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In brief: $8 million in grants will help homeless

Tue., July 15, 2014

Spokane has received about $8 million in federal grants this month to combat homelessness, city officials said Monday.

The latest grant, $3.4 million from U.S. Housing and Urban Development, is to pay for a continuum of care programs administered by the city of Spokane that provide supportive housing, rent assistance and help cover the cost of shelter operations.

Goodwill Industries of the Inland Northwest received a $4.3 million grant this month from the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs to provide services designed to assist homeless veterans and their family members.

Goodwill has been offering the dedicated services since October, according to the city.

Sheriff’s firefighting daughter injured

The daughter of Spokane County Sheriff Ozzie Knezovich suffered serious burns fighting a wildfire in Sweetwater County, Wyoming.

Jessica Knezovich, 26, the acting fire chief in Sweetwater County, had to be airlifted to a burn center at the University of Utah in Salt Lake City with second- and third-degree burns, the sheriff said.

The burns covered 10 percent of her legs, with another burn on her arm, he said.

She is expected to be hospitalized for up to a week.

The sheriff said his daughter was injured when a wildfire flashed over.

She is a graduate of Reardan High School and the fire training program at Spokane Community College.

Jessica Knezovich has worked as a volunteer firefighter in Airway Heights, fire District 10 and Medical Lake.

She also worked as a paramedic for AMR ambulance service in Spokane.

Racist message cleared from marker

A racist message scrawled on a historical marker on the Coeur d’Alene Indian reservation was removed Monday.

Someone wrote on the sign about the DeSmet Mission at U.S. Highway 95 and DeSmet Road in Benewah County.

The Idaho Department of Transportation removed the graffiti.

“It will always be up to the community and those who live here to continue to stand up against hateful actions such as this,” said Heather Keen, public relations director for the Coeur d’Alene Tribe.

Tony Stewart, a member of the Kootenai County Task Force on Human Relations board, said in a statement, “This is clearly a hate crime with the intent to promote anger and hatred directed at the good people of the Coeur d’Alene Tribe. It is unfortunately another example to remind us that we still have a challenge in eradicating racism from the world’s society.”

Gov. Butch Otter condemned the graffiti.

“This kind of hate-filled sentiment has no place in Idaho.”

Standoff in Valley ends with arrest

A 35-year-old Spokane Valley man with a history of unlawful firearm possession is suspected of firing shots at the feet of a family member, and police said he told them he’d rather die than surrender in an hourslong standoff Saturday.

Keiley E. Herrin was booked into Spokane County Jail on two counts of second-degree assault and unlawful possession of a firearm over the weekend.

Authorities say he fired a small pistol at the feet of a family member and her boyfriend during an argument on July 8.

Investigators learned Herrin, who pleaded guilty in January to illegally owning a gun as a convicted felon, was at a garage in the 7400 block of East Third Avenue just before noon Saturday. SWAT team members surrounded the garage, and Herrin eventually surrendered.

Camper’s body found in Snake River

LEWISTON – The body of a 65-year-old Washington state woman who went missing from a campsite on the Oregon side of the Snake River has been recovered about 30 miles downstream.

The Nez Perce County sheriff’s office said the body of Sharon Mathews, of Dayton, Washington, was recovered Saturday by deputies and officers with the Idaho Department of Fish and Game.

Wallowa County (Oregon) Sheriff Steve Rogers said Mathews was with a group of people running jet boats on June 6. The woman and her dog stayed at the Geneva Bar campsite with one of the boats while the rest of the party went upriver.

When group members returned 30 minutes later, Mathews’ shoes were found on the beach and her dog was in the boat.

Nez Perce County officials said an autopsy is planned.

Woman dies after falling into creek

WEST GLACIER, Mont. – A Washington state woman died a day after slipping and falling into a creek in Glacier National Park.

Park officials said 33-year-old Abigail Sylvester, of Buckley, Washington, was believed to be taking pictures Saturday afternoon when she slipped and fell into the fast-moving McDonald Creek. Her husband was unable to rescue her due to the deep and fast-moving water. She was carried over lower McDonald Creek Falls, a drop of about 30 feet, and located about a half mile downstream.

A volunteer firefighter waded into the creek and retrieved the woman. The firefighter, his son, other visitors and park rangers performed CPR.

Sylvester was airlifted to Kalispell Regional Medical Center. Park spokeswoman Denise Germann said the woman died Sunday.


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