Southern California breaking news and trends

Santa Monica smoking ban loses fire until further notice

no smoking no dogs

Photo credit: Lisa Brenner

Real sign hanging on a Santa Monica Pier building, circa 2008.

In Santa Monica, some new renters can still smoke if they got em'. The seaside city has shelved a smoking ban until further discussion with the public. 

On Tuesday night, the Santa Monica City Council voted 4-to-2 to temporarily put out the law approved earlier in July that would have banned smoking for new tenants in apartments and condos. 

Critics argue that the law, as it is written, is a violation of smokers’ civil rights. City councilman Robert Holbrook told KPCC's Ashley Bailey that he’s been hearing from some constituents who strongly object to the law.  

"I want the public to realize it’s very controversial," said Holbrook. "We all receive e-mails. I’m not sure if yours are the same as mine, but accused of being Nazi and Hitler disciple and everything else."

Before moving forward with a smoking ban council members want to address issues brought up by the public, medical marijuana advocates and landlord groups. 

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Puma killing prompts procedure change for Santa Monica police

mountain lion santa monica

Photo by Santa Monica Police Department via PatrickNBCLA/Twitter

Santa Monica police have responded to the controversial fatal shooting of a puma last month by revising the department's procedure for handling free-roaming wildlife in an urban setting.

Officers, activists and veterinarians met with Fish and Game and National Park Service reps this week to discuss a new approach to animal encounters, and "the inherent risks and the reasonableness of those methods when applicable in real-life scenarios," the police department said in a release.

Acknowledging public safety as the primary consideration, as well as the value of safe capture of wildlife, the focus group produced a plan to provide officers with additional training, and to provide the department with specialized equipment to aid in future scenarios.

The Santa Monica Police Department has committed to:

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Ferris wheel feat: World-record victory by LAPD detective on Santa Monica pier

ferris wheel santa monica pier

Photo by guyprentice via Flickr Creative Commons

It is a world-record setting day for Los Angeles law enforcement as detective Gus Martinez reached his goal of enduring the longest Ferris wheel ride ever recorded -- 25 hours.

Under the Guinness World Records guidelines, Martinez (who rode from 7:30 a.m. Thursday to 8:30 a.m Friday) was not permitted to sleep, but was allowed off the spinning wheel for a five-minute bathroom break once per hour, reports the L.A. Times.

Martinez took the circular journey to nowhere on the 130-foot-tall amusement in an effort to raise money and awareness for Special Olympics. His son has won more than 30 gold medals in the competiton, notes NBC LA.

Additional motion sickness can be found on the fundraising website where a contest winner will receive a private, hour-long ride on the wheel.

The previous Ferris wheel riding record was set in Dublin, Ireland, and stood at 24 hours and 30 minutes.

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Ferris wheel feat: LAPD detective attempts world record on Santa Monica pier

ferris wheel santa monica pier

Photo by guyprentice via Flickr Creative Commons

The most exclusive scene Thursday night will be at the Santa Monica pier where an LAPD detective is attempting to set a new world record with a 25-hour ferris wheel ride.

LAPD Detective Gus Martinez is taking the circular journey to nowhere on the 130-foot-tall amusement in an effort to raise money and awareness for Special Olympics. His son has won more than 30 gold medals in the competiton, notes NBC LA.

From 8 p.m. to 12 a.m. on Thursday, night-riders can take a spin in solidarity for $5, with all proceeds benefiting Special Olympics Southern California.

In order to break the record of 24 hours and 30 minutes set in Dublin, Ireland, Martinez will need to go round and round and round and round (etc.) til around 8:30 a.m. on Friday.

A motion sickness-inducing contest accompanies donations made on the website -- the winner will receive a private, hour-long ride on the wheel.

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Mountain lion shot and killed at Santa Monica office building

mountain lion santa monica

Photo by Santa Monica Police Department via PatrickNBCLA/Twitter

The Santa Monica Police Department and the Department of Fish and Game have corralled a mountain lion in a Santa Monica office complex courtyard on Second Street, police said. The animal has not yet been tranquilized.

Police have closed Second Street for the incident. A janitor reported the sighting at about 6 a.m.

"With the Santa Monica Mountains nearby, we see all kinds of critters," said Lt. Calisse Lindsey Santa to NBC LA, of the Santa Monica Police Department. "Raccoons, deer it’s amazing what I've seen in last few years. It happens, but never a mountain lion in a building."

UPDATE 10 a.m. NBC LA reports the mountain lion was shot and killed when it tried to escape. 

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