July 22, 2008 in City

Chewelah man faces 10 years in prison


A Chewelah man caught with drugs and firearms will spend 10 years in federal prison.

James Eugene LeLacheur, 39, was sentenced last week by Senior U.S. District Court Judge Fred Van Sickle after earlier pleading guilty to being a convicted felon in possession of a firearm and possessing methamphetamine with intent to distribute.

He was arrested Nov. 2, one day after federal agents searched his house in Chewelah and found two 9mm handguns and four marijuana plants.

At the time of his arrest, LeLacheur had an ounce of methamphetamine in his coat and a digital scale, agents said.

He admitted traveling to Spokane every other day to buy an ounce of meth for $1,000 and reselling it in Chewelah, agents said.

LeLacheur has prior convictions that include grand theft and possessing controlled substances.

After completing his 120-month prison term, LeLacheur will be on supervised release for five years.

Bill Morlin

Four intersections chosen for photo red

Four Spokane intersections have been selected for cameras that will snap photos of red-light runners, authorities said.

The intersections are northbound Division Street at Sprague Avenue; southbound Browne Street at Sprague Avenue; northbound Hamilton Street and Mission Avenue; and north and southbound Division at Francis Avenue, said Spokane Police Officer Teresa Fuller.

Once the program is in place, drivers who are photographed running a red light will be fined $124.

The ticket will be mailed to the driver, but the traffic violation will not be reported to the person’s insurance company.

The city estimates it will net about $190,000 a year, although some predict the amount will be much higher.

Jody Lawrence-Turner

Porcupine gets a lift along freeway

A wayward porcupine was rescued from Interstate 90 early Monday with the assistance of the Washington State Patrol, the Washington State Department of Transportation and a very long-handled shovel.

The critter wandered about 7 a.m. onto the eastbound lanes of the freeway near the Thor-Freya interchange, where it found itself trapped in the traffic.

Several motorists called the state patrol to report the porcupine’s predicament, said Trooper Mark Baker.

The porcupine managed to make it from the median barrier over to the right edge of the freeway, but it could not get over the concrete barrier.

Baker said he wasn’t sure how to help the scared animal. And he didn’t want to end up full of quills.

That’s when the state Department of Transportation stepped in with a shovel.

“He gave him a little boost,” Baker said.

That’s all the porcupine needed. “He’s all good,” Baker said. “He’s a happy camper.”

Amy Cannata

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