Black Unemployment Rate Hit Record Low in April
5/10/2018 10:35:25 AM

WASHINGTON—The unemployment rate for Black Americans fell to a record low in April, though not necessarily for positive reasons. The jobless rate for African-Americans reached 6.6 percent, the lowest level on Labor Department records dating to 1972. Though some of them found work, many others stopped looking for a job and so weren't categorized as unemployed. The government counts people as unemployed only if they're actively looking for work. When fewer people seek a job, the unemployment rate often declines. Though it has improved in recent years, the unemployment rate...

Compton Blaze Spurs Leak of 25 Gallons of Hazardous Material
5/10/2018 10:34:00 AM

COMPTON—County firefighters knocked down an industrial fire Sunday in Compton that leaked about 25 gallons of an unknown substance into storm drains, according to the Los Angeles County Fire Department. The fire at a business building at 3000 Harcourt St. was reported at 5:45 p.m., said Dispatch Supervisor Michael Pittman. The blaze was contained to the loading dock area, Pittman said. As firefighters battled the blaze, about 25 gallons of a hazardous material leaked into storm drains, Pittman continued. A county fire hazmat team was called to the site. As a precaution, the...

One-Day Strike Set by LAUSD Workers for May 15
5/10/2018 10:33:14 AM

LOS ANGELES—Custodians, cafeteria workers, bus drivers and other support workers at the Los Angeles Unified School District plan to conduct a 24-hour strike on May 15 to protest what they say are unfair labor practices by the school district, a union spokeswoman said Sunday. The tentative one-day strike comes after a vote by LAUSD support workers to authorize a strike late last month, Service Employees International Union Local 99 spokeswoman Blanca Gallegos told City News Service Sunday. The union represents some 30,000 workers, including bus drivers, custodial workers, special...

Professor Sorts Fact, Fiction in Underground Railroad Tales
5/10/2018 10:32:05 AM

By Barbara Miller   WASHINGTON, Pa.—Scenario No. 1: Nine escaped slaves make their way in 1856 from Clarksburg, then in Virginia, and cross the Mason-Dixon Line. Armed with tools used for cutting corn, clubs and rocks, they beat back their pursuers in Greene County and head to freedom in Canada. Scenario No. 2: Six runaway slaves arrive at the Washington home of abolitionist Dr. Francis J. LeMoyne. Law enforcement shows up with a search warrant, but is stymied by the lady of the house, who takes to her bed faking illness to shelter the group hiding beneath the bed...

Supreme Court Affirms Death Sentence in 1996 Compton Murders; Dissent Cites Potential Racial Bias
5/10/2018 10:30:04 AM

By Elizabeth Marcellino   LOS ANGELES—The California Supreme Court Monday affirmed a 1999 death sentence for a convicted double murderer, finding insufficient evidence that jury selection was racially motivated, though a dissenting opinion cited the possibility of racial bias and the unreliability of eyewitness identification. Ennis Reed, 45, was found guilty on June 4, 1999, of two counts each of murder and attempted murder, with jurors finding true the special circumstance allegation of multiple murders in the killings of Amarilis Vasquez and Paul Moreland. The first...

Bald Eaglet with Online Following Returns Home After Fall
5/10/2018 10:28:14 AM

BIG BEAR LAKE—A baby bald eagle who already has a social media following has learned to fly and returned to his nest two weeks after falling from it. The San Bernardino National Forest posted video of Stormy the eaglet's return home Saturday near Big Bear Lake, east of Los Angeles. The video shows Stormy fly back and quickly begin nuzzling one of his parents after what could be distressed or excited squawking. Stormy and his brother hatched earlier this year in an event watched by nature lovers via an online feed. The feed caught the moment when Stormy fell from his home on...

Georgetown's 'Lost' Slaves Were Closer to Home Than Known
5/10/2018 10:24:22 AM

By Terrence McCoy   WASHINGTON—The search for the lost slaves began with a simple question. Every month for two years, Richard Cellini, founder of an organization looking for descendants of the slaves sold to save Georgetown University, had updated a spreadsheet. It showed consistent progress: More and more descendants were learning the truth—that the Jesuit priests running Georgetown had sold their ancestors in 1838 to two Louisiana plantation owners to pay university debts. But Cellini couldn't get past a problem. Roughly a full third of the sold...

Time's Up Takes Aim at R. Kelly Over Sex Misconduct Claims
5/3/2018 9:28:13 PM

By Nekesa Mumbi Moody   NEW YORK—The Time's Up campaign is taking aim at R. Kelly over allegations he has sexually abused women. The organization devoted to helping women in the aftermath of sexual abuse issued a statement Monday urging further investigation into Kelly's behavior, which has come under closer scrutiny over the last year as women have come forward to accuse him of everything from sexual coercion to physical abuse. Kelly has denied such charges. “We demand appropriate investigations and inquiries into the allegations of R. Kelly's abuse...

Oxnard Incumbents Coast to Victory
5/3/2018 9:26:48 PM

By Chris Frost Special to the Tri County Sentry   The City of Oxnard's May 1, Special Election was a significant victory for city council incumbents, Mayor Tim Flynn, Councilman Bert Perello, Mayor Pro Tem Carmen Ramirez and Councilman Oscar Madrigal, as all four coasted to convincing victories. Mayoral Candidate Aaron Starr collected the signatures to prompt the election after four members voted to raise wastewater rates through 2022. The website Ballotpedia reported on its website that Starr was the driving force behind Measure M, which repealed the rate...

Council Reviews the Budget
5/3/2018 9:26:09 PM

By Chris Frost Special to the Tri County Sentry   The Oxnard City Council took a look at it budget for the upcoming fiscal year and revealed opportunities for additional revenue and challenges ahead. Interim City Manager Scott Whitney said the item was not originally scheduled for the council meeting. “This is part of our budget process,” he said. “We’re doing these presentations throughout the months of April and May.” He said they’ll be done through the neighborhood council meetings and each one is a little bit...