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Posted: Thursday, December 27, 2007 10:00 pm

AUBURN - A three-pound Chihuahua mix named Tink is being praised for helping police catch a Christmas Day fugitive.

The dog's adventure began when four suspects who were fleeing police crashed a stolen minivan into a hillside.

Auburn homeowner Wendy Anderson says Tink, her son's dog, found a suspect hiding under a neighbor's motorhome and chased him into the woods. Her son and husband directed a law enforcement helicopter to where the man was hiding.

Tink is a Pomeranian and Chihuahua mix.

Three suspects are juveniles from the San Francisco Bay Area, the California Highway Patrol says. They crashed the van in the Sierra foothill town east of Sacramento.

A passenger, 19-year-old Marvin Gonzales, of San Pablo, was arrested with public intoxication and resisting arrest.

Two science museums to compete in Sacramento

SACRAMENTO - Two science museums planned for the state capital will have to compete for money to keep their doors open.

Sacramento State University and the Discovery Museum Science Center are raising money to open the museums in 2010.

Officials with each institution say the museums will be complementary, but some museum experts say they are more likely to compete. Both will have planetariums, which are expensive to run.

John Jacobsen, who runs a company specializing in museum planning, says finding financial support for two science museums will be challenging. That's partly because museum admissions don't cover operating costs.

Pressure from donors ultimately may force the two entities to merge their plans.

Did city of Ceres skirt environmental law?

CERES - A group of residents are asking why the city of Ceres allowed trees to be chopped down and farmhouses to be demolished on a site that could house a new Wal-Mart supercenter.

Wal-Mart announced in July it sought to build a 208,000-square-foot supercenter on a lot just two miles away from an existing Wal-Mart store.

State law requires experts to review the environmental impacts of the store before approving that it can be built.

Residents worry that the Wal-Mart project is a done deal, and say authorities shouldn't have allowed the site at Mitchell and Service roads to be altered before the report was finished.

City officials say many studies were completed before they granted the demolition permit.

Corps of Engineers to test bay for spilled oil

SAN FRANCISCO - The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers says it will run tests of the bay floor to see if toxic oil from last month's spill remain.

The Corps will test the 43-feet-deep bay bottom off the entrance to the Oakland Outer Harbor today.

Army Corps of Engineers spokeswoman Maria Lee says pom-pom-like absorbent swabs will collect the samples, which will help determine the extent of the spill.

Nearly 58,000 gallons of toxic bunker fuel was spilled into the bay by the Cosco Busan on Nov. 7 after the vessel hit the San Francisco-Oakland Bay Bridge. The gooey oil washed on area beaches and killed thousands of sea birds.

Mother says baby was possessed by demon

FRESNO - Police say a Fresno woman told officers she drowned her 7-month-old daughter in a bathtub on Christmas Eve because the infant was possessed by demons.

Lisa Brown was arrested on Monday on suspicion of killing her daughter, Julian Engelman.

A search warrant affidavit says Brown told police she was new to being a mother, and felt she had to drown her baby because she believed the child was possessed.

Fresno County sheriff's deputies believe the 30-year-old mother called 911 shortly after the baby died.

Fresno State seeks new trial in gender bias suit

FRESNO - Attorneys for Fresno State are asking a judge to overturn a multimillion-dollar verdict against the university in a gender discrimination case involving a former women's basketball coach.

Stacy Johnson-Klein sued Fresno State claiming gender discrimination, sexual harassment and retaliation. She won $19.1 million from a jury earlier this month.

The university has said Johnson-Klein was fired because of her job performance.

On Wednesday, Fresno State attorneys filed motions requesting a new trial and for the case to be moved outside Fresno. They also requested that the judge overturn the verdict, claiming Johnson-Klein showed insufficient evidence.

The judge will consider those motions on Jan. 18.

Woman infected with dangerous strain of TB

SAN JOSE - A Santa Clara County woman is in isolation after becoming infected with a dangerous strain of tuberculosis.

Health officials say the 30-year-old woman is being treated for a form of TB at Stanford Hospital that is considered a public health problem because it is difficult to treat and has a higher mortality rate than conventional TB.

The woman was overseas when she flew back to the United States earlier this month.

Health authorities are urging passengers who sat within two rows of the woman on the flight, as well as patients, visitors and staff in the Stanford emergency room when she sought treatment to be tested to see if they have the illness.

A Santa Clara County public health officer says there is no threat to the general public.

The woman's name or the flight she was on has not been released.

Walgreens settles over claims of overcharging

SAN MATEO - San Mateo County prosecutors say that Walgreens has agreed to pay $767,000 to four California counties to settle a claim of overcharging customers at its stores.

The San Mateo County district attorney's office said Wednesday that the Illinois-based drug chain agreed to settle a lawsuit by Santa Clara, Santa Barbara, Santa Cruz and San Mateo counties alleging that customers were not being charged the lowest advertised prices.

The suit dates to the start of 2004. Investigators say that routine inspections of Walgreens price scanners found that customers sometimes were not given the advertised sale price or were charged more than the posted shelf price for an item.

In agreeing to the settlement, Walgreens made no admission of guilt.

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Should graduations return to the Grape Bowl?

Lodi Unified leaders are moving Lodi and Tokay high school graduations from the Grape Bowl to the Spanos Center at UOP in Stockton. They cite limited seating, costs and unpredictable weather at the Grape Bowl. But others say graduations at the Grape Bowl are an important Lodi tradition, and one reason many supported renovating the stadium. What do you think?

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