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In brief: Suspect sought in Safeway robberies

Police believe the same man robbed two Safeway stores in the Spokane area recently, and they’re asking for help identifying him.

Surveillance photos released by the Spokane County Sheriff’s Office Tuesday show the suspect at Wal-Mart before detectives say he robbed the Safeway at 14020 E. Sprague Ave. in Spokane Valley on May 2.

Another photo shows the robber just after he left the Shadle Park Safeway, 2507 W. Wellesley Ave., about 2:30 p.m. Monday.

The man is described as white, in his 30s, short hair and a medium build. View the photos online at blogs/sirens.

Detectives located the man’s discarded clothing and tracked them to a Wal-Mart store where he’s believed to have been before the robbery.

Crime Stoppers is offering a reward for tips that help identify the man. Anyone with information is asked to call Crime Stoppers at (800) 222-TIPS or submit tips online.

Walter confirmed as city library trustee

A school counselor is the newest member of the Spokane Public Library board of trustees.

The Spokane City Council on Monday unanimously accepted Mayor David Condon’s appointment of Anne Walter to a five-year term.

Walter, 46, is a counselor at Franklin Elementary School. Before launching her education career, she worked in journalism and is a former assistant city editor at The Spokesman-Review.

She replaces former Spokane County Superior Court Judge Rick White, whose term expired earlier this year and who cannot serve again because of term limits.

Walter, who is married to novelist Jess Walter, said she is worried about cuts made to school and city libraries.

“I want to make sure that they’re there and healthy for the people who need them,” Walter said. “I have seen books change kids.”

Library trustees have full control of how to spend the money allocated to the library system by the Spokane City Council.

N-research grants awarded to UI, WSU

The U.S. Department of Energy will send more than $4.5 million to universities on the Palouse to help research nuclear energy and train a new generation of nuclear researchers.

The department announced Tuesday some $47 million in grants involving nuclear energy, with nearly $2 million going to Washington State University and more than $2.5 million going to the University of Idaho.

WSU will get federal funds to help researchers understand molecular processes for fuel cycles and to study corrosion of different types of nuclear waste. It will also receive money to upgrade specialized equipment. UI will receive money to study changes that occur in used nuclear fuels, control systems for hybrid energy and control systems for the next generation of reactors. It will also receive $155,000 for a three-year fellowship.

Crews reopen Cayuse Pass

MOUNT RAINIER, Wash. – The Washington State Department of Transportation said a scenic drive through Mount Rainier National Park is available again with Tuesday’s reopening of Cayuse Pass on the east side of the mountain.

The department said crews are still clearing snow from nearby Chinook Pass, but they hope to have it open in time for Memorial Day Weekend.

Road crews are closer to reopening the North Cascades Highway. The department said that may happen Thursday or Friday.


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