CBP Officers Seize Over 370 Pounds of Narcotics, Valued at $2.5 Million

SAN DIEGO – U.S. Customs and Border Protection officers working at the San Ysidro and Otay Mesa ports of entry yesterday intercepted over 370 pounds of narcotics, with an estimated street value of $2.5 million.

On May 17, CBP officers intercepted, in three separate incidents 316 pounds of methamphetamine and 55 pounds of cocaine. CBP officers discovered the narcotics hidden inside vehicles in various places, such as the spare tire, rear seats and gas tank.

“CBP has many responsibilities protecting America’s borders and combating drug trafficking is one of them,” said Pete Flores, director of field operations for CBP in San Diego. “These seizures showcase our commitment to the security of the nation and zero tolerance for the smuggling of narcotics.

All drivers were arrested and turned over to the custody of Homeland Security Investigations agents for further processing and transported to the Metropolitan Correctional Center, awaiting arraignment.

CBP seized the vehicle and narcotics.

CBP officers at the border crossings in Southern California routinely stop illegal activity, while processing millions of legitimate travelers into the United States. Those statistics can be found here: CBP-enforcement-statistics

Criminal charges are merely allegations. Defendants are presumed innocent unless proven guilty in a court of law.

Publication of Azusa Pacific Universitys Dead Sea Scrolls to Enhance Biblical Scholarship

Azusa Pacific University announces the long-awaited formal publication of rare Dead Sea Scroll (DSS) manuscripts from its Special Collections library. In 2009, the university acquired five ancient biblical manuscripts for scholarly study and preservation for posterity. A faculty team from APU’s School of Theology has completed its systematic examination, transcription, and analysis of the 2000-year-old manuscripts. The highly anticipated official publication of these rare and fragile antiquities will appear as a volume in the prestigious Princeton Theological Seminary Dead Sea Scrolls Project series in 2017.

The publication was prepared in collaboration with an editorial team at Princeton Theological Seminary headed by James H. Charlesworth, Ph.D., George Collord Professor of New Testament. This volume will join other recently published volumes of Dead Sea Scroll fragments in the Schøyen and Museum of the Bible collections.

“The first volume in the Supplement Volumes of the Princeton’s Dead Sea Scrolls Project is the editio princeps of manuscripts of biblical compositions found among the Dead Sea Scrolls,” said Charlesworth. “These manuscripts were unknown and thus not included in earlier publications of the Dead Sea Scrolls. These scrolls are extremely important because they contain some different readings from those found in our Bibles. Some of these readings help us correct the texts of the Bible. Along with Professor Rietz, my associate editor, and the scholars at APU, I am excited to share these Dead Sea Scrolls with all who are devoted to our Bible and an international, multicultural audience.”

“We look forward to bringing complete information about APU’s ancient biblical manuscripts to the scholarly world,” said lead researcher William Yarchin, Ph.D., the Dean’s Endowed Professor of Biblical Studies in APU’s School of Theology. “Some of these manuscripts contain wording found in no other Hebrew manuscript, and scholars are keen to integrate that information into the existing body of biblical scholarship. It is also important to provide this material to the scholarly world in light of concerns over possible forgeries among scroll fragments that have recently come to light. One of our fragments has been carbon dated as truly ancient. So we are confident, and we fully support all future scientific studies that can help advance research in ancient manuscripts.”

Among the five ancient fragments are portions from the book of Leviticus, the book of Deuteronomy, and the book of Daniel, inscribed at about the time of Christ or within a century earlier. It is possible that the Daniel fragment owned by APU is the world’s oldest existing manuscript of Daniel 5:13-16.

Of the significant findings, „The university’s Deuteronomy 27 fragment features a unique reading in verse 4 that agrees with the Samaritan Torah. This will give scholars new insights into the relationship between Judaism and Samaritanism in antiquity,” said Karen Winslow, Ph.D., professor and chair, biblical and theological studies in the Azusa Pacific Seminary.

The Dead Sea Scrolls have been described as one of the greatest archaeological discoveries ever. They include the oldest biblical manuscripts in existence. Scholars credit the scrolls for increasing knowledge of the origins of Christianity and revolutionizing their understanding of Judaism. Azusa Pacific University’s five Dead Sea Scroll fragments include: 1) portions of Leviticus 10:4-7; 2) portions of Deuteronomy 8:2-5; 3) portions of Deuteronomy 27:4-6; 4) portions of Daniel 5:13-16; and 5) an unidentified fragment. All five fragments are from Qumran Cave 4. In 2010, APU held a public exhibition of these manuscripts along with other biblical artifacts from its Special Collections. Along with its Dead Sea Scroll holdings, APU oversees an archaeological excavation of the biblical site Abel Beth Maacah, a 35-acre tel in the northernmost border of present day Israel. Dig findings include a 3,000-year-old seal depicting ritualistic dance and a silver hoard likely from the late Bronze Age.

Publication of Azusa Pacific Universitys Dead Sea Scrolls to Enhance Biblical Scholarship

Azusa Pacific University announces the long-awaited formal publication of rare Dead Sea Scroll (DSS) manuscripts from its Special Collections library. In 2009, the university acquired five ancient biblical manuscripts for scholarly study and preservation for posterity. A faculty team from APU’s School of Theology has completed its systematic examination, transcription, and analysis of the 2000-year-old manuscripts. The highly anticipated official publication of these rare and fragile antiquities will appear as a volume in the prestigious Princeton Theological Seminary Dead Sea Scrolls Project series in 2017.

The publication was prepared in collaboration with an editorial team at Princeton Theological Seminary headed by James H. Charlesworth, Ph.D., George Collord Professor of New Testament. This volume will join other recently published volumes of Dead Sea Scroll fragments in the Schøyen and Museum of the Bible collections.

“The first volume in the Supplement Volumes of the Princeton’s Dead Sea Scrolls Project is the editio princeps of manuscripts of biblical compositions found among the Dead Sea Scrolls,” said Charlesworth. “These manuscripts were unknown and thus not included in earlier publications of the Dead Sea Scrolls. These scrolls are extremely important because they contain some different readings from those found in our Bibles. Some of these readings help us correct the texts of the Bible. Along with Professor Rietz, my associate editor, and the scholars at APU, I am excited to share these Dead Sea Scrolls with all who are devoted to our Bible and an international, multicultural audience.”

“We look forward to bringing complete information about APU’s ancient biblical manuscripts to the scholarly world,” said lead researcher William Yarchin, Ph.D., the Dean’s Endowed Professor of Biblical Studies in APU’s School of Theology. “Some of these manuscripts contain wording found in no other Hebrew manuscript, and scholars are keen to integrate that information into the existing body of biblical scholarship. It is also important to provide this material to the scholarly world in light of concerns over possible forgeries among scroll fragments that have recently come to light. One of our fragments has been carbon dated as truly ancient. So we are confident, and we fully support all future scientific studies that can help advance research in ancient manuscripts.”

Among the five ancient fragments are portions from the book of Leviticus, the book of Deuteronomy, and the book of Daniel, inscribed at about the time of Christ or within a century earlier. It is possible that the Daniel fragment owned by APU is the world’s oldest existing manuscript of Daniel 5:13-16.

Of the significant findings, „The university’s Deuteronomy 27 fragment features a unique reading in verse 4 that agrees with the Samaritan Torah. This will give scholars new insights into the relationship between Judaism and Samaritanism in antiquity,” said Karen Winslow, Ph.D., professor and chair, biblical and theological studies in the Azusa Pacific Seminary.

The Dead Sea Scrolls have been described as one of the greatest archaeological discoveries ever. They include the oldest biblical manuscripts in existence. Scholars credit the scrolls for increasing knowledge of the origins of Christianity and revolutionizing their understanding of Judaism. Azusa Pacific University’s five Dead Sea Scroll fragments include: 1) portions of Leviticus 10:4-7; 2) portions of Deuteronomy 8:2-5; 3) portions of Deuteronomy 27:4-6; 4) portions of Daniel 5:13-16; and 5) an unidentified fragment. All five fragments are from Qumran Cave 4. In 2010, APU held a public exhibition of these manuscripts along with other biblical artifacts from its Special Collections. Along with its Dead Sea Scroll holdings, APU oversees an archaeological excavation of the biblical site Abel Beth Maacah, a 35-acre tel in the northernmost border of present day Israel. Dig findings include a 3,000-year-old seal depicting ritualistic dance and a silver hoard likely from the late Bronze Age.

CBP Officers Seize $12M of Drugs over Mothers Day Weekend

SAN DIEGO – U.S. Customs and Border Protection officers working at the ports of entry along the California border with Mexico over the Mother’s Day weekend intercepted more than a half of ton of narcotics valued at around $12 million.

From Friday, May 12, through Sunday, May 14, CBP officers intercepted 627 pounds of methamphetamine, 382 pounds of cocaine, nine pounds of heroin and 78 pounds of marijuana. CBP officers discovered the narcotics hidden inside vehicles in various places, such as the intake manifold, quarter panels, dashboards, seats and gas tanks.

One enforcement action is highlighted below:

On Friday about 5 p.m., a 20-year-old female U.S. citizen entered the Calexico downtown port of entry driving a white 2014 Honda Civic. A CBP officer referred the Civic for an examination and officers discovered anomalies within the engine area. Both vehicle and driver were escorted to the secondary inspection area for further examination.

One meth drug seizure of several
over the Mother’s Day weekend.

During the intensive inspection, officers utilized the port’s imaging system that led to the discovery of 22 wrapped packages of methamphetamine and one wrapped package of cocaine concealed inside a non-factory compartment within the dashboard area.

The methamphetamine yielded a total weight of about 34 pounds with an estimated street value of approximately $47,600 and the cocaine yielded a weight of two pounds with an estimated street value of approximately $30,000.

The driver, a resident of Desert Hot Springs, California, was arrested for the alleged smuggling attempt and turned over to the custody of ICE agents for further processing.

“CBP officers constantly combat the flow of drugs from entering the U.S. at our ports of entry and $12 million worth of it is evident of our officers’ effectiveness,” said Pete Flores, director of field operations for CBP in San Diego.

CBP officers at the border crossings in Southern California routinely stop illegal activity, while processing millions of legitimate travelers into the United States. Those statistics can be found here: CBP-enforcement-statistics

Criminal charges are merely allegations. Defendants are presumed innocent unless proven guilty in a court of law.

Nurses Reach Tentative Agreement With Keck Hospital of USC, USC Norris Comprehensive Cancer Center

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California Nurses Association Press Release, 5/10/17

Registered nurses at Keck Hospital of the University of Southern California (USC) and USC Norris Comprehensive Cancer Center, have reached a tentative agreement on a four-year contract that secures important patient protections, helps recruit and retain experienced nurses, and provides critical educational opportunities for nurses, the California Nurses Association/National Nurses United (CNA/NNU) announced today.

RNs will vote on the contract, which would cover around 1,110 nurses at the USC facilities, Thursday, May 11 and Friday, May 12.

I have been an RN for 40 years and at USC Keck for 26 years, and it feels great to celebrate Nurses Week with a contract that lifts the standards for our profession,” said Operating Room RN Maria Salazar—referring to the timing of the agreement aligning with the May 6-12 national week honoring nurses.

“Our contract is a testament to the importance of having a strong union,” said Intensive Care Unit RN Allysha Shin. “In light of today’s political climate, it is more crucial now to have strong worker protections.”

Contract highlights include:

Support for nurses, leading to enhanced patient care. The new contract includes additional “resource nurses,” who are scheduled as backup/assistance for RNs in the event of an influx of severely injured or ill patients. Meal and break language also ensures that nurses have adequate rest, critical to reducing the threat of fatigue, which can lead to accidents and other harm for patients. Additionally, the agreement states that lead nurses will not have a patient assignment, so they can perform their duties in support of their fellow RNs.

Economic gains to help with recruitment and retention. With across the board wage increases of at least 15 percent, with more based on years of experience, Keck and Norris will now have some of the most competitive wages in the region, helping to attract the most experienced nurses to care for patients and the community served by the hospitals.

Critical educational opportunities. The agreement includes continuing education opportunities for nurses and reimbursement for conferences and seminars.

Important union protections. With the ongoing growth of Keck Hospital and Norris Comprehensive Cancer Center, nurses say they are pleased that even if RNs are shifted to new buildings within the larger campus, the new contract will protect their union and contract rights—allowing them to continue advocating for their patients.

Workplace violence protections. Nurses laud the current contract’s compliance with a nation-leading CNA-sponsored workplace violence law and new regulations stating that all hospitals must adopt a workplace violence prevention plan, with staff training and other steps to reduce the danger of violence for employees, patients, patient families, and visitors.

No takeaways to health benefits, expanded life insurance. Nurses will be able to keep their health benefits and will also receive expanded life insurance.

“With the current attempts to roll back healthcare, I’m proud that our contract ensures that we will retain our medical coverage for the next four years,” said Shin.

“I’m extremely happy for our USC nurses, as this is a testament of our unity, especially during times of political change and uncertainty,” said ICU RN Rudy Cuellar. “This contract will improve the overall nursing care satisfaction and will enhance RN retention and recruiting.”

California Nurses Association represents nearly 100,000 nurses statewide and is part of National Nurses United, the largest union of registered nurses in the country.

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APU Presents Teacher Workshop on Sumerian Seals

Azusa Pacific University Libraries’ Special Collections and Educational Programming present a teacher workshop on Sumerian seals from ancient Mesopotamia. Educators will learn how APU’s cuneiform tablet and Sumerian seal collection can be used as primary resources in the teaching of ancient history through a cross-curricular Common Core approach. This event takes place on Sat., May 13 from 8:30 a.m.-12 p.m., in the Darling Library, located on APU’s West Campus, at 701 E. Foothill Blvd., in Azusa. Register online. The cost is $5.

In this hands-on workshop, attendees will:

  • Study a sample of the various seals.

Learn how to make a seal in their classes. Discover these items’ significance in ancient history and how to incorporate them into lessons meeting California State History/Social Studies standards and framework. Take away lesson strategies that can be used immediately in the classroom. Roll out a seal impression in clay to take with them. Learn about the history of writing with a viewing of the cuneiform tablet, a papyrus replica, and related educational materials.

For more information on resources, events, and opportunities offered by the Azusa Pacific University Libraries’ Educational Programming department, visit the website or .

Public Records Sought on Prototypes for Trump’s Border Wall

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WASHINGTON— The Center for Biological Diversity today filed a Freedom of Information Act request seeking public records on whether planned prototypes for President Trump’s border wall in Southern California comply with laws meant to protect wildlife, people and wild places.

Today’s request to the Department of Homeland Security and U.S. Customs and Border Protection seeks records related to border wall prototypes that will reportedly be constructed on federal lands in San Diego County near Otay Mesa. The request seeks the agencies’ documentation of compliance with the National Environmental Policy Act, Endangered Species Act and other laws in the prototype construction process.

The public has a right to know if the Trump administration is breaking environmental laws while building these prototype border walls,” said Brian Segee, a senior attorney with the Center. “If Trump can’t even follow the rules with these small models, what can we expect if he tries to build his wall along 2,000 miles of borderlands?”

On April 12 the Center and Congressman Raúl M. Grijalva sued the Trump administration over the proposed border wall and other border-security measures, calling on federal agencies to conduct an in-depth investigation of the proposal’s environmental impacts. At least 100 species near the border are already endangered, including the Sonoran pronghorn, gray wolf and ocelot. Studies show that border barriers divide natural habitat, affect breeding levels and can make it more difficult for animals to forage for food and water.

Since 2001 — the last time the federal government reviewed environmental impacts on the U.S.-Mexico border — enforcement programs and associated environmental impacts have increased exponentially, including the deployment of thousands of new border agents, construction of hundreds of miles of border walls and fences, construction of thousands of miles of roads, the installation of operating camps and other military and security infrastructure. These physical impediments, as well as 24-hour surveillance lighting and road network all function to block critical movement routes and threaten the survival of numerous species. 

The Center for Biological Diversity is a national, nonprofit conservation organization with more than 1.3 million members and online activists dedicated to the protection of endangered species and wild places.

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Iteris Awarded Connected Vehicle Technology Review Study for Orange County Transportation Authority

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Study is first in Southern California and builds on Iteris’ deep knowledge of Connected Vehicle technology from its decades of work with USDOT

SANTA ANA, Calif. – April 20, 2017 Iteris, Inc. (NASDAQ: ITI), the global leader in applied informatics for transportation and agriculture, today announced the Orange County Transportation Authority (OCTA) has engaged with the company to conduct a Vehicle-to-Infrastructure State of the Practice Review. The study will cover connected vehicle technology between vehicles (V2V) and vehicle-to-infrastructure (V2I) and will make recommendations for how the OCTA can advance their development and use as the technologies and their applications mature.   

Connected Vehicle technology, which includes V2V and V2I communications, such as the sharing of traffic signal data with vehicles, presents enormous potential to reduce crashes on roadways. Iteris is at the forefront of designing and implementing these technologies having created the Connected Vehicle Reference Implementation Architecture (CVRIA) for the USDOT and through the company’s involvement in Connected and Autonomous vehicle testbeds in Ohio, Michigan and Virginia.

„Connected Vehicle technology holds tremendous promise to prevent crashes,” said Ramin Massoumi, general manager and senior vice president of Transportation Systems at Iteris. “Understanding and advancing these technologies will not only make our roadways safer, but also operate more efficiently. With our study, OCTA will help to shape the roll-out of V2V and V2I in its region and pave the way for other regions.”

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration estimates that safety applications enabled by V2V and V2I could eliminate or mitigate the severity of up to 80% of non-impaired crashes, including crashes at intersections or while changing lanes.

Iteris has decades of experience in V2I standards in planning, deployment, integration and operations. In addition to the CVRIA, the company developed and maintains the United States’ Intelligent Transportation System (ITS) architecture since 1996, and this year Iteris will combine the two architectures to further build-out the guidelines for connected vehicle and smart community initiatives.

About Iteris, Inc.
Iteris is the global leader in applied informatics for transportation and agriculture, turning big data into big breakthrough solutions. We collect, aggregate and analyze data on traffic, roads, weather, water, soil and crops to generate precise informatics that lead to safer transportation and smarter farming. Municipalities, government agencies, crop science companies, farmers and agronomists around the world use our solutions to make roads safer and travel more efficient, as well as farmlands more sustainable, healthy and productive. Visit www.iteris.com for more information.

Safe Harbor Statement under the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995
This release may contain forward-looking statements, which speak only as of the date hereof and are based upon our current expectations and the information available to us at this time. Words such as „believes,” „anticipates,” „expects,” „intends,” “outlooks,” “target,” „plans,” „seeks,” „estimates,” „may,” “should,” „will,” „can,” and variations of these words or similar expressions are intended to identify forward-looking statements. These statements include, but are not limited to, statements about the timing, success, and benefits of the review and effects of conducting a review. Such statements are not guarantees of future performance and are subject to certain risks, uncertainties, and assumptions that are difficult to predict, and actual results could differ materially and adversely from those expressed in any forward-looking statements as a result of various factors.

Important factors that may cause such a difference include, but are not limited to, our ability to successfully complete the review and make recommendations; government funding and budgetary issues, and potential related funding delays; effects of connected vehicle technology, reviews and recommendations; implementation by the agency of recommendations made to the agency; the impact of general economic, political, and other conditions in the markets we address; and the potential impact of product and service offerings from competitors and such competitors’ patent coverage and claims.  Further information on Iteris, Inc., including additional risk factors that may affect our forward-looking statements, is contained in our Annual Report on Form 10-K, our Quarterly Reports on Form 10-Q, our Current Reports on Form 8-K, and our other SEC filings that are available through the SEC’s website (www.sec.gov).

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VP Olivo Named an Aspen Presidential Fellow

Cynthia Olivo, PCC’s vice president of student services, is one of 40 community college leaders chosen from across the country to join the 2017-2018 class of the Aspen Presidential Fellowship for Community College Excellence.

Delivered in collaboration with the Stanford Educational Leadership Initiative and top community college leaders, the program focuses on a new vision for leadership centered on delivering strong student outcomes in four areas: learning, completion while in community college and of bachelor’s degrees after transfer, employment and earnings after graduation, and equitable access and success for underrepresented minority and low-income students.

Dr. Olivo was selected through a rigorous process that considered her abilities to take strategic risks, lead strong teams and cultivate partnerships, and focus on results-oriented improvements for greater student success and access. 

The granddaughter of migrant farmworkers and raised by a single mother, Dr. Olivo has a 22-year career as a college administrator with experience at the university and community college level. She earned her doctorate from Claremont Graduate University and her bachelor’s and master’s degrees from California State University, San Bernardino.

Bad Parent? Criminal? Dad Goes to Jail for Making 8-Year-Old Son Walk A Mile Home.

Mike Tang was charged with child endangerment for leaving his 8-year-old-son in a grocery store parking lot a mile from home. It was supposed to be a life lesson.

I just wanted to reinforce that money is hard to earn and that, if he doesn’t do a good job at school, he could end up sleeping out here where the homeless people sleep,” says Tang.

Tang says his son, Isaac, had been slacking in school, and when Mike caught Isaac cutting corners on his homework by reading his little sister’s book instead of his own he drove him to the parking lot and left him to walk home.

It was a little before 8 p.m. on a 50-degree January evening in the Southern California suburb of Corona, and about 10 to 15 minutes after the drop, Tang sent Isaac’s grandfather to pick up the boy.

Turns out Isaac had already been picked up. He was in police custody. A stranger had spotted Isaac and called the the cops. The cops arrested Tang, and he spent the night in county jail. A jury later convicted him of child endangerment, and the judge sentenced him to parenting classes and a 56-day work release program picking up trash and doing other menial work.

Mike is refusing to serve the sentence, and there’s an outstanding arrest warrant for his failure to comply. He scrawled a response on top of the warrant and mailed it back.

„Fuck you all!” Mike’s written response begins. „Walking on a public sidewalk at 7:45 p.m. is not child endangerment.”

Is Mike right? Or did he jeopardize Isaac’s safety? And was it appropriate for the police to intervene?

We explored those questions in the video above with the help of journalist and Reason contributor Lenore Skenazy, founder of the Free Range Kids movement.

Approximately 5 minutes. Produced by Zach Weissmueller. Camera by Weissmueller and Alex Manning. Music by Blue Dot Sessions.