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Top issues for Hispanics
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SANTA CLARITA >> As triple-digit temperatures scorched much of the Los Angeles County region Friday afternoon, a fast-moving brush fire broke out along the northbound 14 Freeway in Santa Clarita Valley, spread quickly to more than 3,300 acres, prompted a voluntary evacuation of about 100 people and caused large plumes of smoke visible for miles.
No injuries were reported as a result of the blaze — called the Sand fire — reported at 2:11 p.m. near Sand Canyon Road, according to the Los Angeles County Fire Department.
Evacuations were underway in the area from Soledad Canyon Road at the 14 Freeway to Agua Dulce Canyon Road, said Capt. Keith Mora of the L.A. County Fire Department.
• VIDEO: Fighting the Sand fire
The California Highway Patrol was handling the evacuations, Mora said. About 100 people had been asked to leave. An evacuation center was set up at Golden Valley High School, 27051 Robert C. Lee Pkwy., in Santa Clarita, and shelter for large animals was available at Agua Dulce Airport, Wayside Jail in Castaic and Pierce College in Woodland Hills.
The heat, the 20-plus mile per hour winds and dry brush made it a fast-moving blaze, Mora said.
“The fuel is prime,” Mora said of the dry brush.
And the heat was intense, Mora said. It was 107 degrees when the fire broke out.
More than 200 firefighters were battling the flames from the ground and air.
The Los Angeles Fire Department sent a water-dropping helicopter to assist in the fight and fixed-wing firefighting aircraft also were called in to attack the blaze.
The fire was zero percent contained as of 8:40 p.m.
Two northbound lanes of the freeway were closed south of Soledad Canyon Road, according to the CHP.
Metrolink service has been halted in the area of the Sand fire in the Santa Clarita area. Metrolink says tracks are closed between the Via Princessa and Acton stations.
The fire was moving in a northeastern direction, traveling into the Angeles National Forest, Mora said.
That was good and bad.
On the good side, it wasn’t immediately harming anyone or any property.
“In another respect, it’s damaging our natural forest,” Mora said.
Smoke from the fire was moving southeast into the San Gabriel Valley “due to gusty northwest winds aloft,” according to the National Weather Service.
City News Service contributed to this story.
Los Angeles / West Coast News
LOS ANGELES (KABC) --
Thousands of protesters converged on downtown Los Angeles in participation of May Day rallies Sunday afternoon.
Marches were held across the world, with one of the largest rallies being held in L.A.
Protesters in Southern California called for immigrant and workers' rights, like many union members around the world.
This year, U.S. workers also protested against what they see as hateful presidential campaign rhetoric following remarks by Donald Trump.
"This means this is the power of the people, truly I think the rhetoric surrounding this election cycle has been very hateful, has been very negative and this is really a response to show that we're not going to react with the same hate. We're going to react by saying we're voting for hope and not hate," May Day marcher Lizette Escobedo said.
Trump has argued he is not racist or anti-immigrant.
The downtown L.A. rally began just after 1 p.m. at West 11th and South Figueroa streets.
A separate May Day protest in Boyle Heights was also being held near E Cesar East Chavez Avenue and North Mathews Street.
Crowds of dozens of students, families and members of the Centro CSO: Community Service Organization, Union de Vecinos, Boyle Heights Neighborhood Council and more united to rally for the legalization for all, the end to police killings and to stand against Donald Trump, according to a press release issued Sunday morning.
The protest was expected to point out that immigrant families, especially Latinos, undergo ICE abuse and police brutality.
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DOWNTOWN LOS ANGELES (KABC) --
A new law in California seeks to eliminate racial profiling and incidents like the ones that motivated the deadly police ambush in Dallas. On Friday, the top cop in the state swore in the members of a board entrusted with that task.
To help put an end to racial profiling in law enforcement, California Attorney General Kamala Harris swore in 18 members to the new racial and identity profiling advisory board in downtown Los Angeles.
"I know through the experiences of my family members, my colleagues and my friend that there is not a black man I know who has not been the subject of profiling of unreasonable or unfair stop," she said.
The panel consisted of community and spiritual leaders, current and former law enforcement officers, university professors and civil rights activists.
"I think this board is very needed for the simple fact that the communication and the relationship between the community and law enforcement over the past decade is not as strong as it needs to be," said Timothy Walker, a board member.
The racial and identity profiling act was signed into law last year, which created the advisory board.
The members will help collect data from police on how they conduct traffic and pedestrian stops, then analyze the information and make recommendations.
An emotional Harris also spoke about the recent shootings.
"As a prosecutor, my heart is breaking as the top law enforcement officer of the state and as a black woman," she said.
The major police agencies are expected to turn in data by 2017. The next advisory board meeting was set to take place in September.
SAN DIEGO, Calif. (KABC) --
A San Diego police officer died and another was wounded after being shot in a local neighborhood, the department said Friday.
The San Diego Police Department tweeted that Chief Shelley Zimmerman left the hospital where the second officer, identified as Wade Irwin, was in emergency surgery. She said Irwin, who is married and a father of one young child, was expected to survive.
Zimmerman said Irwin's wife remained by his side throughout the night and that he was a dedicated member of the force.
"(He) just cared so deeply for his family, cared so deeply for our community," she said.
The slain officer, identified as Jonathan DeGuzman, was a husband and father of two. Zimmerman said DeGuzman was taken to the hospital in the back of a patrol car, but despite efforts from emergency hospital staff he succumbed to his injuries.
Zimmerman said it was "gut-wrenching" to lose DeGuzman.
"He cared. He came to work every single day just wanting to make a positive difference in the lives of our community," Zimmerman said.
Both officers were shot multiple times in the upper body during the firefight and were part of the department's gang unit.
DeGuzman and Irwin made a stop just before 11 p.m. in the 3800 block of Boston Avenue and immediately made a call for emergency cover, according to authorities. At some point, a shooting occurred and both officers were hit.
During a mid-morning press conference, authorities said they were still trying to determine if the stop was a traffic stop or a pedestrian stop.
When other officers quickly responded to the scene, they found the pair suffering from gunshot wounds.
A male suspect, who was also shot, was taken into custody after being found in a nearby open ravine area. He was taken to a hospital in an unknown condition.
Authorities cordoned off several blocks in the Southcrest neighborhood to search for a second possible suspect. Residents were asked to stay inside their homes and report any suspicious activity immediately.