Lead stories from "First Look with Scott Cox," Top Stories:
CITY-PICKED GET BOARD MEMBERS ASKED TO RESIGN: If the city's two appointees to Golden Empire Transit's board don't resign by 5 p.m. Monday, the Bakersfield City Council will consider removing them, Vice Mayor Ken Weir has warned. In a letter on city letterhead dated Aug. 21, Weir told GET board members Norris Ledbetter and Howard Silver that leaving now "will provide you a smooth, professional and dignified exit" from the agency. If they don't, the council may act at its Sept. 10 meeting, he said. Read the full story here.
An arrest has been made in the killing of an 88-year-old Delano man found stuffed in the trunk of his submerged car almost a year ago. Delano police said John Albay Galafate was taken into custody Tuesday morning in the 1000 block of Dover Place. John Holguin Espinoza was last seen at his residence at noon Sept. 18 and was on his way to see Galafate. Galafate rented a residence from Espinoza. Espinoza's car was spotted in the Friant-Kern Canal the evening of the next day. The car was pulled from the canal and officers discovered his body when they popped the trunk.
MAN INJURED ZIP-LINING RECOVERING FROM SEVENTH SURGERY: Brian Hodges of Bakersfield opened his eyes Aug. 16 as he lay in a San Diego hospital bed, 27 days after suffering brain and spinal injuries in a zip-lining accident in Mexico. On Monday, the 36-year-old had his seventh surgery. Doctors hope to move him out of the intensive care unit in four days. They said Hodges is reacting positively to the surgery. The families medical bills have surpassed $90,000. 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.
DRUNKEN MOTORIST SENTENCED TO 23 YEARS IN PRISON: A 2012 case involving two drunken motorists who collided -- killing one of them -- and led to hundreds of messages on social media and an in-depth accident re-enactment a year later, ended Tuesday with the surviving motorist sentenced to 23 years in prison. Martin William Juarez had pleaded no contest July 21 to gross vehicular manslaughter in exchange for the dismissal of other charges including second-degree murder. He faced a sentence of 15 years to life if found guilty of the murder charge. Read the full story here.
SUPERVISORS FIRE KERN MEDICAL CENTER FINANCIAL OFFICER: Kern County supervisors fired Kern Medical Center Chief Financial Officer Sandra Martin Tuesday, saying she did a good job ferreting out the hospital's weaknesses but isn't the right person to help change its governing structure. She was in the middle of a three-year contract with the county. Supervisors said that as KMC transitions into being governed by a hospital authority, different skills will be needed to handle the hospital's finances. Read the full story here.
STATE SHUTS DOWN TWO MORE OIL FIELD DISPOSAL WELLS IN KERN: California regulators have shut in two more Kern County oil field disposal wells, bringing the total to 11 facilities idled since the start of July. State Oil and Gas Supervisor Steven R. Bohlen issued emergency orders Aug. 18 closing the facilities as of noon Saturday. California's Division of Oil, Gas and Geothermal Resources disclosed the orders publicly Tuesday afternoon. Orders say both wells closed this month may contain water suitable for irrigation or domestic purposes and may not have contained oil or gas at the time injection began. Read the full story here.
THE TECH REPORT
INSTAGRAM TIME-LAPSE: Photo and video-sharing service Instagram has launched a new time-lapse app called Hyperlapse. The US social media company says it can capture high-quality videos while the user is on the move using built-in stabilization technology. Users will be able to tap once to begin recording and tap again to stop. You then choose a playback speed that you like between 1x-12x and tap a green check mark to save it to your camera roll. You can then share your video on Instagram with all the usual filters.It is only currently available for Apple's iOS operating system.
THE HEALTH REPORT
E-CIGARETTE BAN: The World Health Organization is calling for major regulations on the e-cigarette industry, including a ban on indoor smoking. The UN agency says e-cigarette smoke -- also known as vapor -- increases levels of toxins in the air, including nicotine. The WHO called for standardized regulations that would restrict advertising efforts and prohibit the industry from making unproven health claims for e-cigarettes. The industry -- worth an estimated $3 billion per year -- markets e-cigarettes as a less-toxic product that can help smokers quit. But the WHO maintained there was no scientific proof showing the products helped people stop smoking.
THE SPORTS REPORT
BCHS VOLLEYBALL SWEEPS LIBERTY: The Bakersfield Christian volleyball team pulled off a surprising 3-game sweep of Liberty High, the No. 1-ranked team in BVarsity's Kern County rankings. Read the full story here.
BLAZE LOSES SECOND HALF-TITLE TO STOCKTON: The host Stockton Ports edged the Bakersfield Blaze 3-2 to clinch the second-half title of the California League's North Division.
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