Richard Gonzales

Richard Gonzales is NPR's National Desk Correspondent based in San Francisco. Along with covering the daily news of region, Gonzales' reporting has included medical marijuana, gay marriage, drive-by shootings, Jerry Brown, Willie Brown, the U.S. Ninth Circuit, the California State Supreme Court and any other legal, political, or social development occurring in Northern California relevant to the rest of the country.

Gonzales joined NPR in May 1986. He covered the U.S. State Department during the Iran-Contra Affair and the fall of apartheid in South Africa. Four years later, he assumed the post of White House Correspondent and reported on the prelude to the Gulf War and President George W. Bush's unsuccessful re-election bid. Gonzales covered the U.S. Congress for NPR from 1993-94, focusing on NAFTA and immigration and welfare reform.

In September 1995, Gonzales moved to his current position after spending a year as a John S. Knight Fellow Journalism at Stanford University.

In 2009, Gonzales won the Broadcast Journalism Award from the American Academy of Orthopedic Surgeons. He also received the PASS Award in 2004 and 2005 from the National Council on Crime and Delinquency for reports on California's juvenile and adult criminal justice systems.

Prior to NPR, Gonzales was a freelance producer at public television station KQED in San Francisco. From 1979 to 1985, he held positions as a reporter, producer, and later, public affairs director at KPFA, a radio station in Berkeley, CA.

Gonzales graduated from Harvard College with a bachelor's degree in psychology and social relations. He is a co-founder of Familias Unidas, a bi-lingual social services program in his hometown of Richmond, California.

On Monday, Illinois will become the second state to ban the so-called gay panic defense in cases in which a murder defendant tries to justify his violence as a reaction to learning that the victim was gay.

California banned the defense tactic in 2014, a year after the American Bar Association called for its prohibition.

As The Associated Press reports, there is no single standard for the circumstances leading to the defense:

Reality intruded into the land of fantasy—Disneyland, that is—as a failed transformer interrupted power to more than a dozen rides in two areas of the park for about an hour.

The power outage which occurred at about 11 a.m. knocked out rides in Mickey's Toontown and Fantasyland, but no one was hurt, according to a Disney spokesperson.

A woman running for Congress as a Democrat in Kansas — a red state — says she will drop out following the revelation of a sexual harassment allegation lodged by a former employee whom she had fired.

Andrea Ramsey, a retired business executive, was one of the Democratic candidates running to challenge Republican Rep. Kevin Yoder in Kansas' 3rd Congressional District.

Ramsey vehemently denied the allegations in a letter posted on her campaign's Facebook page.

Updated at 10:55 p.m. ET

California fire officials say the massive Thomas Fire has claimed the life of a firefighter.

The body of Cory Iverson, a 32-year-old father from Escondido, Calif., was driven out of the fire zone in a procession as firefighters lined the road saluting in respect.

Updated at 9:48 a.m. ET

PBS will no longer distribute Tavis Smiley following what a spokeswoman called "multiple, credible" allegations of sexual misconduct uncovered by a recent investigation into the late-night show host's behavior.

Two Democratic representatives, John Lewis and Bennie Thompson, say they will not attend the long-awaited opening on Saturday of two museums dedicated to Mississippi's history and civil rights struggle because of the planned appearance of President Trump.

Lewis is a Georgia Democrat and icon of the civil rights campaign. Thompson is Mississippi's only Democratic congressman. In a joint statement, they said they made their decision "after careful consideration and conversations with church leaders, elected officials, civil rights activists" and many others.

High-ranking U.S.-based Volkswagen executive Oliver Schmidt has been sentenced to seven years in prison and ordered to pay a $400,000 fine for his part in a decade-long diesel-emissions cheating scandal.

Updated at 8:10 p.m. ET

The U.S. Supreme Court will allow the Trump administration to fully enforce its revised ban on allowing entry to the United States by residents of eight countries while legal challenges are heard by a federal appeals court.

Six of the countries — Syria, Libya, Iran, Yemen, Chad and Somalia — are majority-Muslim nations. The other two are North Korea and Venezuela.

Updated at 11:45 p.m. ET

A jury in San Francisco has found Jose Ines Garcia Zarate, a homeless undocumented Mexican immigrant, not guilty of murder in the death of 32-year-old Kate Steinle two years ago in a case that became a flashpoint in the national debate on illegal immigration.

As a presidential candidate, Donald Trump cited the Steinle killing as a justification for his intended crackdown on immigration.

A new government report says the number of children in the U.S. foster care system has increased for the fourth year in a row, due largely to an uptick in substance abuse by parents.

The report, issued annually by the Administration for Children and Families of the Department of Health and Human Services, shows that 437,500 children were in foster care by the end of fiscal year 2016. A year earlier the number was 427,400.

Updated at 6:40 p.m. ET

A federal court has denied a request for a temporary restraining order sought by an Obama-era appointee seeking to block the Trump administration from assuming control of the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau.

The ruling by U.S. District Court Judge Timothy Kelly is a victory for President Trump, who appointed White House Budget Director Mick Mulvaney to take charge of the CFPB after the resignation of its previous director, Richard Cordray.

Three weeks after Election Day, Virginia Republicans hold on to the narrowest of margins for control of the state House of Delegates. But no one can predict for sure whether they can hang on to it.

That's because a surprisingly strong turnout by Democratic voters in elections earlier this month has produced tight races in three House districts. The tightest race, in the 28th House District, is snarled in controversy over the legitimacy of 147 votes.

Copyright 2017 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

ARI SHAPIRO, HOST:

Updated at 1:15 p.m. ET Tuesday

Veteran television host Charlie Rose has been fired by CBS, a day after eight women told The Washington Post that he sexually harassed them between the late 1990s and 2011.

The head of Puerto Rico's power authority stepped down Friday amid controversy over his handling of a system that still can't deliver electricity to that island two months after Hurricane Maria destroyed the power grid.

Ricardo Ramos, executive director of the Puerto Rico Electric Power Authority, or PREPA, resigned as he was unable to shake off questions about a $300 million contract that he had awarded to Whitefish, a small Montana-based energy firm, that was supposed to restore power on the island.

Copyright 2017 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

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For just one more night, the facade of Notre Dame de Paris will display a light show for the ages, designed to celebrate both the cathedral's enduring majesty and the centenary of World War I.

The Boston researcher who examined the brain of former football star Aaron Hernandez says it showed the most damage her team had seen in an athlete so young.

Hernandez, whose on-field performance for the New England Patriots earned him a $40 million contract in 2012, hanged himself in a prison cell earlier this year while serving a life sentence for murder. He was 27 years old.

New York police officials say they are building a "credible" case to arrest Hollywood mogul Harvey Weinstein on charges of raping actress Paz de la Huerta seven years ago in that city.

"We have an actual case going forward,' said the New York Police Department's chief of detectives Robert Boyce at a news conference at Police Headquarters. The investigation is nine days old, Boyce added.

Sayfullo Saipov, the suspect in this week's New York terrorist attack, is a native of Uzbekistan who came to the U.S. through the diversity visa lottery. It's a system for people from countries that have sent relatively few immigrants to the United States in the past five years.

Now, the attack that killed eight has brought heightened scrutiny to the program and prompted calls to end it.

Updated 12:01 a.m. ET

The Houston Astros beat the Los Angeles Dodgers 5-1 in Game 7 of the World Series, winning their first championship crown in the team's 55-year history (and 56th season).

The Astros jumped out to a 5-0 lead after two innings and held on for the rest of the game watching the Dodgers squander multiple opportunities to score.

"We held down a really tough lineup," said Astros pitcher Charlie Morton, who pitched four innings in relief, giving up the Dodgers' only run. He struck out four batters, walked one and earned the win.

Updated at 10:15 p.m. ET

Actor Kevin Spacey's days portraying power-mad Washington politician Frank Underwood are drawing to a close with the Netflix announcement that the series House of Cards will end with the final season of 13 episodes debuting in 2018.

Updated 12:40 a.m. ET

The Houston Astros defeated the Los Angeles Dodgers in Game 3 of the World Series at Minute Maid Park in Houston, taking the series lead with two wins over the Dodgers.

The Astros relied on early scoring and a gutsy relief effort by right-hander Brad Peacock who came in for starter Lance McCullers with one out in the sixth inning and held the Dodgers without a hit for 3 2/3 innings. He struck out four and surrendered a walk.

McCullers went 5 1/3 innings, giving up three runs and four hits for the win.

The Houston Astros won a wild 11-inning seesaw battle beating the Los Angeles Dodgers 7-6 in Game 2 of the World Series.

Astros center fielder George Springer smacked a two-run homer in the top of the 11th inning, silencing fans at Dodger Stadium after their team had tied the game at 5-5 in the bottom of the 10th inning.

The Dodgers struck back again in the bottom of the 11th with a solo homer by pinch hitter Charlie Culberson. But that was all the Dodgers could muster against Astros reliever Chris Devenski.

Updated 11:50 p.m. ET

The Los Angeles Dodgers beat the Houston Astros 3-1 in Game 1 of the 2017 World Series in Los Angeles on the strength of superior pitching and timely home runs.

The Dodgers got a strong performance by their ace, Clayton Kershaw, who struck out 11 batters over seven innings, surrendering only one run on three hits. He walked none.

"It was a special night for Clayton," Dodgers manager Dave Roberts said about his three-time Cy Young Award winner.

The Los Angeles Police Department is investigating Hollywood movie mogul Harvey Weinstein after an Italian model-actress alleged that he raped her at her hotel in 2013.

As NPR's Mandalit Del Barco reports, "A spokesman for the LAPD says the department is interviewing a 'potential victim' of sexual assault by Harvey Weinstein in 2013."

The allegations of sexual assault are the first reported in Los Angeles. Police in New York and London are investigating allegations that Weinstein sexually assaulted five women in those cities.

Updated at 6:55 a.m. ET Tuesday

Less than 24 hours after the massacre at an open-air country music concert in Las Vegas, authorities are still piecing together what shooter Stephen Paddock did in preparation for his deadly shooting rampage that left 59 people dead and 527 others injured.

There is still a lot they don't know about what motivated Paddock, described by officials as a "lone wolf," to launch the most deadly mass shooting in modern U.S. history.

The Federal Aviation Administration has issued a new regulation restricting unauthorized drone operations over 10 Department of Interior sites, including the Statue of Liberty and Mount Rushmore.

The announcement Thursday says the two federal agencies "have agreed to restrict drone flights up to 400 feet within the lateral boundaries" of the following sites:

  • Statue of Liberty National Monument, New York
  • Boston National Historical Park (U.S.S. Constitution), Boston

Seattle Mayor Ed Murray resigned Tuesday following the publication of new allegations that he sexually abused a cousin at a family home in the 1970s.

In a statement, Murray denied the charge, but said that he is resigning effective the end of the business on Wednesday.

The U.S. Supreme Court will temporarily allow the Trump administration to block many refugees from six mostly Muslim countries without direct familial ties in the United States from entering this country.

In a brief order issued Monday, Justice Anthony Kennedy delayed implementation of a ruling issued by the 9th Circuit Court of Appeals last week that would have allowed entry to refugees with formal ties to resettlement agencies here.

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