July 16, 2014 in City

In brief: Coeur d’Alene City Council votes to negotiate deal for BNSF right-of-way

From Staff Reports

The Coeur d’Alene City Council voted unanimously Tuesday night to complete a purchase of 2 miles of BNSF Railway right-of-way along the Spokane River for future trails and parks.

The city hopes to buy the 20 acres of riverfront land for $2.5 million. It’s appraised at $4.3 million, and the railroad has agreed to accept the city’s offer.

BNSF hasn’t used the line since Coeur d’Alene’s last waterfront sawmill shut down, but it took years of negotiations to reach agreement on a price. Urban renewal funding from the Lake City Development Corporation is expected to contribute to the purchase.

The city wants to create a linear park system from downtown and along the river west toward Post Falls.

Officers identified in deadly shooting

Three Sandpoint police officers shot and killed 35-year-old Jeanette Riley on July 8 when she refused to drop a knife outside Bonner General Hospital, the Bonner County Sheriff’s Office said.

Officers Skylar Ziegler, Mike Valenzuela and Garrett Johnson fired the rounds that killed Riley on Third Street in front of the emergency entrance, according to a news release. The officers have all been employed by the Sandpoint Police Department for five years or less, according to the release. Valenzuela has been with the department for five years, Ziegler for three and Johnson for one.

Riley exited a white van armed with a knife after a call came in of a weapons offense, according to the news release. The Sheriff’s Office said Riley walked toward the officers and ignored repeated commands to drop the knife, so they opened fire.

Those with information about the incident are asked to contact Sgt. Gary Johnston, a detective with the Sheriff’s Office, at (208) 263-8417 ext. 3058.

Man in red car reported suspicious

The Coeur d’Alene Police Department is looking for the driver of a red sedan who reportedly tried to get a 16-year-old girl into his car Tuesday afternoon.

The teenager told police that the man offered to give her a ride home as she was walking in the 100 block of East Appleway Avenue at 3:15 p.m., according to a police news release. The driver even went as far as pulling his car in front of the girl to cut her off in his attempts to get her in the car.

The driver is described as a white man in his late 50s or early 60s with a heavy build, medium-length gray and brown hair and wearing a blue shirt and sunglasses. He was reportedly driving an older red or maroon four-door sedan.

Anyone with information is asked to call police at (208) 769-2320.

Beach party to be hosted by college

North Idaho College will host Cecil’s Summer Splash, a free summer beach party, from 4 to 7 p.m. today at the NIC beach on Lake Coeur d’Alene.

The first 300 guests will receive free, Southern-style barbecue, and everyone will have the chance to try out NIC’s beach equipment, such as stand-up paddleboards, kayaks, canoes and catamarans. The party is open to all ages.

At 6:30 p.m., a drawing will be held for five $1,000 scholarships. The winner must be present to win. The $1,000 award will be applied to the balance owed on tuition, fees, books and supplies for the fall and spring semesters this coming school year. Those who plan to attend NIC and current students are encouraged to enter.

Information is available at (208) 769-5958 or www.nic.edu/splash.

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