American Scene: Officer, bystander killed in shootout at body shop

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The three were ordered held without bond. Prosecutors say Miss Shirley and the Leonard brothers deliberately blew up her home so they could collect the insurance payout.

The fiery blast destroyed five homes, including Miss Shirley’s, and damaged dozens of others in the Richmond Hill subdivision in the far south side of the city. The explosion killed Miss Shirley’s next-door neighbors, John Dion Longworth, a 34-year-old electronics expert, and his 36-year-old wife, second-grade teacher Jennifer Longworth. Miss Shirley and Mark Leonard told investigators they were at a southern Indiana casino at the time of the blast.

CALIFORNIA

Identical twin principals take charge at school

OAKLAND — Students at a Northern California middle school are looking at double the trouble if they misbehave.

Two 36-year-old educators who are identical twins are sharing the job of principal at Oakland’s Claremont Middle School this year. And parents and staff say the novel arrangement involving Ronald and Reginald Richardson has been good for the public school and its 410 students, the San Francisco Chronicle reports.

“There’s a huge difference in the school culture,” said Paul Kagiwada, father of a seventh-grader at Claremont, told the newspaper. “It’s cleaner, nicer, quieter. There’s an expectation of respect at all levels.”

The Richardson brothers have followed the same academic and career paths all their lives. They were principals at neighboring elementary schools in Richmond before they were hired to work in Oakland last summer.

Before that, they both attended San Francisco State University on track-and-field scholarships, earned teaching credentials, and then master’s degrees in education from the University of California at Berkeley. Their grandmother also was a principal in Oakland, and their mother taught school in the city.

“We both have this passion for leading,” Reginald Richardson said. “Teaching was a natural fit for us. Fortunately, me and my brother had identical goals.”

OREGON

Rescue teams reach 3 lost winter campers

PORTLAND — Oregon authorities say rescue teams are getting ready to bring out three people who got lost on a winter camping trip near Mount Hood.

A spokesman for the Hood River County Sheriff’s Office east of Portland said that rescuers out Monday morning made contact with the three, who appeared to be in good health.

Detective Matt English says the three set out Saturday on snowshoes and called 911 on Sunday to report they were lost. The sheriff’s office says they reported having food and sleeping bags.

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