April 10, 2013 in City

In brief: Reward in attack on professor


Washington State University President Elson Floyd is offering a $10,000 reward for information leading to the arrest and conviction of those responsible for attacking a professor nearly two weeks ago.

Floyd said in a statement Tuesday that he’s disturbed by the injuries David Warner suffered and the lack of information being reported to investigators.

Warner remains at Providence Sacred Heart Medical Center in critical condition after he was found unconscious and beaten on the ground of a parking lot at the Adams Mall on College Hill on March 30.

Pullman Police have been circulating video surveillance of the minutes leading up to the assault hoping the community can identify possible witnesses and suspects.

Floyd also announced his intention to start a “Commission on Campus Climate” to talk about racial issues in Pullman and find a long-term solution to tackle them.

Floyd donated his own money to the reward fund, the statement said, but others can donate to it as well by contacting WSU police Chief Bill Gardner at  bill.gardner@wsu.edu.

Death was result of hypothermia

A man found dead in a ditch west of Medical Lake in February died of hypothermia, according to the Spokane County Medical Examiner’s Office.

Bruce A. King, 53, was found dead near the intersection of West Hallett Road and South Strangland Road on Feb. 24. Spokane County sheriff’s major crimes detectives did not find any signs of trauma.

Prior reports said King apparently froze to death. Detectives originally thought the death was suspicious, but it was ruled accidental, the release said.

Deputies find wanted man

A man wanted by authorities was discovered hiding out at a South Hill apartment complex Monday night.

Spokane County sheriff’s deputies were looking for Raymond S. Wheatley, 44, on a felony warrant for violating his court order, according to a Sheriff’s Office news release.

Because of Wheatley’s history of violence against law enforcement, authorities called in the SWAT team to help serve an arrest warrant at 2800 E. 27th Ave. around 10 p.m. Deputies arrested Wheatley in 2007 after he grabbed a Spokane Valley police officer’s Taser and tried to use it against him, prior reports said.

The SWAT team announced its presence and Wheatley came out on his own, the release said. Deputies took him into custody without incident.

Florist sued for refusing service

The Washington attorney general’s office is suing the owner of Arlene’s Flowers in Richland for refusing to provide wedding flowers for a same-sex marriage.

State justice officials filed a consumer protection lawsuit against the business and owner Barronelle Stutzman on Tuesday, asking the court to force Stutzman to comply with anti-discrimination laws and pay $2,000 for each violation.

“If a business provides a product or service to opposite-sex couples for their weddings, then it must provide same-sex couples the same product or service,” Attorney General Bob Ferguson said in a news release.

Stutzman was not immediately available for comment Tuesday. The attorney general’s release said her lawyers have indicated she will challenge the action.

Stutzman refused to provide service to Robert Ingersoll, a customer of nine years, in early March when he came in to order flowers for his wedding with his partner, Curt Freed. She told Ingersoll she couldn’t provide the flowers because of her religious beliefs.

Informant led to meth bust

A confidential informant led Spokane County Sheriff’s Office detectives to a married couple dealing meth out of a Spokane apartment, according to criminal complaint filed in United States District Court Tuesday.

Spokane County Sheriff’s detectives arrested Mark W. Bush and Crystal K. Peterson on Thursday after serving a search warrant at their apartment, 1717 E. Mallon Ave.

Court documents say the informant bought meth from Bush three times during the investigation, but Peterson was only present during one deal.

Investigators seized 11 ounces of meth from the home during the search, including four bags inside a box of Nilla Wafers. Bags of meth were found in the bedroom in a black bag, a dresser drawer and in the kitchen freezer.

Bush and Peterson are accused of possessing more than 50 grams of methamphetamine with the intent to deal it and are in Spokane County Jail.

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