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In brief: Robbery suspect killed after police pursuit

Police shot and killed a suspect in a liquor store robbery after a car pursuit Monday in Bonner County, according to the Sheriff’s Office.

Sheriff’s deputies arrived at the state liquor store in the Bonner Mall about 1:45 p.m. to back up Ponderay police officers.

Officers fatally shot the suspect after a pursuit north on U.S. 95 then about a mile east on Colburn Culver Road, according to the Sheriff’s Office.

Ponderay police, Bonner County deputies and Idaho State Police were investigating.

Meghann M. Cuniff


Judge again postpones Duncan jury selection

A judge has postponed jury selection in the death penalty hearing of Joseph Duncan for at least two weeks to give a psychiatrist more time to review material in the case.

U.S. District Judge Edward Lodge initially suspended jury selection April 22 after Duncan asked to serve as his own attorney. He ordered a competency exam, then decided a second one was necessary. Last month, he told more than 300 potential jurors to check back with the court Monday, but has now extended that deadline to July 21.

It is unclear when Lodge will rule on Duncan’s competency to represent himself.

Duncan pleaded guilty in December to 10 federal charges related to the 2005 kidnapping of Dylan and Shasta Groene and the murder of Dylan. The children were kidnapped from their North Idaho home after Duncan killed their mother, 13-year-old brother, and the mother’s fiance.

Associated Press


Woman accused of Medicaid fraud

A care provider was charged last week with 10 felonies related to Medicaid fraud, according to Washington’s attorney general.

Melissa M. Katruska was charged with submitting claims in excess of the services she provided, resulting in the theft of more than $21,000 and the alleged physical neglect of a vulnerable adult, the release said.

Katruska was charged with two counts of first-degree theft and eight counts of making false statements regarding Medicaid. Arraignment has been set for Wednesday. Katruska was providing in-home care for a family friend.

Alison Boggs

Spokane County

Animal shelter overflowing with cats

The county’s animal control shelter is overrun with cats.

So far this year, the Spokane County Regional Animal Protection Service has processed 1,928 cats and kittens – 229 more than the same time last year.

In response, SCRAPS has temporarily cut $25 from the adoption rate for felines. The reduced fee of $37.69 includes spaying or neutering, a license, microchip, vaccinations, rabies voucher and a complimentary vet check.

In addition, SCRAPS is requesting donations of clay cat litter.

Staff report