In brief: Three-car crash on 291 injures four people
A car crash sent four people to the hospital Monday night with the aid of a MedStar helicopter.
The accident involved three vehicles traveling along Highway 291 near the Stevens and Spokane county line, according to the Washington State Patrol.
One car, driven by a 15-year-old, hit another car before 7 p.m., then collided with an SUV coming in the opposite direction, according to KHQ. Three teens in the car, including the driver, were taken to the hospital. Emergency crews also took the SUV driver to the hospital.
The crash is under investigation.
Medical examiner says man committed suicide
The Spokane County Medical Examiner’s Office says a man found dead Sunday night amid an illegal marijuana growing operation committed suicide.
Warren C. Schrempp Jr., 62, died of a gunshot wound. The marijuana operation was at a foreclosed home on Spokane’s South Hill.
A locksmith was at the home on the 4500 block of East Sumac Drive changing locks when he smelled marijuana and noticed a car in the garage, a news release from the Spokane County Sheriff’s Office said. The locksmith left the home and called the real estate agent, who called police around 6 p.m. Sunday.
Sheriff’s detectives found a sliding door open and announced their presence, the release said. The Seriff’s Office said detectives heard a muffled gunshot and backed away.
A SWAT team responded with a search warrant and found the body and marijuana.
Hospital to evaluate boy accused in school plot
An 11-year-old Colville boy accused of plotting to kill a classmate will be evaluated by Eastern State Hospital doctors to determine his sanity.
The results will play a role in whether he is fit to stand trial.
A 10-year-old boy involved in the case pleaded guilty to the same charges April 8 and will be sentenced in May.
The case stems from Feb. 7 at Fort Colville Elementary School where the boys are suspected of sneaking a stolen gun and a knife to school as part of a plan to kill a classmate.
Some on council seek halt on pair of citizen initiatives
Signatures on petitions in support of two proposed citizens’ initiatives in Spokane will be counted and verified. But council members hinted Monday that they may block the proposals from the ballot even if activists collected enough support.
The Spokane City Council voted 6-0 to ask the Spokane County Auditor’s Office to verify the signatures collected for Envision Spokane’s Community Bill of Rights and Spokane Moves to Amend the Constitution’s initiative that would, in part, outlaw people representing corporations from discussing legislation with elected leaders in private settings.
Some City Council members said they supported a city legal review to determine if the proposals are unconstitutional and if the city can block the initiatives from the ballot even if the county verifies that activists collected enough signatures. They argued that if voters approve an unconstitutional initiative, the city would be forced into costly legal battles.
Brad Read, Envision’s board president, said the group likely would file suit if the council prevented voters from having the final say.
Disposal sites to teach proper way to toss drugs
Old prescription drugs can be safely disposed of this Saturday at law enforcement agencies across the Inland Northwest.
All sites will operate from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. as part of National Prescription Drug Take Back Day, designed to protect the environment by proper disposal while also keeping them away from dumpster-diving addicts.
The two sites operated by the Spokane County Sheriff’s Office also will offer free paper shredding. They are at the North Spokane Library branch, 44 E. Hawthorne Road, and the Spokane Valley Police Department, 12710 E. Sprague Ave.
In Coeur d’Alene, police will be collecting old prescription drugs at the Coeur d’Alene Library.
Prison still in lockdown after fighting ends in yard
WALLA WALLA – A lockdown continued Monday night for nearly 400 inmates at the Washington State Penitentiary at Walla Walla where officials are investigating fighting that broke out Saturday when about 180 inmates were in a recreation yard.
Spokeswoman Shari Hall said there were no substantial injuries and inmates stopped fighting on their own.
Spokesman Chad Lewis said investigators are still trying to determine what caused the fighting that involved about 50 offenders.
Court rejects murder appeal brought by Colville man
LITTLE ROCK, Ark. – A white separatist who plotted to set up a whites-only nation in the Pacific Northwest lost an appeal Monday in which he sought a new trial for murdering an Arkansas family.
Chevie Kehoe was sentenced to life in federal prison for the 1996 robbery and slayings of three people living in the small town of Tilly. His accomplice, Danny Lee, was sentenced to be executed.
The 8th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals in St. Louis turned away Kehoe’s argument that his lawyer was wrong to have tried to get as many black people on the jury as possible, on the theory they would be less likely to impose the death penalty.
Kehoe, of Colville, argued that he had ineffective counsel, but a three-judge panel disagreed.
Kehoe and Lee, of Yukon, Okla., were convicted of murdering gun dealer William Mueller, his wife Nancy, and her 8-year-old daughter, Sarah Powell. Their bodies were found in a backwater of Illinois Bayou north of Russellville.