Good morning. It’s Wednesday, May 10.
- Doubts linger as Sen. Dianne Feinstein returns to capital.
- California to pay $24 million over death in police custody.
- And a Palm Springs dog wins top prize at Westminster.
Sen. Dianne Feinstein flew back to Washington on Tuesday after a monthslong absence to recuperate from shingles that led to calls from within her own party to resign. She was expected to return to the Senate as early as Wednesday, restoring a Democratic majority to the Judiciary Committee, where confirmations of some judicial nominees had stalled. A source told the S.F. Chronicle that people close to Feinstein, 89, worried whether she will be up to the rigor of returning to work. S.F. Chronicle | A.P.
California farmers have been trying out new crops to adapt to warming temperatures. Among them is Gary Gragg, who planted mango trees about 25 miles west of Sacramento. It may be the continent’s northernmost grove of mangoes, which are normally grown in places like Florida and Puerto Rico. “Climate change isn’t all bad,” Gragg said. “People almost never talk about the positives of global warming, but there will be winners and losers everywhere.” CalMatters
San Francisco’s Board of Supervisors on Tuesday passed a resolution calling on District Attorney Brooke Jenkins to release video in the April 27 fatal shooting of an alleged shoplifter by a Walgreens security guard, escalating a clash between the legislative body of the city’s top prosecutor. Jenkins has declined to charge the guard, saying he was acting in self-defense. On Monday, she ripped into Supervisor Shamann Walton, who had urged her to reconsider, accusing him of trying to score political points. KQED | SF Standard
- “Wholly inappropriate.” Read Jenkins’ letter.
Cyn Wang is a daughter of Chinese immigrants. She’s married to a woman from Mexico, voted for Sen. Elizabeth Warren in the 2020 presidential election, and once served in the Obama administration. But when she and other parents living on San Francisco’s politically moderate west side asked the San Francisco Democratic Party to charter their new club, they were accused of being closet Republicans and rebuffed. “It’s very, ‘You’re not even allowed in.’ It’s very ‘Mean Girls,” said Janice Li, a party member who supported the new club. S.F. Chronicle
In 2020, the office tower at 350 California Street in San Francisco was offered for $250 million. A buyer has now reached a deal on the property for between $60 million and $67.5 million, a stunning 75% below the earlier offering. The pending sale is being viewed as a sign of what such towers are now worth in post-pandemic San Francisco. The city’s office vacancy rate has soared to more than 30%, up from about 4% in early 2020. SFGATE | The Real Deal
Jeff Carpoff was a down-on-his-luck auto mechanic in Martinez who invented a portable solar generator and sold it to an eager cadre of believers including Hollywood, Warren Buffet, and the U.S. government. But, as a federal judge said before sentencing Carpoff to 30 years, he was “selling air.” Here’s the engrossing story of how Carpoff defrauded more than a dozen corporate customers out of almost $1 billion. 👉 The Atlantic
When Tommy York landed an engineering job at Google in December 2021, he thought he’d finally be able to buy a home in San Francisco. His pay package included a $175,000 stock grant to be paid out over four years. Then the market turned. In January, he was laid off along with thousands of other Google employees. His stock payout: about $46,000. “Tech workers aren’t as rich as they used to be,” the Wall Street Journal reported.
UC Berkeley got its name from the 18th-century philosopher George Berkeley. He was among Ireland’s greatest thinkers, but he was also an unapologetic slaver. That’s why last month Trinity College Dublin, Ireland’s oldest university, announced that it would “dename” its central library, the Berkeley. The move has added momentum to discussions already percolating in Berkeley to do the same. S.F. Chronicle | SFist
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California agreed to pay $24 million to the family of a man who died in police custody after screaming “I can’t breathe” as CHP officers restrained him while trying to forcibly draw his blood during a 2020 traffic stop, lawyers said Tuesday. The settlement was said to be the largest of its kind by the state of California. Last month, the Los Angeles County district attorney charged seven officers and a nurse with manslaughter in the death of Edward Bronstein, a 38-year-old father of five. A.P.
One Los Angeles firefighter used a department cellphone to solicit a prostitute. Another drove with a blood-alcohol level more than double the legal limit and shoved a police officer. A third kicked a homeless man in the head with his steel-toe boot while the man was lying motionless. None of them lost their jobs. According to a journalistic investigation, the Los Angeles Fire Department almost never terminates firefighters, even in cases of crimes or egregious wrongdoing. L.A. Times
Buddy Holly, a petit basset griffon Vendéen from Palm Springs, won best in show at the Westminster Kennel Club Dog Show on Tuesday. A friendly boy, 6-year-old Buddy Holly beat about 2,500 competitors to become the first dog of his breed, a type of hound, to clinch the prestigious prize. His owner, Janice Hayes, wiped tears after the win, calling the moment “so surreal.” She said she was excited for Buddy Holly to get back to being a regular dog and hanging out with “his girlfriends.” A.P. | N.Y. Times
Watching traffic rarely makes it onto bucket lists. But part of the beauty of Route 74, which winds from the Pacific through mountains and desert to the twinkling cities of the Coachella Valley, is the highway itself. From a pullout south of Palm Desert, you can take in awesome views of the San Jacinto and San Gorgonio mountains, the northern edge of the Salton Sea, and the slalom-like stretch of road known as Seven Level Hill, pictured above. Roadtripping California
- Eleven classic California byways. 👉 Visit California
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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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