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KSBR News Briefs on Monday, Sept. 25, 2017

Second video shows man punching officer before shooting

A new video surfaced Saturday that appears to show a man throwing punches at a Huntington Beach police officer during a scuffle before the man was fatally shot outside of a convenience store.

The video, posted on Facebook and YouTube, shows the man in a physical confrontation with a police officer outside of a 7-Eleven Friday morning in Huntington Beach.

The video, which appears to be taken from inside a car in the parking lot, starts with the officer pointing a stun gun at the man and ordering him to sit down. The man seems unaffected when the officer fires the stun gun and quickly rushes toward the officer.

The man can be seen repeatedly punching the officer before the officer appears to get the man in a headlock and they wrestle to the ground. Once they are on the ground, the officer can be heard shouting, "let go of my gun!" though he appears to retain full control of the weapon during the entire encounter.

A second video, which was posted on Twitter on Friday, showed the man grabbing an object from the officer's belt as they struggled next to a parked car. The officer then pulls out his gun and backs away. Another video clip shows the man jumping to his feet and he's almost immediately shot. Six rounds are fired before the officer calls out, "get on the ground." After a short pause, a final, seventh gunshot is fired and the man stumbles backward and collapses against a wall.

Huntington Beach Police Chief Robert Handy said the officer had been forced to defend himself and had the right to fatally shoot the man if he felt his life was in danger.

Police said they are still investigating and released few details of what led to the confrontation. None of the videos appear to show the suspect holding a gun.


California lawmakers look to free older and younger inmates

To ease overcrowding in state prisons, state lawmakers want to release more of the state's older prisoners and more of the inmates who were young when they committed their crimes.

The two bills sent to Gov. Brown in the final days of the legislative session are the latest attempt to keep the prison population below the cap set by federal judges, with the goal of eventually ending federal oversight.

One requires parole officials to consider whether "age, time served and diminished physical condition" reduced the risk for future violence by older inmates. And the other mandates officials consider whether young people fully understood their actions and if their lack of maturity allowed for a greater chance of rehabilitation.

The measures follow voter-approved early-release efforts in recent years that have reduced penalties for drug and property crimes and, most recently, allowed more sentencing credits that can lead to earlier releases for inmates who complete rehabilitation programs.

Law enforcement agencies and victims' organizations say the efforts put hardened criminals on the streets and create safety issues for communities. They point to rising crime rates following the earlier initiatives as evidence that once out from behind bars many convicts return to their criminal ways.


Report: UC students paying for pensions with higher tuition

A newspaper investigation finds the number of University of California retirees collecting six-figure pensions has increased 60 percent since 2012 — and those increasingly generous retirement packages are being paid for by students' tuition.

The Los Angeles Times reports last year more than 5,400 UC retirees received pensions over $100,000.

Spokeswoman Dianne Klein said it's impossible to say precisely how much of this year's tuition increase will go toward retirement costs, but the newspaper indicates it could be tens of millions of dollars.

The Times article shows pensions, salaries and UC's failure to contribute to the pension fund for two decades have left the retirement system in the red. Last year, there was a $15 billion gap between the amount on hand and the amount it owes to retirees.



After 66 million years, creature wins state dinosaur honor

It took about 66 million years, but a duck-billed creature has finally won recognition as our state’s dinosaur.

Gov. Brown announced the signing of a bill making Augustynolophus morrisi the official dinosaur of the Golden State.

Fossilized remains of the duckbilled creature that lived anywhere from 100 million to 66 million years ago have been found only in our state.

Several other states and Washington, D.C., also have official dinosaurs.

California has more than 30 state insignia including a state lichen — lace lichen — and a state fabric, denim.


Studying 1 million people to end cookie-cutter health care

U.S. researchers are getting ready to recruit more than 1 million people for an unprecedented study to learn how our genes, environments and lifestyles interact.

Today, health care is based on averages, what worked best in short studies of a few hundred or thousand patients. The massive "All of Us" project instead will push what's called precision medicine, using traits that make us unique to forecast health and treat disease.

The goal is to end cookie-cutter health care.

A pilot is under way now. If all goes well, the National Institutes of Health plans to open enrollment early next year.

Participants will get DNA tests, and report on their diet, sleep, exercise and numerous other health-affecting factors. It's a commitment: The study aims to run for at least 10 years.


Alzheimer’s Orange County

Every 66 seconds, someone in America develops Alzheimer’s disease. It’s a progressive brain disease where dementia symptoms gradually worsen over a number of years.

Alzheimer’s Orange County Memories in the Making Program Coordinator Ben Allen understands the disease. His wife was diagnosed with it eight years ago and for the last three years, the disease had moved into its advantaged stage. She’s living in a long-term care facility.

He says it took several years before she was diagnosed. It became obvious she was struggling as her symptoms were short term memory loss, confusion, getting lost and losing things.

He’s the guest on our public affairs show “Collage,” which airs at seven this evening on www.KSBR.org  and 88-5 H-D-2, as well as the Tune-In and iTunes apps.

It can also be heard anytime On Demand from www.KSBR.org.