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In brief: Inmate faces weapons charge

A Grant County man already serving four years in prison for shooting an off-duty sheriff’s deputy in 2008 faces up to 10 more years after a federal grand jury indicted him Tuesday on weapons charges.

Robbie Joe Marcher was convicted of second-degree assault, failing to summon assistance and unlawful hunting after the shooting of Deputy Earl Romig on Jan. 10, 2008. 

Now Marcher is accused of possessing a Springfield Savage 30.06 rifle the day he shot Romig, and of possessing two shotguns, a rifle and nearly 160 rounds of ammunition four days later, according to an indictment filed in U.S. District Court in Spokane.

Romig was hunting coyotes and in civilian clothing when Marcher shot him in the back. He said he saw Marcher pointing his rifle at him earlier and looking at him through the scope.

A motorist found Romig with extensive injuries, but he has recovered. Marcher told police he thought Romig was a coyote.

Pot law clarity sought from feds

OLYMPIA – States that have legalized marijuana for medical uses are pushing the U.S. Justice Department for help in sorting out the conflict between federal drug laws and their own, Gov. Chris Gregoire said Tuesday.

U.S. Attorney General Eric Holder said he’s aware of the problems and agreed this week to work with her as the head of the National Governor’s Association and the point person for the 16 states with medical marijuana laws.

But Holder told her a department memo on not using federal resources to pursue patients using medical marijuana is being “misinterpreted” by the states and people setting up dispensaries to sell the drug to patients. That lack of prosecution was intended only for “those that are really quite ill,” she said.