Local News

Tuesday, Sep 17 2013 07:10 AM

'First Look': First News for Sept. 17

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By THE BAKERSFIELD CALIFORNIAN

Lead stories from "First Look with Scott Cox's" Big 6:

OFFICER INVOLVED SHOOTING: We now know the names of the two men killed during a late-night shootout with police at a southwest Bakersfield hotel. Police say 32-year-old Justin Harger and 34-year-old Jorge Ramirez, both of Bakersfield, were pulled over around 12:30 a.m. Monday on a traffic stop at the 4-Points by Sheraton on California Avenue, when gunfire erupted. Both men died at the scene, and an officer suffered moderate injuries from a gunshot wound to the head. The officer's name has not been released. Autopsies for Harger and Ramirez are scheduled for Wednesday. Read the full story here.

KIDS HIT BY A CAR: Three kids walking to school are hospitalized after being hit by a car in northeast Bakersfield. Crossing guard Rachel Garcia says around 7:30 a.m. Monday, she was helping kids across the intersection of Auburn and Eissler Streets when she saw a Ford Taurus approaching. All three victims were hospitalized, two with complaints of pain and one with minor to moderate injuries. The driver was ticketed for a traffic infraction and released at the scene. That intersection is near Highland High School and Chipman Junior High. Read the full story here.

POSSIBLE HATE CRIME: Members of a predominantly black congregation suspect racism is behind two fires a week apart at their historic downtown Bakersfield church. The second blaze, discovered Monday morning, was accompanied by racist graffiti. The Bakersfield Californian reports no one was injured in either fire and Cain Memorial African Methodist Episcopal Church suffered only superficial damage. Bakersfield Fire Department arson investigators and Bakersfield Police investigated the scene Monday and say they don't know if the two fires are related. Police are investigating the incidents as possible hate crimes. Read the full story here.

SEX OFFENDER STING: Sex offender sting near the Kern County fairgrounds. Local law enforcement conducted a registered sex offender compliance operation Sept. 11 near the fairgrounds in the 1100 block of South P Street. Only three registrants were found to be out of compliance, and officers were unable to locate them. The investigation is ongoing. Anyone with information on people who are not complying with their requirement to register as a sex offender is asked to call the Sheriff's Office or Secret Witness at 322-4040. Read the full story here.

BABY INVESTIGATION: Sheriff's homicide detectives are investigating the death of an infant in east Bakersfield. Just after 10 a.m. Monday deputies got a report of a baby not breathing at home in the 3100 block of Monterey Street. After deputies and paramedics got to the scene, three month old Jayden Rodriguez was pronounced dead. Officials say there didn't appear to be any trauma or an obvious cause of death. Anyone with information is asked to call the Sheriff's Office, or the Secret Witness Hotline at 322-4040. Read the full story here.

MORTGAGE FRAUD: A Bakersfield man is sentenced for his part in a mortgage fraud scheme. Eric Hernandez, 37, was sentenced Monday to 10 years and 10 months in prison for conspiracy to commit mail fraud, wire fraud, and bank fraud. Between October 2005 and May 2007 Hernandez conspired with others to defraud mortgage lenders by submitting false loan applications and fraudulent documentation to lenders, causing the lenders to fund mortgage loans for the defendants' benefit on the basis of false and misleading information. During this time period, Hernandez was employed at mortgage brokerages in Bakersfield. Hernandez admitted in his plea agreement that the defendants caused the defrauded lenders losses of over six million dollars. 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.

SHOOTING LEAVES 2 DEAD, 2 OFFICERS INJURED IN HOTEL PARKING LOT: Two men were shot and killed Monday morning and two officers were injured after a police attempt to pull over a vehicle escalated into a shootout in a hotel parking lot. The coroner's office identified the deceased as 32-year-old Justin Bryan Harger and 34-year-old Jorge Ramirez. The shooting occurred at 12:34 a.m. in the east parking lot of the Four Points Sheraton on California Avenue. Harger and Ramirez were shot by police and died at the scene. Police said the investigation is ongoing. Read the full story here.

FRIENDS, PATIENTS MOURN DR. "MC" BARNARD, PHYSICIAN TO GENERATIONS: Dr. Marion C. Barnard II -- "MC" to his friends and patients -- died Thursday at his home in northeast Bakersfield, surrounded by loved ones. He was 65. Those closest to him say he was "country" enough to wear jeans, cowboy boots and a Merle Haggard belt buckle under his white lab coat during his 42 years as a family doctor in east Bakersfield. A memorial service is scheduled for 3 p.m. Sunday at Calvary Bible Church on Manor Street. Read the full story here.

HISTORIC BLACK CHURCH POSSIBLE HATE CRIME TARGET: Members of a predominantly black congregation suspect racism is behind two fires a week apart at their historic downtown Bakersfield church. The second blaze, discovered Monday morning, was accompanied by racist graffiti. No one was injured in either fire and Cain Memorial African Methodist Episcopal Church suffered only superficial damage. Bakersfield Police are investigating the incidents as possible hate crimes. Read the full story here.

THREE CHILDREN HIT IN CROSSWALK: Three children were transported to the hospital by ambulance after being hit by a car in a crosswalk at the intersection of Eissler and Auburn streets in northeast Bakersfield Monday morning while on their way to school. A 10-year-old girl and an 11-year-old boy complained of pain and a 4-year-old boy sufferered serious injuries, according to Bakersfield Police. The accident happened at around 7:39 a.m. Eissler Elementary School crossing guard Rachel Garcia said she was nearly to the middle of Auburn Street when she saw the metallic tan Ford Taurus coming at her and the three schoolchildren following her. The driver, 28-year-old Theresa Hall was issued a traffic ticket and released at the scene. Read the full story here.

MORTGAGE FRAUD SCHEME NETS BAKERSFIELD MAN MORE THAN 10 YEARS IN PRISON: Eric Ray Hernandez, 37, of Bakersfield was sentenced Monday to 10 years and 10 months in prison for conspiracy to commit mail fraud, wire fraud, and bank fraud in connection with a mortgage fraud scheme. According to court documents, between October 2005 and May 2007 Hernandez conspired with others to defraud mortgage lenders by submitting false loan applications and fraudulent documentation to lenders, causing the lenders to fund mortgage loans for the defendants' benefit on the basis of false and misleading information. Hernandez admitted in his plea agreement that the defendants caused the defrauded lenders losses of $6,037,541. Read the full story here.

 

THE TECH REPORT

CELL AND INTERNET USE: Sixty-three percent of adult cell owners now use their phones to go online, a figure that has doubled since 2009. In addition, 34 percent of these cell internet users say that they mostly go online using their cell phone. All this according to new data released by the Pew Research Center's Internet & American Life Project.

SEVERED FINGERS AND THE iPHONE 5S: The introduction of the iPhone 5S and its easy to use fingerprint verification button has suddenly pushed biometric security into the mainstream. One immediate concern from the Apple community is that, based on recent government surveillance revelations, the government might now collect all iPhone user fingerprints. Mashable reports there are also concerns that smartphone thieves might soon resort to physically removing a person's finger in order to gain access to a stolen device. Now, after the Apple event dust has settled, biometric security experts have begun to weigh in and the overall verdict is: Your fingers are safe. The iPhone's Touch ID fingerprint sensor uses radio frequency scanning to detect the sub-epidermal layers of your skin. It's a dynamic that requires the owner of the finger to be alive and attached to the finger being used.

 

THE HEALTH REPORT

ANTIBIOTIC-RESISTANT BACTERIA: Federal health officials reported on Monday that at least two million Americans fall ill from antibiotic-resistant bacteria every year and that at least 23,000 die from those infections, putting a hard number on a growing public health threat. It was the first time that federal authorities quantified the effects of organisms that antibiotics are powerless to fight. Infectious disease doctors have long warned that antibiotic resistance threatens to return society to a time when people died from ordinary infections. One particularly lethal type of drug-resistant bacteria, known by its initials C-R-E, has become resistant to nearly all antibiotics on the market. It is still relatively rare, causing just 600 deaths a year, but researchers have identified it in health care facilities in 44 states. Dr. Thomas Frieden, the director of the C.D.C., said its spread could lead to a "nightmare scenario."

BINGE DRINKING: Plenty of high school seniors are binge drinkers, consuming five or more alcoholic drinks in a row, but a new study shows that some are extreme binge drinkers, knocking back as many as 10, 15 or more drinks in one session. The research out Monday shows ten percent high school seniors have engaged in extreme binge drinking while six percent have consumed 15 or more drinks. The percentage of high school seniors who binge drink overall has gone down, but the percentage extreme binge drinking has stayed virtually the same in recent years, which may explain why emergency room visits for kids in this age group have not decreased.

 

THE SPORTS REPORT

BC WOMEN 3RD IN WSC GOLF TOURNEY: SIMI VALLEY -- Kendall Huser tied for second with a 7-over-par 78 to help the Bakersfield College women's golf team to a third-place finish Monday in the Western State Conference tournament at Simi Hills Golf Course. Melissa Lopez had an 87 for the Renegades, who finished with a 363 team score. Santa Barbara City won the tournament with a 317, followed by Canyons. BC hosts the next WSC tournament on Monday at Stockdale Country Club. Read the full story here.

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