Gang Bank a Slush Fund? Angry words flew back and forth at a Montebello City Council meeting as one councilman accused another of using the city's Gang Diversion Task Force as his political ATM. The San Gabriel Valley Tribune reports that the allegations included one that Bill Molinari used the nonprofit Task Force as a conduit for stealth political contributions. Molinair denies the charge.
God Save the Queen Long Beach's iconic tourist attraction, the Queen Mary ocean liner, has a new owner -- a New York investment firm. According to the Los Angeles Business Journal, the Garrison Investment Group took control at a Manhattan auction for a mere $25,000.
Celebrity NIMBY Meltdown Ashton Kutcher's self-documented, malarial rants against a screenwriter who's building a house next door to him are providing gossipeurs with fodder to last through summer. As both TMZ and Defamer point out, the home shared by Kutcher and wife Demi Moore was 10 years in the making.
Is There a Shrink in the House? Somewhere down the Halls of Democracy and just off from the Corridors of Power lie the padded cells known as L.A.'s neighborhood councils. The Eastsider L.A. has an exquisite description of the latest fracas of the Echo Park council, in which one board member began banging a drum with a wooden spoon to express his displeasure with the council president. Finally, after some heated colloquys ("You stop it!" "You, stop it!"), L.A. City Councilman Eric Garcetti arrives to unintentionally restore order. Next stop, Mr. Garcetti -- Gaza!
Body Fat -- Nature's Kevlar A British woman tells the Guardian UK that her "muffin top" saved her life on the streets of Los Angeles by slowing a sniper's bullet. "Had I been the usual L.A. size-zero stereotype," she says, "I would probably have been killed. Or paralyzed."
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Is L.A. Losing Its Jones for Medical Pot? The L.A. Times reports that neighborhood activists are beginning to take a dim view of the proliferation of Southland medical marijuana dispensaries.