Southern California breaking news and trends

LA sheriff's deputy arrested for committing lewd acts on a child

A Los Angeles County sheriff's deputy has been arrested for investigation of committing lewd acts on a child.

Police say Deputy Oscar Rodriguez, a 10-year department veteran, was taken into custody Thursday. He was immediately relieved of duty pending the outcome of criminal and administrative investigations.

Police say the alleged acts were committed while Rodriguez was off duty.

Rodriguez was assigned to the sheriff's Marina del Rey station.

He's being held on $100,000 bail.



KFI suspends hosts John & Ken for 'inappropriate' Whitney Houston comments

KFI hosts John Kobylt and Ken Chiampou were suspended Thursday for "insensitive and inappropriate comments" made about the late Whitney Houston, KFI/640 AM announced.

Details about the comments were not disclosed in the announcement. However, in a recording of the show found online, Kobylt refers to the singer with a derogatory term, notes the Orange County Register.

Management stated in the suspension announcement that it does "not condone, support or tolerate statements of this kind." Kobylt is quoted as saying "We made a mistake, and we accept the station's decision. We used language that was inappropriate, and we sincerely apologize to our listeners and to the family of Ms. Houston."

Hosts John and Ken are expected to be back on the air Feb. 27.


Drug-filled Cessna surrounded by NORAD fighter jets near LAX after breaking Obama no-fly zone

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Mandel Ngan/AFP/Getty Images

A small plane picked the wrong week to smuggle drugs into LA.

As President Barack Obama was returning to Los Angeles International Airport aboard Marine One, a plane carrying drugs broke the temporary no-fly zone prompting a swift military reaction, NBC News is reporting.

The president was reportedly never in danger. However, the same may not be true of the single-engine Cessna 182 that found itself surrounded by NORAD fighter jets.

F-16s out of March Air Reserve Base in Riverside County intercepted the small plane and followed it "without incident," according to a NORAD statement, to the Long Beach Airport, where marijuana was discovered inside the aircraft by authorities.


'Dr. Phil' interview with Miramonte students airs today

Grant Slater/KPCC

Parents of students at Miramonte Elementary School escort they children out of school on February 6, 2012.

A taped "Dr. Phil" interview of former students of Mark Berndt — the Miramonte Elementary School teacher arrested in January charged with 23 lewd acts on children — will air on television Thursday afternoon at 3 p.m. locally.

In the episode promo video, some former students are shown and others are seen in partial close-up with their identity concealed by appearing hidden or out of frame. There is discussion about their experiences in the classroom, and allegations that Berndt fed students cookies that authorities believe were covered in semen.

LAUSD Superintendent John Deasy received a letter from the California Commission on Teacher Credentialing, dated Wednesday, notifying him that the district posed a potential "risk to student safety" by not filing timely reports, required by the state, about changes in teacher employment status.


At least 3 shot at East Hollywood home, house burns down; 2 bodies found in wreckage

James Rojas/KPCC

The East Hollywood that burned down where at least three people were shot, Feb. 16, 2012.

James Rojas/KPCC

The scene following a house burning down where at least three victims were shot in East Hollywood, Feb. 16, 2012.

James Rojas/KPCC

The scene near the house that burned down where at least three victims were shot in East Hollywood, Feb. 16, 2012.

At least three people were shot at an East Hollywood home, and a fourth victim was found dead inside. The house was engulfed in flame.

Once the fire department said the fire was out, officers went into the house and discovered the body of a male suspect who matched the description of the shooter, according to LAPD Lt. Andrew Neiman. Additional searching led to finding another unidentified body who appeared to be male.

Authorities say a man and two women with gunshot wounds were rescued from the burning home at around 12:30 p.m. Thursday and officers thought they saw a fourth victim inside. Those three victims were taken to a hospital in serious condition.

There was a relationship between the suspect and one of the victims taken to the hospital, and it may have been a domestic violence incident, according to Neiman.