Region in brief: Recount confirms mayor’s ouster

THURSDAY, DEC. 3, 2009

A hand recount of ballots from Airway Heights on Wednesday settled a lingering question of the 2009 general election, confirming City Councilman Patrick Rushing defeated incumbent Mayor Matthew Pederson by two votes.

Rushing finished with 281 votes to Pederson’s 279.

The recount of Airway Heights’ two precincts, conducted in front of observers from the political parties and the candidates or their campaigns, did not change either candidate’s tally.

It also confirmed 33 voters didn’t choose either candidate and left the spot for the race blank on their ballots.

The mayor’s position in Airway Heights is largely ceremonial, because the city switched to a city manager form of government.

On the ballot, the mayor’s job appeared as Council Chair Position 1; the mayor runs council meetings.

All election results will be certified Friday morning when the county canvassing board meets.

Salvation Army seeks toy donations

The Salvation Army is seeking toy donations for the children living in the organization’s emergency and transitional housing this holiday season.

The Spokane branch of the Salvation Army offers housing to more than 50 families at its facilities.

More than 125 children live on campus at any given time, officials said.

They want to give a toy to each of those children this Christmas.

Donations will be accepted in the organization’s toy barrels at local Fred Meyer stores, the Krispy Kreme off Sullivan Road in Spokane Valley, and the Salvation Army’s administrative offices, 222 E. Indiana Ave.

Online donations can also be made, through the JC Penney Angel Tree, at

All toys purchased online are shipped to the Salvation Army for distribution.

Tips sought on Foodmart robbery

Police are searching for a man who robbed a northeast Spokane convenience market and gas station Tuesday night armed with a black shotgun.

The clerk at Divine’s Foodmart, 1918 N. Hamilton St., told police that the robber wore an insulated black jacket, jeans and a black ski mask, possibly with a white skull design on it.

The robber took cash just before 9 p.m. and fled south to the alley and then went east, police said.

A witness one block away was watching a suspicious vehicle parked at the end of the alley and saw a black man with the same coat and jeans come out of the alley and get in the passenger seat, police said.

The vehicle headed west on Baldwin Avenue.

The vehicle was described as an older model, possibly mid-1990s, red Ford Bronco or Chevrolet Blazer.

Anyone with information about the robbery can call Crime Check at (509) 456-2233.

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