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By THE BAKERSFIELD CALIFORNIAN
Lead stories from "First Look with Scott Cox's" Big 6:
TAFT COMMUNITY CORRECTIONAL FACILITY: The city of Taft has reached a $55 million agreement with Los Angeles County to reopen the Taft Community Correctional Facility for more than 500 low-level inmates. The contract has been signed and is awaiting tweaks by LA supervisors' staff before being finalized. The five-year agreement will bring low-level inmates from Los Angeles County beginning as soon as December. None of them has been convicted of violent, sexual or serious crimes. The reopening will provide about 54 jobs. Read the full story here.
ANIMAL CONTROL MEETING: Ken County officials hope to get some questions answered when it comes to rounding up stray critters. The Animal Control Commission holds a special meeting Wednesday. Among those on hand will be County Supervisor Zack Scrivner and Shyanne Schull, Interim director of Animal Services. On the agenda is a possible exchange agreement between the county and city, and whether ID or proof of residency should be required when somebody turns in an animal. The meeting gets underway at 6 p.m. at the Kern County Health Department, 1800 Mt. Vernon Ave.
UNIDENTIFIED BODY: Still no name on a body found in a burning car in Southwest Bakersfield. An autopsy is complete for the Bakersfield man called John Doe by the Kern County Coroner's office. Cause and manner of death are pending toxicology reports, and officials won't release the man's name until they have more positive information. His body was found at 7 a.m. Saturday when fire crews were called to Young Street at Pacheco. That's where they found a car engulfed in flames with the body inside. The case is now in the hands of the Bakersfield Police Department. Read the full story here.
PAROLEE AT LARGE: Bakersfield Police are hoping you can help find a parolee whose tracking device stopped working. Authorities say 51-year-old Raymond McClinton either removed or disabled the GPS ankle monitor, so now they don't know where he is. McClinton is a registered sex offender, described as black, 6-4 and 200 pounds with black hair and brown eyes. A recent mug shot shows him with a shaved head. If you have any information on his whereabouts, you're urged to call the BPD. Read the full story here.
SHOOTING IN EAST BAKERSFIELD: Sheriff's homicide detectives are investigating an early morning shooting at a house in East Bakersfield. It happened Tuesday at a home in the 3100 block of Lexington Avenue near Sierra Middle School. The victim has been identified as 34-year-old Raul Contreras. He was listed in critical condition at KMC. No word on any suspects or a motive for the shooting. Anyone with information is asked to contact the Sheriff's Office or call Secret Witness at 322-4040. Read the full story here.
DISPOSE OLD DRUG PRESCRIPTIONS: Wondering what to do with that stash of prescription drugs you're not taking anymore? The Kern County Sheriff's Department is teaming up with the Drug Enforcement Agency for National Drug Take Back Day this weekend. Crime Prevention Specialist Ashley Glover says the process is simple. The event is designed to make sure prescription drugs don't fall into the wrong hands. There will be six different locations this Saturday from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. Check out DEA.gov to find the location nearest you.
WHAT'S TRENDING ON BAKERSFIELD.COM
In case you missed it, here are the stories that are trending across bakersfield.com.
EAST BAKERSFIELD MAN FOUND SHOT IN HOME: Kern County Sheriff's deputies found a shot and critically injured man early Tuesday morning in an east Bakersfield home. Raul Contreras, 34, was found about 2:40 a.m. inside a home at 3132 Lexington Ave. with a gunshot wound. No further information was available. Anyone with information on this case is asked to call the Sheriff's Office at 861-3110. Read the full story here.
TAFT, L.A. COUNTY REACH DEAL ON CORRECTIONAL FACILITY REOPENING: The city of Taft has reached a $55 million agreement with Los Angeles County to reopen the Taft Community Correctional Facility for more than 500 low-level inmates. The contract has been signed, Taft Mayor Paul Linder said Tuesday, and is awaiting tweaks by LA supervisors' staff before being finalized. The five-year agreement will bring low-level inmates -- none convicted of violent, sexual or serious crimes -- from Los Angeles County beginning as soon as December. The reopening will provide about 54 jobs, mostly filled by area residents. Read the full story here.
WEEK 8 PREP FOOTBALL PREDICTIONS: It's already week eight for football in the Central Section. Check out Californian sports reporter Zach Ewing's week eight football game predictions on bakersfield.com. Read the full story here.
CYCLIST INJURED TUESDAY MORNING ON OLIVE DRIVE: A bicyclist was injured early Tuesday morning while riding on Olive Drive. Bakersfield Police reported the unidentified male cyclist was northbound in the 8500 block of Olive Drive at about 5:21 a.m. and was crossing two lanes of traffic when he was struck by a 2011 gray Chevrolet Camaro. The cyclist was taken to an area hospital with moderate to major injuries. Police said alcohol and drugs were not a factor. The investigation is continuing. Read the full story here.
SUPERVISORS VENT ANEW OVER POOR KMC OVERSIGHT: Kern Medical Center's finances are stabilizing, it seems. But it was clear Tuesday morning that nerves on the Kern County Board of Supervisors are still rattled by the messy financial reality at the public hospital. Supervisor Mick Gleason yanked a housekeeping modification to the contract with the county's outside financial auditor -- the firm Brown Armstrong -- off the consent agenda so it could be discussed. But there are some good news. New KMC Chief Financial Officer Sandra Martin told supervisors Tuesday that financial realities seem to be tracking about where she and her staff project they should be. Read the full story here.
THE TECH REPORT
APPLE EVENT: Here's a recap of the five biggest announcements from Apple's event on Tuesday: Number 1. As expected, the new 9.7-inch iPad is thinner and lighter than earlier models, and comes in space gray and silver -- no gold though. It starts at $499 for a 16GB, Wi-Fi only model. Number 2. The iPad Mini gets a big screen boost with the addition of a Retina display. It starts at $399. Number 3. Seeking out a traditional personal computer? Apple rolled out its Mac Pro starting at a whopping $2,999. For that price, consumers get an Intel Xenon 5 Quad-Core processor and 4K display support. Number 4. The MacBook Pro gets an overhaul, with thinner, lighter models boasting the new Intel Haswell chips. Both the 13- and 15-inch models get a price cut. And finally, the latest version of the Mac operating system called OS X Mavericks is available now and for free.
CAMERAS: The growing use of cameras for speed and red-light enforcement has spawned a counter-measure: Warnings built into auto navigation systems. Navteq, a chief supplier of navigation information has camera locations in its databases. Some automakers' include the camera information; others do not. General Motors has just begun offering the camera info on some of its navigation systems, including the 2014 Chevrolet Corvette and Impala. GM calls it a "safety camera" function within the navigation system. Activating it shows the camera locations on the map. as it might show ATMs or gas stations.
THE HEALTH REPORT
FLAVORED CIGARS: Can you tell the difference between a cigarette and little cigar? They look identical, but cigars are cheaper and candy-flavored so they're gaining popularity among teens. Two of every five youth smokers use cigarettes or look-alike cigars that are flavored, according to a U.S. government report intensifying the call for federal control of all tobacco products including electronic cigarettes. Of middle-school and high-school students who currently smoke, 42 percent reported using menthol cigarettes or flavored little cigars, which are often cheaper. Flavors can mask the harshness and taste of tobacco. and the CDC says "little cigars contain the same toxic and cancer-causing ingredients found in cigarettes." In 2009, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration banned candy and fruit-flavored cigarettes but exempted menthol ones. In July, the FDA reported that menthol cigarettes cause more youth to begin smoking, boost dependence on tobacco and reduce success in quitting smoking.
THE SPORTS REPORT
GOLDEN HAWKS SWEEP LIBERTY IN SWYL VOLLEYBALL SHOWDOWN: Centennial isn't the biggest volleyball team in town, but it appears to be the best. The same might be true for the Central Section's top playoff division. The Golden Hawks swept Liberty 25-20, 25-19, 25-23 at home Tuesday in a battle for the Southwest Yosemite League and the inside track to the No. 1 seed in the Division I playoffs. Read the full story here.
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