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In brief: Van Halen postpones Spokane concert

Just last week, officials at the Spokane Arena were thrilled to announce that Van Halen would be coming to Spokane.

On Thursday, that show was postponed, along with more than 30 others scheduled beyond June 26.

“It came as a shock to us this morning,” said Becca Waters of the Spokane Public Facilities District. “We don’t have any information as to why they postponed.”

There’s been no official explanation, but reported that past animosities among band members had heated up.

Tickets for the Aug. 21 show had been scheduled to go on sale Saturday. Waters said the district will let the public know when that show is rescheduled.

Spokane tightens land use near base

Spokane Mayor David Condon and Council President Ben Stuckart on Thursday signed new land-use rules to protect Fairchild Air Force Base from encroachment.

They joined County Commissioner Mark Richard in a ceremony at Greater Spokane Incorporated in downtown Spokane. Commissioners have approved a nearly identical law for unincorporated areas around Fairchild.

The changes come from a joint land-use study financed with a grant from the U.S. Department of Defense. The plans create zones of limited development near the base among other regulations.

Officials said the protections are instrumental in securing Fairchild’s continued operation as bases are closed in coming years and could give Fairchild an advantage in selection of the first bases to house a new generation of Boeing tankers.

Stuckart noted that Airway Heights and Medical Lake have yet to approve plans that mirror those adopted by Spokane and Spokane County and that Thursday’s signing event was a nudge to officials in those cities.

Keller ferry to close today until 8 p.m.

The Keller ferry on state Highway 21 north of Wilbur, Wash., will be shut down today from 6 a.m. to 8 p.m. so that the north terminal can be moved from a low-water ramp to the regular landing on Lake Roosevelt. The ferry operates across the Columbia River seven days a week from 6 a.m. to midnight.

Sister of cop killer to leave prison soon

TACOMA – Washington Corrections officials confirm that the sister of a man who killed four police officers in November 2009 will be freed in July after serving about half of the five-year sentence she got for her role in the case.

Maurice Clemmons gunned down four Lakewood, Wash., officers at a Tacoma-area coffee shop. He was killed two days later in a confrontation with a Seattle police officer.

Accused of helping her brother’s getaway driver, LaTanya Clemmons was convicted of rendering criminal assistance. Corrections spokeswoman Selena Davis said Thursday that as a nonviolent offender, LaTanya Clemmons qualified for a 50 percent sentence reduction after behaving well in prison. She also received credit for 301 days in jail awaiting trial and sentencing.


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WSU, Mike Leach face lawsuit over football player’s dismissal

A lawsuit claims that Washington State football coach Mike Leach has selectively enforced his own team rules, and that the university failed to provide due process before revoking a student-athlete’s financial aid – again shining a spotlight on how the school responds to criminal allegations.