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Napa Valley Winemakers Optimistic as Famed Wine Region Begins to Recover

NAPA - Despite Mother Nature challenging Napa, Sonoma, Mendocino, Solano and Lake Counties in unimaginable ways, the tragic wildfires of the past 10 days have demonstrated the spirit of strength and resilience of these communities. Across the North Coast region, more than 40 lives were lost, thousands of homes and businesses were destroyed and the natural landscape of the area’s forests and hillsides will take years to recover.

In spite of this devastating human toll, reports of wine industry damage in the Napa Valley do not appear to be widespread. As of today, the Napa Valley Vintners (NVV) nonprofit association has heard from 330 of its member wineries. Direct damage from the fires was reported by 47 member wineries and just a handful experienced significant property loss.

Fresno County District Attorney's Office Awarded Special DUI Prosecution Grant

FRESNO - Those arrested for DUI in Fresno County, especially repeat offenders and those involved in fatal or injury crashes, can expect to face a highly trained, specialized prosecutor, funded by a $382,711 grant from the California Office of Traffic Safety (OTS). The grant to the Fresno County District Attorney’s Office will fund a Vertical Prosecution team that will work cases from arrest through conviction and sentencing.

The Fresno County District Attorney’s Office will use these OTS funds to continue the fight to make the streets of our county safer by prosecuting drunk and drugged drivers. In 2014, there were 50 deaths and 528 serious injuries as a result of DUI crashes in Fresno County. In the past year under the 2016-2017 OTS grant, the District Attorney’s vertical prosecution team filed 111 felony cases of driving under the influence of alcohol and drugs. The office as a whole filed 4,346 DUI felony and misdemeanor cases.

Governor Brown for Signing Bill to Keep Californians’ Data Out of Federal Muslim Registry

SACRAMENTO - This week California Governor Jerry Brown signed Senate Bill 31, the California Religious Freedom Act, a bill introduced by Senator Ricardo Lara (D-Bell Gardens) to ensure the state of California never participates in a federal Muslim registry. The bill also bars localities from creating their own versions of registries, such as the "Muslim mapping" plan the Los Angeles Police Department attempted to carry out in 2007. 

In response to the bill’s signing, Peter Bibring, Police Practices Director with the American Civil Liberties Union of California, had this to say, “We are grateful to Governor Brown for signing the California Religious Freedom Act and heeding the voices of millions of Californians who have called for protections from anti-Muslim bigotry. 

Deputies Capture Man Responsible for Multiple Burglaries in Old Fig Garden Neighborhood

FRESNO - Fresno County Sheriff’s deputies have arrested 34 year old Anthony Garza of Fresno. He has been booked into the Fresno County Jail on multiple charges of burglary, possession of stolen property, attempting to steal a car and evading police. His bail is set at $203,500.

Around 11:45 am on Monday, deputies responded to a report of an auto theft in progress in a neighborhood near W. Barstow and N. Maroa Avenues in Fresno. The victim said she found a man (later identified as Anthony Garza) attempting to take her car, which was parked inside her garage. The woman confronted Garza, causing him to run away. While doing so, Garza dropped a bag filled with miscellaneous items.

Detectives Arrest Burglar & Felon in Possession of Guns, Drugs & Ammunition

FOWLER - Property crimes detectives with the Fresno County Sheriff’s Office have arrested 29 year old Nelson Navarrette of Fowler and an 18 year old man. Navarrette was booked into the Fresno County Jail on charges of being a felon in possession of guns, drugs, ammunition, a large capacity magazine and possession of stolen property. His bail is set at $756,000. The 18 year old man was issued a felony citation for burglary and was not booked into jail. His identity is not being released in order to protect the integrity of the case.

On October 13th, detectives responded to a reported burglary at a home near the intersection of S. Bethel and W. Sierra Avenues in Kingsburg where two guns were taken. Detectives developed information that an 18 year old man was responsible for the theft. Detectives then learned that this man had sold the stolen guns to Nelson Navarrette. During an interview, he told investigators he needed money so he could take his girlfriend to the Fresno Fair.

Prescription Drug Abuse Awareness 5K and Drop-Off Day

FRESNO - A kick-off rally will be held on Sunday, October 15th at 7:00 pm. It takes place at Peoples Church, 7172 N. Cedar Ave. in Fresno. Fresno County Sheriff Margaret Mims will be one of the guest speakers who discusses how prescription drug abuse has a negative impact on our community. The community is encouraged to sign-up and take part in the “Stomp it Out 5K Fun Run/Walk” on Saturday, October 21st at Clovis Community College, located at 10309 N Willow Ave., Fresno, 93720.

During the event, the Fresno County Sheriff’s Office will also be collecting unused prescription drugs in the school parking lot. It’s all part of the “Lock it Up” project, which Sheriff Margaret Mims and former Fresno County Supervisor Debbie Poochigian helped form to stomp out prescription drug abuse (PDA). This is something that’s been identified as one of the most urgent problems to tackle in the FresnoClovis area. It also has gained support from local congregations, the Clovis Unified School District and local businesses.

California Becomes First State in U.S. to Ban Sale of Puppy Mill Dogs in Pet Stores

SACRAMENTO -  Local and national animal welfare organizations today commend CA Governor Jerry Brown for signing into law legislation that will prevent the sale of commercially raised dogs, cats and rabbits in pet stores across the state of California. The law also encourages partnerships that promote the adoption of homeless pets.

Authored by Assembly member Patrick O'Donnell (D-Long Beach), Assembly Bill 485 protects animals and consumers, and sets an important precedent for the rest of nation. The bill passed the CA legislature Sept. 14. To date, 36 jurisdictions in California – including the cities of Los Angeles, Sacramento, San Diego and San Francisco – have enacted similar ordinances, and the signing of AB 485 makes California the first state in the nation to enact a statewide prohibition on pet store sales of dogs from puppy mills.

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