- Associated Press - Thursday, July 17, 2014

LOS ANGELES (AP) - Brian Melley, who has reported on and directed news coverage across California for The Associated Press, has been named courts reporter in Los Angeles.

The appointment was announced Thursday by West Region Editor Traci Carl, who oversees news for 13 states. Melley will join a team that includes AP Special Correspondent Linda Deutsch and Anthony McCartney, who covers celebrity justice. He starts his new assignment Monday.

Melley, a 17-year AP veteran, joined the California staff in 2000 as Fresno correspondent, where he covered the disappearance of Chandra Levy, an intern in Washington, D.C.; and the murder cases of Yosemite killer Cary Stayner and Scott Peterson, convicted of killing his pregnant wife Laci Peterson. He later worked in Sacramento as a reporter and in San Francisco as an editor.

He has spent the past seven years as Los Angeles news editor, helping oversee news coverage of Southern California, including numerous destructive wildfires, the Metrolink rail disaster that killed 25 people, the rampage by former Los Angeles Police Officer Christopher Dorner and the recent killings near the University of California, Santa Barbara.

“Brian is a veteran newsman with sharp news judgment and a passion for court reporting,” Carl said. “We are thrilled to have him in this job.”

Melley, 48, joined AP in 1996 after working at the Springfield, Massachusetts, Union-News and Sunday Republican. He worked in Boston as a supervising editor, helping direct coverage of the EgyptAir 990 crash and the death of John F. Kennedy Jr.

He is a 1988 graduate of the University of Massachusetts in Amherst, his hometown.

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