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 City Council of New York voted 36-13 Thursday to approve a plan to close the city's notorious jail complex on Rikers Island by 2026 in favor of four smaller jails spread out across the city.

Scientists cannot yet predict when the next deadly earthquake will strike, but emergency response authorities in California plan to unveil the first statewide quake warning system Thursday, which marks the 30th anniversary of the 1989 Loma Prieta earthquake.

The warnings will be issued in two ways: a cellphone app called MyShake and the more traditional wireless notification system that sends out Amber Alerts.

A vacationing British family who crossed the U.S.-Canada border without authorization has been deported after spending nearly two weeks in federal detention, according to a lawyer for the family.

Attorneys for the family said the four adults and three children were en route back to the United Kingdom.

Actress Felicity Huffman reported to a federal prison in northern California to serve her 14-day sentence for her part in the unfolding college admissions scandal that saw affluent parents use bribery and other illegal means to get their children into elite educational institutions.

The 56-year old star of Desperate Housewives surrendered herself to authorities at the low-security Federal Correctional Institution in Dublin, Calif., about 35 miles east of San Francisco. She entered the facility earlier than her court-ordered date of October 25.

Three major U.S. drug distributing companies are negotiating a multibillion-dollar settlement to end numerous lawsuits filed by state and local governments seeking compensation for costs associated with the opioid crisis.

The drug distributors — Amerisource Bergen, McKesson and Cardinal Health — could pay as much as $18 billion over 18 years, according to The Wall Street Journal, which first reported the discussions.

Beginning in early 2020, California will ban the sale of the pesticide chlorpyrifos which state environmental officials say has been linked to brain damage and other health defects in children.

Under an agreement reached with Corteva Agriscience, the maker of chlorpyrifos, sales of the pesticide will end Feb. 6, 2020, and agricultural growers will not be allowed to possess or use it after Dec. 31, 2020.

Additional fetal remains were discovered during a search of stored vehicles belonging to a deceased Illinois doctor who had performed abortions in neighboring Indiana clinics, according to investigators.

After Dr. Ulrich Klopfer died at the age of 79 in September, 2,246 medically preserved fetal remains in small plastic bags were discovered in his Chicago home by his wife who alerted authorities.

The number of migrants taken into custody after crossing the southern border declined for the fourth consecutive month, according to new figures released by the Trump administration.

Two people sustained minor injuries on Monday after a hot air balloon struck a power line, igniting a fire when the gondola made a hard landing on the outskirts of Rio Rancho, N.M.

A new feature for Tesla cars that allows drivers to remotely summon their parked autos is drawing scrutiny from government regulators after reports of malfunctioning software.

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, in a statement issued Wednesday, said that is aware of the reports that "Smart Summon" does not always work as promised and is in ongoing contact with the company.

But the agency did not open a formal investigation.

President Trump signed a proclamation late Friday barring legal immigrants who cannot prove they will have health care coverage or the means to pay for it within 30 days of their arrival to the United States.

Trump said uninsured individuals are a burden on the health care industry and U.S. taxpayers.

The Trump administration will no longer allow migrant families apprehended at the border to enter the U.S. under the immigration policy commonly known as "catch and release."

The policy change was announced Monday by Acting Secretary of Homeland Security Kevin McAleenan in remarks at the Council on Foreign Relations in Washington, D.C.

Tropical storm advisories have been issued as meteorologists are watching three storms in the Atlantic basin.

The one most likely to hit land soon is Karen, which was degraded to a tropical depression as it slowly rolls toward Puerto Rico and the U.S. Virgin Islands in the southeastern Caribbean Sea bringing torrential, life-threatening rainfall and flooding.

President Trump has authorized the deployment of additional U.S. forces to the Middle East to strengthen air and missile defenses around Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates, the Pentagon announced late Friday.

Defense Secretary Mark Esper called the move a first step and said the deployment would be defensive in nature. He said the deployment comes in response to requests for help from Saudi Arabia and the UAE.

Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau apologized after after photos surfaced showing him wearing brownface and blackface as a young man, saying he has no plans to resign and vowing to continue his campaign for re-election in October.

"Darkening your face, regardless of the context or the circumstances, is always unacceptable because of the racist history of black face," Trudeau said at a news conference Thursday in a public park in Winnipeg. "I should have understood that then and I never should have done it."

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