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[whitespace] News From Silicon Valley's Neighborhoods

Care Takers
Los Gatos--The jig is up countywide for Guardian Post Acute Services Inc., the largest nursing-home corporation in the country. After a three-month criminal investigation, the company must now pay $120,000 to its victims in exchange for years of neglecting the elderly folks in its facilities. The investigation contained an acute-care hospital's sick-but-true testimony of maggots around the feeding tube of a patient who had just arrived from a Guardian home. If no new operator takes charge, both Guardian of Los Gatos and of San Jose will close their doors within 90 days.

One Lump or Two
Cupertino--No one could've predicted what was to happen to the Salguero cousins as they hunkered down in Stevens Creek County Park one fine spring day. There they were, enjoying a little family picnic, when suddenly a nearby baywood tree plummeted to the ground, walloping a 50-foot second tree on its way, which in turn dropped a gigantic branch square on the heads of Elio and Dennis. Both were rushed to nearby hospitals and released within 24 hours, suffering lacerations and severe head trauma. The county parks department is still perplexed as to what triggered the fallen fate of the baywood.

High-Tech Heist
Sunnyvale--In what could be termed a truck-jacking, thieves last week made off with hundreds of thousands of dollars worth of high-tech booty. Police haven't yet caught the culprits, but they do give an account of the scam that goes like this: A driver, who'd just made a pick-up from Sunnyvale's Rohm Corporation, stepped out of his van to "help" a thirtysomething male who apparently needed directions. That's when the driver was grabbed from behind, tied up, blindfolded and driven around in another vehicle while the pricey goods were looted from his truck.

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