Crime Blotter: Blackout behind bars 

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Lights go out, prisoners stay in at Hall of Justice  

There were no jail breaks or cellblock fights even though the power went out at San Francisco’s Hall of Justice on Thursday.

The building — which houses County Jail, courtrooms, police headquarters and the District Attorney’s Office — went dark for more than two hours.

Proceedings were suspended at all courtrooms except for five. Jails on the sixth and seventh floors were affected, Sheriff’s Department spokeswoman Susan Fahey said, adding that inmates’ movements were restricted while the power was out.

Police spokesman Officer Albie Esparza said the outage did not affect police patrols, as the dispatch center is at another facility.

PG&E said an initial investigation indicated the problem was not with the utility’s equipment.
The cause of the outage remained unknown Thursday.

Man to serve life sentence for holding nurse hostage

A homeless man who’s spent his life running afoul of the law will spend the rest of his days behind bars.
Cottrell Broadnax, 51, was sentenced to 335 years to life in prison for holding a nurse hostage at gunpoint at Children’s Hospital in Oakland on July 30, 2010.

He was convicted of false imprisonment, assault with a firearm, being an ex-felon in possession of a firearm, carrying a loaded firearm and possession of a controlled substance.
Broadnax’s attorney, Alameda County Deputy Public Defender Sachiel Slavin, had raised questions about his mental competency to stand trial, but in a separate trial a jury found him to be
competent.

Broadnax has 12 prior felony convictions for offenses such as robbery, burglary and assault with a deadly weapon.

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Staff Report

Staff Report

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A daily newspaper covering San Francisco, San Mateo County and serving Alameda, Marin and Santa Clara counties.
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