campaign. Vanity Fair | TechCrunch


Chesa Boudin, 39, is a Rhodes Scholar and graduate of Yale Law School.

Chesa Boudin campaign

Chesa Boudin, a public defender who never prosecuted a case, is San Francisco's new district attorney-elect after stunning Suzy Loftus, the choice of the Democratic establishment. He vowed to crack down on police misconduct, reduce jail populations, and end cash bail. He learned he won the job while visiting his father in prison. L.A. Times | S.F. Chronicle


"I've got my lunch here, it's very threatening as you can see."

Protesters held a lunchtime "eat-in" in the BART system after a police officer was captured on video detaining a man who ate a sandwich on a train platform. The man, who is black, argued and ended up in handcuffs for "resisting." Public outrage prompted an apology from the BART's general manager. | SFist

A BART police union demanded an apology from a BART official who participated in the eat-in protest, accusing her of "advocating lawlessness." S.F. Examiner


Southern California


A supporter of President Trump during a visit by Donald Trump Jr. at UCLA on Sunday.

Mark Ralston/AFP via Getty Images

Donald Trump Jr. came to UCLA to promote his book expecting to be taunted by liberal protesters. "Name a time when conservatives have disrupted even the furthest leftist on a college campus," he said to the crowd. "It doesn't happen that way. We're willing to listen." Then a group of far-right conservatives, angered that he wasn't taking questions, heckled him off the stage. The Guardian | Washington Post


A freshman at San Diego State University died after an event at a fraternity. All 14 of the campus's fraternities have been suspended. Few details were released, but the university president said police "uncovered information which alleges that a fraternity was involved in possible misconduct." S.D. Union-Tribune | Daily Aztec


Christopher Dennis was a staple of Hollywood Boulevard before spiraling into drug addiction.

Kevork Djansezian/Getty Images

For more than two decades, Christopher Dennis portrayed Superman on Hollywood Boulevard. Known as unfailingly polite, he lived a few blocks away in a small apartment filled with Superman paraphernalia. Last week, TMZ reported that Dennis had been found dead at the age of 52, apparently homeless and lying in a metal bin. Columnist Nita Lelyveld went to the boulevard, where she learned about the reality of life on the Walk of Fame. "Nobody cares about nobody out here," a Freddy Krueger said. L.A. Times


Xavier Rony

Here's Victoria Beach, one of Southern California's great beaches for explorers. Easily missed, it's nestled off Pacific Coast Highway in Laguna Beach behind a neighborhood of mansions. Those who make the trek down a long staircase are rewarded with caves, tide pools, a circular stone pool, pictured above, and a 60-foot tower that looks like it belongs in a fairy tale. California Through My Lens | California Beaches


Thanks for reading!

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

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