In brief: Louis Hanson found guilty of Spokane gang murder
A jury found a 30-year-old man charged with shooting and killing a rival gang member in December guilty of first-degree murder Thursday morning.
Louis Hanson, 30, shot Aaron Cummings, 27, on Dec. 30. Prosecutors argued that Hanson killed Cummings in order to rise through the ranks of his own gang.
A witness told police that Hanson entered a home on 1607 N. Wall St. early in the morning, pulled a revolver and shot Cummings.
Hanson faces life in prison under Washington’s “three strikes” law.
Beans, peas, lentils get bipartisan boost
Washington Democrats and Idaho Republicans joined forces this week to ask Congress to boost programs for beans, peas and lentils in the upcoming farm bill.
Sens. Maria Cantwell, D-Wash., and Mike Crapo, R-Idaho, top a list of senators seeking money to continue a five-year pilot program to use more of those crops in school breakfasts and lunches. They’re also pushing for more federal research into those commodities, also known as pulse crops, for their potential to reduce obesity, high blood pressure and cholesterol.
Adding beans, peas and lentils to school meals could help lower rates of obesity among American teens, which studies show is as high as 17 percent, the senators said. Among senators also signing the letter to the conference committee were Patty Murray, D-Wash., and Jim Risch, R-Idaho.
The Palouse is one of the nation’s prime areas for growing peas, chickpeas and lentils.
Silverwood owners receive CdA honor
Silverwood Theme Park owners Gary and Jeanne Norton were named the Coeur d’Alene Chamber of Commerce citizens of the year Thursday.
The couple were singled out for the amusement and water park’s economic impact, with more than 1,500 permanent and seasonal jobs, as well as their donations to food banks and nonprofit groups such as the Children’s Village in Coeur d’Alene. Jeanne Norton also involved Silverwood in the Festival of Trees fundraiser supporting the Kootenai Health Foundation.
Gary Norton opened Silverwood in June 1988. It has grown into the largest tourism attraction in Idaho. The Idaho Department of Commerce estimates the theme park has contributed more than $1 billion to the regional economy.
Shell makes plans for Arctic drilling
ANCHORAGE, Alaska – A spokesman for Shell Alaska said the company in the next few weeks will submit an Arctic offshore exploration plan but hasn’t decided whether it will move forward with drilling next year.
Curtis Smith said by email that the company is “putting the building blocks in place” for an upcoming exploration season but hasn’t made a final decision.
He said if Shell drills in 2014, it will be in the Chukchi Sea only, and not the Beaufort Sea.
The plans were made public during Royal Dutch Shell PLC’s third-quarter earnings announcement.
Shell drilled in both the Chukchi and the Beaufort in 2012 but suffered serious setbacks, culminating with the grounding of a drill vessel near Kodiak.
The company subsequently decided it would not drill in 2013.
Environmental groups oppose Arctic offshore drilling, saying oil companies have not demonstrated they can clean up a major spill in ice-choked waters.