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First Degree Murder Verdict in Stabbing Case
After a short deliberation of less than 24 hours, a jury has found 26-year old Vladimir Sotelo-Urena guilty of first degree murder in the stabbing death of 22-year old Nicholas Bloom. The Santa Rosa homeless men were in a confrontation on Christmas Eve last year outside of the downtown library, when Bloom asked for a cigarette. Sotelo-Urena stabbed Bloom with a kitchen knife up to 80 times, chasing Bloom down as Bloom begged him to stop. Sotelo-Urena will be sentenced November 11th. A first degree murder verdict carries a mandatory 25-years to life sentence. 
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California First State with Plastic Bag Ban
Governor Jerry Brown signed Senate Bill 270 into law on Tuesday, making California the first state in the country with a ban on single-use plastic bags. The ban is on single-use plastic bags at grocery stores and pharmacies, and will eventually apply to liquor stores and convenience stores in 2016. Sonoma County enacted its own ban this year, with enforcement of the ban effective September 1st. Proponents of the ban said that a uniform ban across the state would eliminate confusion from various ordinances already in place in parts of California. Plastic bag manufacturers railed against the legislation, but an amendment allowing for $2 million in loans appeased those concerns. The loans will help plastic manufacturers shift to manufacture reusable bags. The state-wide ban goes into effect in July 2015.
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Harvest Fair Top Winning Wines
The Harvest Fair top award winning wines have been revealed: sweepstakes white goes to Selby 2013 Sauvignon Blanc, Balleto 2013 Russian River Valley Estate Pinot Noir takes sweepstakes red, and the specialty wine sweepstakes winner is Windsor Vineyards N.V. Sonoma County Blanc de Blanc. Join KSRO on Saturday, October 4th for a live broadcast from the Harvest Fair from 9am to 3pm, where the top award winners will be interviewed on air.
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Impaired Driver Incidents
Three separate incidents involving impaired drivers caused problems on roadways in Sonoma County on Friday morning. Cops responded to drivers who had either crashed or stopped along local roadways, who were suspected to be under the influence of marijuana, methamphetamine, and alcohol. An officer found a vehicle parked on the shoulder of northbound Highway 101 near Mendocino Avenue, in which a person sat unresponsive. When the officer attempted to interact with the person, the driver climbed into the backseat and put on headphones. The driver was removed after the officer broke the back window of the car. Jars of marijuana were found in the vehicle. In a separate instance, a driver had crashed into a tree off 101 and was suspected of being under the influence of meth, and in another a vehicle was overturned on Pocket Canyon Road. Alcohol was believed to be a factor in that incident.
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