News in Brief: Nov. 2 to Nov. 8



University of California, Santa Barbara professor Yitang Zhang, who has taught at the university since 2015, has been awarded the Qiu Shi Outstanding Scientist Award from the Qiu Shi Science & Technologies Foundation in Beijing. “Bounded Gaps Between Primes,” the “breakthrough” paper, according to Chancellor Henry T. Yang, explores and offers a solution to the gaps between prime numbers. Zhang established the first-ever finite bound in which “twin” prime numbers, like three and five, have a finite gap that occurs infinitely often.

UCSB hosted their annual outreach event for high schoolers this past weekend. The Achieve UC event, held in the Loma Peloma Center, reached out to local high achieving high school students, many of which would be first generation college students. Participants and their families received coaching on the application process and UC’s Blue + Gold Opportunity Plan, the UC-wide financial aid program.


Throughout the election countdown week, local candidates campaigned aggressively throughout campus and Isla Vista. Third District Supervisor candidates Joan Hartmann and Bruce Porter spent their week encouraging students in the Arbor to vote. Hartmann and Porter were joined in the Arbor on election day by 24th District Congressional candidates Justin Fareed and Salud Carbajal. Hartmann and Carbajal enjoyed a special brunch with current Congresswoman Lois Capps at the De La Guerra Dining Commons Sunday morning.


Santa Barbara Police arrested 40-year-old Shane Hale Thursday afternoon after Hale, with both an outstanding warrant and a stolen car in his possession, jumped into the ocean and attempted to swim away. Police initially recognized Hale in the driver’s seat of a brand new Honda Accord on Cabrillo Boulevard, later discovering that the car had been stolen from a dealership in Ventura the day prior. Hale swam approximately a quarter of a mile before city harbor patrol boats assisted police and took Hale into custody.

Former University of California, Santa Barbara student Daniel Chen pleaded not guilty last Wednesday to multiple counts of forcible rape. Officials arrested Chen earlier this year after a DNA swab given by Chen to Northern California officials matched the semen found on condoms at the crime scene. The initial incident, which occurred on the outskirts of the UCSB Recreation Center in Feb. 2014, was originally believed to be a gang rape. Officials are now unsure whether fellow suspects, who are not yet identified or in custody, engaged in rape or aided the incident. Chen faces life in prison. His trial will be held on November 1, 2017.

After a period of significant rainfall in the early autumn months, Northern California is officially free of a five year long drought, according to a federal report released Thursday. With the second wettest October on record for much of the Northern Sierra Mountain region, Northern California has experienced the highest readings since March 2013, according to the U.S. Drought Monitor. However, water officials are quick to remind California residents that the lower three-fourths of the state, including the densely populated Southern California region, still remain in drought. Officials also emphasize that the drought emergency, declared statewide three years ago, still remains in effect.

UCSB soccer player Sam Strong was charged last Friday with a felony count of assault with a deadly weapon and a misdemeanor count of reckless driving after nearly hitting a campus parking officer with his car last month. Strong, who had nearly $600 in unpaid parking tickets according to The Daily Nexus, was attempting to evade the officer who was in the process of putting a clamp on the tire of Strong’s car. Strong pleaded not guilty to both counts. Though Strong was officially suspended from early October games against UC Irvine and Cal State Northridge, his status on the team has not yet been confirmed.