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By THE BAKERSFIELD CALIFORNIAN
Lead stories from "First Look with Scott Cox's" Top Stories:
CONDORS OWNERSHIP: No National Hockey League team currently owns a team at the ECHL level, but apparently that is about to change. A story in Tuesday's Edmonton Sun reported, without attribution, that the NHL's Edmonton Oilers were poised to purchase the Bakersfield Condors. The Condors play in the ECHL, the AA- level of hockey, and became affiliated with the Oilers this season. Condors President Matthew Riley met with Bakersfield media Wednesday morning, but would not confirm or deny the report. Read the full story here.
21 INDICTED IN MAIL THEFTS: A wide-ranging investigation into mail thefts spanning several counties and involving thousands of victims has resulted in federal indictments against 21 defendants including five for thefts that took place in the Bakersfield area. Assistant U.S. Attorney Brian K. Delaney said there's been a widespread problem regarding mail theft, and "Operation Mailbox" was begun after authorities received numerous complaints regarding mail stolen by a variety of methods. And here is a video of Californian reporter Jason Kotowski describing how mail theft works. Read the full story here.
ANTI-INTERNET CAFE BILL: Nearly two months after joining Bakersfield's war on Internet cafes -- which city officials believe offer illegal gambling -- Assemblyman Rudy Salas, D-Bakersfield, on Wednesday unveiled a bill that would outlaw them in California. Assembly Bill 1439, which Salas said he introduced in the state legislature on Jan. 6, would add "sweepstakes" to the list of unfair business practices prohibited under state law. If the bill passes the state legislature and is signed by Gov. Jerry Brown later this year, operating an Internet cafe would then become a misdemeanor crime. Read the full story here.
WHAT'S TRENDING ON BAKERSFIELD.COM
In case you missed it, here are the stories that are trending across bakersfield.com.
SUSPECT ASSAULTS BOY AFTER STEALING HIS BICYCLE: A suspect stole a boy's bicycle earlier this month and then assaulted the 11-year-old after the boy chased him. Kern County sheriff's deputies say the incident occurred about 2 p.m. Jan. 2 at the Mi Familia Market at 1324 Flower St. in east Bakersfield. The suspect, upon leaving the store, took a BMX-style bike that was parked to the front and began riding away. The boy chased him and the suspect knocked the boy to the ground, deputies said. For the photo of the suspect, check out bakersfield.com. Read the full story here.
KHSD RESTRICTS SUPERINTENDENT SEARCH TO INSIDERS: The Kern High School District has decided to limit to internal candidates its search for a successor to retiring Superintendent Don Carter. The five members of the board of trustees will act as the search committee, and will consider only current district employees, board members decided at a special meeting Wednesday. Carter, 59, told the board last week that he will retire effective Aug. 2. Whoever replaces him will oversee 18 traditional high schools and six alternative education campuses, as well as 3,700 employees and nine collective bargaining units. Read the full story here.
MAN CAUGHT STEALING 250 POUNDS OF LEMONS: His arrest last week likely has Jose Pena in a sour mood. The 55-year-old is accused of stealing 250 pounds of lemons from an orchard at Highway 166 and Old River Road. Pena, of Taft, was arrested Jan. 7 after deputies caught him in the process of stealing lemons and loading them into his vehicle. Deputies said they also found an industrial battery stolen from a wind machine at the orchard inside Pena's vehicle. He was also found to be in possession of methamphetamine. The orchard is owned by Paramount Citrus Company. Read the full story here.
THE TECH REPORT
APPLE SETTLEMENT: Apple has reached a $32.5 million settlement with the Federal Trade Commission over unauthorized purchases made within smartphone and tablet apps. The settlement requires Apple to offer full refunds for any charges by a minor that are unauthorized. The deal also mandates Apple updates its billing practices to ensure it has express consent from users before charging them for content within apps.
THE HEALTH REPORT
ACETAMINOPHEN: The Food and Drug Administration has asked doctors, dentists, pharmacists and other healthcare professionals to stop giving patients high-dose acetaminophen, the active ingredient in the popular pain-reliever Tylenol. Pills, capsules, tablets, syrups and other formulations that contain more than 325 milligrams of acetaminophen have not been shown to reduce pain better than lower doses of the medication; however, such high levels of the drug can cause liver damage.
THE SPORTS REPORT
RAM'S DRULIUS IS ALL-AREA SINGLES PLAYER OF YEAR: Garces High freshman Anastasia Drulius, who capped off a spectacular rookie season, in which she posted a 33-2 singles record and won the Central Section girls singles championship, was named BVarsity's All-Area Tennis Singles Player of the Year. Drulius also won the Southeast Yosemite League singles title and helped the Rams claim the Southeast Yosemite League team championship. Read the full story here.
CHECK OUT SCOTT IN 60: