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From Mammoth to Tahoe: California braces for powerful blizzard

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A significant storm is on the horizon for California, set to arrive on Thursday and potentially unleash a powerful blizzard across the Sierra Nevada region. The National Weather Service office in Reno is anticipating snowfall of 5 to 12 feet at elevations above 5,000 feet, making this storm one of the most impactful of the winter season. The sheer magnitude of this snowfall is expected to make it the largest storm of the season so far.

Areas along Highway 395 in Mono County, such as Mammoth Lakes and June Lakes, could see 1 to 3 feet of snow, with the Tahoe Basin potentially receiving up to 4 feet of snow along the Sierra crest. Popular spots like South Lake Tahoe, Incline Village, and Tahoe City are also forecasted to see over 3 feet of snow. In addition to heavy snowfall, winds on the ridges of the Sierra Nevada mountains could reach speeds exceeding 120 mph, creating blizzard conditions with near-zero visibility at times.

With the impending storm approaching, forecasters are urging residents to take advantage of the calm weather leading up to Thursday to prepare for the severe conditions ahead. Travel is expected to be extremely difficult from early Thursday morning through Sunday, with road closures and whiteout conditions likely. The National Weather Service office in Sacramento has advised travelers to pack extra food, water, and warm clothing in case of emergencies.

Yosemite Valley may experience snow showers on Saturday, with the potential for heavy snowfall at times. In Los Angeles County, the storm is anticipated to bring rain starting late Friday, with higher chances on Saturday and possibly lingering into Sunday. Rainfall amounts could range from 0.75 to 1.5 inches in coastal and valley areas, and 1 to 3 inches in the mountains. Alternatively, there is a chance of drier conditions with lower rainfall totals.

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For L.A. County, the storm is expected to bring cold temperatures, possibly leading to snowfall in areas below 3,000 feet. The weather service office in Oxnard has cautioned about frost and freeze concerns in sheltered valleys on Sunday and Monday morning. Meanwhile, the San Francisco Bay Area may see rain returning late Thursday through Saturday, accompanied by cold temperatures, gusty winds, and moderate rainfall.

In the Sacramento Valley, strong winds gusting from 35 to 55 mph could pose a risk of power outages, particularly in areas northward from Marysville in Yuba County. Overall, this storm system is poised to bring significant impacts across California, with various regions bracing for challenging weather conditions.

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Understanding the Jury Selection Process for Trump’s Manhattan Criminal Case

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Follow our live coverage of Trump’s hush money trial.

The upcoming jury selection for Donald J. Trump’s Manhattan criminal case has garnered significant attention as it involves the trial of a former U.S. president. On Monday morning in Manhattan, hundreds of New Yorkers will report for jury duty in what will be a historic and unprecedented event. The process of jury selection in this high-profile case will be meticulous and crucial, as both the defense and prosecution teams aim to select 12 jurors and several alternates who are impartial and unbiased.

The prospective jurors will face intense scrutiny as they are questioned about their beliefs, opinions, and potential biases that could impact the trial’s outcome. This highly anticipated trial has generated buzz and attracted widespread media attention, with the former president expected to attend various sessions.

Here’s a detailed look at what to expect during the jury selection process:

The jury pool consists of Manhattan residents, and both the prosecution and defense teams will spend the next few days or weeks gathering information about the potential jurors to assess their suitability for the trial.

Since New York State laws prohibit fully anonymous juries, the jurors’ names will be known to all parties involved, including the former president, and their addresses will be accessible to the lawyers. However, the public may not be privy to this information, as the judge in the case has granted the prosecutors’ request to keep the jurors’ identities confidential.

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After being briefed on the allegations, potential jurors will be questioned by Justice Juan M. Merchan about their ability to remain impartial and committed to the trial. They will also be asked about any scheduling conflicts that could hinder their full participation throughout the trial, which is anticipated to last over six weeks. Those expressing concerns may be excused from the jury pool.

The remaining jurors will undergo a standard set of inquiries, disclosing details about their professions, education, and personal lives. They will also reveal their sources of news, media consumption habits, and any prior exposure to materials related to the case, such as books authored by Trump or his associate, Michael D. Cohen.

Additionally, jurors will be asked about their involvement in political activities, opinions on the treatment of Trump in the case, but not their specific voting history, political affiliations, or contributions.

Both Trump’s legal team and the district attorney’s prosecutors can challenge prospective jurors based on specific reasons suggesting bias or partiality. The judge ultimately decides on these challenges, and each side also has opportunities to dismiss jurors without providing explanations. Following these evaluations, Justice Merchan will finalize the jury selection with the remaining qualified individuals.

Given Mr. Trump’s engagement in past trials, he is likely to play an active role in the jury selection process. However, he is restricted by a gag order issued by Justice Merchan, prohibiting him from publicly commenting on the jurors or revealing their identities. Despite his keen interest in the selection process, his interactions with the jurors will be confined to the courtroom.

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