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The Spokesman-Review Newspaper The Spokesman-Review

Spokane, Washington  Est. May 19, 1883
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Sirens & Gavels archive for Jan. 1, 2012

MONDAY, FEB. 6, 2012

Drug suspect wanted after missing court

A man charged with a drug felony after police found him passed out just east of downtown is wanted by Crime Stoppers. Joseph Wade Davis, 27, has a colorful criminal history that includes a chase with a sheriff's deputy in June 2010 and another chase...

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Reward targets man who skipped trial

Crime Stoppers is offering a reward for tips that lead to the arrest of an assault suspect who missed the scheduled start of his trial last week. Joseph I. Ackaret, 28, is accused of hurling a beer bottle at a resident in the 2900 block...

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A look at Spokane police use of force 

To understand why the Spokane Police Department’s use-of-force training is under a microscope, consider this disconnect: Although the state’s top police trainer concluded that the fatal 2006 confrontation with unarmed janitor Otto Zehm was indefensible, the department’s own instructors and the city’s legal advisers have...

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Fugitive haunted by son's murder in jail

A man targeted by Crime Stoppers for failing to register as a sex offender committed the same crime three years ago while haunted by the brutal jailhouse murder of his son. William R. Rentz, 58, was convicted of third-degree child molestation in Cowlitz County in...

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FRIDAY, FEB. 3, 2012

Jury convicts man of threatening officer 11 

A jury has convicted a Spokane man of felony harassment for threatening to kill a Spokane police officer. Rudy Ray Cordova, 38, was acquitted of fourth-degree domestic assault, which is the suspected crime that brought him in contact with Officer Chris McMurtrey. Cordova's lawyer, Doug...

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Repeat Best Buy pest charged w/ felony

A 19-time felon banned from Best Buy allegedly returned to the store 13 times in seven months, leading to a slew of felony burglary charges. Police arrested William Steven Neis, 49, at his apartment at 1119 W. 11th Street on Jan. 25. Officers had responded...

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'Teacher Grandpa' sentenced for rape 

A man known as "Teacher Grandpa" at a Spokane day care has been sentenced to at least 10 years in prison for child rape. Eugene R. Wright, 66, is to serve 123 months and undergo a sexual deviance evaluation before he's released, which could mean...

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Toothless robber: I needed dentures

WAYNESBURG, Pa. (AP) — A woman who appeared to not have any teeth in surveillance photos from a bank robbery last month has confessed, apologized and told police she planned the heist because she needed the money for dentures. Evelyn Marie Fuller, 49, remained in...

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THURSDAY, FEB. 2, 2012

Another escape attempt at Benewah jail

State officials learned of an attempted Wednesday escape at the Benewah County Jail when officials at another jail called to say the inmate had been transferred there, and they wanted him gone. The Idaho Department of Correction is working to transport Timothy Wesley Allen, 30,...

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Burglary suspect arrested after chase

A north Spokane County man followed a burglary suspect as he sped away from his home this afternoon, leading to a chase with a sheriff's sergeant that ended with the suspect's arrest. Harold A. Willey, 52, avoided spike strips at Bruce Road and Highway 206...

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Andrea George moved to Spokane from Minnesota to become the executive director of the Federal Defenders of Eastern Washington and Idaho. (Jesse Tinsley)

New leader for federal public defenders

Andrea George moved to Spokane from Minnesota to become the executive director of the Federal Defenders of Eastern Washington and Idaho. (SRPhoto/Jesse Tinsley) Andrea K. George has just begun as the new executive director of the team of attorneys representing indigent crime suspects in Spokane...

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Would-be traffic stop turns into chase

An attempted traffic stop for going 10 miles over the speed limit in Spokane Valley Wednesday night turned into police chase with a felony drug suspect, officials said today. Danny D. Harman, 36, was arrested after Officer Mark Brownell performed a Pursuit Intervention Technique on...

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Deputies tackle wrong man outside court

A suspected child rapist suffered shoulder injuries when Spokane County corrections deputies apparently mistook him for another man who they’d been sent to detain outside a courtroom. “The whole time I was telling them that they got the wrong guy,” said Robert C. Botzon, 47,...

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ISP gun found in Del Taco drive thru

(AP) — The Idaho State Police is investigating after an off-duty officer's loaded service weapon was found in the parking lot of a North Idaho taco restaurant. Officials say the officer took off his holster to change his license plates, placed the .45-caliber gun on...

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$50k bond for suspect in fatal crash

A 21-year-old woman accused of leaving the scene of fatal drunken crash has been charged with two felonies. Hannah K. Hahn, 21, remains in jail on $50,000 bond after appearing in Superior Court today on charges of vehicular homicide and failure to remain at the...

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Cop questioned over Thompson support 

A Spokane police officer who says he feared for his life after being threatened by a felon was asked in court Wednesday about supportive comments he posted on a Facebook page in support of another convicted felon – former Officer Karl Thompson. Defense lawyer Doug...

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WEDNESDAY, FEB. 1, 2012

Rape alleged in prostitute's brutal murder

Spokane police are recommending murder, rape, robbery and kidnapping charges against a sex offender suspected of killing a Spokane woman who was working as a prostitute last August. Major crimes detectives have submitted the charging request for Derrick Ross Vargas, 24, (right) to the Spokane...

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Public urination claim doesn't stop probe

A 22-year-old man's claim of public urination didn't stop a sheriff's deputy investigating suspicious activity at a north Spokane church late Monday, officials said today. Yuriy V. Siriy had 19 car keys of various shapes and sizes when Deputy Daryl Smith searched him after arresting...

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Indiana man sentenced in CdA for pot

An Indiana man who grew marijuana in Latah County is to spend 18 months in federal prison under a sentence imposed this week in Coeur d'Alene. Kevin Brett Waters, 45, said he planted 67 plants on co-defendant Dawn C. Wilson's property in Kamiah before leaving...

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Driver in fatal pedestrian crash jailed

A 21-year-old vehicular homicide suspect who missed her court appearance on Monday is back in jail after turning herself in. Hannah Kay Hahn was arrested Tuesday at her lawyer’s office, KHQ-TV reports. She was booked into jail about 5:15 p.m. on charges of vehicular homicide...

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Stevens Co. murder suspect fit for trial

The suspected shooter charged with the July 17 killing of a 63-year-old Colville man has been found competent to stand trial. Eric L. Booth, 26, is expected to appear in court next Tuesday to schedule a trial, Stevens County Prosecutor Tim Rasmussen said this week....

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TUESDAY, JAN. 31, 2012

Man guilty in road rage murder re-trial 

A jury today convicted a North Idaho man of second-degree murder for fatally running over a woman during a 2006 road rage incident with her husband and two daughters. Jonathan Wade Ellington, 51, has already served six years in prison for the Jan. 1, 2006,...

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