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Cheney couple faces animal cruelty charges

Prosecutors have filed animal cruelty charges against the Cheney couple who owned multiple animals, including horses and a llama, seized during a search of their property last month.

Terri Marlin, 51, and Thomas Marlin, 53, face multiple animal cruelty criminal counts following an investigation into the conditions at their property at 23239 S. Cross Road in July. Authorities were initially alerted to the couple, who have an extensive history of animal abuse complaints, after several emaciated horses appeared at the Cheney Rodeo Grounds during a wildfire evacuation.

Spokane County Regional Animal Protection Services seized two horses, a llama, eight dogs and six cats from the residence. The Marlins face seventeen criminal counts apiece, including first-degree animal cruelty, second-degree animal cruelty and confining an animal in an unsafe manner, according to a news release from SCRAPS. First-degree animal cruelty is a felony, while the other charges are misdemeanors.

Dining out, Mason Jar style

After eight years of living in Portland and abroad, Douglas LaBar returned to Cheney, his hometown at the end of the summer of in 2012, opening The Mason Jar two months later. He shared some of his recipes with us.

Mason Jar Hearty Granola

From The Mason Jar, Cheney

4 cups rolled oats

2 teaspoon cinnamon

2 teaspoon salt

6 tablespoons plus 1 teaspoon vegetable oil

½ cup dark honey

½ cup firmly packed light brown sugar

2 teaspoons vanilla extract

1/3 cup whole almonds

1/3 cup whole hazelnuts

1/3 cup golden raisins

1/3 cup dried cranberries

Preheat oven to 325 degrees. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper. Toss oats, cinnamon and salt. Whisk together oil, honey, brown sugar and vanilla until completely combined. Pour honey mixture over oats and use hands to combine, making clumps. Pour mixture onto pan, spreading out evenly. Bake for 10 minutes, remove from oven, flip with spatula and sprinkle almonds and return to oven. Bake for another 5 minutes, remove from oven, flip with spatula and sprinkle with hazelnuts and return to oven. Bake for another 10 minutes, remove from oven, and let cool completely. Sprinkle raisins and cranberries on top and transfer to airtight container.

Note: The Mason Jar uses locally made Wild & Sweet Rich Honey.

Yield: 1 pound


From The Mason Jar, Cheney

½ cup chevre

10 slices baguette

1 large roasted bell pepper, sliced into ½-inch thick strips

Fresh Basil (15 to 20 leaves)

Balsamic reduction (See below)

Toast baguette. Spread chevre on toasted baguette. Place slices of bell pepper on each toast. Roll basil leaves and julienne them, then sprinkle over baguette. Drizzle with balsamic reduction.

Note: The Mason Jar uses Heron Pond Farms Garlic and Sea Salt Chevre.

Balsamic Reduction

From The Mason Jar, Cheney

1 cup balsamic vinegar

Place balsamic vinegar in small saucepan over medium heat. Bring to a boil, then let simmer until liquid is reduced by at least half.

Tomato Bisque

From The Mason Jar, Cheney

3 pounds ripe tomatoes

¼ cup chopped onion

½ teaspoon celery seed

1 bay leaf

4 whole cloves

6 ounces tomato paste

¼ cup butter

¼ cup flour

3 cups milk

1 ½ teaspoon salt

Freshly ground black pepper

Fresh basil, for garnish

Croutons, for garnish

Core, peel and chop tomatoes, then place in saucepan. Add onion, celery seed, bay leaf and cloves. Simmer uncovered for 15 minutes until tomatoes very soft, stirring occasionally. Blend in tomato paste.

In another other saucepan make a rouxrue: melt butter, add flour, and stir with wire whisk until blended.

In a third saucepan bring milk to boil, then add it all at once to roux rue mixture. Stir briskly until sauce is thickened and smooth; season with salt and pepper.

Combine rouxrue/milk mixture with tomato mixture; stir until smooth. Season to taste. Garnish and serve.

Note: Tomato mixture can be made and frozen.

America’s least exciting college town?

See Saturday's Slice column.


Actually, in the time-honored spirit of promo-writing, that's a bit misleading. There won't be a rip-roaring discussion of whether or not the answer is "Yes."

It's just a question. But you can answer it, and then we can have a rip-roaring discussion in a subsequent column. 

Three reasons to miss the Seahawks

1. Back when the team held its preseason training camp in Cheney each summer, a fair number of local NFL fans enjoyed going out to watch very large men sweat.

2. Economic impact.

3. Eventually HBO's "Hard Knocks" series would have come to Cheney to profile the Seahawks and there almost certainly would have been some entertaining Spokane bashing and film footage of contract holdouts arriving at Spokane International Airport.

Hunting at Turnbull National Wildlife Refuge. Yep.

Photobucket Does “wildlife refuge” invoke the sound of gunshots? Well, officials at the Turnbull National Wildlife Refuge near Cheney have authorized hunting for the first time since it was established in 1937. Apparently, the area has reached its carrying capacity for large elk herds which are causing damage to the habitat. Rich Landers from the S-R reports “a highly restrictive walk-in elk hunting season will be opened in 2009 on up to 7,260 acres normally closed to public access.” Also, this curious bit: “In addition, mentored youngsters will be given one weekend to hunt waterfowl from designated blinds on a 140-acre wetland within the 16,017-acre refuge.” Of course, there’s a personal component, an initial sense of anger here at DTE headquarters. Our alma matter was relatively close, and we made frequent trips out to Turnbull to view the beautiful land like so many others. Even though there’s an environmental assessment for the hunting plan, we’re naturally protective and scratching our heads, since some initial details seem sketchy. What are the impacts of waterfowl? Why do Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife biologists support proposals to issue about “70 antlerless hunting permits and two bull permits scattered over the fall archery, muzzleloader and modern rifle seasons.” Is this a job for the public? An alternative proposal was for hikers to disturb the elk, and make them leave. “It would take a lot of hikers to move elk out and we don’t have staff to monitor that,” said Mike Rule, refuge wildlife biologist. “But more important, we need to reduce the number of elk.” Are they up to the task of monitoring such strict limits? Lastly, and just for kicks, somebody observed on a tour with Rule the following: “They don’t just stand around and look at you,” as the elk ran away. Smart elk. More. Refuge officials will accept public comment through Dec. 19. Public meeting: Turnbull hunt plan An open house regarding the proposed hunting plan for Turnbull Wildlife Refuge is set for 6 to 8 p.m. tonight, at the refuge headquarters Environmental Education Building south of Cheney.