An Indio woman recently granted a new trial in the 2003 death of her 2-year-old stepson was expected to be released from custody Tuesday after a judge approved a reduction of her bail.

Patricia Brown, 52, was found guilty in August 2016 of second-degree murder and assault on a child for the Jan. 16, 2003, death of Deetrick Brown, her husband’s son from another relationship, but Riverside County Superior Court Judge John G. Evans recently ruled that the evidence used to convict her was insufficient.

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PALM DESERT (CNS) – A fire broke out inside a Palm Desert hotel room Tuesday afternoon, but was quickly contained by county firefighters.

The non-injury blaze was reported at 3:28 p.m. at the Embassy Suites at 74700 Highway 111.

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DESERT HOT SPRINGS (CNS) – A driver suffered a health-related emergency Tuesday that caused him to lose control of his pickup truck, which veered off a Desert Hot Springs roadway and damaged more than a half-dozen mailboxes and a parked car before slamming into a fence just feet from a residence, authorities said.

It began at 7:55 a.m. when 60-year-old Desert Hot Springs resident Les Cser experienced an undisclosed medical issue while driving on Avenda Manzana, California Highway Patrol Officer Mike Radford said.

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INDIO (CNS) – Arraignment for a Los Angeles County resident accused of killing a man and injuring a woman during a Valentine’s Day shooting in Desert Hot Springs was postponed Tuesday until April 12.

Anthony Webb, 38, of San Pedro is suspected in the slaying of 49-year-old Desert Hot Springs resident Joseph Slaten and a woman who were found shot in a parked car about 5:30 p.m. near a home in the 12500 block of Avenida Alta Loma. Slaten died at the scene, and the woman, whose name was withheld, was hospitalized with what police described as non-life-threatening gunshot wounds.

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RIVERSIDE (CNS) – Caltrans announced Tuesday it is seeking direction from residents of Riverside County and the rest of the state on how to improve the movement of freight while maintaining environmental and health standards.

Caltrans is slated to hold a workshop in the Riverside area on May 17 concerning the California Freight Mobility Plan 2019. The time and location will be announced later this month.

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RIVERSIDE (CNS) – A probationer accused of stealing checks from a Norco resident and cashing them failed to appear for her arraignment Tuesday in Riverside, prompting a judge to issue a warrant for her arrest.

Megan Alice Schuchman, 34, of Norco is charged with three counts of identity theft for the alleged offenses, which occurred in 2016.

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PERRIS (CNS) – A 38-year-old woman was struck and killed while attempting to cross a Perris street without being inside the boundaries of a crosswalk, authorities said Tuesday.

The victim, a Perris resident whose name was withheld pending family notification, was fatally injured about 10:30 p.m. Monday on the Ramona Expressway, just west of Perris Boulevard, according to the Riverside County Sheriff’s Department.

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RIVERSIDE (CNS) – A Los Angeles-area dentist accused of conspiring to torch his Corona office to collect property insurance payouts is facing more than a dozen felony charges.

Dr. Armen Shaant Megerdichian, 51, of Winnetka was arrested Monday and arraigned on 13 felony counts, including filing false insurance claims, concealing facts in the process of filing a claim and grand theft.

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RIVERSIDE (CNS) – An Inland Empire lawmaker’s bill seeking to require schools and school districts to disclose to prospective employers all instances of confirmed or alleged child abuse and sexual misconduct involving a teacher or administrator will be reviewed for the first time next week in the Legislature.

Sen. Mike Morrell, R-Menifee, said he introduced SB 1456, the California Sexual Abuse-Free Education — SAFE — Act, to ensure that parents and guardians “have peace of mind that their children are safe no matter where they go to school.”

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RIVERSIDE (CNS) – California Highway Patrol officers throughout the Inland Empire will be ramping up efforts Thursday to deter motorists from using their mobile phones in a way that puts themselves and other drivers at risk.

The enforcement campaign will be one of several conducted as part of “Distracted Driving Awareness Month,” which the CHP is actively observing in partnership with the California Office of Traffic Safety and Impact Teen Drivers.

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INDIO (CNS) – Jury selection began Tuesday for the trial of a man accused of killing his roommate following an argument at their Desert Hot Springs apartment, then threatening to kill the victim’s girlfriend.

Brian Keith Hernandez, 49, allegedly shot 49-year-old Steven Nelson in the head just before 10 p.m. on Feb. 28, 2017, after telling the victim and his girlfriend that they had to move out of the unit the three were sharing at the Estancia Apartments, 13355 Verbena Drive. Nelson died the following day at Desert Regional Medical Center in Palm Springs.

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BANNING (CNS) – A 31-year-old Cabazon man accused of attacking his mother and holding her against her will pleaded not guilty Tuesday to charges of assault, false imprisonment and dissuading a witness.

Richard Anthony Diaz was arrested March 20 following the alleged assault that took place in the 14000 block of Marino Street.

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