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In brief: Judge upholds forest protections

Tue., March 26, 2013, midnight

SEATTLE – A court in Washington, D.C., has rejected the last legal challenge to prohibitions on logging and road building in backcountry roadless areas, ending more than 12 years of fighting over one of the nation’s signature wilderness protection policies.

The state of Alaska had challenged the rule adopted in 2001 by President Bill Clinton to preserve the last large tracts of untouched forest in states including Idaho, Wyoming, Colorado, Alaska and California, which still have not been opened to logging and other development.

U.S. District Judge Richard J. Leon ruled Monday that Alaska’s challenge in 2011 came too late under the statute of limitations to invalidate a policy that had already survived multiple lawsuits in courts across the country.

A separate challenge seeking to exempt 9.3 million acres of the Tongass National Forest in southeast Alaska is pending before a federal appeals court, but that case would not affect the bulk of the so-called “roadless rule” in effect across 58.5 million acres of the U.S.

Therapist will speak at Our Kids lunch

A family therapist who has studied how childhood violence affects people into adulthood will be the keynote speaker at this year’s Our Kids: Our Business luncheon on April 10.

Robin Karr-Morse has traced the relationship between child abuse and incarceration rates, as well as brain development and the biological roots of violent behavior. She published a book on the research called “Ghosts from the Nursery.”

She’ll speak at the annual lunch at the Spokane Convention Center. The event takes place from 11:30 a.m. to 1 p.m. and costs $35. To register, visit, or call (509) 838-6581.

Pedestrians killed, hurt in north Seattle

SEATTLE – Police said a driver who may have been under the influence of alcohol or drugs struck four pedestrians crossing a street Monday, killing two and critically injuring two others: a woman and the infant she was carrying.

“This is obviously a very tragic situation,” said Seattle police Deputy Chief Nick Metz. “It’s not very normal that we have this level of folks who are victimized in this way.”

The accident happened shortly after 4 p.m. in a residential neighborhood in north Seattle.

Seattle police spokesman Jeff Kappel said the driver of the vehicle, a 50-year-old Seattle man, was in custody and under investigation for possibly driving under the influence of alcohol or drugs.

A man and woman were pronounced dead at the scene, Kappel said.

Kyle Moore, Seattle Fire Department spokesman, said the injured were a 25-year-old woman and a 2-week-old infant. “When we arrived on scene, that infant was not breathing, so we initiated CPR and got the heartbeat back,” Moore said.

Moore said both the woman and infant were in critical condition. They were taken to Harborview Medical Center.

Father charged in shooting of two

TACOMA – Pierce County prosecutors have charged a 69-year-old man with first-degree murder and attempted first-degree murder following the shootings of his adult children. Not guilty pleas were entered Monday on Michael League’s behalf during his arraignment in Superior Court.

Court Commissioner Meagan Foley ordered League jailed in lieu of $2 million bail.

According to court records, League admitted shooting his children early Sunday with a .22-caliber pistol as they slept in his Puyallup home. League told police he used a pillow to muffle the sound of the gunshots so as not to wake his wife or two of his grandchildren, who also were asleep in the home.

The daughter, 43-year-old Danielle Faucett, died Sunday. The son, 46-year-old Dennis League, was hospitalized with critical injuries. League’s wife told investigators she and her husband had been under stress with having their children living with them.


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