I’m Davan Maharaj, editor-in-chief of the Los Angeles Times. Here are some story lines I don’t want you to miss today.
He Volunteered for War, Got a Purple Heart and a Bill for $30,000
Army Master Sgt. Bill McLain was preparing to head to war in Afghanistan three years ago when he found out the California National Guard had garnished his entire monthly paycheck. At issue: the $30,000 in enlistment bonuses that it claimed he had improperly received five years earlier. After the garnishments ended, his troubles had only started. Here’s how one disabled veteran has dealt with the clawback program that has now been suspended after a Times story came out last weekend. Plus: See how reporter David S. Cloud got the story.
The Story of a Little Boy, Hidden and Abused
For three years, Yonatan Daniel Aguilar was hidden in locked closets and sedated. When people asked his mother where he was, court records show, she told them he had been placed in an institution in Mexico. In August, the 11-year-old was found dead at his Echo Park home. The court records, obtained by The Times, help explain how school officials, police, social workers and therapists lost track of the boy despite earlier allegations of abuse. But they also raise new questions about whether more could have been done to save him.
Hear Her and Her and Her Roar
With the nation’s first female presidential nominee from a major party, it was almost certain gender was going to enter the campaign at some point. But the surprise, Cathleen Decker writes, is that it’s been less about Hillary Clinton’s historic quest and more about Donald Trump’s words and alleged actions toward women. Just within the last week, we’ve seen Trump’s “nasty woman” remark become a rallying cry and Megyn Kelly’s on-air exchange with Newt Gingrich go viral. Here’s how this year echoes the “year of the woman” campaign of 1992.
In Ohio, These Guys Love the Boss and the Donald
Bruce Springsteen has called Trump “a con man” and a “flagrant, toxic narcissist.” In Youngstown, Ohio — the namesake of a 1995 Springsteen song — many of the machinists, miners and laborers have an admiration for both. “I call it the pissed-off steel workers party. A lot of people like someone who causes trouble. That’s why Trump is so popular,” said one auto mechanic. “Why am I voting for him? He’s not Hillary Clinton.”
— Millions of people have voted, and both Clinton and Trump are seeing some bright spots.
— Evan McMullin made Utah a presidential battleground. Next, he’ll try to transform conservative politics.
— Mike Pence’s campaign plane skidded off the runway at LaGuardia, but no injuries were reported.
Why More Women Are Living on the Streets
As L.A. County’s homeless population has grown, the number of women living in RVs, tents and lean-tos has doubled in the last three years. Now, one in three homeless people in the county is female, according to government statistics. Several forces are said to be driving the increase: soaring rents, domestic violence and the aging of the homeless population. But advocates say most facilities are geared to helping men.
YOUR ELECTION GUIDE
— Crime victims wrestle with two ballot measures that would either end executions in California or attempt to speed them up.
— What to make of all of California’s 17 propositions on the ballot.
— Endorsements by The Times’ editorial board.
— A state audit says the L.A. Unified School District still has problems resolving allegations of wrongdoing by teachers and holding down costs related to them.
— Newport Beach officials sued the FAA, alleging that its plan to reroute flights across Southern California was completed without adequate environmental review. Culver City is expected to follow.
— The city of L.A. didn’t have an accurate count of how much property it owned … until now.
— A review board denied parole to Charles “Tex” Watson, the self-described right-hand man of Charles Manson.
— Police arrested the man who says he destroyed Trump’s star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame before he could hold a news conference.
— “The Monster’s Cookbook” has everything you’ll need to throw a killer Halloween party.
— Need proof of the Day of the Dead’s pop culture influence? Just look on the shelves at any major U.S. retailer.