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A middle school student in Hercules, California contacted a school resource officer around 9:15 Wednesday morning, claiming that she saw a man at the school with a gun in his pocket. She reportedly told the resource officer that she first saw the gun on the bus. She says that she saw the man inside the campus of the school and approached the resource officer.

The resource officer found the man near the administration gate at the school. Officials say that the 19-year-old had attended the school when he was younger, but the resource officer did not believe that the teen was authorized to be at the school. The officer drew his gun and ordered the teen onto the ground. Later, the officer found a BB gun, which was not loaded with any BBs in the pocket. The 19-year-old now is facing a charge of unlawfully possessing a weapon on school grounds.

Generally, the California Penal Code defines weapons fairly broadly in the statute that prohibits bringing or possessing a weapon on K-12 school grounds.Kids, or high school students, may face charges for weapons on school grounds for relatively minor incidents with the breadth of the law in California.

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Tagged in: BB Gun weapons charges

Deputies in Calaveras County arrested a San Andreas, California man on suspicion of burglary after police say he used a sauna at a San Andreas residence. Officials say that a San Andreas homeowner found the suspect in the kitchen of the home last week, wearing a trench coat and socks. The resident claims that he chased the man out of his home and tackled the suspect in the driveway, while a neighbor called police.

Law enforcement apparently interrogated the man about his alleged presence in the home. Police claim that the man said that he thought the home was unoccupied and had entered the home to use the sauna. When questioned about his trench coat and socks, law enforcement says that the man told them that his clothes were on the floor near the sauna.

Police claim that several items were found in the man's possession when he was found at the home. Authorities say that the items had been stolen from the home and that the suspect admitted to taking small tools, batteries and other small items from the residence.

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Law enforcement took two people into custody at a Salinas, California truck stop. Authorities claim the two can be linked to a December 31, 2012 burglary at the same location. Police claim that a man smashed a glass case at the store in December and took several items.

Staff members at the gas station and truck stop claim that a woman returned to the store in early January seeking to return some of the items that authorities believe were stolen during the late December commercial burglary. Store personnel claim that the woman was seeking a refund for the allegedly stolen high-priced items.

Monday, as several California Highway Patrol officers were inside the store, authorities claim that a man and woman walked into the establishment. Staff members claim that the man was the one who stole items in the late December incident, while they also claim that the woman is the same person who allegedly tried to return stolen items to the store for a refund in early January. Store personnel called over the CHP officers, who reportedly detained the man and woman until Salinas Police officers could respond to the location.

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Law enforcement raided an upscale home in Castro Valley Tuesday after receiving a tip that someone may have been selling marijuana from the home. When officials went inside, they claim that an alligator was found in a tank in a bedroom of the residence. Authorities say that they thought the alligator, technically a 16-year-old dwarf caiman, was guarding marijuana. The caiman was found in a two-foot by four-foot tank.

During the raid, officials say that law enforcement also seized roughly 34 pounds of marijuana. A 32-year-old man was arrested on suspicion of drug charges, including possession of marijuana for sale and possession within 1,000 feet of a school. Meanwhile, authorities transported the dwarf caiman to the Oakland Zoo. Authorities have added animal abuse charges to its accusations against the Castro Valley, California man.

Law enforcement announced Thursday that the 16-year-old caiman was undernourished when officials took custody of the animal. Authorities believe that the animal was given inadequate living conditions at the Castro Valley home. The latest allegations were announced after the caiman died a day after authorities took control of the animal.

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Police are looking to bring more charges against a Union City, California man after his arrest on New Year's Day. Authorities claim the 25-year-old had stolen two packages from in front of a house in Palo Alto January 1. Palo Alto Police received a call from a resident who claims to have seen someone take packages from a neighbor's doorstep. Law enforcement responded to the area and arrested a Union City man who was in the area.

Police claim that they found two packages in the Union City man's truck. Authorities also seized a baton, a fake gun and drugs after a search of the man's truck. Law enforcement says that a personal check was in the man's Chevrolet pickup truck that authorities believe was stolen from a mailbox in late December. Authorities apparently also suspect the man of drug crimes, after seizing bags and a scale from the truck during the search.

Law enforcement apparently raided a storage unit in Campbell, California as a part of the investigation. Police assert that the Union City man rented the storage unit, where officers reportedly found two more packages that law enforcement believes may have been taken from homes in Palo Alto. Police continue to look for evidence to tie the man to other thefts in Palo Alto. He was booked into jail on several theft-related charges, including possession of stolen property.

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Police in Angels Camp, California say that a Citrus Heights man stole five bottles of champagne on New Year's Eve, loaded the bottles into a golf cart, and attempted to make a roughly 74 mile trek home in the stolen golf cart. Police claim that the 46-year-old California man had been staying at a resort in Angels Camp for the holiday. But authorities say that the man had an argument and decided to leave the resort.

Police claim that the Citrus Heights man spotted a golf cart in a garage roughly 20 minutes before midnight on New Year's Eve. That's when police say the man decided to drive home. Authorities accuse the man of taking the electric golf cart and the champagne and hitting the highway.

Police believe that the man took a wrong turn while searching for Highway 4 and got lost. Law enforcement arrested the man near Copperopolis on suspicion of driving under the influence. Police claim that the man drove more than 13 miles in the cart. Officials claim that the man admitted to stealing the machine.

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Police raided the home Wednesday afternoon and claim to have found more than 500 marijuana plants and roughly 4 pounds of processed pot inside the home. While authorities were conducting the raid, police say that a 38-year-old arrived. The resident reportedly arrived home a little more than an hour after police began searching the home.

The Scotts Valley man was arrested on suspicion of possession of pot for sale and marijuana cultivation charges related to the allegations arising from the raid on his home. Law enforcement also accuses the man of driving on a suspended license, according to the Santa Cruz Sentinel. Scotts Valley Patch is reporting that the man is also facing charges for driving under the influence.

This blog has reported several stories regarding search issues and other stories regarding marijuana cultivation charges in California. Many media reports rely upon information provided by government authorities. It is important to note that criminal charges are brought in court, where constitutional principles and legal rules protect an individual's rights.

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What began as a traffic stop for an alleged driving under the influence offense led to felony drug charges Saturday for a San Jose man in Novato, California. Media reports do not indicate what led a Novato police officer to suspect the driver of being under the influence before conducting the traffic stop. However, authorities say that the officer claims to have smelled pot emanating from inside the car.

The officer claims that two large packages wrapped as Christmas gifts were inside the car. Police brought in a canine unit to sniff the packages and claim that the dog alerted during the dog sniff. Novato Police say that the department has three police dogs used to sniff for evidence of drugs.

The officer reportedly ripped open the Christmas gifts and claims that the boxes contained three pounds of processed marijuana. The driver was arrested on suspicion of possession and transportation of marijuana with intent to sell.

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Law enforcement apparently concluded that the two men were in violation of the terms of their probation. Police say that they believed each man had terms prohibiting them from associating with a gang, according to the Santa Cruz Sentinel. Both men were arrested on suspicion of the violations.

Authorities say that the 22-year-old was searched at the Watsonville Police station after his arrest. During a body-cavity search, police claim that the man had concealed drugs that were packaged to avoid contamination of the substances and reduce the risk that the man would have an overdose of drugs. Police say that the substances included nearly 29 grams of pot, 11.6 grams of black tar heroin, as well as amounts of methamphetamine and cocaine.

The 22-year-old was not taken to the Santa County Jail on that same day. However, the 25-year-old was booked into the jail on the alleged probation violation.

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Undercover police appeared at the courthouse in Tulare County Tuesday. The officers were not there to attend hearings, but to follow defendants into the parking lot after the specified defendant's had appeared in court. Visalia Police say that they decided to run an undercover sting to catch people appearing in court on drunk driving charges if they drove to the courthouse after a suspension of their driving privileges.

The Visalia Police say that they were targeting drivers who were suspended or revoked due to a DUI arrest. Law enforcement says that 10 people who appeared Tuesday in Tulare County Superior Court were followed from the courthouse. Officials say that the sting operation was used to ensure that drivers with allegedly suspended or revoked licenses were targeted to ensure that the individuals had found alternate means to appear in court on the DUI charges.

One man who was followed from the courthouse reportedly was arrested on suspicion of driving with a suspended or revoked license during the sting operation. Visalia Police say that the sting was set up using grant money from the California Office of Traffic Safety through the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration.

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The use of ignition interlock devices in drunk driving cases has garnered attention across the country in recent years. Four counties in California are currently experimenting in the use of the devices in cases involving allegations of driving under the influence. The device is essentially a breath test machine that is installed in the car.

A driver must blow into the Breathalyzer before attempted to start the vehicle. If the device detects a specified level of alcohol, the car simply will not start. In most states, the driver must also periodically blow into the device while driving, and information from that breath test is recorded for download at specified times while the device is required after a DUI conviction.

Tuesday, the National Transportation Safety Board unanimously recommended that all 50 states pass laws to require the use of ignition interlock devices in all DUI cases.

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Tagged in: ignition interlocks

People reportedly spotted the woman's car driving in Torrance with a man on the hood of the car. Several people approached the car and flagged down the driver, according to media reports. One of the people claims to have reached into the vehicle and taken the keys from the ignition.

Emergency responders were called to the area where people flagged down the woman. Police say that the man was struck slightly more than two miles from where the group is credited with stopping the car. Investigators say that the man was partially embedded in the windshield when emergency responders arrived. He was responsive at that time. However, police say that the man later died at the hospital.

The woman was arrested on suspicion of manslaughter and drunk driving charges related to the incident. News reports suggest that the woman works as a drug and alcohol counselor. Police claim that she panicked after the accident. Authorities say that the woman tested nearly twice the legal limit for alcohol under California's drunk driving laws.

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Police in San Mateo recently issued a public statement over a perceived increase in residential burglaries in the city. Law enforcement claims that they enlisted the help of what media reports describe as neighborhood agencies to assist in investigations. The city says it put in place a rapid response system for burglaries.

San Mateo Police say that a call came in reporting a possible burglary in progress. The California Highway Patrol dispatched air support and the neighborhood agencies reportedly set up a perimeter around the area where the possible burglary report came from.

San Mateo Police claim that three young men, two juveniles and an 18-year-old adult were found during the search of the area. The three males were arrested on suspicion of burglary and other charges. Police now accuse the three, ranging in age from 13 to 18-years old of as many as seven burglaries in San Mateo.

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An alleged variation of an attempted "smash and grab" has California authorities searching for suspects. Police in Santa Cruz, California say that two men used sledgehammers while trying to break the glass cases holding watches at a jewelry store Friday. Police further assert that a third man, who entered the store with the two sledgehammer wielding men, used pepper spray to assault a female worker at the jewelry store.

Emergency responders reportedly treated the woman at the store. Police claim that the three young men fled the establishment empty handed after the alleged attempted theft Friday afternoon. Meanwhile, Santa Cruz Police reportedly fielded reports of an Audi driving recklessly in downtown Santa Cruz.

Authorities say that an Audi was found abandoned roughly an hour and a half after the alleged attempted robbery. A police spokesperson says that the Audi displayed dealer plates from an outfit in Oakland. The car dealership had not reported the car stolen, but says that the vehicle was taken from the auto-dealership lot.

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Law enforcement has made four arrests in connection with the theft of gold and gems from a museum in Mariposa, California. However, police say that more arrests are not out of the question. With the size of the alleged take in the break-in, police apparently are looking to round up as many suspects as possible.

Authorities say that men broke into the California State Mining and Minerals Museum in Mariposa during the light of day and ransacked the place during the alleged robbery. Officials say that the alleged thieves were disguised as ninjas as they entered the museum. After gaining entry, officers say that the men moved two workers to a back room, and then went on a rampage-smashing display cases inside the museum.

The alleged thieves set off an alarm while accessing a vault at the facility. Authorities say that the alarm triggered an automatic sequence to close the vault door. The intruders reportedly were able to escape from the vault before the door slammed shut. A nugget reportedly mined during the California Gold Rush weighing nearly 14 pounds made of crystalline gold is housed in the vault, but reportedly was left intact at the museum.

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Police in San Jose called in the bomb squad to deal with an item found in a van during an investigation into an alleged driving under the influence offense. Officers with the city's MERGE Unit, which the Mercury News says is the equivalent to a SWAT Team, decided to pull over a car for a DUI investigation. It is not clear what led to the police suspicion that the driver may have been under the influence.

Police also say that they found evidence of some kind of drug crime and evidence to support their suspicion of a DUI offense. Officers searched the Windstar van and found what they believed to be a pipe bomb.

The bomb squad reportedly was called to the area near First Street and Matrix Drive in San Jose, California. Authorities closed streets in the area, but the neighborhood was not evacuated. Police say that the bomb unit exploded the device in a controlled explosion. No injuries or damage has been reported related to the police detonation. Neighbors near to the location claim that the blast could be felt and heard.

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Santa Cruz Police officers reportedly responded to a Manor Place home after law enforcement says that neighbors were complaining about alleged drug activity at the residence. A 60-year-old Santa Cruz, California resident was arrested on three times in a three day time span on suspicion of drug-related offenses. The man reportedly says that he provides care for his mother, who is in her 90s.

Police reportedly visited the residence in waves last week. The city says that it has more choices as a result of the police visits than merely bringing charges in criminal court.

The first visit to the property was reportedly prompted by a complaint of a neighbor alleging that some kind of drug activity was going on at the home. Authorities responded and arrested the 60-year-old man on suspicion of crack cocaine possession and a drug paraphernalia charge. The next day, law enforcement returned to the home on a report of a possible drug overdose, according to police. The man was arrested again, this time for allegedly being under the influence.

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A former Fullerton, California police officer has been sentenced to three years of informal probation after pleading guilty to destroying evidence. The sentence was not imposed in association with a plea deal with prosecutors. The Orange County district Attorney's Office sought time behind bars at sentencing for the former cop.

The charge arose after a drunk driving suspect the Fullerton cop had arrested committed suicide while being held in the city jail. Authorities say that the arresting officer destroyed his digital audio recorder after learning that the suspect hanged himself in his jail cell April 14, 2011.

Prosecutors say that the officer crushed the audio recorder and yanked out its circuit and mother boards, destroying any audio recording that the device contained during his encounter with the alleged drunk driver.

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The University of Southern California campus was put on lockdown for a period of time Wednesday night after a shooting incident injured four people. Authorities believe that a man critically injured in the shooting was the primary target, while three other people were bystanders who were swept into the incident.

The man critically injured is a former standout football player from Crenshaw High School who was dubbed as the "most versatile and feared player" on the 2009 Los Angeles area high school football team by the Los Angeles Times.

Authorities say that the athlete had attended a Halloween party Wednesday night on the USC campus. University officials believe that roughly 400 people attended the party. The former Crenshaw High athlete apparently became involved in some kind of disturbance with another man.

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Tagged in: Shooting

Another alleged minor traffic violation has brought singer Bobby Brown into the news. Police say that Brown committed some sort of traffic violation around 1:00 Wednesday morning on Ventura Boulevard in Tarzana, California. The officer apparently grew suspicious that Brown may have been under the influence, which led to field sobriety tests. Police claim that Brown did not do well in the physical tests.

Authorities say that Brown was cooperative throughout the process. He was booked into jail and released later Wednesday morning on $25,000 bail.

This is not the first time that Brown has faced California DUI charges after a traffic stop this year. Brown was pulled over in March for allegedly talking on a cellphone. Officers said that Brown smelled of alcohol during that traffic stop as well, and the singer was later convicted of DUI. Brown entered into a plea agreement in that DUI case.

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