Richard Gonzales | KERA News

Richard Gonzales

Richard Gonzales is NPR's National Desk Correspondent based in San Francisco. Along with covering the daily news of region, Gonzales' reporting has included medical marijuana, gay marriage, drive-by shootings, Jerry Brown, Willie Brown, the U.S. Ninth Circuit, the California State Supreme Court and any other legal, political, or social development occurring in Northern California relevant to the rest of the country.

Gonzales joined NPR in May 1986. He covered the U.S. State Department during the Iran-Contra Affair and the fall of apartheid in South Africa. Four years later, he assumed the post of White House Correspondent and reported on the prelude to the Gulf War and President George W. Bush's unsuccessful re-election bid. Gonzales covered the U.S. Congress for NPR from 1993-94, focusing on NAFTA and immigration and welfare reform.

In September 1995, Gonzales moved to his current position after spending a year as a John S. Knight Fellow Journalism at Stanford University.

In 2009, Gonzales won the Broadcast Journalism Award from the American Academy of Orthopedic Surgeons. He also received the PASS Award in 2004 and 2005 from the National Council on Crime and Delinquency for reports on California's juvenile and adult criminal justice systems.

Prior to NPR, Gonzales was a freelance producer at public television station KQED in San Francisco. From 1979 to 1985, he held positions as a reporter, producer, and later, public affairs director at KPFA, a radio station in Berkeley, CA.

Gonzales graduated from Harvard College with a bachelor's degree in psychology and social relations. He is a co-founder of Familias Unidas, a bi-lingual social services program in his hometown of Richmond, California.

Updated at 4:42 p.m. ET Saturday

Officials in Virginia Beach, Va., have named the 12 people who were killed in a shooting Friday at the city's municipal center.

They are:

Laquita C. Brown of Chesapeake

Tara Welch Gallagher of Virginia Beach

Mary Louise Gayle of Virginia Beach

Alexander Mikhail Gusev of Virginia Beach

Katherine A. Nixon of Virginia Beach

Updated at 12:25 p.m. ET Friday

President Trump says he will begin imposing tariffs on all goods imported from Mexico beginning June 10, unless that country does more to help reduce illegal immigration from Central America.

Shares of automaker stocks fell Friday morning following the news. It also drew a response from carmakers — many of whom have built facilities in Mexico in recent years to take advantage of cheaper labor and easy access to the U.S.

Voters in Israel will go the polls for the second time this year after Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu missed a midnight deadline to form a coalition government.

The Israeli parliament, prompted by Netanyahu, has voted to hold new elections Sept. 17. The move comes after elections were just held in April and appeared to give Netanyahu a fourth consecutive term in office.

The Knesset voted 74-45, on a bill sponsored by Netanyahu's Likud party, to dissolve itself and call for new elections.

Updated at 6:43 p.m. ET

A judge in Wisconsin has ruled that 21-year-old Jake Patterson will spend the rest of his life behind bars by sentencing him to two life terms in prison without the possibility of release for kidnapping a teenager and murdering her parents last year.

The Southern and Western regions of the United States continued to have the nation's fastest-growing cities between 2017 and 2018, according to new population estimates for cities and towns released Thursday.

New York still leads all American cities with 8.4 million residents.

But as NPR's Hansi Lo Wang reports, cities in Arizona, Texas, Washington and North Carolina top the list of rapidly growing municipalities.

Updated at 9:15 p.m. ET Friday

Officials at Customs and Border Protection say they have no immediate plans to transport hundreds of detained asylum-seeking migrants to two counties in southern Florida.

The news of plans to send migrants detained at the southern border to Broward and Palm Beach counties first surfaced on Thursday. Local officials said they were told by federal immigration authorities to expect as many as 500 migrants in each county every month.

President Trump signed an executive order Wednesday designed to bar U.S. telecommunications networks from using equipment from foreign suppliers, a move apparently targeting Chinese telecom giant Huawei.

President Trump hosted Hungarian Prime Minister Viktor Orban at the White House on Monday, a gesture the past two U.S. presidents avoided granting to the hard-right European leader.

A federal appeals court has ruled that the Trump administration may continue requiring asylum-seekers to remain in Mexico as they await court proceedings in the United States. It might be seen as a victory for Trump, though a temporary one.

U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo made an unscheduled visit to Baghdad after canceling a planned meeting with Chancellor Angela Merkel in Germany. The visit comes as the U.S. is stepping up pressure on Iraq's larger neighbor, Iran, and claiming that Iran could be planning threats against U.S. forces in the region.

The White House and departments of State and Defense have not been specific about what those threats might be.

Peter Mayhew, the actor who played the tall and shaggy Chewbacca the Wookiee in the Star Wars films, has died at the age of 74.

U.S. border authorities have recovered the body of a 10-month-old child and continue searching for two other children and an adult whose raft overturned in the Rio Grande as they were attempting to cross the U.S.-Mexico border Wednesday night near Del Rio, Texas, according to U.S. Customs and Border Protection.

Updated at 8:08 p.m. ET

One of the victims in the mass shooting on Tuesday at the University of North Carolina's Charlotte campus is being praised as a hero who saved lives by charging and tackling the shooter, according to local police.

Riley Howell, 21, who was killed in the shooting, "took the suspect off his feet," said Charlotte-Mecklenburg Police Chief Kerr Putney in a news conference. "Absolutely, Mr. Howell saved lives."

The National Rifle Association filed a lawsuit Wednesday challenging a newly implemented ordinance by the city of Los Angeles that seeks to limit ties between city contractors and the gun rights group.

The lawsuit alleges that the ordinance, which took effect on April 1, violates constitutional protections for free speech and association under the First Amendment and the right to equal protection under the 14th Amendment.

A federal appeals panel has upheld California's controversial "sanctuary state" law, ruling that the measure does not impede the enforcement of federal immigration laws in that state.

A three-judge panel of the U.S. 9th Circuit Court of Appeals, in a unanimous decision, found that the state law, known as SB 54, limiting cooperation between state and local law enforcement and federal immigration authorities does not conflict with federal law.

TV actor Jussie Smollett has been indicted by a Cook County grand jury on 16 felony counts of disorderly conduct for filing a false police report that he was assaulted.

The panel returned the charges on Thursday.

Officials say a vehicle went around a warning gate along tracks of the Long Island Railroad Tuesday, and collided with a commuter train bound for Manhattan. Then a train traveling in the opposite direction struck the vehicle, according to local authorities. All three people in the vehicle were killed.

The foreign minister of Iran, Mohammad Javad Zarif, resigned Monday without explanation in a brief message on Instagram.

NPR's Michele Kelemen reports that Zarif was a central player in the nuclear negotiations with the Obama administration.

"In a post on Instagram, Mohammad Javad Zarif apologizes for what he calls his shortcomings and his 'inability to continue to serve' as foreign minister. An official at Iran's mission to the U.N. confirms that Zarif has resigned," said Kelemen.

Immigration officials have stopped, for now, the force-feeding via nasal tubes of nine immigrants from India who were conducting a hunger strike inside an immigration detention center in El Paso, Texas.

Updated at 10:55 p.m. ET

The Supreme Court, divided 5-4, has temporarily blocked implementation of a Louisiana abortion law nearly identical to the Texas law the high court struck down in 2016. The court's action, however, is only a pause.

It allows abortion-rights proponents time to bring an appeal to a newly constituted conservative court majority that may nonetheless be willing to reverse course dramatically on the subject of abortion.

Updated Feb. 8 at 2:45 p.m. ET

Amazon CEO and Washington Post owner Jeff Bezos is accusing American Media Inc., parent company of the National Enquirer, of extortion, saying it threatened to publish potentially embarrassing personal photos of him if he did not stop an investigation into how the tabloid obtained other private photos and texts of him and his girlfriend.

Hollywood's biggest night, the Oscars ceremonies, will not feature an official host guiding the event this year, according to the president of ABC Entertainment which will broadcast the Academy Awards on Feb. 24.

Karey Burke told television reporters that the telecast would have "a pretty exciting opening" even without a host.

This is not the first time that the awards show went on without a host.

A federal judge in Seattle has ordered the Defense Department to stop discriminating against naturalized citizens who volunteered to serve in the U.S. Army under a program to attract certain immigrants with specialized skills.

Updated Feb. 2 at 12:37 a.m. ET

Virginia Gov. Ralph Northam apologized on Friday for appearing in a "clearly racist and offensive" costume in his 1984 medical school yearbook. The photo shows a person wearing blackface standing next to another person wearing a Ku Klux Klan robe.

Criticism from the right and left mounted Friday night, including calls for the governor to resign.

Northam, a Democrat, said in a statement: "I am deeply sorry for the decision I made to appear as I did in this photo and for the hurt that decision caused then and now."

Updated 5:00 a.m. ET Tuesday

California residents who suffered catastrophic losses due to the November 2018 wildfires filed insurance claims totaling $11.4 billion, according to new estimates released by state insurance officials.

The announcement by Insurance Commissioner Ricardo Lara represents a 25 percent hike — more than $2.3 billion — over the estimate in December.

Updated Jan. 25 at 9:05 a.m. ET

The Trump administration on Friday is implementing its plan requiring asylum-seekers, mainly from Central America, to remain in Mexico while their legal proceedings are conducted in the U.S. court system.

California state fire investigators say that a 2017 wildfire that killed 22 people in Sonoma county was ignited by a private electrical system and not by utility giant Pacific Gas and Electric.

A federal judge in Texas issued a ruling Friday declaring the Affordable Care Act unconstitutional, apparently setting the stage for another hearing on the health care law by the U.S. Supreme Court.

The ruling by U.S. District Judge Reed O'Connor invalidates what's commonly referred to as Obamacare nationwide and casts into doubt the survival of the law on the eve of the deadline for tens of millions of Americans to sign up for health care coverage in 2019.

Updated at 4:57 p.m. ET Friday

A 7-year-old Guatemalan girl who crossed the southern border into the United States illegally earlier this month died of dehydration and shock after being apprehended by the U.S. Border Patrol in New Mexico.

French authorities say the man suspected of launching a shooting attack on the Strasbourg Christmas market that killed three people and wounded 13 others was slain by police Thursday, ending an extensive two-day manhunt.

The suspect had evaded police since the attack Tuesday night, despite a massive search involving hundreds of police and soldiers.

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