California: Transgender woman dies after silicone injection

SANTA ANA, California — Santa Ana police are investigating the death of a 40-year-old transgender woman who attended a silicone injection party in December.

KNX 1070’s Mike Landa reports the woman, whose name was not released, is believed to be the latest victim in a nationwide trend of transgender women who want to look more feminine by getting injected with industrial-type silicone through cattle syringes.

California: Long Beach forum to focus on transgender awareness

LONG BEACH, California -- Eric Gray wants to put the T back in LGBT.

Gray, 39, who lives in downtown, helped Leadership Long Beach and The Long Beach LGBTQ Center plan a public forum on transgender awareness and issues.

The free event will take place Feb. 3 from 7-10 pm at the Aquarium of the Pacific, address. Tickets can be reserved HERE.

California: State high court's vote affecting Scout affiliation stirs debate anew

When the California Supreme Court voted last week to prohibit state judges from belonging to nonprofit youth organizations that practice discrimination, Julia Kelety was not surprised.

The issue, which had been roiling through the legal community for the last year, had triggered vigorous debate, giving Kelety, a Superior Court judge in San Diego County, time to prepare.

Committee chair for Boy Scout Troop 24, she has already begun to consider a successor before she begins dialing back her commitment to the 30 boys in her troop.

Former San Diego man wins spousal survivor benefits case

OAKLAND, California -- A gay widower, a former San Diego resident, has won his legal battle to collect spousal survivor benefits.

Darryl Kapple -- the widower of James Bland, who worked for the Department of the Navy -- had initially been denied spousal survivor benefits. But Chief Administrative Judge Benjamin Gutman of the U.S. Merit Systems Protection Board on Jan. 16 overturned the denial.

Kapple and Bland met in 2003 and became a couple, holding a commitment ceremony in San Diego the same year.

California: WeHo requires gender-neutral restrooms

WEST HOLLYWOOD, California -- West Hollywood has a new law that is winning praise from the transgender community.

Starting Thursday, single-stall restrooms in public places must become gender-neutral. The law will require businesses and restaurants to make separate men and women restrooms accessible to everyone.

“It’s a pretty simple fix. It’s just a plastic sign that we can take down and put back up,” said Maggie Crifasi of Pizza Rustica, which made the change last weekend. “Everybody here is so gay-friendly.”

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World's largest lesbian event, The Dinah, turns 25

PALM SPRINGS, California -- LGBT groups all over the globe have spent many years creating events that support our community. Few things compare to the Club Skirts Dinah Shore Weekend in Palm Springs – the largest lesbian event in the world -- which will celebrate its 25th anniversary April 1-5.

California launches ethics inquiry of NOM and its major donors

SACRAMENTO, California -- The California Fair Political Practices Commission (FPPC) has verified to Fred Karger that it will investigate the National Organization for Marriage (NOM) and seven of its major donors as a result of his 35-page complaint filed late last year. NOM is the largest anti-LGBT organization in the country.

Supreme Court faced gay rights decision in 1958 over "obscene" magazine ONE

LOS ANGELES, California -- The road to gay rights at the U.S. Supreme Court began not in San Francisco or New York, but in a small downtown Los Angeles office, where volunteer writers and editors in 1953 launched a new "magazine for homosexuals."

ONE, as it was called, offered thoughtful articles, defiant editorials and none of the racy photos or sex ads often found in the gay press. "The first issue was sold in bars in the Los Angeles area for 25 cents, about the price of a draft beer," said Michael C. Oliveira, an archivist at the magazine's archives housed at the USC Library.

California: Transgender woman charged with attempted murder in "Mrs. Doubtfire" house fire

SAN FRANCISCO, California -- A transgender woman from Los Angeles has been charged with attempted murder in connection with the arson fire at the "Mrs. Doubtfire" house in San Francisco's Pacific Heights neighborhood.

Tyqwon Welch, 25, was arrested Wednesday in San Jose, according to media reports, and is now behind bars in a men's facility at a San Francisco County Jail, according to authorities. Bail was set at $2 million.

California: LGBT community welcomes new San Jose mayor

SAN JOSE, California -- South Bay residents are heralding the inauguration of Sam Liccardo as San Jose's 65th mayor as a sea change in relations between City Hall and the LGBT community.

After battling the previous mayor, Chuck Reed, for the past eight years over his refusal to back same-sex marriage, many LGBT residents had turned a cold shoulder to him. In contrast, even before he took his oath of office Jan. 1, Liccardo had signed on to the Mayors for the Freedom to Marry initiative, upholding a campaign pledge.