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Latest from The Spokesman-Review

Deer Park man guilty of vehicular assault

Spokane police released this photo of the March 29 crash.

A Deer Park man pleaded guilty today to a hit-and-run crash earlier this year that injured three people in Spokane.

Christopher L. Smith, 52, told Superior Court Judge Maryann Moreno that he blacked out when he approached the intersection of Mission Avenue and Greene Street on March 29. The crash took out a light pole and damaged three other cars. One of those drivers suffered a broken leg.

"I remember turning the wheel and I blacked out," Smith said. "I don't know why I walked away. I think about that every day."

But Smith came to his senses long enough to ask his ex-wife to tell police that he wasn't driving her car. He was arrested later that day at his Deer Park home.

Spokane County Prosecutors initially charged Smith with vehicular assault and three counts of failure to remain at the scene of an injury accident. As part of the plea bargain, two of the latter charges were dropped.

Moreno sentenced Smith, who had no prior felony convictions, to eight months in jail. She noted that if his story were true — that a blown front tire caused the crash — he likely would have faced a citation.

ROTC Student Saves Man In River

Christopher Smith, a Gonzaga University junior from Tampa, Fla., found himself dangling from a ledge over the Spokane River before daybreak Friday in a daring rescue of a suicidal man who had jumped into the river minutes earlier. Smith, 19, shinnied about 12 feet down from a viewing platform on the Centennial Trail’s Kardong Bridge to reach the man, who was partly submerged and holding onto the bridge’s concrete pier. He pulled out the man and tried to keep him warm until firefighters arrived. As they waited, they talked about the man’s reasons for wanting to die. The man told Smith he was out of work and recently divorced/Mike Prager, SR. More here.

Question: Has someone ever saved your life?