Local news

In brief: Police say beating wasn’t hate crime

Spokane police said Sunday that a man who was beaten this weekend in downtown Spokane was not the victim of a hate crime.

Danny Hawkins, a board member of OutSpokane, said he and his partner were leaving a downtown bar Friday night when he hit a car that he thought was going to strike him. He said the driver exited and punched him in the face. Hawkins said in an interview with The Spokesman-Review earlier that the man asked him if he was gay before continuing to assault him and calling him a derogatory name based on his sexual orientation.

Spokane police Officer Tim Moses, however, said the driver initially tried to drive away after Hawkins hit the Jeep, but Hawkins kicked the man’s rear bumper twice, prompting the driver to exit the vehicle to challenge Hawkins. Moses said the driver punched Hawkins, who fell to the ground. Hawkins then confronted the driver and the driver hit Hawkins twice more, Moses said.

Moses said police take hate crimes seriously, but that Hawkins did not tell police Friday night that he believed the incident was a hate crime and no one who witnessed the incident mentioned that derogatory words about gays were used.

Both the driver and Hawkins felt they were victims, and there wasn’t probable cause to arrest either, Moses said.

“To us, it was another bar fight gone bad,” Moses said.

Attempts made to reach Hawkins on Sunday were unsuccessful.

Robbery suspect arrested in Portland

A man suspected of robbing a north Spokane bank last week was arrested on Saturday in Portland, Ore.

Jeremiah Pickup, 21, was arrested about 4 a.m. Saturday at a hotel, said Spokane police Officer Tim Moses.

A man robbed the Chase bank at 5508 N. Division St. on Wednesday afternoon. The robber told a bank teller he had a weapon, and demanded money. He fled with an undisclosed amount of cash, police said.

Police said last week that they believed the culprit was Pickup, at least in part based on surveillance video. Police said Pickup would face a charge of first-degree robbery. Pickup also is suspected of robbing a bank in Multnomah County, Ore.

Pickup was taken into custody by Portland police and was booked into the Multnomah County Jail on a heroin possession charge and a parole violation.

No leaks found in gasoline pipeline

Tests conducted over the weekend of a gasoline and diesel pipeline along the North Fork of the Coeur d’Alene River found no irregularities in the line.

Pressure in ConocoPhillips’ Yellowstone Pipeline, which stretches between Thompson Falls, Mont., and Spokane, mysteriously dropped earlier this month. About 75 ConocoPhillips workers have been monitoring a 6-mile stretch of the pipeline, and booms have been set up in parts of the Coeur d’Alene River as a precaution.

Late Saturday, ConocoPhillips completed a test in which a sphere was placed in the line to record sounds. Results found no leaks in the pipe, said Jeff Callender, a ConocoPhillips spokesman.

On Sunday, the company drained gasoline from that part of the pipe and pumped water in it to conduct further tests, Callender said.



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