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Portal:Greater Los Angeles

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Greater Los Angeles is the second-largest urban region in the United States, encompassing five counties in southern California, extending from Ventura County in the west to San Bernardino County and Riverside County on the east, with Los Angeles County in the center and Orange County to the southeast. It consists of three metropolitan areas in Southern California: the Los Angeles metropolitan area, the Inland Empire, and the Ventura/Oxnard metropolitan area (Ventura County).

Throughout the 20th century, it was one of the fastest-growing regions in the United States, although growth has slowed since 2000. As of the 2010 U.S. Census, the Los Angeles metropolitan area had a population of nearly 13 million residents. Meanwhile, the larger metropolitan region's population at the 2010 census was estimated to be over 17.8 million residents, and a 2015 estimate reported a population of about 18.7 million. Either definition makes it the second largest metropolitan region in the country, behind the New York metropolitan area, as well as one of the largest urban agglomerations in the world. Read more...

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The O. J. Simpson murder case (officially the People of the State of California vs. Orenthal James Simpson) was a criminal trial held at the Los Angeles County Superior Court, that spanned from the jury being sworn in on November 2, 1994, to opening statements on January 24, 1995, to a verdict on October 3, 1995. The former professional football star and actor O. J. Simpson was tried on two counts of murder after the deaths of his ex-wife, Nicole Brown Simpson, and a waiter, Ronald Lyle Goldman, in June 1994. The case has been described as the most publicized criminal trial in American history. Simpson was acquitted after a trial that lasted more than eight months.

Simpson hired a high-profile defense team, initially led by Robert Shapiro and subsequently led by Johnnie Cochran, and which also included: F. Lee Bailey, Alan Dershowitz, Robert Kardashian, Gerald Uelmen (the dean of law at Santa Clara University), Robert Blasier, and Carl E. Douglas, with two more attorneys specializing in DNA evidence: Barry Scheck and Peter Neufeld. Los Angeles County believed it had a solid prosecution case, but Cochran was able to persuade the jurors that there was reasonable doubt about the DNA evidence (a relatively new form of evidence in trials at the time) – including that the blood-sample evidence had allegedly been mishandled by lab scientists and technicians – and about the circumstances surrounding other exhibits. Cochran and the defense team also alleged other misconduct by the Los Angeles Police Department. Simpson's celebrity and the lengthy televised trial riveted national attention on the so-called "Trial of the Century". By the end of the criminal trial, national surveys showed dramatic differences in the assessment of Simpson's guilt between most black and white Americans. more...

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Jack Leonard "J. L." Warner (August 2, 1892 – September 9, 1978), born Jacob Warner in London, Ontario, was a Canadian-born American film executive who was the president and driving force behind the Warner Bros. Studios in Hollywood, Los Angeles, California. Warner's career spanned some forty-five years, its duration surpassing that of any other of the seminal Hollywood studio moguls.

As co-head of production at Warner Bros. Studios, he worked with his brother, Sam Warner, to procure the technology for the film industry's first talking picture. After Sam's death, Jack clashed with his surviving older brothers, Harry and Albert Warner. He assumed exclusive control of the film production company in the 1950s, when he secretly purchased his brothers' shares in the business after convincing them to participate in a joint sale of stocks.

Although Warner was feared by many of his employees and inspired ridicule with his uneven attempts at humor, he earned respect for his shrewd instincts and tough-mindedness. He recruited many of Warner Bros.' top stars and promoted the hard-edged social dramas for which the studio became known. Given to decisiveness, Warner once commented, "If I'm right fifty-one percent of the time, I'm ahead of the game."

Throughout his career, he was viewed as a contradictory and enigmatic figure. Although he was a staunch Republican, Warner encouraged film projects that promoted the agenda of Democratic President Franklin D. Roosevelt's New Deal. He opposed European fascism and criticized Nazi Germany well before America's involvement in World War II. An opponent of Communism, after the war Warner appeared as a friendly witness before the House Un-American Activities Committee, voluntarily naming screenwriters who had been fired as suspected Communists or sympathizers. Despite his controversial public image, Warner remained a force in the motion picture industry until his retirement in the early 1970s. more...



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January - May 2014

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