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By THE BAKERSFIELD CALIFORNIAN
Lead stories from "First Look with Scott Cox's" Big 6:
WESTSIDE PARKWAY: City officials want you to continue enjoying the Westside Parkway, but to slow down so you don't go flying off the loop that is the eastbound off-ramp to Truxtun Avenue. Wednesday marked the second time a car slid off the ramp and onto the embankment. There are no guard rails on the loop, but there soon will be. Assistant Public Works Director Nick Fidler tells the Bakersfield Californian's Jason Kotowski the guard rails should be installed in the next four to five weeks at a cost of about $39,000. The ramp is already built to Caltrans standards and doesn't require a guard rail, but Fidler said the city decided to install it as well as flashing beacon lights to warn drivers the freeway is ending. Read the full story here.
ANIMAL SHELTER: Kern County Animal Control officers need your help to take hundreds of animals off their hands in the next 32 days. The county is asking animal rescue groups to come to its rescue, taking animals by the truckload. And County Administrative Officer John Nilon said a media campaign will ask the public to foster animals and tell them how to keep strays from ending up in a county cage that must be emptied before Oct. 1. Last week, the city of Bakersfield told Kern County to vacate the animal shelter at 201 South Mount Vernon Avenue by September 30. The county is working to make adopting an animal easy and cheap by dropping fees to $5 for cats and $15 for dogs. Read the full story here.
WIFE OF MAN FOUND DEAD IN FIELD ARRESTED ON SUSPICION OF MURDER: A dramatic twist in the case of a Bakersfield man found dead on a dirt road. Sheriff's deputies arrested 46-year old Leslie Chance Thursday and booked her for the murder of 45-year old Todd Chance whose body was found Sunday on a dirt road at Noriega Road and Enos Lane. The coroner says Chance died of multiple gunshot wounds, and the death was quickly ruled a homicide. Read the full story here.
MAN DIES NINE DAYS AFTER ARREST : A man subdued by Kern County Sheriff's deputies earlier this month has died. Ronnie Ledesma Jr., 39, died about 10 p.m. Wednesday at Kern Medical Center following complications from injuries he sustained during the arrest. He was arrested Aug. 19 after a disturbance at the Walgreens at 2629 Mt. Vernon Ave. A sheriff's office spokesman declined to answer questions Thursday night. The spokesman said Sheriff Donny Youngblood would answer questions about the incident Friday. Ledesma's death was the third time in the past four months that a man arrested by sheriff's deputies has died. Read full story here.
HIT AND RUN: An arrest is made in a central Bakersfield hit and run case. Around 2:30 a.m. Thursday, a police sergeant was patrolling the 2500 block of P Street when he spotted a pickup fitting the description of the one that struck and killed 59-year-old Yvonne Cupis Tuesday on Q Street. The sergeant pulled over the driver, 29-year-old Anthony Morales. Morales was interviewed and then arrested on charges of hit and run causing death, driving on a suspended license, and vehicular manslaughter. Read the full story here.
IMMIGRATION: More immigration activists will be converging on the office of a Bakersfield congressman. This weekend, 15 people are going on what they call the Pilgrimage for a Pathway to Citizenship through the Central Valley. The marchers will meet with several congressmen along the way, but they say they're disappointed they haven't gotten any face time from House Majority Whip Kevin McCarthy. So on Sunday they plan to build an altar outside McCarthy's office on Empire Drive. They say it will honor those who have suffered from what they call the country's broken immigration system. On Monday, 1,500 are expected to attend a rally at the Fox Theater starting at 4:30 p.m. After that, the pilgrims plan to begin a vigil at McCarthy's office. 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.
WIFE OF MAN FOUND DEAD IN FIELD ARRESTED ON SUSPICION OF MURDER: The case of a man mysteriously found dead in a field Sunday morning took a dramatic turn Thursday night when sheriff's deputies arrested the victim's wife and booked her on suspicion of his murder. Leslie Jenea Chance, 46, was arrested in the case and will be booked on a murder charge in the death of Todd Chance. Todd Chance's body was found Sunday morning in a field northwest of Bakersfield. He had died of multiple gunshot wounds and his death was quickly ruled a homicide by the coroner. Read the full story here.
MAN INJURED BY DEPUTIES DURING ARREST DIES NINE DAYS LATER: A man subdued by Kern County Sheriff's deputies earlier this month died late Wednesday following complications from injuries he sustained during the arrest. Ronnie Ledesma Jr., 39, died about 10 p.m. Wednesday at Kern Medical Center. He was arrested Aug. 19 after a disturbance at the Walgreens at 2629 Mt. Vernon Ave. Deputies said Ledesma was uncooperative and in order to get him under control, he was hit with "impact weapons" and deputies used "control holds" to subdue him. Read the full story here.
CITY TO INSTALL GUARDRAILS ON PARKWAY LOOP: City officials want the public to continue enjoying the Westside Parkway, but to slow down so they don't go flying off the loop that is the eastbound off-ramp to Truxtun Avenue. Wednesday marked the second time a car slid off the ramp and onto the embankment. There are no guard rails on the loop, but there soon will be. Assistant Public Works Director Nick Fidler said the guard rails should be installed in the next four to five weeks at a cost of about $39,000. Read the full story here.
BRING ON THE BIG GUYS, LOCAL TEAM SAYS: A new high school football season opens at 7:30 p.m., but local coaches are not going gently into this good night. No, instead many have scheduled tough opening games designed to test their team to its limits as early as possible. "We go right into the fire," said Ridgeview coach Dennis Manning, whose team begins its Central Section Division III title defense at home against defending Southwest Yosemite League champion Frontier. "Those guys are really good. That's a really strong, fast, good-looking football team we're playing." Read the full story here.
COUNTY LAUNCHES REVIEW TO CHANGE OIL PERMITTING: Kern County is kicking off a months-long review that could fundamentally change government oversight of petroleum production in the heart of California oil country. The industry-funded review is a key element in the county's plan to amend its zoning ordinance dealing with oil and gas production. If successful, the effort would make the county the primary permitting authority in local oil production. Read the full story here.
THE ENERGY REPORT
EARTHQUAKES AND FRACKING: Bloomberg reports that a series of earthquakes in southern Texas is likely tied to fracking operations. Seismographs detected 62 earthquakes near wells that were fracked between 2009 and 2011. The environmental debate over fracking has been fiercely debated, and earthquakes and fracking has become a key issue for many. Bloomberg reported that one of Oklahoma's largest recorded quakes, a 5.7 magnitude temblor in 2011, was a result of disposal of wastewater from oil production.
THE TECH REPORT
U-VERSE: AT&T is planning to bring more mobile capabilities to its U-verse platform in 2014. The operator is reportedly working at its Foundry Innovation Center in Atlanta on a method to send photos over Wi-Fi to the TV using the U-verse platform. It's also reported that AT&T has a U-Verse phone finder capability to help users locate a lost phone when they are in their house as well as a caller ID service that flashes the caller's name on the TV screen.
NEW VENDING MACHINES: Vending machine sales have fallen to 1990s levels, so vending machine companies are having to make adjustments. To boost sales, vending companies are installing new machines that accept credit cards and mobile payments and feature digital screens, video cameras, and smartphone charging stations. Machines that accept plastic can lift sales 30 percent, according to estimates. Analysts also note that revenue per transaction rises 20 percent when the machines can prompt consumers to buy a Snickers bar along with their bag of Doritos.
THE HEALTH REPORT
SLEEPING PILLS: About one in 25 American adults takes sleeping pills to help them fall asleep and stay asleep at night, according to new data from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Researchers found some distinct patterns among sleeping pill users including that: -- Women were more likely to use sleeping pills than men. -- People over the age of 50 were more likely to take sleeping pills than younger folks. -- People with more degrees were more likely to take sleeping pills.
TYLENOL: Bottles of Tylenol sold in the U.S. will soon bear red warnings alerting users to the potentially fatal risks of taking too much of the popular pain reliever. Johnson & Johnson says the warning will appear on the cap of each new bottle of Extra Strength Tylenol sold in the U.S. in October and on most other Tylenol bottles in coming months. The warning will make it explicitly clear that the over-the-counter drug contains acetaminophen, a pain-relieving ingredient that's the nation's leading cause of sudden liver failure. Overdoses from acetaminophen send 80,000 people to the emergency room in the U.S. each year.
THE SPORTS REPORT
BVARSITY ON TONIGHT : High school football is here, and The Californian's team has it covered. Pick up today's newspaper for a special 40-page prep preview section. And tonight, watch a live stream of the Frontier vs. Ridgeview game at 7:30 p.m. on bakersfield.com. Then at 11 p.m., watch BVarsity Live, with tons of analysis and commentary on the night's games, again at bakersfield.com.
BLAZE PITCHERS COMBINE TO THROW ONE-HITTER: Bakersfield closed out its home schedule in style, with starter James Allen and three relievers combining to one-hit the Stockton Ports on Thursday night, winning 4-1 in the Blaze's final game at Sam Lynn Ballpark this season. Allen worked six innings and allowed the Ports' only hit -- a solo homer to Bruce Maxwell in the second inning. From there, it was smooth sailing for him and relievers Ben Klimesh, Carlos Gonzalez and Pat Doyle. Allen walked three and struck out five, while Klimesh walked one and struck out one. Doyle worked the ninth for his 11th save of the season.
CHECK OUT OUR SCOTT IN 60 FEATURE: