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.

The Department of Homeland Security made good Monday on a Trump administration promise to publicly shame cities and counties that don't cooperate with federal immigration authorities. Immigration and Customs Enforcement released its first weekly list of local jails and jurisdictions that haven't honored so-called immigrant detainer requests.

The Department of Homeland Security released new data late Wednesday showing that illegal southern border crossings diminished in the opening weeks of the new Trump administration.

The new figures indicate "an unprecedented decline in traffic" in the month of February, according to a statement issued by Department of Homeland Security Secretary John Kelly.

Attorney General Jeff Sessions, in a letter to Congress, said his remarks about not having contact with Russian officials during last year's presidential campaign were "correct," even though he's had to acknowledge that he twice met with Russian Ambassador Sergey Kislyak.

Remember those pictures of parched lawns and bone-dry unplanted fields when it seemed that Californians could only pray for rain and snow?

Now thanks to one of the wettest winters on record, scientists say that the snowpack along the Sierra Nevada mountain range is a whopping 185 percent of average. And that's important because the runoff from the Sierra snowpack provides one-third of all of California's water.

A federal magistrate judge in California ruled Wednesday that Noor Salman, the widow of Omar Mateen, can be released on a $500,000 bond pending her trial on charges that she helped her husband plan the deadly mass shooting at an Orlando nightclub in June 2016.

A Minnesota police officer accused of fatally shooting Philando Castile in a St. Paul suburb last July pleaded not guilty to second-degree manslaughter and two other charges.

St. Anthony police Officer Jeronimo Yanez entered his plea in a brief hearing in Ramsey County district court.

The Department of Homeland Security issued new guidelines this week that call for hiring 15,000 additional Border Patrol agents and immigration officers. It also wants to greatly expand the number of unauthorized immigrants who are prioritized for deportation.

Updated Feb. 17, 2017, 8:00 p.m. ET with comment from ICE

Federal immigration agents last week detained a woman in the U.S. illegally just after she received a protective order against an allegedly abusive boyfriend, in an El Paso County courthouse.

El Paso County Attorney Joanne Bernal said the ICE arrest inside a courthouse was "unprecedented and stunning."

"To my knowledge, and others I have spoken to, no one has a recollection of immigration officials acting like this in a courthouse," Bernal told NPR.

Copyright 2017 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

Federal immigration authorities launched a new wave of raids and other actions in several states over the past five days aimed at sweeping up people who are in this country illegally.

The majority of people in this country illegally reside in just 20 metropolitan areas, with the largest concentrations found in New York, Los Angeles and Houston, according to a new study published by the Pew Research Center.

Updated at 7:50 p.m. ET

A federal appeals court has unanimously rejected a Trump administration request to allow its travel ban to take effect.

The three-judge appeals panel declined to overturn a lower court's order suspending the president's ban against entry into the United States by refugees and travelers from seven majority-Muslim nations.

Days after retail giant Nordstrom announced that it will no longer sell Ivanka Trump's clothing label, the president struck back, accusing the Seattle-based department store chain of treating his daughter "so unfairly."

The blast came in a tweet posted on his personal account.

Trump wrote, "My daughter Ivanka has been treated so unfairly by @Nordstrom. She is a great person — always pushing me to do the right thing! Terrible!"

Updated at 10:25 a.m. ET on Feb. 7

A newly released report by Amnesty International alleges a widespread and systematic attack by Syria's government against its civilian population, including murder, torture, enforced disappearances and extermination carried out at a military prison called Saydnaya.

The report's executive summary opens with this grim description:

In a surprise announcement, the Boy Scouts of America said that it will begin accepting transgender boys who want to join its scouting programs.

The Scouts' policy change came in a written and video statement released by Chief Scout Executive Michael Surbaugh. He said that for more than a hundred years the Scouts used the information on an individual's birth certificate to determine a boy's eligibility to join its single gender programs.

Canadian authorities say a 27-year-old man was solely responsible for the armed attack on a Quebec City mosque on Sunday.

The man, who has been identified as Alexandre Bissonnette, faces 11 charges: six counts of murder and five counts of attempted murder. In a brief appearance in court he did not enter a plea.

President Trump has signed a flurry of executive orders during his first week in office and apparently he isn't done yet. He is expected to sign a series of executive actions related to national security as early as Friday. One is related to combating ISIS and others will impact U.S. refugee policy, according to a White House official.

There's an active debate inside newsrooms, and particularly within the NPR newsroom, about how to characterize the statements of President Trump when they are at odds with evidence to the contrary.

Isidro Baldenegro Lopez, a Mexican indigenous activist and subsistence farmer who led the fight to protect ancient forests from illegal logging in the northern Mexican state of Chihuahua, was slain on Sunday.

Baldenegro Lopez, a leader among the Tarahumara people, for years had led non-violent sit-ins and blockades in protest of logging in the Sierra Madre mountain region.

Three baseball stars who avoided convincing connection to steroid use during their playing days — Jeff Bagwell, Tim Raines and Ivan Rodriguez — were elected to Major League Baseball's Hall of Fame Wednesday. The stars all received 75 percent of the ballots cast by the Baseball Writers Association of America.

In a flood of clemency orders before he leaves office, President Obama commuted the sentences of 209 people and pardoned 64 others on Tuesday. The vast majority of offenders had been convicted of drug-related crimes. Two were involved in cases about leaks of government material. And two were cultural stars of past decades who had run afoul of the IRS.

The top Republican and Democrat on the Senate Select Committee on Intelligence say they intend to investigate the allegations of Russian meddling in the U.S. elections.

In a joint statement, Sen. Richard Burr, R-N.C., chairman of the committee and Sen. Mark Warner, D-Va., the vice-chairman, said "we believe that it is critical to have a full understanding of the scope of Russian intelligence activities impacting the United States."

A downtown section of Birmingham, Ala., including the church where four black girls were killed in a Ku Klux Klan bombing in 1963, has been declared a national monument by President Obama.

The 16th Street Baptist Church will be the focal point of the Birmingham Civil Rights National Historical Park. The bombing, which also injured 22 other people, proved to be a turning point in the civil rights struggle.

The Obama administration is ending a two-decade-old policy that allowed Cuban refugees to enter the United States without visas.

Known as the "wet-foot, dry-foot" policy, it began in 1995 under then-President Bill Clinton in response to a wave of Cubans fleeing the island in boats. The U.S. turned away those who were intercepted at sea ("wet-foot"), while permitting Cubans who managed to get to U.S. soil ("dry-foot") to stay and eventually become legal residents.

Lee Baca, once the top elected law enforcement official in Los Angeles, will be re-tried on charges of obstructing a federal investigation into his county jail. The announcement by federal prosecutors follows a recent mistrial in which he was nearly acquitted by a jury deadlocked 11-1 in his favor.

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