Proposed deal decried

first_imgLANCASTER – An accused drunk driver blamed for the death of a baby girl riding in the back seat of her parents’ car has been offered a plea bargain that would free him after less than a year in jail, angering the baby’s family. Eric Boden, 27, whose blood alcohol level was later tested at .13 percent, was talking on a cell phone when his Ford Ranger pickup truck rear-ended Manuel and Jessyka Ceja’s Honda Accord as the Sylmar couple pulled over to let a fire engine pass, authorities said. “I think it’s outrageous,” said Manuel Ceja, 22, who lost his only child in the July 16 crash on Pearblossom Highway but who escaped injury himself. “It’s way too lenient.” Said Natalie’s uncle, Jose Monzon: “If we are going to do anything about drunk drivers, how are we going to do so if the sentence for death is a year? It’s kind of contradicting the goal of ‘don’t drink and drive.”‘ When Natalie was killed, strapped into her child-safety seat, her parents had been taking her to see friends in the Antelope Valley. They were going to deliver the friends an invitation to her baptism. “She was a perfect, healthy baby. What can I say about her?” Manuel Ceja said. Boden, free on $100,000 bail, has pleaded not guilty to gross vehicular manslaughter while intoxicated and driving under the influence causing injury. He has not accepted the plea bargain. Boden’s attorney, Michael Eberhardt, declined to comment on prosecutors’ offer, except to say one was being discussed. Eberhardt said he was waiting for a copy of the coroner’s report. “We can’t agree to do anything until I know for sure what the cause of death is,” Eberhardt said. Deputy District Attorney Robert Foltz said Boden had no prior drunk driving record and his .13 percent blood alcohol level was above California’s .08 legal limit but fell within “the kind of normal DUI range.” Proving in court that Boden acted in a grossly negligent manner, a requirement for a conviction for gross vehicular manslaughter, would be difficult, Foltz said. “You have to find a person was so outrageous in his conduct that they showed a complete and total disregard for anyone’s safety and human life,” Foltz said. “It would be different if the kid was road racing or had prior drunk driving or prior reckless driving. We just don’t have that element.” Foltz said it was unlikely that Boden would get a prison sentence if he went to trial. “His behavior is abhorrent, but the realities are that we have to evaluate these cases proportionately so that they are handled appropriately,” Foltz said. “It has not been my experience that a case with these facts and with this particular defendant with absolutely no record, no prior DUIs or drug arrests, that a court would likely send him to prison.” California Highway Patrol investigators recommended Boden be charged with gross vehicular manslaughter while intoxicated, which carries a maximum sentence of 10 years. They have no power over what prosecutors do when the case gets to court, a CHP sergeant said. `’To see someone sentenced to one year for something so egregious is a true disappointment,” CHP Sgt. Tom Lackey said. Manuel Ceja said the family expected a minimum sentence of four years in state prison, but hoped for a maximum sentence of 10 years. District Attorney Steve Cooley refused an interview request about the offer, saying through a spokeswoman that he did not know the details of the case and nothing more to add than what Foltz said. Because of overcrowding in the Los Angeles County jail system, most jail inmates are being released after serving about 30 percent of their sentence. A jail official said early release depends on what other charges inmates are facing, the crimes for which they are sentenced and the judges’ sentencing orders. Foltz said he spent almost 90 minutes talking with the family about the offer and was aware of their sentiments. “I’m sure they think it’s too lenient,” he said. Foltz added that if it was his family who lost a child no prison sentence would be high enough. Karen Maeshiro, (661) 267-5744 karen.maeshiro@dailynews.com 160Want local news?Sign up for the Localist and stay informed Something went wrong. Please try again.subscribeCongratulations! You’re all set!last_img
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Del Norte football can clinch Big 5 title with win over Eureka on Friday

first_imgCrescent City >> It all comes down to this.When the Del Norte Warriors and Eureka Loggers match up, seemingly regardless of sport, inevitably the stakes are high. In the case of tonight’s Big 5 football contest at Albee Stadium, there is once again plenty on the line for both teams.All the Warriors have to do for added incentive is to rewind one calendar year when last the two teams hooked up on the gridiron. That was at Mike Whalen Field in Crescent City. The Warriors carried a 7-0 lead into …last_img read more

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Is Inflation Theory in Trouble?

first_imgFor more than a quarter of a century, “inflation” has been viewed as the savior of the Big Bang theory.  The Big Bang was in trouble in the late 1970s because of the flatness problem and the horizon problem: our universe appeared to be too homogeneous and isotropic to be an accident.  If a runaway inflation occurred within the first second of the expansion, cosmologist Alan Guth calculated, it would even out any differences and produce the nearly-uniform universe we all know and love.  It seemed an elegant, simple solution.    Many argued in the meantime that inflation was untestable.  Some said it was an ad hoc “rescuing device” to save a theory in trouble.  Nevertheless, Guth and others have claimed that it has passed every test thrown at it (02/21/2005).  Astronomers have pretty much incorporated one of the varieties of inflation into the standard model.  This week in News at Nature, however, a study was reported that doesn’t need cosmic inflation. Could the Big Bang have come not at the beginning of the universe, but after a long, slow period of shrinkage?    That’s one theory bolstered by a new analysis of the Big Bang’s afterglow, which shows that the early universe did not inflate with the smoothness that many theorists expected.    “The standard, canonical models will be ruled out if this holds,” says Amit Yadav, an astronomer at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign.  “The simplicity is gone.”There’s a lot at stake in the result, the article states: “it could also lead to a radical reinterpretation of what the Big Bang was and whether it marked the universe’s beginning.”    On another campus, a different study is calling inflation into doubt.  According to Science Daily, Lawrence Krauss at Case Western Reserve University failed to find the expected noise pattern in the cosmic background radiation expected from inflation theory.  The article, in passing, questions the testability of inflation:Inflation theory arose in the 1980s as a means to explain some features of the universe that had previously baffled astronomers such as why the universe is so close to being flat and why it is so uniform.  Today, inflation remains the best way to theoretically understand many aspects of the early universe, but most of its predictions are sufficiently malleable that consistency with observation cannot be considered unambiguous confirmation.The team claims the polarization pattern that had been used by inflationists as confirmation could be produced by a different mechanism.If the universe is older and more complex than a recent inflationary Big Bang, other questions arise.  According to the Second Law of Thermodynamics, the universe cannot be infinitely old.  It would have gone to its heat death infinitely long ago.    The only solution appears to be a controlled expansion done by intelligent design.  Enter the Bible, that claims a dozen times that God stretched out the heavens.  That fits not only the expansion evidence, but the fine-tuning as well.  Materialists are left totally baffled trying to account for these observations without design.(Visited 32 times, 1 visits today)FacebookTwitterPinterestSave分享0last_img read more

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Two ex-MPs join hands, launch new political front in Odisha

first_imgTwo fringe political parties on Monday joined hands and launched a front with the sole objective of ousting the ruling BJD from power in the coming twin elections in Odisha.Samata Kranti Dal, headed by former MP Braja Kishore Tripathy, and Utkal Bharat, led by former MP Kharavel Swain, announced the formation of the Odisha Democratic Front. The two ex-MPs said that the new front aimed at defeating the BJD in the upcoming Lok Sabha and Assembly elections and announced to field candidates in all the 147 Assembly seats in the State.‘An alternative’ Claiming that the BJD government has made the State poor during its 18-year rule, they said the Odisha Democratic Front will emerge as an alternative. They alleged that a large number of people are migrating to other States in search of jobs and the State government has failed to create employment opportunities for the local youths.‘Govt. has failed’ The Front leaders also criticised the State government and the Chief Minister alleging that the administration failed in all sectors including like health, education and agriculture. Both Mr. Tripathy and Mr. Swain were hopeful that all the anti-BJD leaders will come forward and fight together to defeat the Naveen government.Mr. Tripathy had been elected MP twice and was a Cabinet Minister in the Atal Bihari Vajpayee government at the Centre after being elected on the BJD ticket from Puri Lok Sabha seat in 1999. He had resigned from the BJD in 2009 and joined the BJP before launching his own party, Samata Kranti Dal, in 2013.Mr. Swain was also elected MP twice, including once from Balasore on a BJP ticket.last_img read more

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South Africa inflict innings defeat on India

first_imgFirst day’s gloom seemed to have rubbed on to India’s fortunes as the visitors fell to a humiliating innings and 25-run defeat against South Africa at the SuperSport Park in Centurion on Sunday. ScoreSachin Tendulkar celebrates his 50th Test ton in Centurion on Sunday. Agency photoThe only bright spot in the Test was Sachin Tendulkar’s 50th Test century.Some even say India had lost the match the very moment captain Mahendra Singh Dhoni lost the toss.And they weren’t completely wrong, for on a damp wicket with conditions assisting the pacers, there was little that the India batsmen could do after opposition captain Graeme Smith forced them in.As expected the famed India battling line-up folded up like a pack of cards with nine wickets falling on the day save skipper Dhoni, who fell the next day to Morne Morkel.Morkel finished with a five-wicket haul while Dale Steyn took three as India wrapped their first innings on a measly 136.The sun came out bright on Friday and the pitch was dry – perfect conditions for forging batting alliances. And that’s precisely what South Africa did – forge partnerships.The most noteworthy was Hashim Amla and all-rounder Jacques Kallis’s 230-run partnership. While Amla scored 140 before getting out to Ishant Sharma the next day, Kallis remained unbeaten scoring his maiden double ton.Later, Kallis forged a partnership with AB de Villiers to put 224 on board. De Villiers punished the Indian attack, that looked toothless in the absence of injured paceman Zaheer, making a quick-fire 129.advertisementIn fact, his century was so hasty that it entered the record books as the fastest ton by a South African in Test cricket. He reached the mark in just 75 balls.The plight eased for the Indians when the host decided to declare the innings on 620/4 – a commanding 484-run lead in their bag.With a good lead in hand, the South African fielders were in a mood to relax and that showed in their sloppy fielding as they gave the Indian openers Virender Sehwag and Gautam Gambhir five lives before leading them back to the pavilion on 63 and 80 respectively.The fourth day’s proceedings only saw the India batsmen walk in and out of the pavilion as the Proteas tightened the noose.Finally, Sachin Tendulkar and skipper Mahendra Singh Dhoni got on with the rescue operation putting on 172 runs for the seventh wicket.Tendulkar went on to complete his much-desired half-century of Test tons with Dhoni aptly supporting him.No sooner did Tendulkar achieve the target that Dhoni fell, giving an impression that he was only in the middle to help Sachin’s cause.A Dale Steyn delivery that climbed on him had Dhoni fend for cover and in the process he gave away an edge to Mark Boucher behind the stumps. He was out for 90.Post his dismissal Paul Harris accounted for Harbhajan Singh’s wicket to fast track India’s loss. The game could have got over in minutes, but bad weather stopped play and soon stumps were called.Minutes into the fifth day Sachin Tendulkar was standing at the crease unbeaten on 111 as the scoreboard read – South Africa win by an innings and 25 runs – a massive and humiliating defeat for the No. 1 Test team in the world.last_img read more

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