May 15, 2012 in City

In brief: Airman found dead in dormitory

 

An airman attending training at Fairchild Air Force Base was found dead in his dormitory on Saturday morning, a news release from the U.S. Air Force said.

Airman 1st Class John Bradshaw, a first-term enlistee whose service began in December, was pronounced dead at 8:15 a.m. The cause of his death is under investigation, the release said.

Bradshaw was attending training at the Survival Evasion Resistance and Escape School and was not stationed at Fairchild, said Sgt. Jennifer M. Buzanowski, assistant superintendent of public affairs.

Bradshaw’s hometown was not listed.

No settlement in first day of Zehm talks

A full day of mediation ended Monday without a formal announcement that parties had reached an agreement to settle the $14.5 million federal civil lawsuit filed by the mother and estate of Otto Zehm against the city of Spokane.

Attorneys could not comment about the ongoing mediation conducted by U.S. District Court Judge Michael Hogan from Oregon.

Attorneys Jeffry Finer and Breean Beggs filed the civil lawsuit in 2009 on behalf of the mother and estate of Otto Zehm, a mentally ill janitor who died after a violent encounter with Spokane police officers in 2006.

Spokane police Officer Karl F. Thompson Jr., who was convicted late last year of using excessive force and lying to investigators, was named in the suit along with eight other members of the department.

Hearing set on S-R comments subpoena

A hearing on a motion opposing an attempt by Kootenai County Republican Chairwoman Tina Jacobson to obtain information that could identify three anonymous commenters on a Spokesman-Review blog has been set for June 1.

The motion will be heard by First District Court Judge John Luster at 9 a.m. in the Kootenai County Courthouse, 501 Government Way in Coeur d’Alene.

Jacobson filed a subpoena seeking the identifying information after a reader posted an anonymous comment on the Huckleberries Online blog questioning whether money allegedly missing from the Kootenai County Central Committee might be “stuffed inside Tina’s blouse.” Two other readers posted anonymous follow-up comments.

Cowles Publishing, owner of The Spokesman-Review and spokesman.com, will oppose efforts to obtain the information to the extent allowed under Idaho law, Editor Gary Graham has said.

Officials identify body found in river

A body found Sunday in the Spokane River near People’s Park has been identified as a man who was seen jumping from the Greene Street Bridge last month.

Witnesses who saw Erick Hjelm, 25, jump into the river April 10 contacted 911, prompting a rescue effort, but his body wasn’t found, the Spokane Police Department said Monday.

The identity of the body was determined in an autopsy.

Powell voyeurism trial testimony ends

Tacoma – Testimony in the voyeurism trial of Steve Powell, the father-in-law of missing Utah mother Susan Powell, came to an abrupt end Monday as prosecutors rested their case and defense attorneys declined to call their own witnesses.

The final volley of information explored a brief slice of Steve Powell’s personal journals, concluding a trial with a very narrow scope. Neither side examined Steve Powell’s relationship with Susan Powell, whose 2009 disappearance triggered scrutiny of the Washington man.

Steve Powell was never called to testify. He faces 14 voyeurism counts, including accusations that he filmed two neighbor girls using their second-floor bathroom.

A Utah investigator testified about an entry in Steve Powell’s journal, which prosecutors say was uncovered during a search of his home last year. West Valley City police Sgt. Todd Gray said Steve Powell wrote how he enjoyed taking video of “beautiful women of every age” and that he took the images for personal use.

Defense attorneys have at times pointed out that other people lived in Steve Powell’s home, including Susan Powell’s husband for a time after her disappearance. Josh Powell was being investigated in her disappearance before he killed himself and the couple’s two children this year.

Susan Powell’s father, Chuck Cox, said he wished his daughter had been a larger focus of the testimony in Steve Powell’s trial. Authorities have said many images in Steve Powell’s files were of Susan Powell and were taken without her knowledge.

Cox said it appeared that prosecutors were trying not to prejudice the jury by referencing Susan Powell.

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