Report: Almost 900 Secret Service agents got COVID

By Josh Boak | Associated Press WASHINGTON — Roughly 900 U.S. Secret Service employees tested positive for the coronavirus, according to government records obtained by a government watchdog group. Secret Service records show that 881 people on the agency payroll were diagnosed with COVID-19 between March 1, 2020 and March 9, 2021, according to documents obtained by Citizens for Responsibility and Ethics in Washington. More than 11% of Secret Service employees were infected. Secret Service spokesperson Justine Whelan said COVID testing of employees was pro-active with more than 25,000 tests being administered. “The Secret Service’s essential law enforcement mission required agency employees to remain in continuous contact with the public during the pandemic,” Whelan said. “Now and throughout the pandemic, the Secret Service was fully prepared and staffed to successfully meet these challenges.” The records received through a Freedom of Information Act request did not include the names or assignments of those who tested positive. But more than half — 477 — worked in the special agent division, which is responsible for protecting the president and vice president, as well as the families of these…

San Jose: Man dies from injuries in mysterious June shooting

SAN JOSE — Police are investigating a new homicide after a man shot and wounded earlier this month died from his injuries about two weeks later, but it still is not clear where the deadly gunfire happened. A man was taken by his friends to Valley Medical Center at 2:47 a.m. June 6 and was soon listed in critical condition, according to San Jose police. He died Friday. The victim was identified Tuesday by the Santa Clara County Medical Examiner-Coroner’s Office as 20-year-old Eduardo Rodriguez, a San Jose resident. Not only are the motive and circumstances behind the fatal shooting still under investigation, detectives acknowledge that they still don’t know where it occurred. When pressed by this news organization about that absence of information, the police department stated that the people who took Rodriguez to the hospital “were not forthcoming” to investigators with information about the shooting. The death marked the city’s 31st homicide of the year. That figure includes 22 killings investigated by San Jose police and nine deaths from the May 26 VTA railyard shooting that are being investigated by the Santa Clara…

Duane Kuiper feeling ‘pretty good,’ eyes return to broadcast booth for Giants-A’s series

Still feeling OK near the start of his chemotherapy treatments, Duane Kuiper said he is cautiously optimistic he can broadcast this weekend’s Giants’ series with the Oakland A’s at Oracle Park. Kuiper, who turned 71 on Saturday, announced earlier this month that he would need to miss some Giants broadcasts on NBC Sports Bay Area and KNBR as he began chemotherapy treatments due to his health condition, which has not been specified. Kuiper told KNBR’s “Murph and Mac” show on Tuesday that he’s feeling, “pretty good.” “I am new at this whole chemo thing. You read about it, you have friends that go through it, you don’t real details about it until you jump in the water, and then the water can be a little weird,” Kuiper said. “You really don’t know what to expect from day-to-day how you’re going to feel. “So far I’ve had a month’s worth of treatments, three more months to go. The original schedule was every Friday, but that got kicked back last week, so this week it’s going to be Thursday, which is giving me a lot of hope…

4 more spectacular Bay Area tide pools to explore

Low tide reveals an entire world of intertidal-zone life, sea stars, undulating anemones and tiny, colorful nudibranchs living in the rocky pools near shore. So check the tide charts, grab shoes that can get wet or grubby and head for one of the Bay Area’s stellar tide pool spots. Just remember that tide pool terrain is notoriously slippery. Watch your footing and never turn your back on the waves. Point Lobos State Natural Reserve, Carmel This spectacular stretch of coastline has been dubbed the crown jewel of the State Park system — and it’s credited with inspiring Robert Louis Stevenson’s “Treasure Island.” Long John Silver was probably more concerned with piratical pursuits than tide pools, but you’ll be smitten by the sights at Weston Beach, where hermit crabs, limpets, black turban snails and colorful seaweed live in the intertidal zones. Prefer to visit virtually or get a peek ahead of time? Or dive — remotely — beneath the waves? Find links for the park’s new smartphone apps, visitor info and the Point Lobos Foundation’s tide pool guide at www.parks.ca.gov. Parkgoers explore the tide pools at Point…

As passengers return to air travel, bad behavior skyrockets

By DAVID KOENIG | Associated Press Air travel can be difficult in the best of times, with cramped planes, screaming babies, flight delays and short tempers. Throw in a pandemic, and the anxiety level can rise quickly. That has led to confrontations with flight attendants and other unruly behavior, including occasional fights that get captured and replayed endlessly on social media. Airlines have reported about 3,000 cases of disruptive passengers since Jan. 1, according to a spokesman for the Federal Aviation Administration, which began tracking it this year. About 2,300 of those incidents involved passengers who refused to obey the federal requirement to wear a face mask. Over the past decade, the FAA investigated about 140 cases a year for possible enforcement actions such as fines. This year, it was nearly 400 by late May. Things have gotten so bad that the airlines and unions for flight attendants and pilots sent a letter to the U.S. Justice Department on Monday urging “that more be done to deter egregious behavior.” “The federal government should send a strong and consistent message through criminal enforcement that compliance with…

How Big Tech created a data ‘treasure trove’ for police

By MATT O’BRIEN and MICHAEL LIEDTKE | The Associated Press PROVIDENCE, R.I. — When U.S. law enforcement officials need to cast a wide net for information, they’re increasingly turning to the vast digital ponds of personal data created by Big Tech companies via the devices and online services that have hooked billions of people around the world. Data compiled by four of the biggest tech companies shows that law enforcement requests for user information — phone calls, emails, texts, photos, shopping histories, driving routes and more — have more than tripled in the U.S. since 2015. Police are also increasingly savvy about covering their tracks so as not to alert suspects of their interest. That’s the backdrop for recent revelations that the Trump-era U.S. Justice Department sought data from Apple, Microsoft and Google about members of Congress, their aides and news reporters in leak investigations — then pursued court orders that blocked those companies from informing their targets. In just the first half of 2020 — the most recent data available — Apple, Google, Facebook and Microsoft together fielded more than 112,000 data requests from…

Surfing Lore: The Bay Area riders of the perfect storms

Nothing spoils a surf session quite like facing the double-barrel of a shotgun. It happened many, many moons ago, when I lived in a wooden water tower in Capitola-by-the-Sea where my friends and I often headed north in a single-minded pursuit of waves. Without the luxury of wave-forecasting apps, surfers back then relied on oceanographic instincts to find the best conditions. Stanford alumnus Ricky Grigg, a famous big-wave rider and University of Hawaii scientist who died in 2014, once told me surfers were some of the best oceanographers he knew. We’d squint at the horizon, gauge wind direction, read tide charts and monitor the lines of wavelets as they marched toward shore like a chorus line. We weighed the topography and the bathymetry, the depth of ocean floors, to calculate where to go. One summer in the early 1970s, author Elliott Almond lived in a water tower in Capitola-by-the-Sea. Almond, left, was getting ready for a paddle out with his friend, the late Don Carroll, a well-known Santa Cruz surfer and mountain biker. (Photo courtesy of Marie Cruz).  My friend had done the homework one…

Prosecutors say sordid photographs motivated father to kill his 13-year-old son

Mark Redwine killed his 13-year-old son Dylan in a fit of rage over sordid photographs, prosecutors argued Monday during opening statements of the father’s long-awaited murder trial in La Plata County. Dylan Redwine disappeared during a visit with his father in 2012.  Redwine, 59, is charged with second-degree murder and child abuse resulting in death in Dylan’s death. The boy disappeared from his father’s home near Durango in 2012, during a court-ordered custody visit over the Thanksgiving holiday. Dylan was reported missing on Nov. 19, 2012, and his disappearance prompted an extensive search and drew national attention. The boy’s remains were not found until 2013 and 2014. The first set of remains were discovered about eight miles from Redwine’s home, and part of Dylan’s skull was later found about a mile from the initial location. Redwine’s public defender, John Moran, argued during opening statements that Dylan, who did not want to visit his father, ran away from home, and suggested he may have been attacked by a bear or a mountain lion, pointing to what he said was a tooth mark on Dylan’s skull. But…

After a busy pandemic, East Bay golf course looks to expand its greens

CONCORD — When Diablo Creek Golf Course was allowed to reopen last year during the coronavirus pandemic, the business saw a “remarkable and unpredictable uptick” in tee-off times at the spacious greens, according to a city official. People found their way to golf — a sport that lends itself well to outdoor physical distancing — and the course prospered, seeing a 40% increase from past years in rounds played. Officials project a net revenue of over $300,000 at the city-owned course when the current fiscal year ends later this month. But the increased participation by residents also has brought more attention to an aging clubhouse with amenities that don’t always meet customers’ expectations, the course director said in an interview. Specifically, he says the clubhouse’s venue space is too small and the greens, constructed long ago, are now outdated. If the popularity persists, he and city officials may look into major upgrades at the facility. “The clubhouse was built in 1963,” said course director Joe Fernandez. “It’s had two facelifts — we’ve painted it and replaced the flooring — but it’s dated compared to a lot…

Here’s why there aren’t enough Bay Area homes to buy

The Bay Area has one of the worst records in the country for building enough housing for its booming workforce, putting the region atop another national ranking for housing misery. Between 2010 and 2020, the core Bay Area added roughly 6 jobs for every new home or apartment, one of the worst ratios in the country, according to a new analysis of census data by Apartment List. The only regions with a worse ratio of job creation to housing construction were rust-belt cities — including Detroit, Cleveland, Toledo and Dayton, Ohio — where existing homes provided ample living opportunities to rebounding midwestern economies. A healthy market should be adding a new home for every job or two, said Apartment List chief economist Igor Popov. “We’re really not building enough to keep up with job creation,” he said. “It’s a sad song we’ve sung before, but we freshen it up every once in a while.” The analysis suggests a deeper Bay Area housing crunch, where rising prices for homes and apartments push more residents out of the region. With few homes on the market and a strong tech…

Drought: Emergency project being built to protect California water supplies

In a new symbol of California’s worsening drought, construction crews are putting the finishing touches on a $10 million emergency project to build a massive rock barrier through part of the Delta in Contra Costa County to preserve water supplies for millions of people across the state. The 800-foot long barrier — the size of San Francisco’s Transamerica Pyramid laid on its side — is essentially a rock wall, 120 feet wide, built in water 35 feet deep. Its purpose: To block salt water from the Pacific Ocean and San Francisco Bay from flowing too far east and contaminating the huge state and federal pumps near Tracy that send fresh water south to 27 million people — from San Jose to Los Angeles — and to millions of acres of farmland in the Central Valley and beyond. In a worst-case scenario, if too much salty water reached the pumps, they might have to be shut down. “It would be a real bad situation,” said Jacob McQuirk, a principal engineer for the state Department of Water Resources who is leading the barrier project. “Water would be…

Many Bay Area residents feel free keeping their masks on

SAN JOSE — As the Bay Area snaps back to life with almost all pandemic restrictions now in the rearview mirror, residents can’t seem to shake off the mask-wearing habit. When the state fully reopened last Tuesday, allowing vaccinated people to go out to restaurants, gyms, movie theaters and bowling alleys without face coverings for the first time in more than a year, many who viewed masks as a necessary evil greeted the news with a welcome sigh of relief. But for others, masks have become a social norm and habit that will be hard to kick, as evidenced inside Bay Area grocery stores teeming with shoppers who continue to hide their noses and mouths behind face coverings while pushing their sanitized carts down the aisles. Mask use continues to decline rapidly and mobility is nearly back to pre-COVID-19 baseline levels. 6/8 pic.twitter.com/EMBnylI72X — Ali H. Mokdad (@AliHMokdad) June 20, 2021   Walking with a couple of shopping bags in her hand at Santana Row just a couple of days after the mask orders were lifted, 43-year-old Stephanie Fischer, of San Jose, said she still…

Bridge: June 22, 2021

“My card won a trick. Her card didn’t,” the Queen of Hearts boasted after today’s deal. “Of course, the contract failed as a result,” her cousin the Queen of Diamonds sniffed, “but that’s obviously not important.” At the Mad Hatter’s game, the two Red Queens had continued to bicker. The Queen of Hearts blustered that she was the most powerful card in Wonderland and none dared capture her. The Queen of Diamonds insisted that losing a trick could be beneficial. Against the Hatter’s four spades, Alice, West, carefully led the queen of hearts, making sure Her Majesty won a trick. What should Alice lead next? TRUMP TRICK Alice saw that for the defense to have a chance, East needed either a trump trick or the king of clubs. Still, they needed two diamonds. With a nod to the Queen of Diamonds, Alice led the queen! The Hatter covered with dummy’s king, winning. He took the A-K of trumps and started the clubs, but East ruffed the third club and led another diamond. Down one. DAILY QUESTION You hold: S A K 9 3 H 9…

Word Game: June 22, 2021

TODAY’S WORD — CAROUSAL (CAROUSAL: kuh-ROU-zul: Boisterous merrymaking; revelry.) Average 20 words Time limit 35 minutes Can you find 26 or more words in CAROUSAL? The list will be published tomorrow. YESTERDAY’S WORD — STATICE sate scat seat sect site stat state static stet tacit tact taste teat test attic case cast caste cesta cite east To purchase the Word Game book, visit WordGameBooks.com. Order it now for just $5 while supplies last! RULES OF THE GAME: 1. Words must be of four or more letters. 2. Words that acquire four letters by the addition of “s,” such as “bats” or “dies,” are not allowed. 3. Additional words made by adding a “d” or an “s” may not be used. For example, if “bake” is used, “baked” or “bakes” are not allowed, but “bake” and “baking” are admissible. 4. Proper nouns, slang words, or vulgar or sexually explicit words are not allowed. Contact Word Game creator Kathleen Saxe at kzsaxe@gmail.com.

Horoscopes June 22, 2021: Meryl Streep, follow your heart

CELEBRITIES BORN ON THIS DAY: Donald Faison, 47; Cyndi Lauper, 68; Graham Greene, 69; Meryl Streep, 72. Cyndi Lauper (Photo by Roy Rochlin/GettyImages)  Happy Birthday: Expand your mind, check out the possibilities and explore how you can use your skills in new ways that will bring in extra cash and make you feel passionate about your long-term plans. It’s OK to be different and to strive for something because it inspires you. Follow your heart and put in the work necessary to make your dreams come true. Your numbers are 6, 14, 24, 26, 33, 37, 48. ARIES (March 21-April 19): Keep money matters a secret until you figure out how best to put your cash to work for you. Home improvements are favored if you can stick to a budget. Don’t pay a contractor; call on friends and family for help. 3 stars TAURUS (April 20-May 20): Limitations and frustration will set in if you take on too much or make promises on which you cannot deliver. Pay attention to what’s going on around you, and align yourself with someone who shares your home…

Ask Amy: She wants me in her life but she kicked me out of her house

Dear Amy: I am a 62-year-old man who recently ended an 11-year relationship with my live-in partner. Amy Dickinson  Just prior to the pandemic, I brought my frail mother to live with us. The stresses of this 24/7 care, coupled with COVID and my partner working from home, were more than our relationship could bear. As it is her home, she recently asked me to leave and I reluctantly placed my mother in a nursing home. I’m happy to say that she’s doing quite well there. My ex and I still communicate daily, and she often mentions that she “wants me in her life” but has no interest in cohabiting. I’m a skilled renovator and continue to perform jobs for her at her request. I’ve expressed my desire for a reconciliation, but she has no interest in that, while telling me she “loves” me. I find this mixed message confusing. Am I wasting my time holding out hope for a reconciliation? Am I being taken advantage of? She is a psychologist with an intimate knowledge into the working mind, which only serves to add to…

Harriette Cole: I wish my girlfriend hadn’t told me that she was following her ex

DEAR HARRIETTE: My girlfriend revealed to me that she has just recently stopped checking her ex-boyfriend’s social media pages. She and I have been dating for a few months now, so needless to say, I’m very hurt. Harriette Cole  She told me that she wasn’t sure why she was checking his pages in the first place, but when her feelings for me intensified, she stopped feeling the need to check. I honestly wish that she’d never told me that. Now I kind of just feel like she might still have feelings for her ex-boyfriend. What am I supposed to do with this information? I feel like I might need a break now, but I’m not sure if it’s that serious. What should I do? — Confused Boyfriend DEAR CONFUSED BOYFRIEND: Take a deep breath and calm down. While it might have been better for your girlfriend to keep her actions to herself, it sounds like she was trying to be open and honest with you. It is normal for people in new relationships to want their partners to let go completely from previous relationships when…

Redwood City: Man arrested on suspicion of trying to kidnap 16-year-old girl

REDWOOD CITY – A 35-year-old man has been arrested on suspicion of grabbing and trying to pull a 16-year-old girl away from a tea bar in Redwood City, police said. The incident was reported at 6:47 p.m. Friday at Teaspoon, at 2361 Broadway, the Redwood City Police Department said in a news release. The victim was standing in front of the tea bar when the suspect grabbed her left arm with both hands and tried to pull her away, police said. A bystander intervened and told the suspect to leave. The suspect, however, followed the victim into the tea bar, where he grabbed her arm, placed his arm around the small of her back and tried to pull her away again, police said. The same bystander intervened again and told the suspect to leave, which he did, police said. Officers arrived and detained the suspect a short distance away from the tea bar. After he was identified by witnesses as the suspect, he was arrested and booked into the Maguire Correctional Facility in Redwood City on charges of attempted kidnapping and annoying or molesting a…

California Dolphin