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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

Zero emissions, 15 years

California air regulators could put the nation's most populous state at the forefront of phasing out internal combustion engines.
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Los Angeles Times
Today's Headlines
Click to view images State regulators are set to vote on phasing out sales of new gas-powered vehicles by 2035. (Myung J. Chun / Los Angeles Times)

By Elvia Limón and Jason Sanchez

Hello, it's Thursday, Aug. 25, and here are the stories you shouldn't miss today:

TOP STORIES

Today's vote: Phasing out sales of new gas-powered cars within 15 years

California air regulators are set to vote on a historic plan that would effectively require all new cars sold within the state to be zero emissions by 2035 — a ruling that would put the nation's most populous state at the forefront of phasing out internal combustion engines and the harmful, planet-warming gases they emit.

If approved, the regulations are expected to significantly reduce vehicle carbon dioxide emissions, as well as smog-forming nitrogen oxides, over the next two decades. They could also lead the way in transforming America's aging fleet of gasoline-powered automobiles.

Biden will cancel $10,000 of student debt for many borrowers

President Biden moved to cancel $10,000 in student debt for people earning less than $125,000 annually while extending a pause on loan repayments for all borrowers through the end of the year.

Also under the plan, people who received Pell Grants to help cover the cost of college will be eligible for up to $20,000 in loan relief. And a new income-based repayment cap will ensure borrowers pay no more than 5% of their monthly income toward their undergraduate loans as long as they aren't behind on payments. Some analysts believe that change may prove even more significant than the debt forgiveness.

Biden described his action as economic fairness that would "provide more breathing room for people" and boost America's competitiveness.

Plus: Here's what you need to know about who's eligible and for how much in California.

More politics

  • California lawmakers rejected legislation that would have allowed West Hollywood, San Francisco and Palm Springs to authorize weekend alcohol service until 4 a.m.
  • The Department of Justice has released a 2019 memo to then-Atty. Gen. William Barr advising him not to pursue obstruction of justice charges against then-President Trump.
  • The Biden administration and Iran are crawling toward reviving the landmark nuclear accord that would delay Tehran's building of a bomb.

Sign up for our California Politics newsletter to get the best of The Times' state politics reporting and the latest action in Sacramento.

Vanessa Bryant and Chris Chester prevail in the Kobe photo sharing trial

A jury ordered Los Angeles County to pay Vanessa Bryant, widow of Lakers star Kobe Bryant, and a second person $31 million in damages for the graphic photos sheriff's deputies and firefighters took at the scene of the 2020 helicopter crash that killed Bryant, his daughter, and seven others.

In reaching the verdict after only a few hours of deliberations, jurors made clear they had been persuaded by Bryant and Chris Chester, who argued that illicit photos of the crash victims' bodies had violated their right to privacy and inflicted emotional distress. Chester lost his wife, Sarah, and daughter, Payton, in the crash.

Little to hold Torrance police officers accountable

Eight months ago, a Los Angeles Times investigation revealed portions of racist and homophobic text messages exchanged by at least a dozen Torrance police officers, a scandal that sparked an investigation by the California attorney general's office. Documents recently reviewed by The Times revealed texts in which officers talked about hurting and killing Black suspects.

Despite critics' calls for a civilian board to oversee the city's Police Department — as Los Angeles has — there's little evidence that Torrance officials have taken tangible steps toward reform since the scandal exploded.

If the city doesn't act soon, other officers implicated in the texting scandal could avoid discipline. Under state law, officers generally must face discipline within one year of their agency learning about alleged misconduct. Records show the district attorney's office recovered all of the racist messages last August, though it's unclear when Torrance officials reviewed them.

A looming COVID risk in California?

California schools reopened for the fall semester with loosened COVID-19 protocols and low student vaccination rates among younger children, presenting a new test for the trajectory of the pandemic as some experts expect another rise in cases when winter arrives.

But health experts are watching how schools do in the coming weeks, especially given how many youngsters remain unvaccinated. Only 37% of children ages 5 to 11 have completed their primary vaccination series in California, quite low compared with the 67% vaccination rate for adolescents 12 to 17 and 78% for adults 18 to 49, according to the state Department of Public Health.

More top coronavirus headlines

  • The World Health Organization says COVID-19 deaths are down 15%.
  • Paxlovid, Pfizer's COVID-19 pill, appears to provide little or no benefit for adults 40 to 65, according to a new study.

Stay up to date on variant developments, case counts and vaccine news with Coronavirus Today.

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PHOTO OF THE DAY

A dog feeds her puppies.
Mother nature: Mia feeds her puppies at the Beagle Freedom Project after her arrival in Los Angeles. Read: "Meghan, Prince Harry adopt beagle rescued from abuse at Virginia plant." (Beagle Freedom Project)

CALIFORNIA

The State Bar gave a 14% raise to its executive director amid the Tom Girardi scandal. The pay hike brought Leah T. Wilson's annual salary to $344,000, an amount that dwarfs the salaries of Gov. Gavin Newsom ($218,556) and other prominent government officials overseeing larger organizations, including the state attorney general ($189,841) and California's recently named chief justice ($293,286).

A Bay Area woman admitted she'd lived with her dead mother's body for more than a year, police say. The Petaluma Police Department said officers found the mother's decomposing body while performing a welfare check, prompted by neighbors who became concerned when they had not seen the daughter for several weeks. Investigators classified the case as an unattended death, meaning the body was not found for a period of time after the person died.

L.A. residents are trying to stop "Fast & Furious" from filming in their neighborhood. Residents say the franchise's presence does far more than just attract tourists for pictures. "It's become a tourist destination for street racing," said Damian Kevitt, executive director and founder of the nonprofit Streets Are for Everyone.

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NATION-WORLD

A Russian serviceman's scathing memoir depicts a senseless war. The soldier's searing firsthand account of the invasion of Ukraine — depicting ordinary foot soldiers exploited as cannon fodder by inept commanders and a cynical Kremlin leadership — is drawing decidedly mixed reviews from inside and outside the battle zone.

The Uvalde, Texas, school board fired the school district's embattled police chief. Pete Arredondo is the first officer dismissed over the hesitant and fumbling law enforcement response to the May 24 mass shooting that left 19 students and two teachers dead. Only one other officer — Uvalde Police Department Lt. Mariano Pargas, who was the city's acting police chief on the day of the massacre — is known to have been placed on leave for actions during the shooting.

Mexican officials have arrested "Cabo 20." The country's federal authorities arrested David López Jiménez, who goes by the nickname "El Cabo 20," on suspicion of ordering the killing of Tijuana photojournalist Margarito Martínez Esquivel.

Floods are wreaking havoc across Pakistan, killing 903 people since mid-June. Heavy rains have triggered flash floods, killing hundreds and leaving about 50,000 people homeless, the country's disaster agency said. Thousands whose homes were swept away now live in tents, miles away from their inundated villages and towns, after being rescued by soldiers, local disaster workers and volunteers.

HOLLYWOOD AND THE ARTS

That's Dr. Joni to you: Mitchell's renaissance revs up with an honorary Berklee doctorate. Berklee President Erica Muhl lauded the 78-year-old musician for "blazing the trail for women in music with an unwavering commitment" and dubbed her "one of the world's greatest musical artists."

The interview that took down a monarch. Former BBC "Newsnight" booker Sam McAlister reveals, in a new book, the tense discussions that secured her an interview with Prince Andrew. When first offered access in 2018 — to do what she called a "puff piece" on his charity work — she turned it down, telling his PR people firmly: No preconditions, or no interview. As questions surrounding the prince's ties to Jeffrey Epstein grew louder, McAlister persevered.

A giant collage remixes blockbuster movie iconography. "Experience 51: Time" celebrates the Oscar-winning career of production designer Rick Carter, who was pivotal in creating the vivid worlds depicted in films such as "Back to the Future," "Jurassic Park" and "Avatar," among others. The exhibit at ESMoA includes eight other artists' interpretations of characters and themes from Carter's movies. Renderings, pencil drawings and paintings are fused onto fabric that came from downtown L.A.'s Garment District. The huge collage lines the walls of the gallery.

Harvey Weinstein was granted an appeal in a New York rape and sex crime conviction. The Miramax co-founder was sentenced to 23 years in a New York state prison a month after his February 2020 conviction, bringing an end to a years-long saga that helped spawn the #MeToo movement. More than 80 women accused Weinstein of sexual abuse. The disgraced producer is now hoping an appeals court will agree with his arguments about not getting a fair trial and will overturn his conviction.

BUSINESS

Dan Price, CEO known for giving raises, has resigned after a Palm Springs rape investigation. The chief executive of Seattle-based Gravity Payments is accused of raping a woman in Palm Springs in April 2021, the second public allegation against him of violence against women in recent years. Price called the allegations against him "false accusations," in a statement on Twitter. In the same post, Price announced his resignation.

West Hollywood is giving out spiked-drink tests to bars and clubs. The city has begun distributing date-rape drug-test kits to venues that serve alcohol and to some patrons. The packages contain tests that detect whether someone's drink has been drugged. Each kit contains 10 tests that detect gamma hydroxybutyrate, also called GHB, or ketamine, two commonly used date-rape drugs.

Renters pay big fees every time they apply for apartments. California could change that. Assembly Bill 2559, which the California Senate approved Monday, seeks to relieve renters of some of the costs of credit and background checks, as other states have done. It would allow renters to purchase reusable credit reports instead of paying for new ones each time they apply for an apartment.

OPINION

A tribute to Mr. C and all teachers. One after another, Mr. Gerald Carpenter's students, now gray themselves, lined up to thank their favorite teacher. One called him a rock star. Another thanked him for knowing he needed help when he couldn't say so. It was a beautiful tribute, especially in these times of catastrophic teacher shortages, plummeting funding for needed supplies and the injection of hysterical laws in dozens of states limiting how teachers can talk about race relations and inequality in our classrooms.

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SPORTS

The PGA Tour announced major changes in response to rival LIV Golf. The tour made its boldest response yet to the Saudi-funded league with a plan for the best players to commit to a 20-tournament schedule in which they will compete against each other up to 17 times. The schedule includes the four majors and features $20-million purses.

Fernando Tatis Jr. apologized for his 80-game drug suspension. The San Diego Padres superstar shortstop was suspended Aug. 12 for 80 games after Major League Baseball said he had tested positive for an anabolic steroid. Tatis originally said he accidentally took a medication to treat ringworm that contained the banned substance. Asked about the ringworm story, Tatis offered a clarification, saying he had been dealing with a skin infection for some time, took some medication and tested positive soon after.

The lost years. The Angels, despite employing a pair of generational talents in center fielder Mike Trout and two-way phenom Shohei Ohtani, are spiraling toward their seventh consecutive losing season, which would match a stretch from 1971 to 1977 for the longest streak of futility in franchise history. Now there's news that Arte Moreno is exploring a possible sale of the team.

ONLY IN L.A.

Photo collage of a turtle on a rock with an L.A. street and downtown skyline in the background.
A red-eared slider. (Photo illustration by Nicole Vas / Los Angeles Times; photos by Raul Roa / Los Angeles Times and Unsplash)

L.A.'s turtle transplants. By and large, the turtles you see in city parks across Los Angeles aren't native to California. Once upon a time, the native southwestern pond turtle "used to be all through the rivers and streams of the Greater L.A. basin," said Brad Shaffer, director of the UCLA La Kretz Center for California Conservation Science.

Today, it's only possible to see those turtles in a few isolated places in L.A. County — and it's a candidate for listing under the U.S. Endangered Species Act, Shaffer said. So, where did our native turtles go? And how did the non-native turtles get here?

Part of the explanation: Non-native red-eared sliders do well in our county urban parks, and they're "beautiful, especially when they're babies," he said. But they don't stay little forever, with some adult turtles reaching nearly a foot in length — leading many people to "re-home" their grown-up turtles by dumping them in urban ponds and lakes.

FROM THE ARCHIVES

An illustration of nude people with bat wings standing under a large tree.
An English pamphlet published in 1836 included the bat-winged people that John Herschel was supposed to have seen on the moon. (Los Angeles Times)

One hundred and eighty-seven years ago today, on Aug. 25, 1835, the first in a series of stories began running in the Sun in New York claiming that British astronomer John Herschel had observed life on the moon. The creatures were about 4 feet tall and had wings.

The Times mentioned what came to be known as the Great Moon Hoax in its Feb. 25, 1962, edition, in an article about the possibility of life on other planets, as well as some of the fantasies from the past: "Sir John, son of the even more respected Sir William Herschel, was reported to have set up a uniquely powerful telescope near Capetown, South Africa. Through this great optical telescope he was said to have seen amazing sights on the moon's surface. Among them were bat-winged men and women, some of the women cradling babies in their arms, animals that look like polar bears but which lived in huts and were obviously much more intelligent than any earth bear, and trees and foliage as lush as those in a hot-house."

It was, of course, a hoax. But the story spiked circulation numbers for newspapers in New York and London, The Times reported, and "many notable scientists were fooled."

Staff writer Amy Hubbard contributed to this report.

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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