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In Brief: County Medical Society won’t take sides in UW, WSU conflict

Thu., June 12, 2014

The Spokane County Medical Society is not taking sides in the ongoing conflict between the University of Washington and Washington State University on how best to expand medical education in the region.

A statement released Tuesday by the membership of 900 physicians and physician assistants announced a desire to train more medical professionals in Spokane, but didn’t go so far as to say who should be in charge of doing that.

“We don’t feel like it’s our role to stand up and make a selection,” said Dean F. Larsen, the organization’s CEO. “University of Washington and Washington State University have had a good partnership, and we hope they keep that going.”

He added, “We would like to see it in a cooperative atmosphere. We just want to make sure we have quality education that continues here.”

The medical society also supports additional residencies in Eastern Washington.

No arrests made in golf club stabbing

No arrests have been made in the stabbing of a man with a broken golf club in Spokane Valley Tuesday evening.

Spokane County Sheriff’s Office spokesman Craig Chamberlin said detectives are continuing to investigate the incident and are trying to determine if the resident was acting in self-defense.

Deputies were called to a home in the area of 32nd Avenue and Best Road around 8:45 p.m. Tuesday. The resident reported that two men on bicycles came to the home three times looking for a woman who wasn’t there. On their third visit one of the men reportedly threw a rock at the resident, who fought back with a golf club. One of the men on bicycles was stabbed with the golf club after it broke.

The man who was stabbed was still in critical condition as of Wednesday afternoon, Chamberlin said. Deputies are still searching for the second man on a bicycle.

Pedestrians hit crossing highway

Two pedestrians making their way across state Highway 53 in a crosswalk were hit by a car just after 6:30 a.m. Wednesday.

Rathdrum resident Ashley J. Janssen, 21, was turning west onto Highway 53 from Westwood Drive in Rathdrum when she struck the couple, according to the Idaho State Police. James K. Valentine, 68, and Joyce A. Valentine, 66, were taken to Kootenai Medical Center for treatment of their injuries.

An investigation is underway to determine if Janssen will face any charges, ISP said.

Salmon River rafter dies after boat flips

RIGGINS, Idaho – Three of four rafters flipped into the Salmon River at Lake Creek Rapids made it back to the boat but a fourth rafter swept downstream died.

The Idaho County Sheriff’s Office says boaters on Tuesday pulled the man from the water just before noon about a mile downstream from the rapids and began CPR.

Emergency responders continued CPR while transporting him to a medical helicopter in Riggins, but he was pronounced dead when they arrived. Authorities say the man wasn’t wearing a lift vest and was on a private rafting trip. His name wasn’t released.

Man sentenced for phony abuse claims

PORTLAND – A bank robber who made phony claims of child sex abuse by priests in four states in an unsuccessful effort to get money has been sentenced to nearly three years in prison for mail fraud.

The U.S. attorney’s office said 50-year-old Shamont Sapp was given a 33-month sentence Wednesday in Portland by U.S. District Judge Anna Brown.

The former Pennsylvania resident pleaded guilty to pursuing phony cases against Roman Catholic dioceses in Portland; Tucson, Arizona; Covington, Kentucky; and Spokane from 2005 through 2010. Federal prosecutors say he filed the fraudulent claims while he was a federal prison inmate serving lengthy sentences for 10 Pennsylvania bank robberies he committed in 1995.

In each claim he said he had been sexually abused as a teenage runaway in 1978-79. Disproving the claims required extensive investigative and legal work. The U.S. attorney’s office said the Archdiocese of Portland spent $70,000 disproving Sapp’s allegations.

Berry farm to pay workers $500,000

SEATTLE – One of Washington state’s largest berry growers has agreed to pay $500,000 to workers who say they were underpaid and denied rest breaks.

Sakuma Brothers Farms in the Skagit Valley did not admit liability in the settlement, filed Wednesday in U.S. District Court. It still needs the approval of a federal judge.

Under the terms, Sakuma would pay the money to more than 1,200 migrant and seasonal workers who labored for the company from October 2010 to December 2013. In addition, Sakuma would pay $344,000 to the lawyers who sued on their behalf.

Sakuma also said it would change business practices, agreeing to track and record all hours worked, to clock workers in within five minutes of their arrival and to provide them 10-minute breaks for every four hours worked.


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