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Posted: Friday, June 8, 2001 10:00 pm | Updated: 12:20 pm, Tue Jan 28, 2014.

Firefighters dismantle newspaper stand to free man

A 20-year-old man was held captive Thursday night by a San Francisco Chronicle newspaper stand when his finger got stuck in its change return.

After trying soap and everything else slippery they could find, firefighters and paramedics realized they would have to take the stand apart. The newspaper stand was located in front of Safeway at 2449 W. Kettleman Lane.

"There was no way it (his finger) was going to slide out," Capt. Doug Hintz of the Lodi Fire Department said.

The man was trying to get his change out of the coin return when his finger got stuck, Hintz said.

"We had to tear the thing apart to get him out," he said.

The Lodi police, fire department and paramedics worked for almost 30 minutes to free the 20-year-old's finger.

His finger was fine, according to authorities at the scene.

In the 31 years Hintz has been with the fire department, he has seen many things, but not someone's finger stuck in a newspaper box, he said.

"If the coins are not there, don't reach in," he said.

Apartment fire still under investigation

A two-alarm fire that destroyed two units at the Vintage East apartment complex on South Church Street on Thursday remains under investigation.

"The fire was not electrical and we're almost positive it was not arson," Geoff Spinner of the Lodi Fire Department said Friday.

The fire caused the temporary evacuation of 20 units was "basically accidental," Spinner said.

So far, damage is estimated to be around $75,000.

Council to hear Parks and Rec Commission's priorities

The Lodi City Council has postponed a budget discussion to hear the Parks and Recreation Commission's priority project presentation at the regular Tuesday morning meeting.

Council members voted at last Wednesday's regular City Council meeting to postpone the presentation, which will be for information only.

The council meets at 7 a.m. Tuesday at Carnegie Forum, 305 W. Pine St.

The meeting is open to the public.

Boy hit by car remains in critical condition

Ronaldo Martinez, the 3-year-old boy hit by a car Wednesday on East Pine Street in Lodi, remained in critical condition Friday at the University of California Davis Medical Center.

Ronaldo suffered scrapes to his head, a broken collar bone, a broken femur - the large bone that extends from the hip to the knee - and a collapsed lung, police said.

Galt man arrested on suspicion of possessing stolen property

Galt police arrested Dallas Perry, 19, of Galt on suspicion of possessing stolen property, police said.

Perry was arrested at 4:44 p.m. Thursday at an apartment in the 800 block of North Lincoln Way.

Witnesses told police that Perry was seen in a vehicle that had been reported stolen Wednesday on Ayers Lane in Galt, police said.

District attorney to be guest speaker at Committee on Aging

Sacramento County District Attorney Jan Scully will be the guest speaker at Tuesday's meeting of the Galt Committee on Aging, which will begin at 9 a.m. at the Galt Parks and Recreation Department office, 660 Chabolla Ave.

The meeting is open to the public.

Mokelumne Fire sets special meeting on parcel tax

The Mokelumne Rural Fire District will have a special board meeting at 7:30 p.m. Thursday to work out how much a parcel tax, if approved by voters, would cost property owners in Lockeford and Victor.

The fire board hopes to place on a measure on a special election ballot in November to augment district finances. An ad-hoc committee recommended the parcel tax to hire a full-time rather than a part-time fire chief, increase the number of paid firefighters from nine to 12 and to increase firefighter salaries.

A parcel tax would require two-thirds approval by voters.

The board meeting will be held at Station 2, 13157 E. Brandt Road, Lockeford.

Contract talks will continue for courthouse employees

Union representatives for San Joaquin County courthouse employees are calling Thursday morning's hour-long strike in front of the Stockton Courthouse a warning.

"We're calling it a unity break," said David Gabler, chief negotiator for the SEIU, a union representing employees at the courthouse.

Close to 150 court reporters, court clerks and other court-related employees stood in front of the Stockton Courthouse from 8 to 9:30 a.m., shutting down many court proceedings for over an hour.

As of Jan. 1, the courts became a division of the state, not the county, after the passage of legislation AB 2140. Since then, contract negotiations have taken place, Gabler said.

"On April 19, we left negotiations thinking we had an agreement," he said. "We thought we had a deal and the court backed out."

Union representatives will meet again Monday with a mediator from the state.

"There's the potential to resolve it (the negotiations) or the potential for it to go haywire," Gabler said.

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