California Dem accused of child cruelty says he spanked daughter, cops say injury not on buttocks: report

A California lawmaker arrested earlier this week on suspicion of child cruelty said Thursday that the allegation stemmed from spanking his 7-year-old daughter. Joaquin Arambula, a Democratic assemblyman, said he spanked his daughter Sunday night and it’s a punishment tool he rarely uses.  Elizabeth Arambula, his wife, told CBS News that their daughter was “really … Continue reading “California Dem accused of child cruelty says he spanked daughter, cops say injury not on buttocks: report”

A California lawmaker arrested earlier this week on suspicion of child cruelty said Thursday that the allegation stemmed from spanking his 7-year-old daughter.

Joaquin Arambula, a Democratic assemblyman, said he spanked his daughter Sunday night and it’s a punishment tool he rarely uses.  Elizabeth Arambula, his wife, told CBS News that their daughter was “really angry” that her father spanked her, and “wanted to be heard.”

Arambula said he believes his daughter went to school angry and told a teacher about what had happened. He was arrested Monday after officials at Dailey Elementary Charter School reported a child with an injury, Fresno Police Chief Jerry Dyer said.

The CBS report said that Arambula said he spanked his daughter on the buttocks, but Dyer said the injury “in this case is not on the buttocks.”

"It is absolutely permissible for a parent to discipline their child by spanking them on the buttocks, but that is not what we are investigating, and that is not where the injury occurred to the child," said Dyer.

Authorities did not go into any more details.

Arambula is a former emergency room doctor who was elected in 2016 to represent parts of Fresno County. He has three daughters, ages 3, 6 and 7.

He was released shortly after his arrest on suspicion of willful cruelty to a child and has not been formally charged. The police plan to send the case to the Fresno County District Attorney next week, according to CBS.

In a statement to the Fresno Bee, Arambula’s attorneys said they’ve “offered to meet with representatives of the… district attorney's office so that relevant information can be presented."

Arambula's daughters stayed with his parents for two nights until child protective services said they could go back home Wednesday, reports said.

“There’s a process to be played out, and this process played out, and they determined that the kids should go back home,” Arambula said. “I’m excited about that. But we have a job and a responsibility to continue to be good parents, and that’s what I want to work on and will strive to do.”

Authorities will check in on the Arambulas in 30 days and suggested the family seek therapy, he said.

Arambula’s arrest was for a misdemeanor, not a felony, because the injury did not require medical attention, Dyer said, according to the Bee. Spanking a child is generally legal if it’s in a fleshy area such as the buttocks but not if it’s in a place likely to cause injury like the face, he said.

Arambula's attorneys emailed Action News a statement in response to the new allegations.

"Mr. Arambula was arrested at the school on December 10, 2018. The children were entrusted to his parents. After a fair and impartial investigation by Child Welfare Services that dispelled concerns about child abuse, his 3 children were returned to his custody on December 12, 2018. Unlike Chief Dyer we will not try this case in the media."

Assembly Speaker Anthony Rendon hasn’t commented on the arrest.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.

Library supervisor, 41, gunned down in parking lot months after altercation with suspect, police say

A disturbance at a Northern California library in October may have led to this week's shooting death of a 41-year-old library supervisor as she sat in her car outside the building Tuesday evening, police say.

Amber Clark was shot several times in the face and head outside the North Natomas Public Library, FOX 40 Sacramento reported.

A man identified as Ronald Seay, 56, who was arrested early Wednesday, is suspected in the woman's death, the report said.

Clark was sitting in her car around 6 p.m. Tuesday when a suspect approached and shot her with a handgun, according to police, the Sacramento Bee reported.

Ronald Seay, 56, is charged in the death of Amber Clark, authorities say. (Sacramento Police Department)

Authorities said Seay had caused a disturbance Oct. 13 at the library, where Clark worked as the branch supervisor. She interacted with Seay during the incident, according to police, who added that responding officers issued a no-trespass order to Seay, FOX 40 reported.

Sacramento Police spokesman Sgt. Vance Chandler said detectives believe Clark was targeted and are investigating the motive for the shooting, the Bee reported.

Chandler said Seay has lived a few miles from the North Natomas Public Library for several months and previously lived out of state.

Seay was arrested after a short and slow-speed chase at 5:30 a.m. Wednesday in Natomas, about 9 miles northwest of Sacramento, following a brief police chase.

The suspect was being held on $1 million bail and will appear in court Friday, FOX 40 reported.

Clark's husband, Kelly Clark, said in a statement to the Bee that his wife “pursued professions that served to benefit young people and the betterment of society."

“She selflessly gave of herself to her community,” he said.

In a statement on Facebook, the Sacramento Public Library said Clark "has been a champion for accessibility and inclusion, teaching all of us that we are all people and not defined by our disabilities or differences."

Amy Lieu is a news editor and reporter for Fox News.

Sondra Locke, frequent co-star in Clint Eastwood films, dead at 74

LOS ANGELES – Actress and director Sondra Locke, who was nominated for an Academy Award for her first film role in 1968's "The Heart is a Lonely Hunter" and went on to co-star in six films with Clint Eastwood, has died.

Locked died Nov. 3 at her Los Angeles home of cardiac arrest stemming from breast and bone cancer, according to a death certificate obtained by The Associated Press. She was 74. Authorities were promptly notified at the time, but her death was not publicized until RadarOnline first reported it Thursday. It is not clear why it took nearly six weeks to come to light.

Locke was best known for the six films she made with Eastwood — whom she dated for 13 years — starting with the Western "The Outlaw Josey Wales" in 1976 and ending with the Dirty Harry movie "Sudden Impact" in 1983.

Born Sandra Louise Smith — she would later take on a stepfather's last name and take on the stage name Sondra — Locke grew up in Tennessee, where she worked at a radio station and appeared in a handful of plays before winning a nationwide talent search in 1967 to be cast opposite leading man Alan Arkin in the movie adaptation of Carson McCullers' 1940 novel "The Heart is a Lonely Hunter."

She would win raves for the role along with nominations for a Golden Globe and an Oscar. Both awards went to Ruth Gordon for "Rosemary's Baby."

She had a run of unmemorable film and TV roles until meeting Eastwood on the set of "Josey Wales," which he both directed and starred in.

Sondra Locke and Clint Eastwood made six films together. They settled a highly publicized lawsuit for an undisclosed amount during jury deliberations in 1996. (Associated Press)

Her career would mirror his for the next several years. The pair's hit films also included the 1978 street-fighting and orangutan comedy "Every Which Way But Loose" and its 1980 sequel "Any Which Way You Can."

Locke also played singer Rosemary Clooney in a 1982 TV biopic, and directed the 1986 film "Ratboy," which flopped in the U.S. but was popular with critics in Europe.

In 1989, Locke's charmed life came to an end as Eastwood broke up with her, she later wrote. The locks were changed and her things were placed outside a home she thought had been a gift from Eastwood.

She sued Eastwood for palimony then later sued him for fraud saying a movie development deal he arranged for her was a sham to get her to drop the palimony suit. They settled the highly publicized lawsuit for an undisclosed amount during jury deliberations in 1996.

The following year she released her memoir, titled "The Good, the Bad and the Very Ugly: A Hollywood Journey," which also detailed the double mastectomy and chemotherapy that came with her first bout with breast cancer.

She told the AP at the time that the title, a play on one of Eastwood's films, was "applicable to the story."

"I try to cover the good years as well as the bad and the ugly," Locke said. "Also, that in even the worst ugly things there can sometimes be a lot that will make you a better person."

Locke had married actor Gordon Anderson in 1967. According to her death certificate, the two were still legally married when she died, and he was the person who reported her death. She described their relationship to the AP in 1997 as just good friends. A phone number listed in Anderson's name rang without being picked up.

California’s chief justice leaves GOP; cites Kavanaugh confirmation to Supreme Court

The chief justice of California’s Supreme Court announced that she quietly left the Republican Party over the confirmation of Justice Brett Kavanaugh to the U.S. Supreme Court.

Chief Justice Tani Cantil-Sakauye told CALmatters on Thursday that she made her decision to re-register as a no-party voter following Kavanaugh’s contentious confirmation hearings.

“You can draw your own conclusions,” she said.


Kavanaugh faced sexual misconduct accusations from several women, which he denied. Christine Blasey Ford testified before the Senate Judiciary Committee that Kavanaugh assaulted her in the 1980s while they were in high school.

Cantil-Sakauye said she didn’t view her decision as her leaving the Republican Party.


“I’ve been thinking about it for some time,” she said, adding that she discussed it with her husband and friends. Their consensus, she said, was that “you didn’t leave the party. The party left you.”


Cantil-Sakauye was appointed as California’s chief justice in 2011 by then-GOP Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger, and served as a prosecutor before becoming a judge 28 years ago.

The 59-year-old justice has sparred with the Trump administration in the past for its attacks on judges.

She joins several other Republicans who have either disavowed or left the party in recent months, including former U.S. Rep. David Jolly and Republican strategist Steve Schmidt.

California mulls tax on text messaging, may lead to showdown with federal regulators

A California regulator's plan to tax texts in order to fund cellphones for the poor hit a snag Wednesday after a Federal Communications Commission ruled text messages aren't subject to the utility agency's authority.

The decision by the FCC, which categorized text messages as "information services" on par with emails and not "telecommunications services," came in an effort to combat robo-texts and spam messages. The California Public Utilities Commission now faces an uphill battle ahead of a scheduled vote on the measure next month.

Those opposed to the planned tax hailed the FCC decision a victory.

“We hope that the CPUC recognizes that taxing text messages is bad for consumers,” Jamie Hastings, senior vice president of external and state affairs for CTIA, which represents the U.S. wireless communications industry, told The Mercury News. “Taxing this service would burden those who rely on and use this service each and every day.”

The CPUC has not yet commented on the FCC's decision. The group is scheduled to meet next on Jan. 10 in San Francisco.

California regulators are considering a plan to charge a fee for text messaging on mobile phones to help support programs that make phone service accessible to the poor. (AP Photo/Matt Sayles)

If the proposal ever became reality, it's unclear how much money individual consumers would be asked to pay their wireless carrier for texting services, The Mercury News reported. But it likely would be billed as a flat surcharge — not a fee per text.

The plan comes after a report from the commission laid out why the tax is needed, specifically citing declining telecommunications industry revenues during the past six years — a drop of nearly $5 million.

"This is unsustainable over time," the report states.


A spokesperson for the CUPC told KTVU the proposed tax would likely have little to no impact on consumers because while a fee may be assessed for texting, current fees for voice calls would likely be reduced.

"Sometimes we just don’t need a new tax for every idea that a government agency or official has."

— Carl Guardino, CEO of the Silicon Valley Leadership Group

But that hasn't stopped wireless industry and business groups from coming out to vociferously fight the proposal. They contend that new consumer charges could be more than $44 million a year, and that wireless carriers would be at a disadvantage from messaging services such as Whatsapp, Facebook Messanger and Apple's iMessage.

It’s unclear how much money consumers would be asked to pay their wireless carrier for texting services under the proposal, but it is likely would be billed as a flat surcharge. (AP Photo/Damian Dovarganes)

"This isn’t very creative it's just political B.S.," Consumer Watchdog President Jamie Court told FOX11. “I find it appalling that there is going to be a text tax because it’s so visceral it’s so anti-consumer and we haven’t established a need for it."

Others echoed similar concerns about the plan.

“The public purpose program fund has, already, one billion dollars,” Carl Guardino, CEO of the Silicon Valley Leadership Group, told KTVU. "Sometimes we just don’t need a new tax for every idea that a government agency or official has."

Are text messages ever really ‘deleted’?

Kurt ‘The Cyber Guy’ Knutsson explains how the process works on ‘Fox & Friends.’

If the proposal goes through, some residents said they already thinking of ways to avoid any new taxes on their texting habits.

“I feel like if they tax it, people would just use other (free) means, like a What’s App, Viber, something, that wouldn’t get taxed,” Becky Tremann told KTVU.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.

Travis Fedschun is a reporter for Follow him on Twitter @travfed

Steph Curry says he was ‘joking’ when he questioned moon landing, will visit NASA

NBA star Steph Curry told ESPN Wednesday he was "joking" earlier this week when he said he did not think humans had ever landed on the moon — and he revealed he'd accept an invitation from NASA to visit lunar artifacts at the Johnson Space Center in Houston.

Curry kicked off the controversy earlier this week when he appeared on a podcast called "Winging It" with fellow NBA veterans Vince Carter and Kent Bazemore, as well as Curry's Golden State Warriors teammate Andre Iguodala. At one point in the free-flowing conversation, Curry asked the group: "We ever been to the moon?" After the others responded no, Curry said: "They're going to come get us, I don't think so either. Sorry, I don't want to start conspiracies."

"Obviously I was joking when I was talking on the podcast," Curry told ESPN, adding that his public silence was "protesting how stupid it was that people actually took that quote and made it law as, 'Oh my God, he's a fake-moon-landing truther,' whatever you want to call it."

The comments quickly went viral and sparked a furor on social media, with many criticizing the two-time NBA MVP for doubting the moon landing. Curry did not comment publicly about his statements until Wednesday, intensifying the focus on him. NASA spokesman Allard Beutel publicly invited Curry to visit the Johnson Space Center in Houston, "perhaps the next time the Warriors are in town to play the Rockets.


"We have hundreds of pounds of moon rocks stored there, and the Apollo mission control," Beutel said. "During his visit, he can see firsthand what we did 50 years ago, as well as what we’re doing now to go back to the moon in the coming years, but this time to stay."


Curry told ESPN he "definitely" would take Beutel and NASA up on their offer.

"I am going to educate myself firsthand on everything that NASA has done and shine a light on their tremendous work over the years," he said. "And hopefully people understand that education is power, informing yourself is power. For kids out there that hang on every word that we say, which is important, understand that you should not believe something just because somebody says it. You should do your homework and understand what you actually believe.


"But I'm going to go to NASA and I'm going to enjoy the experience wholeheartedly."

However, Curry's trip to Mission Control may have to wait for a few months. Golden State isn't scheduled to visit Houston until March 13.

Spill in Mexico sending millions of gallons of sewage into coastal waters off California

The recent break of a sewage pipe across the border in Mexico is allowing millions of gallons of sewage to flow into the Tijuana River — and, eventually, the Pacific Ocean — impacting coastal areas in California.

The International Boundary and Water Commission notified local officials on Monday that a pipe had broken on Dec. 7 and has since been sending between 6 to 7 million gallons of sewage per day into the river area, according to Imperial Beach Mayor Serge Dedina.

"It's absolutely outrageous and unacceptable," he told reporters at a press conference. "The biggest issue that we're concerned about is this happens again and again and then the Mexican government doesn't notify anybody. They sort of cover it up and they notify us at the last minute and then our kids are at risk of swimming in sewage."

There have been over 330 sewage spills into the Tijuana River Valley in the past three years, according to officials. (FOX5)

Dedina said that there have been over 330 spills into the river valley in the past three years. Pollution forced the closure of beaches in parts of Imperial Beach on more than 160 days the past two years.

A broken sewage pipe has been sending 6 to 7 million gallons of raw sewage per day into the Tijuana River. (FOX5)

"Not only does it impact Imperial Beach and Coronado, but all the residents of South San Diego are impacted by the smell," he said.

The latest spill has closed 12 miles of beach from the U.S.-Mexico border northward to Coronado, FOX5 San Diego reported.


Last year, the mayor was one of several surfers who became sick after surfing in the polluted waters off Imperial Beach due to ongoing sewage spills.

Sewage from Mexico closes California beaches near border

The San Diego County Department of Environmental Health officials posted beach closure notices after contaminated water flowed in to U.S. waters from the Tijuana River in Mexico.

In March, the city joined nearby Chula Vista and the Unified Port District of San Diego in a lawsuit against the IBWC for being in violation of the Clean Water Act.

The federal lawsuit contends that federal inaction has led to tens of millions of gallons of "almost continuous" sewage, and seeks to force federal officials to upgrade systems to divert polluted flows.


Officials on the other side of the border pledged to spend $4.3 million to clean the river channel earlier this year and renovate pumping systems, but no major progress has been seen.

The river valley area is still littered with trash such as car tires, car seats, and other debris — including an entire car.

The Tijuana River Valley is littered with various debris, including this car. (FOX5)

If this latest spill continues, it could be the largest since February 2017 when a pipe burst and flooded the river with at least 28 million gallons of raw sewage, according to the San Diego Union-Tribune.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.

Travis Fedschun is a reporter for Follow him on Twitter @travfed

Collection of nude photos of women found in ex-USC gynecologist’s storage unit

A collection of photographs showing nude women was discovered in a self-storage unit rented by Dr. George Tyndall, the former University of Southern California gynecologist accused of sexually abusing hundreds of students during examinations.

The cache of images appeared to include homemade pornography – some of it decades old and featuring Tyndall with women apparently unconnected to the university – but also photos of unclothed women in what appeared to be a medical exam room, police Capt. Billy Hayes told the Los Angeles Times.

Authorities found the photos last spring after they launched an investigation into Tyndall. They are now being used in the probe.

The investigation is believed to be the “largest sex crimes investigation involving an individual in LAPD history,” the Los Angeles Times reported. The investigation is ongoing and the sex crimes unit of the Los Angeles County district attorney’s office will determine whether to file criminal charges.


Tyndall, 71, resigned from his position last year. Hundreds of current and former USC students have made allegations against Tyndall to the university, filed police reports or taken part in at least a dozen pending state lawsuits against the school. In October, USC administrators agreed to settle a federal class-action suit on behalf of Tyndall’s patients for $215 million.

Detectives were trying to determine whether nude photographs linked to former USC gynecologist Dr. George Tyndall show any of the hundreds of women who allege he sexually harassed them during examinations.  (AP)

Detectives are trying to determine whether any of the photographs found in the storage facility show patients at campus clinic appointments.

Leonard Levine, the doctor’s lawyer, said in a statement that Tyndall has “never sold, traded or shared any images of patients he examined while conducting medical examinations at USC.”


John Manly, an attorney representing many former Tyndall patients, told the Times that between 10 and 20 of his clients were asked questions by police that seemed designed to identify them in photos.

"This plays into the worst nightmares of women," Manly said.

USC said it was cooperating with the investigation.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.

Kathleen Joyce is a breaking/trending news producer for You can follow her at @Kathleen_Joyce8 on Twitter.

Judge recalled by voters after Brock Turner sex assault case seeking donations to pay off legal fees

A former California judge who was ousted from the bench amid a successful recall effort over what many perceived to be a light sentence for a Stanford University student convicted of sexual assault, is asking for donations so he can pay off $135,000 in court-ordered attorney’s fees.

In a recent email titled “A Final Ask,” former Santa Clara County Superior Court Judge Aaron Persky asks supporters to help him pay off the fees, as he has no money left in his campaign account, the Los Angeles Times reported.

Santa Clara County voters threw Persky, the first California judge to be recalled in nearly a century, out of office in June over the six-month sentence he handed down to Stanford swimmer Brock Turner for sexually assaulting an unconscious woman in 2015 outside a campus fraternity party.

“My campaign committee has spent all its resources fighting the recall, and now must pay $135,000 to satisfy the attorney fees order, which is due by December 31,” Persky writes in the email. “I am writing to ask you to make a contribution to that effort.”


Critics — led by Stanford law professor Michele Dauber — launched the recall effort in mid-2016 following the Turner sentence.

Persky had cited Turner’s age and lack of criminal history for what many viewed as a lenient decision.

“A prison sentence would have a severe impact on him. … I think he will not be a danger to others,” Persky said at the time.

The case gained national attention after the victim read a statement in court before Turner's sentence. The statement made the rounds online and was read on the floor of the U.S. Capitol during a congressional session.

The recall election was viewed as one of the first electoral tests of the #MeToo movement's political strength.

The judge's campaign committee collected more than $840,000 in donations but spent it all fighting to keep his seat, the Mercury News of San Jose reported.

“If my campaign committee is unable to raise the money to pay the amount ordered, I will be personally liable for any balance owed,” Persky wrote.

“If my campaign committee is unable to raise the money to pay the amount ordered, I will be personally liable for any balance owed.”

— Aaron Persky, former judge, Santa Clara County Superior Court


The recall campaign spent around $1.4 million to put a measure on the ballot.

Persky waged a legal battle where he argued that because judges are state officers, California’s secretary of state – not the Santa Clara County Registrar of Voters – should have overseen the petition drive for it to qualify as a ballot measure.

A Santa Clara County court rejected his argument and ordered him to pay more than $163,000 in legal fees to lawyers representing the recall campaign. A settlement reduced the amount to $135,000.

Attorney James McManis, whose law firm represented Persky for free during his court battle against the recall, criticized Dauber for going after attorney fees.


“It’s not enough she took his job away and took his pension away and left him out on the street,” McManis said. “She wanted attorneys’ fees too.”

Dauber said that Persky brought the legal expense on himself when he “made the bad decision to repeatedly file frivolous lawsuits and appeals with the goal of stalling and causing expense.”

“The court has concluded that he should be required to pay for that decision, and we are happy that our lawyer will be getting paid for his outstanding work in defending our constitutional rights, and those of the voters of Santa Clara County,” she told the L.A. Times.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.

California woman’s cat found waiting at wildfire-ravaged property: ‘You made it!’

Courtney Werblow was in tears when she returned to the Paradise, Calif. property where her parent’s home once stood. But it wasn’t the ravaged property that had her crying. Rather, it was the sight of her beloved cat, Timber.

“Come on Timber! Come on baby girl! Hi baby girl, come on!” Werblow can be heard saying in a now-viral video as she shakes a bowl of food for the hesitant feline.


“You look so good,” she says, breaking into tears as Timber approaches."You made it! You made it! It's okay baby. We are right here. We are here for you!"

Timber, a female with beige coloring and a brown face, is  “special” Werblow told ABC10. The California woman said Timber came into her life after she and her husband married and she was expecting their second child.

Timber was living with Werblow’s parents at the time the Camp Fire blazed through the Butte County area because her rental property did not allow cats.

“NEVER LOSE HOPE! One month today since the fire, we received an escort to my parents' property & my cat Timber was discovered!! She’s alive. Praise God!!” she wrote alongside the video, which had more 720,000 views as of Wednesday morning.

“Amen, this is absolutely amazing news, Praise God, I’m so happy I’m all choked up,” one Facebook user wrote in response.

“I’m so touched by this story. I had to watch it several times. I hope things get better & better for your family,” another added.


Werblow told the news station finding Timber alive was a “much-needed moments of hope” for her family after the Camp Fire — which burned more than 150,000 acres, destroyed nearly 14,000 structures and killed 86 people, according to Cal Fire —destroyed everything they had.

Werblow’s story of Timber echoes that of another pet owner in Paradise whose dog was found waiting at the scorched property a month after the wildfire ripped through the area.

Courtney Werblow did not immediately return Fox News' request for additional comment Wednesday.

Madeline Farber is a Reporter for Fox News. You can follow her on Twitter @MaddieFarberUDK.