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In brief: Signed referendum petitions submitted

Tue., June 7, 2011

BOISE – Backers of three referendum measures to overturn this year’s Idaho school reform bills delivered more than 210,000 verified signatures to the Idaho Secretary of State’s office on Monday, far more than needed to qualify the measures for the November 2012 ballot.

Each measure needed at least 47,432 valid signatures of registered Idaho voters; the backers turned in more than 72,000 for each of the three measures.

“The people of Idaho will finally have their say on these widely unpopular laws,” said Mike Lanza, a Boise parent and chairman of Idahoans for Responsible School Reform.

The new laws, championed by Idaho schools Superintendent Tom Luna and Gov. Butch Otter, eliminate most collective bargaining rights for teachers; impose a new merit-pay bonus system; and shift funds from teacher salaries to technology investments and more online learning.

Man arrested, woman at large after fight

One man was in custody and a woman at large following a melee on the lower South Hill Monday that left two men with minor injuries.

Justin C. Werle, 26, and the unidentified woman are accused of going to a home at 3604 E. Ninth Ave. looking for a man who occupants said was not allowed at the home.

Werle said he was looking for his truck before he forced himself into the home, said Shannon Myers, 27. Myers’ friend was stabbed in the hand, and her husband appeared to have an injured ankle.

The woman with the attacker also appeared to have a cut hand, Myers said. The couple fled in a pickup truck after being repelled by the residents. That truck collided with a vehicle on Freya Street and was stopped by police a short time later near Desmet Avenue and Freya.

Werle was arrested on charges of first-degree burglary and second-degree assault. The woman remained at large Monday night.

Parking lot robberies net three arrests

Three people are accused of robbing two women in north Spokane parking lots Saturday.

Suspects Donovan T. Johnson, 18; and Keona A. Crossley, 19; were arrested after a standoff at Crossley’s home at 1903 E. Decatur Ave. Suspect Logan R. Sims, 18, was arrested in a nearby yard.

Police searched the home after locating a car matching the description of a car used in robberies at the North Colton Street Wal-Mart and the NorthTown Mall. In both cases, women were approached by a gunman while in the parking lot.

A witness then reported occupants of a tan vehicle were dropping credit cards and receipts into the roadway near North Napa Street and East Central Avenue.

The cards belonged to the NorthTown robbery victim, police said.

Detectives found a shotgun and a handgun in the Decatur home. They believe the handgun was used in the robberies.

Johnson, Crossley and Sims were booked into Spokane County Jail on two counts of first-degree robbery. Johnson told detectives they were planning to get an apartment together and needed money, police said.


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