November 20, 2008 in City

In brief: Hall escapes, may be headed to Spokane

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Career criminal Eddie Ray Hall escaped custody in Yakima on Wednesday and was believed to be headed to Spokane, police say.

A former cellmate of Hall’s told police he was forced at knifepoint to drive Hall as far as George, Wash., according to Spokane County Sheriff’s Office spokesman Sgt. Dave Reagan.

Hall was working at the Yakima County Pacific Avenue Corrections Center on Wednesday morning when he climbed over a fence and escaped.

Crime Stoppers of the Inland Northwest is asking the public for tips as to Hall’s whereabouts; call (800) 222-8477 or (509) 327-5111. The organization says in a press release that he is considered a danger to the community.

Hall’s criminal career spans 25 years and includes eight burglary convictions and a half-dozen convictions for delivery of drugs.

Staff reports

Shoshone County

Hunting accident kills Deer Park man

A man shot and killed another hunter whom he mistook for an animal this week in Shoshone County.

James R. Hinchcliff, 57, of Deer Park, died in a forested area about 12 miles up Thompson Pass Road near the Montana border after a member of his three-person hunting party shot him in the chest about 3 p.m. Tuesday, said Rod Plank, of the Shoshone County Sheriff’s Office.

The Sheriff’s Office will likely send its investigation to the prosecutor to decide whether James L. Egan, 64, of Dalton Gardens, should be charged. Hinchcliff “was wearing brown camouflage clothing from head to toe,” Plank said.

Hinchcliff’s death, the fifth hunting fatality in the county since 1992, “really could have been prevented simply by wearing some different clothing,” Plank said.

Idaho doesn’t require hunters to wear bright orange.

Meghann M. Cuniff

Spokane County

Fire captain, son enter not guilty pleas

A Spokane Fire Department captain and his son pleaded not guilty Wednesday to charges related to an alleged bar fight and police chase two weeks ago.

Ronald Clinger, 53, faces charges of felony attempting to elude police and misdemeanor drunken driving and rendering criminal assistance. His son, Daniel Clinger, 32, is charged with second-degree assault.

The elder Clinger, who was released on his own recognizance from jail, appeared in front of Spokane Superior Court Judge Jerome Leveque, while his son, who remains in jail, appeared via video.

The two were arrested Nov. 4 after police say Ronald Clinger sped away from police lights and sirens with his son after the son stabbed a man during a fight at the Prime Tyme Restaurant and Lounge in Chattaroy.

Meghann M. Cuniff

Man charged after hitting two with car

A 19-year-old man was booked into Spokane County Jail on two counts of vehicular assault after hitting a couple with his car early Wednesday in Spokane Valley.

The couple was hit at Evergreen Road and Mallon Avenue, said Spokane County Sheriff’s Office Sgt. Dave Reagan. The 49-year-old man and 57-year-old woman were taken to Sacred Heart Medical Center with non-life-threatening injuries.

Kelly J. Coburn, of Spokane Valley, has been booked into Spokane County Jail.

About 5:50 a.m., Coburn was driving a 1990 Ford Tempo when “he turned off Evergreen and struck the couple as they walked northbound across Mallon in the unmarked crosswalk,” Reagan said. Coburn reportedly had been drinking alcohol overnight. He was booked into the Spokane County Jail on the two felony charges.

Jody Lawrence-Turner

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