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In brief: Second fire in week damages duplex

Wed., Jan. 23, 2013, midnight

A fire broke out in a Spokane duplex Tuesday for the second time in a week.

The Spokane Fire Department responded to a small fire in the home near East South Riverton Avenue and East Mission Avenue at 4:42 a.m., according to Battalion Chief Bruce Moline.

Four teenage boys were burning wood pallets in a fireplace without a screen and the fire extended outside the fireplace, burning the floor and the joists below it, Moline said.

The mother of two of the boys and her boyfriend were staying in a motel provided by the American Red Cross after an unrelated electrical fire broke out in the home’s attic Wednesday.

The boys, about 15 and 16 years old, were watching over the home, Moline said. They were using the fireplace for heat because there still was no electricity.

The latest fire was under investigation, but Moline estimated there could be about $8,000 to $10,000 in damage.

Man in 50s survives 19 stab wounds

A man who was stabbed 19 times Tuesday evening is expected to survive, police say.

A man in his 50s was walking home from Walgreens after buying a soda, KHQ reported, and later showed up at a home in the 100 block of East Dalton Avenue asking for help.

Police said he was stabbed 19 times in the back and neck and he may also have a collapsed lung. The victim was unable to communicate with police Tuesday.

Police believe it was an isolated incident, KHQ said.

Robbery suspect tied to other crimes

A man who was arrested Thursday in connection with a robbery at Bates Pharmacy, 3704 N. Nevada St., has been linked to three other pharmacy robberies, according to Spokane police.

Larry Griffin, 38, demanded prescription medication from Walgreens, 2105 E. Wellesley Ave., on Nov. 7, police said. The thief wore a black knit stocking cap and fled the pharmacy with the pills.

On Dec. 4, Griffin demanded prescription pills from the Rite-Aid Pharmacy, 9120 N. Division St., wearing a similar black stocking hat, and fled with a bag of pills, police said.

On Dec. 27, a man wearing a black hoodie and a ski hat entered the Rite-Aid Pharmacy at 1443 N. Argonne Road and demanded pills. The suspect left the store carrying a bag of prescription bottles.

Griffin was arrested Thursday after witnesses gave police a license number for the robber in a similar incident at Bates Pharmacy.

Man arrested hour after vehicle theft

A man was arrested less than an hour after police say he stole a woman’s car as it was unattended and warming up in her driveway.

A woman reported her car was stolen at 7:35 a.m. Officers found the stolen car being driven by Robert D. Basford, 42, into a parking lot at North Nevada Street and East Wellesley Avenue, a Spokane police news release said.

Police said Basford had shaved keys, which are often used to steal cars.

Basford was booked into Spokane County Jail for taking a motor vehicle without permission and possession of motor vehicle theft tools.

“We’ve seen an increase in vehicle theft this month, presumably because of the extreme cold temperatures,” said police spokeswoman Officer Jennifer DeRuwe. “Patrol officers have taken quite a few stolen vehicles reports where the owner has left the engine running, unattended, and the car has been stolen.”


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