NEWS OF THE DAY
From Across the Nation
_1 Teachers strike: A major teachers strike in Los Angeles is planned for Monday after a union rejected a new offer from the nation’s second-largest school district and declared an impasse in negotiations. After talks Friday, the union representing teachers in the Los Angeles Unified School District announced that the new offer is “woefully inadequate.” The offer included adding nearly 1,200 teachers, counselors, nurses and librarians, reducing class sizes by two students, and capping class sizes to 32 to 39 students. The offer also included a 6 percent salary increase over the first two years of a threeyear contract. The union, United Teachers Los Angeles, wants a 6.5 percent hike that would take effect at once and be retroactive to fiscal 2017.
_2 Deadly fire: An elderly Manhattan couple died in a blaze that engulfed their luxury high-rise apartment before dawn Saturday and sent flames roaring out the windows. The fire at the River House on East 52nd Street started just after 5 a.m. in the couple’s ninth-floor apartment, filling its dozen or so rooms with smoke. Mary Merow, 85, and her husband, John Merow, 89, were killed. Three firefighters were hospitalized with non-life-threatening injuries. The cause of the blaze at the Art Deco building is under investigation. The palatial River House was built in 1931, with a 26-story tower and two 15-story wings. It’s been home to notable residents including Henry Kissinger, Uma Thurman and Secretary of Commerce Wilbur Ross Jr.
_3 Child with gun: A handgun was confiscated from a kindergartner walking into school in Columbus, Ohio, after someone reported that the 6-yearold boy appeared to have a heavy object in his pants. Columbus police didn’t disclose whether the gun was loaded Friday when it was taken from a student at Columbus Africentric Early College. A photo shared by police showed bullets with the seized firearm. Police say the boy won’t be charged because he’s so young. They’re investigating where he got the weapon.
_4 Officer sentenced: A former Philadelphia police officer was ordered to serve three to 12 months in county jail for killing a man while drag racing with another officer two years ago. Adam Soto fought back tears Friday while begging for forgiveness from the victim’s family during his sentencing. Soto, who was fired shortly after the Jan. 31, 2017, crash, pleaded guilty in October to a felony charge of homicide by vehicle. Authorities say Soto was speeding near a high school when he hit 50-year-old Daniel Dimitri.
_5 Orca calf: Researchers say there is a new calf among the population of critically endangered killer whales that live in the waters between Washington state and Canada. Ken Balcomb of the Center for Whale Research said staff first saw the calf last week at the eastern end of the Strait of Juan de Fuca. The whales have been starving amid a dearth of salmon. No calf born in the past three years has survived.