DMV Issues Nearly 400,000 Licenses Under AB 60

More than 390,000 undocumented immigrants have become legal drivers, and received their California driver’s license since Assembly Bill 60 went into effect in January. Officials at California’s DMV say that number far exceeds their expectation.

Until this year, Carlos Barajas, an undocumented “dreamer”, constantly drive with his eyes peeled behind the wheel, scanning the road for cops.

While most drivers might fear getting a ticket, a stop for Barajas meant getting his car towed, and losing his means for work.

“So driving without a drivers license, very stressful,” Barajas said. His family came to the U.S. Illegally from Mexico when he was three. For years now, drove to work and school illegally.

“Even if you know you’re going to break the law, you have to do what you have to do. If you have to go to work and make some money, then you have to do it,” Barajas said.

He doesn’t face that issue any longer, however, now that he has a legitimate drivers license. His parents are also among the nearly 400,000 undocumented Californians who have became legal drivers as a result of AB 60.

“To get nearly 400 thousand ppl through that process in the first 6 months is outstanding,” said DMV spokeswoman Jessica Gonzales.

The DMV normally doesn’t take a position on legislation but Gonzales says AB 60 just made sense.

“We knew there were people out there driving, they had to get to work, hey had to get their kids to school and so this was a great opportunity for people to not be scared behind the wheel and to legally have that license, that driver privilege,” said Gonzales.

“There was always a thought like, is this for real,” said Yamilet Valladolid, director of El Concilio, a nonprofit that works to empower undocumented immigrants.

Valladolid worked with undocumented drivers to help with training and test prep. She says her classes filled up quickly and says the state is better off for having trained drivers on the road.

“They’re buying better cars, they’re paying for insurance, they’re driving a lot better obviously because now they know the laws and regulations,” said Valladolid.

Now drivers like Barajas only have one thing to worry about.

“The only thing that bugs me is traffic, that’s pretty much it,” said Barajas.

That’s a roadblock that’s not going away any time soon.

The DMV encourages undocumented immigrants who haven’t gotten their driver’s licenses to do so. The DMV expects one million more undocumented people to become legal drivers within the next two years.

Former NFL player’s mistress kills wife, herself

Authorities say the girlfriend of former NFL player Buster Barnett kidnapped and killed his wife before killing herself.

Clayton County police say 49-year-old Sandra Barnett was kidnapped by Lisa Brown at her Ellenwood home on Wednesday afternoon.

“Sandra was actually on the telephone with a friend when Lisa showed up at the front door,” Clayton County Police Capt. Richard Gandee said. “Lisa Brown was actually driving a vehicle owned by Buster.”

Carroll County authorities spotted the Dodge Durango on Thursday and began a chase on Interstate 20 that spanned into Alabama. Alabama State Patrol troopers joined in when the chase crossed state lines.

The Durango suddenly stopped in the middle of the interstate at mile marker 208. At that point, authorities said Brown shot Sandra Barnett and turned the gun on herself.

Sandra Barnett was a teacher at McNair Middle School for more than two decades, according to Clayton County police.

“Everybody just remembers this bubbly, happy spirit — just happy,” said co-worker Nimet Muhammad. “Every day at work, you could just count on her.


Neighbors said they grew suspicious when they saw the Durango outside of her home on Wednesday. They said that Barnett had recently replaced a lock on her gate that she believed someone had tampered with.

“We’ve uncovered a set of handcuffs and some receipts,” Gandee said. “[Brown] had purchased the handcuffs prior to this kidnapping.”

Coworkers told 11Alive’s Matt Pearl that Barnett’s husband is Buster Barnett, who played four seasons with the NFL’s Buffalo Bills from 1981 through 1984,according to NFL.com. He attended Jackson State University.

Police say Barnett has been in an affair with Brown for several years.

Brown, 49, from Lithonia, Ga., had previous run-ins with the law, police said.

“Lisa Brown was actually on probation for kidnapping out of the state of Texas,” said Gandee. “She had kidnapped her child that she had lost custody of, and the jurisdiction down there had to track her for like three days to find her.”

Brown was also a teacher. Atlanta Public Schools tells 11Alive’s Kevin Rowson that Brown taught at North Atlanta High School and was with the system from 2008 until 2013. APS officials could not if the 2013 Texas kidnapping had any relation to her leaving the school.

You know what they say about a women scorned…….

Fire destroys homes, cars after crossing California freeway

 

A fast-moving wildfire swept across a freeway Friday in a Southern California mountain pass, destroying 20 vehicles and sending motorists running to safety before it burned at least five homes. There were no reports of serious injuries, authorities said.

Fanned by hot desert winds, the fire started along Interstate 15 — the main highway between Southern California and Las Vegas — and spread quickly.

Dozens of vehicles were abandoned and hundreds of others turned onto side roads to get away from the flames as water-dropping helicopters flew over the Cajon Pass area about 55 miles northeast of Los Angeles.

Motorists stuck on the road described a harrowing scene.

“It’s crazy, you’re watching black clouds and white clouds of smoke, there’s a ridgeline off to my right … and it looks like any second flames will come over the ridgeline,” Chris Patterson, 43, said from his vehicle.

It’s not uncommon for wildfires to reach freeways in California. It was unclear, however, why dozens of cars were caught along Interstate 15, forcing frightened people to flee on foot.

U.S. Forest Service spokesman Uriah Hernandez said no injuries had been confirmed.

The agency said the fire had burned at least 3,500 acres and was threatening the rural community of Baldy Mesa.

San Bernardino County Fire officials said at least five homes were burned and another 50 were threatened by the flames. An additional 10 cars on the freeway were damaged by the fire.

Melissa Atalla said she could see the flames from her gas station in Baldy Mesa.

“People are spectating from our parking lot, running around getting water and beer. It’s chaos,” Atalla said. “One man came in and said, ‘Oh my, my house is getting burned.'”

The fire led authorities to shut several freeway lanes, causing traffic to back up for miles. California Highway Patrol spokesman Steve Carapia said 50 to 75 vehicles were left abandoned on the freeway.

Raquel Martinez, 34, was traveling to Las Vegas with her husband for the weekend when they got stuck in northbound traffic on the I-15 for about an hour.

The sky darkened to black. As they drove by, cars were covered in “pink powder” — or fire retardant. Cars meanwhile were being redirected up narrow twisty emergency lanes from the southbound side headed north.

“I haven’t seen a fire that big and so close to us. It really was huge,” Martinez said.

Retro of the day: Mary Hopkin

Those Were the Days” is a song credited to Gene Raskin, who put English lyrics to the Russian romance song “Dorogoi dlinnoyu” (“Дорогой длинною”, lit. “By the long road”), composed by Boris Fomin (1900–1948) with words by the poet Konstantin Podrevskii. It deals with reminiscence upon youth and romantic idealism.

 

 

 

Mary Hopkin’s version was released as “Kanashiki Tenshi” (悲しき天使?, lit. “Sad Angel”) in Japan.

Chart performance (Mary Hopkin version)

Weekly charts

 

 
Chart (1968–69)

Peak
position

Australia (Kent Music Report)[21]

2

Austria (Ö3 Austria Top 40)[22]

2

Belgium (Ultratop 50 Flanders)[23]

1

Canada (CHUM)[24]

1

Canada Top Singles (RPM)[25]

1

Denmark[26]

1

Finland[27]

1

France (IFOP)[28]

1

Germany (Official German Charts)[29]

1

Ireland (IRMA)[30]

1

Italy (FIMI)[31]

15

Japan (Oricon Singles Chart)[32]

1

Netherlands (Dutch Top 40)[33]

2

Netherlands (Single Top 100)[8]

1

New Zealand[34]

3

Norway (VG-lista)[35]

1

Poland[36]

1

South Africa (Springbok Radio)[27]

2

Spain (AFE)[37]

1

Sweden[38]

1

Switzerland (Schweizer Hitparade)[39]

1

UK Singles (Official Charts Company)[40]

1

US Billboard
Easy Listening[41]

1

US Billboard Hot 100[41]

2

US Cash Box[42]

1

US Record World[43]

1

 

 

 

Chart (1968)

Position

Belgium (Ultratop 50 Flanders)[45]

8

Canada (RPM 100 Top Singles)[46]

16

Italy (FIMI)[31]

73

Netherlands (Dutch Top 40)[47]

5

Switzerland (Schweizer Hitparade)[48]

9

US Billboard Hot 100[49]

30

US Cash Box[50]

22