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Thomas Kingston's Cause of Death Revealed

Gwyneth Paltrow and Chris Martin's Son Moses Looks So Grown Up in Rare Photo; Bethany Joy Lenz Reveals Name of Alleged "Cult" She Says She Belonged To; Hailey Bieber's Sister Alaia Baldwin Aronow Arrested for Assault and Battery; and more from E! News... March 01, 2024   View Online   NEWS VIDEOS PHOTOS SHOP NEWS VIDEOS PHOTOS SHOP   Thomas Kingston's Cause of Death Revealed VIEW   Gwyneth Paltrow and Chris Martin's Son Moses Looks So Grown Up in Rare Photo VIEW   Bethany Joy Lenz Reveals Name of Alleged "Cult" She Says She Belonged To VIEW   Hailey Bieber's Sister Alaia Baldwin Aronow Arrested for Assault and Battery VIEW   Ayesha Curry Is Pregnant, Expecting Baby No. 4 With Husband Stephen Curry VIEW SEE MORE   F

Will Biden forgive some student debt?

Aides expect President Biden to land somewhere close to forgiving up to $10,000 of federal student loan debt for borrowers earning less than $125,000 a year.
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Los Angeles Times
Today's Headlines
Click to view images President Biden intends to announce his long-delayed decision on canceling some student debt today. (Kent Nishimura / Los Angeles Times)

By Elvia Limรณn and Jason Sanchez

Hello, it's Wednesday, Aug. 24, and these are the stories you shouldn't miss today.

TOP STORIES

Biden plans a student debt relief announcement

President Biden intends to announce his long-delayed decision on canceling some student debt today. Biden has yet to finalize details of his plan, but any choice he makes on the contentious issue is likely to draw criticism from both parties and risks shifting the political winds that have recently begun blowing in the Democrats' favor.

Aides expect the president to land somewhere close to forgiving up to $10,000 of federal student loan debt for borrowers earning less than $125,000 a year, according to a person familiar with the matter. More than 40 million Americans in that income category have at least some student debt.

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A bid to put abortion protections in California's Constitution has strong support

A measure to amend the state Constitution to add protections for abortion rights appears on track for victory this fall, as the issue appears to be strongly motivating voters.

A new UC Berkeley Institute of Governmental Studies poll shows that 7 in 10 California voters support the proposed constitutional amendment, and majorities back other policies aimed at protecting abortion rights.

Voters' strong convictions on the issue appear likely to bolster the election fortunes of Democrats in the state in November.

This power line could save California

Billionaire Phil Anschutz is getting ready to build the nation's largest wind farm, in Wyoming, and a 732-mile power line across four states to ship the electricity it generates to the Golden State. It's an audacious plan — and a harbinger of what's coming for communities across the West.

To see what the future might look like, L.A. Times journalists visited Anschutz's sprawling wind farm construction site, then traveled the planned route of his electric line. For this first in a series of stories, they talked with the project's fiercest supporters and harshest critics.

Anschutz Corp. executive Bill Miller says the clean-energy writing is on the wall: "People holler and scream and bitch and bellyache about it, but at the end of the day, it's happening. Society has spoken. They know what they want. And we'd better listen."

Ukraine braces for a solemn Independence Day

Far from bogging down in a stalemate, the Russian invasion of Ukraine has evolved into an increasingly dangerous conflict as it passes the six-month mark.

That mark in a war that has killed thousands and driven millions from their homes overlaps with what is normally a joyous national holiday. Today marks 31 years since Ukraine broke free from the collapsing Soviet Union.

Independence Day was greeted by Ukrainians with a mixture of defiance and dread, as the U.S. State Department said it had "information that Russia is stepping up efforts to launch strikes against Ukraine's civilian infrastructure and government facilities in the coming days" and repeated entreaties that U.S. citizens leave the country.

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PHOTO OF THE DAY

A man in a skull mask and flowered crown stands amid a cloud of red smoke.
SMOKE ON THE WATER: Butch Locsin performs on a bridge over the L.A. River. READ: "Who's the masked guy in a suit putting on mesmerizing smoke shows on L.A. streets?" (Wesley Lapointe/Los Angeles Times)

CALIFORNIA

The rise of monkeypox has sex workers worried. The virus has predominantly hit gay and bisexual men, but it has alarmed Angelenos of other genders and orientations who make a living from sex work — which includes stripping, performing in adult films or on webcams and other forms of selling sexual services. Many workers — familiar already with condoms to protect against infections — are now being counseled that "hands should be off" as much as possible during interactions. Also: Eligibility for monkeypox vaccines expanded again this week in L.A. County, increasing access to the two-dose series for more people who meet high-risk criteria.

A third duck with its beak removed was found in a Fountain Valley park. Two others have been found and cared for by the center since July. The third duck was found by a volunteer walking in the park after work; she took the bird home because the center was closed. Like the other ducks, it appeared to be starving and died overnight. Officials with the California Department of Fish and Wildlife are investigating the incident.

A woman was arrested after 11 dead dogs were found at Bakersfield homes. Annie Schreiber was booked on suspicion of 11 counts of felony animal abuse and other charges. Animal control officers searched the homes on Aug. 11 and found the dead dogs as well as 29 others and three cats suffering from neglect, according to the Bakersfield Police Department. Schreiber allegedly operated an unlicensed animal boarding and training business and was "directly responsible for the neglect of the animals," police said.

Sick sea lions were spotted along the Ventura County coast. Sea lions are being poisoned by a toxin found in plankton, and reports of the sick animals being spotted along the Ventura County coast are skyrocketing, according to a rescue organization.

House Speaker Nancy Pelosi's husband receives a jail and probation sentence for a DUI in Napa County. Paul Pelosi pleaded guilty to misdemeanor charges of driving under the influence related to a car crash he caused in May in Yountville, Calif. He was sentenced to five days in jail and three years of probation, according to authorities.

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NATION-WORLD

Two men were convicted in the plot to kidnap Michigan Gov. Gretchen Whitmer. Adam Fox and Barry Croft Jr. were convicted of all charges in federal court in Grand Rapids, Mich. They were accused of scheming to kidnap the Democratic governor and ignite a civil war near the 2020 presidential election.

A former Louisville, Ky., officer pleaded guilty in the Breonna Taylor case. Federal investigators said Kelly Goodlett added a false line to the search warrant for Taylor's home and later conspired with another detective to create a cover story when Taylor's March 13, 2020, shooting death by police began gaining national attention. Goodlett appeared in a federal courtroom in Louisville and admitted to conspiring to falsify the warrant.

Poll: Most Americans want stricter gun laws. Most U.S. adults want to see gun laws made stricter and think gun violence is increasing nationwide, according to a new poll that finds broad public support for a variety of restrictions, including many that are supported by majorities of Republicans and gun owners. The poll shows that 71% of Americans say gun laws should be stricter, including about half of Republicans, the vast majority of Democrats and a majority of those in gun-owning households.

HOLLYWOOD AND THE ARTS

Their goal is to save a team. Nearly two years ago, actors Ryan Reynolds and Rob McElhenney bought Wrexham FC in hopes of turning the soccer team around and documenting on camera how they did it. That transformation remains a work in progress — the club is fifth in the league standings in its third season under the new owners — but the docuseries it inspired, "Welcome to Wrexham," premieres tonight on FX.

"Bel-Air" showrunner talks about a debut novel. The novelist and TV writer Rasheed Newson is 43, which makes him too young to have participated in the heyday of AIDS activism and the civil rights movement. "I'm Black and I'm gay and so I've always wondered what role I would've played," he said from the Pasadena home he shares with his husband and their two children. "I wonder where I would've fallen in the world of protesting." Newson will never know. But he has some fun speculating in his debut novel, "My Government Means to Kill Me," a hard-edged, cameo-filled novel of AIDS-riddled 1980s New York.

A new play looks at Abraham Lincoln through a queer lens. Roger Q. Mason, a playwright and performer, writes on their website: "I am a Black, Filipinx, plus-sized, gender non-conforming, queer artist of color. My work employs the lens of history to chip away at the cultural biases that divide rather than unite us." This would serve as an excellent description of not only Mason's character, Taffeta, but Mason's play "Lavender Men," premiering at Skylight Theatre. The play brings Lincoln back from the dead to relive his relationship with a law clerk to whom he's passionately, if discreetly, devoted, writes theater critic Charles McNulty.

BUSINESS

A Brink's driver was catching ZZZs instead of robbers. When thieves broke into a Brink's tractor-trailer and stole millions of dollars of jewelry in a late-night heist last month at an Interstate 5 truck stop, one of the drivers was asleep in the vehicle's sleeping berth, the company says. That revelation was disclosed in a lawsuit filed by Brink's against 13 jewelers whose wares the company was transporting from San Mateo to the L.A. area for the International Gem and Jewelry Show.

A Laguna Beach home sold for a 2022 record of $43.5 million. The staggering sum makes it the most expensive transaction ever in the affluent enclave of Emerald Bay and one of the priciest ever in Orange County. The record was set last year, when hedge fund manager Joseph Edelman spent $70 million on an 18,000-square-foot mansion in Laguna Beach's Abalone Point. This one's smaller, at less than 5,000 feet, which helped it break another record: It sold for $8,733 per square foot, the most ever for a newly constructed home in Orange County.

OPINION

Facebook's troubling cooperation with an abortion investigation. With federal protections for reproductive rights rolled back, data privacy protections are more important than ever for healthcare and abortion access. Facebook and other tech companies routinely cooperate with police demands for information they collect. After reports revealed this month that Facebook handed over to law enforcement messages between a Nebraska teen and her mother about the teen's pregnancy loss, Facebook claimed that it wasn't aware the police were seeking information relevant to a person's abortion. That raises the question: What would Facebook have done if the warrant included the word "abortion"?

Why CNN's efforts to appease democracy's enemies will backfire. Does the network really believe the MAGA cult will start liking Don Lemon or Jake Tapper if they have more Trumpers on their shows? Do they think the MAGA cult will stop attacking them and calling them "fake news" if Jim Jordan and Ted Cruz start appearing regularly? Do they think those who worship former President Trump will change the channel from Fox or Steve Bannon's podcast to start watching CNN regularly?

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SPORTS

Angels owner Arte Moreno is exploring the sale of the team. Moreno does not have a potential buyer lined up; one person familiar with his thinking but not authorized to speak publicly about it likened the announcement to putting a "for-sale sign on the lawn." Moreno has owned the Angels since 2003, when he bought the team for $183.5 million from the Walt Disney Co. That was the year after the Angels won their first and only World Series championship.

How the Dodgers became men of steal. Entering play Monday, the team had 78 stolen bases while being caught just 14 times. They are on pace to steal 105, easily their highest total since 2014, when Dee Strange-Gordon skewed the category by pilfering 64. Their success rate this season (84.8%) is exceeded only by the Chicago White Sox, who are 41 for 48 (85.4%). The increased thefts should keep the Dodgers sharp for the pressure-packed playoffs, when stealing bases becomes easier and more impactful.

ONLY IN L.A.

Columnist Patt Morrison on the misnamed sports teams of Los Angeles. Maybe it's because we're neighbors with Hollywood's mirage machine that we can cohabit so easily with irony. How else to explain how we've spent more than 60 years cheering for a team that's named after luscious bodies of water that exist only in Los Angeles' yearnings?

The Los Angeles Lakers were named for their old hometown, Minneapolis, and for Minnesota's slogan "Land of 10,000 Lakes." Now the team is here, in the "Land-of-Good-Luck-Finding-a-Lake." (If Morrison had her druthers, the team would be "the Arroyo Secos.")

FROM THE ARCHIVES

A man stands in the window of a store, leaning back with a squeegee.
March 5, 2013: Window washer Peter Munk cleans the panes at City Lights Bookstore. (Los Angeles Times)

Twenty-one years ago this week, on Aug. 26, 2001, the San Francisco Board of Supervisors made City Lights Bookstore an official historic landmark.

The Times wrote a year earlier of the shop and its pending designation:

"Wedged into a cramped corner of Columbus Avenue, the shop founded by renowned Beat Generation poet Lawrence Ferlinghetti has an oddball pie-slice shape, slanted checkered floors and triangular rooms, not to mention slipshod lighting with wiring running every which way. … The distinction isn't for memorable architecture but for the bookstore's counterculture history and role as the bohemian soul to a generation of avant-garde San Francisco writers."

Ferlinghetti launched the store in 1955 and two years later began publishing books. Within a year, City Lights published its most famous title, testing the 1st Amendment with the X-rated poetry of Allen Ginsberg: "Howl and Other Poems." The shop was "an artistic speak-easy," The Times wrote, "where Beat writers such as crazy Jack Kerouac gave regular readings and where comics Lenny Bruce and Mort Sahl popped in."

We appreciate that you took the time to read Today's Headlines! Comments or ideas? Feel free to drop us a note at headlines@latimes.com.

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