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Spokane, Washington  Est. May 19, 1883

Sirens & Gavels archive for April 2011


FRIDAY, APRIL 29, 2011

Phone records back up Steele recordings 

BOISE - Edgar Steele's lawyers have questioned the reliability of recordings that show their client discussing the plot to kill his wife with alleged hitman-turned-FBI-informant Larry Fairfax. Prosecutors used phone records provided by the defense to poke a hole in that claim this morning. Steele…

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Edgar sent 14k+ emails to other women 

BOISE - Jurors this morning saw emails Edgar Steele sent to a 25-year-old European woman with whom prosecutors say he was seeking an intimate relationship. The messages were among more than 14,000 Steele sent through a Ukrainian online dating website in the months before his…

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CdA coke kingpin sentenced to 15 years 

A longtime Coeur d'Alene cocaine dealer who laundered money through a bar and restaurant has been sentenced to 15 years in prison. James Roy "Slim" O'Neill, 49, was the kingpin of a cocaine distribution ring that supplied the drug in North Idaho for at least…

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Reward for tips on CdA rape suspect

Crime Stoppers is offering a reward for tips that help arrest a Coeur d'Alene rape suspect wanted fore more than two weeks. Scott Patrick Giordano, 30, is accused of raping the girl last Wednesday at a home in the 800 block of Mullan Avenue. The…

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Cyndi says she knew of Edgar's women

These are portions of phone calls from the Kootenai County Jail that were played for jurors today in the murder-for-hire trial of Edgar Steele. BOISE - Cyndi Steele testified today that she knew her husband was talking to European women online but said the communication…

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Larry Fairfax says he's writing a book

The main witness against Edgar Steele is writing a book he says is fiction and "may have" said he hopes to be on the Oprah show. Larry Fairfax (left) admitted that under cross examination this morning in U.S. District Court in Boise, the second day…

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Brother: FBI set up taco truck protester

The man who boasted online about taking part in racist protests of taco-trucks in Coeur d’Alene and now faces an illegal weapons charge was the victim of government entrapment, his brother says. Jeremiah Daniel “J.D.” Hop, 29, was set up earlier this month by an…

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Assistant U.S. Attorney Marc Haws is shown at the trial of Edgar J. Steele on Wednesday, April 27, 2011. Steele is shown at right. (sketch by Ward Hooper)

Jurors hear Fairfax-Steele recordings 

In this sketch by Ward Hooper, Assistant U.S. Attorney Marc Haws is shown at the podium during the trial of Edgar J. Steele today. Steele is shown at right. BOISE - Larry Fairfax told jurors in the Edgar Steele murder-for-hire trial that though he accepted…

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In ruse, FBI told Steele wife was dead 

BOISE - The day Edgar Steele was arrested for an alleged murder plot against his wife, investigators first told him his wife had died in a car crash to see if he would go along with alibis he'd mentioned in a secretly recorded conversation with…

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Defense: Fairfax stole silver, set up Steele 

BOISE - The murder-for-hire case against Edgar Steele is really the work of financially strapped man desperate to cover up his theft of silver from Steele's home, defense lawyer Robert McAllister said this morning. "This case is as much about a man named Larry Fairfax…

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Prosecutors: Case against Steele 'simple'

BOISE - Prosecutors say the case against Edgar Steele is simple. "It's the story of a man who wanted to murder his wife, hired somebody else to do it, and fortunately, they didn't succeed," Assistant U.S. Attorney Marc Haws said in his opening statement this…

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13 women, 1 man to hear Steele case 

BOISE - Thirteen women and one man will hear the case of a North Idaho attorney accused of hiring a man to kill his wife and mother-in-law. Two of the 14 jurors selected Tuesday for the trial of Edgar Steele will be alternates. All will…

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Hells Angel arraigned on federal charges

A member of the Hells Angels motorcycle club pleaded not guilty Monday to gun and drug charges. Michael Ryan Fitzpatrick, 33, was booked into Spokane County Jail after his arraignment before U.S. Magistrate Cynthia Imbrogno in U.S. District Court in Spokane. Fitzpatrick is charged with…

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Feds release Harpham booking photos

The U.S. Marshals Service has released booking photos of Kevin William Harpham. The photos were taken the day of his arrest in connection with the bomb found along the planned route of the Martin Luther King, Jr., United march in downtown Spokane Jan. 17. Photos…

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Mother-daughter child abusers sentenced

A Coeur d’Alene woman and her mother were ordered imprisoned today for their roles in the neglecting of twin 2-year-old girls. Elisabeth Crossley and her 55-year-old mother, Ruth Cassidy, each will spend up to five years in prison, with no less than two years. Crossley’s…

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Romantic ties figure in Plummer slaying

Jealousy may have led to the fatal stabbing of a Spokane man in Plummer, Idaho, last week, a friend said. Victim Antowyn D. “Tony” Swiney, 37, (left) was with his girlfriend when her ex, Jody A. Miller, arrived with a group to celebrate Miller’s 41st…

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Man gets 10 years for beating death

A Spokane transient has been sentenced to 10 ½ years in prison for the slaying of a 46-year-old man last April. Roland E. Benton II, 35, pleaded guilty last month to first-degree manslaughter with a deadly weapon for the beating death of Douglas J. Klages.…

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MONDAY, APRIL 25, 2011

Smash-grab burglar targets cigs in Valley

Police are looking for tips on a smash-and-grab cigarette burglary that damaged a Spokane Valley convenience store early today. A burglar smashed glass from a front window at the the Broadway Mini Mart, 10304 E. Broadway Ave., early today and stole cigarette packs. An alarm…

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Public safety news from the Inland Northwest and beyond.

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