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Texas aquarium accidentally kills nearly all fish in its biggest indoor tanks

Written By kolimtiga on Kamis, 16 April 2015 | 12.56

Texas State Aquarium accidentally killed almost all the fish in its two biggest indoor tanks, an aquarium spokesman told the Los Angeles Times.

The animals at the aquarium in Corpus Christi died Tuesday when a new medication was introduced into the water in an effort to control a parasite that was resistant to other treatments, spokesman Richard E. Glover Jr. said.

Such an incident "is extremely rare," said Rob Vernon, spokesman for the Assn. of Zoos and Aquariums.

"It appears to be a truly sad fluke," Glover said. "Considerable losses were sustained."

Before introducing the chemical into the tanks, staffers tested it on a smaller exhibit and found no adverse reaction, he said.

As many as 100 fish were killed in the four affected tanks, the largest of which holds 125,000 gallons, Glover said.

That largest tank held an exhibit called the Islands of Steel, featuring nurse sharks, green moray eels, spadefish, amberjack, tarpon, grouper and a sand tiger shark, according to the aquarium's website.

The creatures the aquarium was trying to kill were the trematoda parasite, Glover said

"Trematoda is a class within the phylum Platyhelminthes," he said. "It includes two groups of parasitic flatworms, known as flukes. They are internal parasites."

Glover did not specify what chemical was used to try to kill the parasite, but the aquarium said in a statement that it "is commonly used by many other aquariums in treating similar issues."

"Nothing like this has ever happened before," Glover said.

Staffers worked through the night to save as many animals as possible and try to figure out what went wrong, and water samples have been sent to labs for testing, he said.

An official at the Aquarium of the Pacific in Long Beach said he sympathizes with the Texas aquarium staffers.

"We manage health problems like parasite infections in fish and also take precautionary steps to minimize the risk to the fish, but complications can still occur," Perry Hampton, Aquarium of the Pacific vice president of animal husbandry, told the Los Angeles Times in an email.

"Fortunately," he said, "we have not experienced such a significant adverse reaction to date and empathize with the staff over the loss of their animals."

Follow Ryan Parker on Twitter, Facebook and Instagram

Copyright © 2015, Los Angeles Times

8:38 p.m.: This story has been updated with a comment from Perry Hampton of the Aquarium of the Pacific.

7:59 p.m.: This story has been updated with more information on the trematoda parasite.

7:05 p.m.: This story has been updated with a comment from the Assn. of Zoos and Aquariums.

The first version of this story was published at 6:32 p.m.

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Cities criticize California water cuts as unfair, unrealistic

Representatives of urban water suppliers and advocacy groups from across the state have criticized a plan from state water regulators that would force some to cut water consumption by as much as 35% over the next year.

In more than 200 letters to the State Water Resources Control Board released Wednesday, some agencies urged state officials to reconsider how they would implement the mandatory  statewide water-use cut that Gov. Jerry Brown ordered this month.

Many communities called on the board to consider its previous water conservation efforts when setting a reduction target. Other cities said their population data was skewed by an influx of seasonal residents. A few questioned whether their reduction targets were fair, even amid a persistent drought.

The city of Beverly Hills needs to cut water usage by 35% under the state board's current plan. In his letter to officials, Beverly Hills interim City Manager Mahdi Aluzri said meeting that target would take time, adding that the board "should delay any formal enforcement actions until water suppliers have been given an opportunity to develop and fully implement new conservation measures."

"The city recognizes that further conservation measures will be required to achieve the Governor's conservation mandate," Aluzri wrote. "However, the city is concerned that achieving a 35% conservation standard in such a short time may ultimately be infeasible."

A document outlining the state water board's proposed framework says it will "assess suppliers' compliance for both monthly and cumulative water usage reductions."

Writing on behalf of the Los Angeles Department of Water and Power, Senior Assistant General Manager Marty Adams said that because water usage fluctuates due to varying temperatures and precipitation levels, the monthly water-use numbers reported by the state are "meaningless."

"The use of these numbers for compliance will result in failure by the water agencies," Adams wrote.

Instead of using a "one-month snapshot," DWP recommended using a "12-month rolling average" to assess compliance and perform enforcement.   

An official in the City of Compton wrote to the state with another perspective.

Deputy Director of Public Works Chad Blais wrote that residents "simply can't afford" many basic services such as water, electricity and gas. Under the state's framework, Compton residents are credited with using only 65 gallons per person per day, which Blias said is "a direct reflection of …  economic hardship" rather than proof that the community has changed its water-use habits.

Still, 65 gallons per capita means Compton would have to cut 20% of its overall water usage over the course of the next year.

"If you drive through the city of Compton most of the front yards are brown," Blais wrote.  "Therefore, the prospect of achieving an additional 20% reduction from this community is not feasible."

Desert Water Agency General Manager David K. Luker urged the water board to "take a position on outdoor landscaping rather than laying blame at the feet of local agencies." He wrote that a 35% water-use reduction would result in a $10.1-million loss in revenue for the water supplier, which serves resort communities in the Coachella Valley such as Palm Springs.

"A customer came to our office this week and asked us who he should file suit against when his property value decreases because the landscaping that he has invested tens of thousands of dollars in has died," Luker wrote.

Cities and water agencies in San Diego County followed the lead of the county water authority in protesting that the proposed reductions do not give credit to areas that have already begun reducing water usage and finding new sources of water.

The water authority is investing in a $1 billion-desalination plant under construction in Carlsbad that, by year's end, is expected to begin providing 7% to 10% of the county's water needs, decreasing the demand for water from northern California and the Colorado River.

Potable water use in the county was 12% lower last year than in 1990 despite an increase in population of 700,000, according to the water authority.

The proposed percentage cutbacks "punish those who have conserved and reward communities that did not make such early and sustained commitment to conservation," said Kimberly Thorner, general manager of the Olivenhain Municipal Water District in northern San Diego County.

Also, farmers said their businesses would be "devastated" by the percentage cutbacks that would treat San Diego County farming areas like urban districts rather than with the same exemption as water districts serving farmers in the Central Valley. The county has a $2 billion a year farming economy.

"We cannot just turn off water at 20-35% and expect the trees and bushes to thrive," wrote Neil Nagata of Nagata Bros. Farms in San Luis Rey near Oceanside. "If I do not produce a crop I will not have any income to continue farming at all."

A different perspective came from Dan Singer, city manager in Vista, who suggested that public schools and college campuses "be subject to the mandatory water use reductions" imposed on cities.

"Frequently school districts override local building and zoning codes," Singer wrote.

The state water board's preliminary plan places the heaviest conservation burden on cities and towns with the highest rates of per-capita water consumption during one month in 2014. The 135 communities facing the largest water usage cut include small rural communities as well as affluent enclaves such as Newport Beach and Beverly Hills.

Cities that had the lowest per-capita water use in September 2014 — including Santa Cruz and Seal Beach, and the community of East Los Angeles — would be required to cut just 10%.

Most communities would be required to cut water use by 20% to 25%, including Los Angeles, San Diego, Long Beach, Santa Ana, San Jose and Anaheim.

The conservation targets were part of a framework the state board unveiled to comply with Gov. Jerry Brown's historic order requiring a 25% cut in water use in cities and towns statewide over the next year. The proposal assigns targets to more than 400 local water agencies, though not all of them submitted input.

Under the preliminary framework, the state will measure whether each community hits its target by comparing overall water use over the next year with 2013 levels.

Agencies that don't comply with the rules could face fines of up to $10,000 a day.

"State Water Board staff are currently working on a set of draft emergency regulations intended to reflect the thoughtful comments we receive to the framework issued last week," board spokesman George Kostyrko said in an email.

Those draft regulations are due out Friday, according to a schedule previously set by the water board.

Twitter: @bymattstevens


Copyright © 2015, Los Angeles Times

5:40 p.m.: This post was updated to include comments from a representative of the city of Compton.

5:20 p.m.: This post was updated to include comments from a representative of the Los Angeles Department of Water and Power.

This article was first posted at 4:54 p.m.

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Baseball: Logan Pouelsen leads Huntington Beach comeback win

Down, 5-1, early on, Huntington Beach rallied for a 9-5 victory over Edison on Wednesday in a Sunset League game.

Logan Pouelsen had a double, triple and four RBI for the Oilers (11-7, 3-1). He also struck out two in his one inning of relief. Jake Scott had two hits and three RBI for Edison (14-3, 4-2).

Huntington Beach took over first place after Newport Harbor defeated Los Alamitos, 3-2, on a walk-off single by Rigsby Duncan. Liam Ogburn threw a complete game.

In the Trinity League, Santa Margarita defeated St. John Bosco, 11-1. Nick Plaskett and Andrew Mendonca each had three hits. Kyle Bushousen picked up the pitching win.

In the Foothill League, Valencia defeated West Ranch, 10-1. Kevin Chandler improved to 5-0. Scott Ogrin had three hits and raised his batting average to .557. Valencia is 12-4 and 5-1. Hart defeated Canyon, 6-1. Jack Ralston allowed three hits and struck out seven. Austin Russ had three hits. Saugus defeated Golden Valley, 8-0. Anthony Donatella threw a three-hitter.

In a battle for first place in the Crestview League, Nick Sprengel struck out eight in El Dorado's 6-2 win over Foothill. El Dorado is 7-0 in league. Esperanza defeated Yorba Linda, 15-2. Erick Leef went four for four. El Modena defeated Brea, 8-3. Brett Conine finished with three hits.

In the Baseline League, Etiwanda defeated Los Osos, 5-1, behind Grant Ashcroft, who threw a complete game. Chino Hills defeated Rancho Cucamonga, 6-0. Bailey Falter struck out six and allowed eight hits in the shutout. Konnor Zickefoose had a triple and home run.

In the Marmonte League, Calabasas defeated Westlake, 10-2. Grant Nechak threw six innings and also contributed two hits and two RBI. Parker Brahms had three RBI and Max Sonnenberg added two hits. Matt Lautz threw a complete game in Agoura's 8-1 win over Newbury Park. Joey Dawes had three hits and two RBI.

Oaks Christian defeated Thousand Oaks, 6-5. Holden Christian struck out 10 in five innings. Noal Prewett went three for three with three RBI. John Glenn homered for Thousand Oaks.

In the Coastal Canyon League, Ryan Bill threw shutout ball for 6 1/3 innings in Moorpark's 2-0 win over Simi Valley. Fox Anderson and Patrick Valdez had two hits apiece.

In the Palomeres League, Erik Cha threw a complete game in Ayala's 15-2 win over Claremont. Ayala is 11-7 and 5-1. South Hills defeated Diamond Bar, 5-0. Ryan Mauch and Hayden Petrovick combined on the shutout. Glendora defeated Bonita, 7-4. Hayden Pearce threw five shutout innings of relief. RJ Romo had two hits and two RBI.

In the Southwestern League, Great Oak defeated Vista Murrieta, 9-3. Logan Morrison, Hunter Johnson and Tyler Haggard each had two hits.

Left-hander Easton Lucas of Grace Brethren threw his second no-hitter of the season, striking out 14 in a 5-0 win over Santa Clara.

In the Bay League, Mira Costa defeated Palos Verdes, 5-3. Michael Rumpp picked up his fifth win and Trevor Franklin got the save.

In the South Coast League, Noah Fluman threw a complete game and El Toro knocked off Aliso Niguel and Kyle Molnar, 5-2. Eric Wagaman hit a home run for Aliso Niguel. Dana Hills (18-3, 3-2) defeated Tesoro, 3-2. Marrick Crouse threw the complete game, giving up six hits.

In the Del Rey League, Bishop Amat defeated Cathedral, 7-5. Sergio Robles had two hits and two RBI. Brandon Godoy hit a grand slam during a seven-run sixth inning.

In the Empire League, Cypress defeated Pacifica, 3-1. Dominic Fletcher had a three-run home run.

Jacob Barham went four for four in Long Beach Wilson's 8-5 win over Gardena Serra.

In the Suburban League, Omar Myzel had three hits in La Mirada's 9-0 win over Artesia.

In the Golden Coast League, Sierra Canyon defeated Campbell Hall, 3-2. Christian Hernandez improved to 4-0 with five strikeouts. Jake Patterson and Billy Edwards each had two hits.


Copyright © 2015, Los Angeles Times
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Baseball: Jeremy Polon pitches ECR past Chatsworth, 4-1

You can always count on a little drama in the El Camino Real-Chatsworth game.

Left-hander Jeremy Polon of El Camino Real was cruising along with a 4-0 lead. Then Chatsworth loaded the bases in the seventh. Would the Chancellors pull out a comeback win?

Not on Wednesday. Polon was able to complete the 4-1 victory and provide a critical West Valley League win for the Conquistadores (15-6, 3-0) over the Chancellors (14-8, 2-1).

Polon scattered seven hits, striking out four and walking three. El Camino Real knocked out sophomore Tommy Palomera early on. Colton Snyder went three for three and James Terrazas added two hits. Adrian Acosta had three hits for Chatsworth. The two schools meet again on Friday at Chatsworth.

Cleveland held on for 10-8 win over Taft. Ben Kaser and Austin White had three hits each. For Taft, Max Mehlman went three for three with a home run. Jake Stacy had a two-run home run.

Adrian Rodriguez struck out eight and walked none in Birmingham's 3-1 win over Granada Hills. He outdueled Chris Murphy, who struck out 10. Jorge Navarrette had two hits for Birmingham.

In the Valley Mission League, Felix Rubi threw the shutout in Kennedy's 2-0 win over Sylmar, giving the Golden Cougars a sweep this week and pretty much assuring that they will face San Fernando for the league title in the final week of the regular season. Rubi struck out eight, walked one and gave up three hits. Juan Jose Gonzalez had two hits.

In the East Valley League, Poly took over first place with a 5-1 win over Verdugo Hills. Isaac Gutierrez threw a complete game, striking out five. Michael Galindo had two hits and two RBI. Arleta defeated North Hollywood, 4-3. Nate Casillas threw a complete game.


Copyright © 2015, Los Angeles Times
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Drew Rucinski has spotty effort in spot start as Angels lose in Texas

Written By kolimtiga on Rabu, 15 April 2015 | 12.56

No matter how well Drew Rucinski pitched Tuesday night, he was not going to remain in the Angels rotation for long, not with Garrett Richards on the verge of returning from left-knee surgery.

But Rucinski was so shaky in his first major league start, an 8-2 loss to the Texas Rangers in Globe Life Park, that he wasn't merely demoted to the bullpen afterward.

The right-hander was optioned to triple-A Salt Lake after getting rocked for four runs and six hits in 22/3 innings, walking four and striking out none in a 77-pitch outing was probably worse than the line score indicated.

Yes, Rucinski could have avoided a three-run second had center fielder Mike Trout and left fielder Matt Joyce not miscommunicated on a catchable Robinson Chirinos drive that fell for a two-run double. Rucinski needed 40 pitches to complete the inning.

But Rucinski fell behind in counts to nine of 16 batters, threw two wild pitches and gave up several hard-hit outs. And right fielder Collin Cowgill bailed him out in the third by throwing out Shin-Soo Choo at second when Choo tried to stretch a single into a double.

"He pitched himself into a lot of trouble tonight," Manager Mike Scioscia said. "I don't think he brought his best game to the mound. He never got on track."

Rucinski, 20 months removed from independent-league ball, won a roster spot with a solid spring in which he went 2-1 with a 2.60 earned-run average, attacked hitters and threw strikes. That Rucinski failed to appear Tuesday night.

"I never got into that groove," Rucinski said. "I fell behind in counts and was kind of all over the place with my fastball."

Much like many of his wayward pitches, a pivotal play in the second did not go Rucinski's way. With the Angels trailing, 1-0, Rucinski was one strike away from escaping a two-on, two-out jam when Chirinos capped an eight-pitch at-bat by driving a ball to deep left-center.

Trout raced to the gap and appeared to have a bead on the ball, and Joyce charged hard from left. Both players pulled up slightly at the last second, and the ball nicked off Trout's glove and fell for a two-run double.

"I thought I was going to catch it," Trout said. "I had a bead on it. I called it, and I think he called it. I thought we were going to run into each other, so I kind of backed up a little bit. It's just one of those things, where I'm getting adjusted to him in left field. It's a big play in the game, obviously. But we'll straighten it out."

Injuries limited the amount of time Joyce, who was acquired from Tampa Bay last winter, spent in left field this spring, and he and Trout are still learning each other's range and tendencies. The two nearly collided on Seth Smith's double to the gap in the April 6 season opener in Seattle.

"We've had a couple of in-between plays, where it's no-man's land," Joyce said. "Two guys are going as hard as they can. I thought I could get there. I called it. Trout came over, he has priority, and he called it. I tried to get out of the way, and I'm sure he caught me out of the corner of his eye."


Twitter: @MikeDiGiovanna

Copyright © 2015, Los Angeles Times
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Grand Jury urges Central Coast city of Guadalupe to dissolve

A speck along the Central Coast, the city of Guadalupe, population 7,080, has seen a lot of history: Father Junipero Serra hauled in the now-agricultural mecca's first cattle, and the sets for director Cecil B. DeMille's silent 1923 epic "The Ten Commandments" rose in the majestic dunes just outside the town limits.

Now the city six miles west of Santa Maria, and four from the ocean, may be facing another historic landmark. A Santa Barbara County grand jury has recommended that cash-strapped Guadalupe dissolve, which would make the city the first in the state to disincorporate since 1973.

In a report titled "Guadalupe Shell Game Must End," the grand jury concluded that more than a decade of financial mismanagement, a declining tax base and increasing debt obligations have all but ensured the doom of the 1.3-square-mile working-class town that was first established in 1840.

According to the grand jurors, well-intentioned but incompetent bureaucrats "inappropriately" transferred about $7.6 million from restricted funds to cover budget shortfalls and ignored the recommendations of city audits and prior grand jury reports to trim expenses. With costs expected to outpace revenue, the report urged the city to pull the plug.

By "moving money from one account to another to keep the city afloat," Guadalupe has engaged in a "shell game" that must come to an end with disincorporation, the jury said.

City Administrator Andrew Carter said he doubted that the Guadalupe City Council would follow the grand jury's recommendation, which is not binding. Disincorporation is a multi-stage legal process that can either be forced on the city by the state Legislature or approved by city voters.

"There's nothing in the report that we don't already know," said Carter, who has held the post since 2013. He faulted grand jurors for dwelling on missteps by past management and giving short shrift to recent efforts to turn the city around.

City employees have taken a 5% pay cut, and this winter, ground broke on a long-awaited housing and commercial development that is expected to boost tax revenue by adding 800 homes. In November, voters overwhelmingly approved three tax initiatives that are expected to bring an additional $315,000 to the city's coffers.

"I doubt that any other community voluntarily imposed three tax measures on themselves," Carter said. Additional changes in utility and other taxes should yield a balanced budget for the next fiscal year, he said.

Carter said county officials' suggestion that Guadalupe disband strikes some in the city as representative of a larger chasm between the farming town and the well-heeled county seat.

"The demographics of Guadalupe are the exact opposite of the demographics of Santa Barbara's," Carter said.

According to the U.S. Census, about 87% of Guadalupe's residents are Latino; 6% of them have a college degree. In Santa Barbara, about 42% of residents have a college degree; 38% are Latino.

No city has dissolved in California since tiny Hornitos in Mariposa County in 1973, one year after the city of Cabazon lost its legal status and was integrated into unincorporated Riverside County. In recent years, Jurupa Valley, Vernon and Maricopa have edged close to dissolution.

At a meeting Tuesday night — the first time the City Council has met since the report was issued last week — members were expected to appoint two of their peers to draft a response to the grand jury. The response is due within three months.


Copyright © 2015, Los Angeles Times
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Clippers guaranteed at least a No. 3 seed after beating Suns, 112-101

The Clippers won their seventh game in a row, and their 14th of their last 15 games after beating the Suns in Phoenix, 112-101, in their final game of the regular season.

More importantly, the win guaranteed the Clippers (56-26) at least a No. 3 seed in the Western Conference. They're currently in second place, half a game ahead of the Houston Rockets and the San Antonio Spurs, who both play Wednesday. The Clippers will keep the second seed only if both the Rockets and the Spurs lose.

The Clippers will start the playoffs Saturday or Sunday, owning home-court advantage in the first round.

The Clippers led by as much as 30 points before the Suns cut the margin to 11 points with two minutes left, prompting Clippers Coach Doc Rivers to put the starters back in the game. But it was too little too late for the Suns (39-43), who finished in 10th place in the West, out of playoff contention.

Each of the Clippers starters except for Matt Barnes finished in double figures. Chris Paul had 22 points on eight-for-17 shooting, including a season-high six three-pointers in 11 attempts in 29 minutes. He also had six assists.

Paul also had a first  -- he played in all 82 games for the first time in his 10 seasons in the league.

Blake Griffin had 20 points on eight-for-14 shooting, eight rebounds and five assists in 30 minutes. DeAndre Jordan had 13 points, 14 rebounds and two blocked shots. Jordan finished the season with 1,226 rebounds, the all-time franchise season record. 

Spencer Hawes had 13 points on five-for-seven shooting, his first time scoring in double figures since March 1.

Follow Melissa Rohlin on Twitter @melissarohlin

Copyright © 2015, Los Angeles Times
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Angels fall to Rangers, 8-2, thanks to Robinson Chirinos' five RBIs

AT THE PLATE: The Angels threatened in the first two innings, but Rangers starter Nick Martinez got Matt Joyce to line out to shortstop and David Freese to ground out to first with two on to end the first, and Erick Aybar to ground into an inning-ending double play with the bases loaded to end the second. Texas catcher Robinson Chirinos had a career-high five runs batted in, highlighting a three-run second with a two-run double and a four-run sixth with a three-run homer. Elvis Andrus had gone 481 at-bats without a homer before his solo shot to left in the sixth, the longest active streak in the major leagues.

ON THE MOUND: Angels left-hander Jose Alvarez replaced struggling starter Drew Rucinski with two outs in the third and retired seven straight batters, three by strikeout, but he was rocked for four runs and three hits in the sixth. Martinez (2-0) allowed no earned runs and five hits in seven innings. Relievers Mike Morin, Fernando Salas and Vinnie Pestano threw scoreless innings for the Angels.

REHAB REPORT: Garrett Richards, in the final stage of his recovery from left knee surgery, allowed four earned runs and seven hits, including a homer, in five innings Tuesday night, striking out five and walking four for triple-A Salt Lake at Fresno. The right-hander threw 91 pitches, 57 for strikes, and his fastball was clocked at 93 to 94 mph. Richards, who hasn't pitched since last August, is expected to start for the Angels on Sunday in Houston.

ON THE SHELF: Kole Calhoun (right calf tightness) did not start for the third straight game, and the right fielder won't start again until Friday or Saturday at the earliest. "It's moving in the right direction," Manager Mike Scioscia said, "but we don't want to take a chance of setting him back a few weeks when it could be just a couple of days here."

UP NEXT: Left-hander Hector Santiago (0-1, 5.06 earned-run average) will oppose Rangers right-hander Anthony Ranaudo (making his season debut) at Globe Life Park on Wednesday at 11 a.m. PDT. On the air: TV: FS West. Radio: 830.

Copyright © 2015, Los Angeles Times
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Los Angeles pays $8 million to settle wrongful-imprisonment lawsuit

Written By kolimtiga on Selasa, 14 April 2015 | 12.56

A man whose murder conviction was thrown out by a judge after he spent 17 years in prison said Monday that an $8.3-million legal settlement from the city of Los Angeles could not make up for the years he lost behind bars.

"We've suffered and we're still suffering," said Obie Anthony, 40, gesturing toward Reggie Cole, his co-defendant in the case whose conviction was also thrown out.

The payout, reported by The Times this week, settled a lawsuit that portrayed a murder investigation rife with problems — including the withholding of potentially exculpatory evidence, perjured testimony and the ignoring of leads that pointed to a different suspect.

"No compensation...can give me my years back," Anthony said.

The city admitted no wrongdoing in the settlement. The city's attorneys argued that detectives had conducted the investigation properly.

Anthony and Cole were convicted in the murder of Felipe Gonzales Angeles, who was shot to death outside of a South L.A. brothel in 1994. There was no physical evidence connecting Anthony and Cole to the crime, and the case relied almost entirely on eyewitness testimony.

A key witness in the case was John Jones, a pimp who ran the brothel.

The men were found guilty of murder and sentenced to prison without the possibility of parole.

Their journey toward freedom began in 2000 when Cole stabbed a fellow inmate to death.

Cole said he had acted in self-defense. He was charged with murder, which would have made him potentially subject to the death penalty because of his conviction in the Angeles killing. The California Innocence Project, which reviews inmates' claims of wrongful conviction, began looking into his case.

The group determined that Jones, the pimp, had fabricated his testimony. A Los Angeles County judge in 2009 overturned Cole's murder conviction.

Two years later, after a petition by Anthony, another Los Angeles County judge concluded that not only did Jones lie during his testimony, but prosecutors had failed to disclose an agreement to give him a lighter sentence on pimping and pandering charges in exchange for his testimony. He was released and later found factually innocent.

Anthony and Cole sued the detectives and the city of Los Angeles for wrongful imprisonment.

The lawsuit alleged that detectives protected Jones by ignoring his ongoing illegal activities and by refusing to pursue an alternative theory that he, or someone he knew, was the killer.

The lawsuit also alleged that detectives wrote reports that mischaracterized the accounts of eyewitnesses and suppressed evidence that was favorable to Anthony and Cole.

"The city of Los Angeles doesn't pay $8.3 million to guilty men. They paid Obie Anthony $8.3 million because he's innocent and the police engaged in wrongdoing," said David McLane, who along with attorney Marilyn Bednarski, represented Anthony in the civil case.

Anthony said he plans to open a transition center for those exonerated — who often have nobody to rely on after their release from prison, he said.

"The system that falsely accuses them sends them back out into a revolving door," he said. 

For court-related news, follow @sjceasar

Copyright © 2015, Los Angeles Times
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Spencer Hawes hasn't been the player the Clippers expected him to be

That Spencer Hawes has had a poor season in almost every way isn't something the Clippers reserve center is hiding from.

Hawes was honest when asked to evaluate his substandard play.

"It's been bad," he said. "There's no other way to put it. You just can't let it defeat you when you go through the low stretches."

Hawes was the Clippers' big free-agent signing last summer, as he was given a four-year, $23-million deal.

He was expected to be the quality big man the Clippers lacked over the years. He was expected to fill a void as the backup behind center DeAndre Jordan and as a shooter who could spread the floor from three-point range when Hawes replaced power forward Blake Griffin on the floor.

But Hawes hasn't been that player.

He's averaging 5.8 points per game, the lowest since his rookie year, and 3.6 rebounds, also the lowest since his first year in the NBA.

He's shooting just 38.8% from the field, the lowest of his career.

In his first seven years in the NBA, Hawes shot 36.1% from three-point range. With the Clippers, he's shooting just 31% from there.

"Obviously I thought the adjustment would be easier," Hawes said. "It didn't really shake out the way I thought it was going to go, how I hoped it would go."

Hawes admits it has been a trying season, but hopes that when the playoffs start this weekend that his game improves.

"Obviously when you go through a season like this, it tests you," he said. "But at the same time, you've just got to stay ready, handle what you can control. You go around enough times, odds are enough guys experience a little bit of this. You have been through this before. I'm lucky that that's the case. You keep doing what you do and just be ready for when the time comes."

Seeking better bench play

Other than super-sub Jamal Crawford, the Clippers' reserves have had an uneven season.

Still, Clippers Coach Doc Rivers said he could see himself playing "eight, nine, 10" players in the playoffs.

"Usually during the playoffs, most of us [coaches] mix and match," Rivers said. "You usually keep a starter or two on the floor at all times. It'll be no different this year."


Twitter: @BA_Turner

Copyright © 2015, Los Angeles Times
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