California coronavirus death count tops 70,000 as cases fall

SACRAMENTO, Calif. (AP) — California’s coronavirus death toll has reached another once-unfathomable milestone: 70,000 people. The mark recorded Monday by Johns Hopkins University is the highest in the country. Texas is about 3,000 deaths behind. The milestone comes as California is experiencing the lowest rate of new infection cases among all states. That leaves California in a much better situation as it enters the colder months. Cases began ticking up last October, and by January California was the country’s epicenter for the virus. California’s health secretary is Dr. Mark Ghaly. He tells The Associated Press he doesn’t foresee the state repeating such a surge and that new stay-at-home orders aren’t expected.