LEGAL GIANTS: When a juror in the Jimmie Doss murder trial asked to attend a funeral, Contra Costa Superior Court Judge Theresa Canepa determined that she would have to dismiss the woman rather than face yet another delay in the weeks-long trial.
Each courtroom has a different way they choose from the alternate jurors. Some have bingo-style revolving cages from which the alternate juror numbers are selected, while others pick names out of a hat.
For Canepa, she uses her lucky San Francisco Giants hat and her court clerk selects one of the alternate's numbers.
No word if any judges are using Oakland A's hats in their selection process.
BAY BRIDGE BANTER: Unless the A's and Giants meet again in the World Series (and The Eye doesn't want to jinx that), last week was the only time the two teams will clash this summer.
Although the A's overwhelmed their cross-bay counterparts during the four-game series, fans of the green and gold and orange and black both landed their share of verbal extra-base hits in the ballpark of social media.
Here are some of the Eye's favorites:
SPEECH UNDER FIRE: Vice Mayor Jovanka Beckles is determined to muffle Richmond's penchant for personal attacks and ribald remarks at City Council meetings.
She's expected at Tuesday's meeting to propose new rules that ban residents who use what she defines as "fighting words."
Her proposal has been floating around for weeks, and it sparked controversy, spates of vitriol and viral videos featuring Beckles arguing with her detractors.
The situation reached a new boil at the July 1 City Council meeting, part of which Beckles spent writing a slur-laced email, which she wrote she used for "effect," to a resident.
After the meeting, Beckles argued with some of her provocateurs and called the police on them. The police made no arrests. Video shows Beckles telling her critics that they are "bad examples of what it means to be black" and their speech is "why kids are dying" in the community.
The Rev. Kenneth Davis can be heard on the video saying, "Why don't you die?"
Beckles is of African descent and is the city's first openly gay female councilmember.
After the meeting, Beckles' supporters created a Facebook page called "Support the Vice Mayor and Affirm Freedom from Hate Speech," and encouraged a big turnout for the July 15 meeting.
Beckles sent an email to City Attorney Bruce Goodmiller on July 7 asking about the legal limits of "fighting words" in meetings.
"Offensive language generally does not constitute 'fighting words,'" Goodmiller wrote. "The key is that the 'fighting words' must lead to an immediate breach of the peace, a fight, an altercation; there must be more than offense taken."
Beckles took to Facebook soon after, making it clear she interprets Goodmiller's advice as no impediment to her proposal.
"Hate speech is not protected. Fighting words are not protected under the 1st amendment," Beckles wrote.
Staff writers Robert Rogers, Matthias Gafni and Paul Burgarino contributed to this report.