In brief: Three Fort Lewis soldiers killed
FORT LEWIS, Wash. – The Department of Defense has identified three Fort Lewis soldiers killed Thursday by an improvised explosive device in Afghanistan.
Spc. Joseph V. White, 21, of Bellevue; Sgt. Edward B. Smith, 30, of Florida; and Sgt. Titus R. Reynolds, 23, of Columbus, Ohio, died when their vehicle was hit Thursday in Omar Zai.
The soldiers were assigned to the 4th Battalion, 23rd Infantry Regiment, 5th Stryker Brigade Combat Team, 2nd Infantry Division.
Judge OKs murder trial in home fire case
MOSCOW, Idaho – A judge has ruled there’s ample reason to move ahead with the trial of a Latah County man charged with murdering his pregnant wife and burning down their home to cover the crime.
Second District Court Judge John Judge said Friday that while the evidence is circumstantial, there is probable cause that 25-year-old Silas Parks committed a crime.
An autopsy report indicated 28-year-old Sarah Parks died of strangulation or suffocation before the fire started on the bed where firefighters found her charred body. And a state investigator ruled the fire was not accidental.
“I think I can fairly assume that the fire was caused in an effort to cover up the crime,” Judge said.
Parks remains in Latah County jail with no bond. His next court appearance is Monday. Prosecutor William Thompson Jr. has 90 days to decide whether to pursue the death penalty.
Talk show host Beck given key to city
Mount Vernon, Wash. – As planned, the mayor of Glenn Beck’s hometown has presented the Fox News personality with a ceremonial key to the city.
Saturday evening’s event was preceded by weeks of protests and petitions calling for the cancellation of the visit by the conservative commentator.
Beck received a boisterous, minute-long standing ovation after receiving the plaque-mounted key from Mount Vernon Mayor Bud Norris.
Norris, a Republican, says he proclaimed Saturday “Glenn Beck Day” as a way to mark Beck’s success as a nationally known broadcaster.
Fire Department spokeswoman Erica Work says demonstrators outside Mount Vernon’s McIntyre Hall numbered close to 800 — the largest protest anybody could remember in the city north of Seattle.
An event earlier Saturday drew thousands of fans into Safeco Field – and about 30 protesters outside.