Mixer: Mistrial and Metro hike

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MixerBannerLaura Nelson from the Los Angeles Times and Fred Shuster from City News Service joined us this week.

The Metropolitan Transportation Board voted this week to increase bus and rail fares by 25 cents beginning in September.

Fares will go from $1.50 to $1.75. Passengers will be given two hours of free transfers.

It was a 12-1 vote. The dissenting vote was LA County Supervisor Gloria Molina, who said the poor are under enough stress as it is, they shouldn’t have to pay more to get around.

More than 100 people spoke during an hours-long public hearing, mostly in opposition to the fare increase.

Metro board members did hold off on other hikes in the future — planned for 2017 and 2020 — for now. And they may rescind an early increase they passed for senior citizens and the disabled.

Also this week, Los Angeles federal Judge Percy Anderson declared a mistrial yesterday in the trial of 29-year old James Sexton. He’s the former LA County Sheriff’s deputy accused in a wide-ranging probe linked to allegations of inmate abuse at jails, under former Sheriff Lee Baca.

The jury apparently was evenly split, and there was no push or pull either way.

About a half dozen other cases are expected to be tried in the near future, after 20 current or former deputies were indicted in a wide-ranging federal abuse and corruption probe.