Arrow-right Camera
The Spokesman-Review Newspaper
Spokane, Washington  Est. May 19, 1883

Sirens & Gavels

THURSDAY, AUG. 6, 2009

Courthouse watch: 8.6.09

The former security supervisor for The Spokesman-Review pleaded guilty today to three sexual assault charges that could keep him in prison for life. Robert J. Robel, 61, (right) pleaded guilty to first-degree rape of a child, second-degree rape of a child and first-degree child molestation.…

Continue reading this post »


Marijuana grow gets man 6 years in prison 

A Mexican man will spend more than six years in prison for operating a large marijuana grow that did more than $10,000 damage to the Okanogan National Forest, according to the U.S attorney's office. Moyses Mesa-Barajas, 43, was arrested last August after federal and state…

Continue reading this post »

Courthouse watch: 8.5.09

A 21-year-old Spokane man pleaded not guilty today to second-degree rape of a woman who said she was sexually assaulted at a party.Here's Thomas Clouse's report: "Anthony J. Wilson appeared before Superior Court Judge Ellen Kalama Clark, who ordered a sexual assault protection order against…

Continue reading this post »

Department of Corrections prison cell phones (Colin Mulvany / The Spokesman-Review)

'If it were legal'

The Washington Department of Corrections has joined agencies in more than two dozen states in calling on the Federal Communications Commission to allow cell phone signals to be jammed in prisons. Shortly after that was announced, the DOC scheduled media events to demonstrate how DOC…

Continue reading this post »

TUESDAY, AUG. 4, 2009

Boyfriend of Resort victim ran for Idaho Senate

Check out my story here for new information on the tragic death at the Coeur d'Alene Resort last week. UPDATE: Hambrice's blood-alcohol level was .23, police said Wednesday. The article includes comments from a colleague of Lynea M. Sprung Hambrice at Louisiana State University. What…

Continue reading this post »

Courthouse watch: 8.4.09 

The defendant seemed disgruntled as he said "not guilty" after each charge. "Almost done," his public defender whispered to David L. "Cowboy Dave" Harwood, 39. It took Harwood saying "not guilty" 19 times, but eventually his arraignment for a bust connected to a major Sheriff's…

Continue reading this post »

MONDAY, AUG. 3, 2009

Alleged groping incident caught on tape

A woman who claims a Coeur d’Alene police officer groped her during a drunken driving arrest last summer has video of the interaction from a police cruiser’s dash camera.But what the 45-minute video (a segment is posted above) means for the lawsuit filed by Coeur…

Continue reading this post »

Courthouse watch: 8.3.09

A man accused of raping a woman in north Spokane was arrested on a similar charge last year but cleared after a jury couldn't reach a verdict. Justin L. Dehn, 22, remains in Spokane County Jail on $25,000 bail after appearing in Superior Court on…

Continue reading this post »

Another prison term, but for real this time

A Shoshone County man who filled his computer with thousands of videos of children being sexually abused will spend the next 10 years in federal prison. Kenneth Jack Hendryx, 58, of Silverton, Idaho, pleaded guilty to possessing sexually explicit images of minors in March and…

Continue reading this post »

FRIDAY, JULY 31, 2009

Frederick Russell turns to address the families of victims in the Whitman County Superior Court of Judge David Frazier  in Colfax Wednesday January 2, 2008 .  Russell was sentenced to 171 months for his convictions on vehicular homicide and assault.  CHRISTOPHER ANDERSON The Spokesman-Review (Christopher Anderson / The Spokesman-Review)

Russell appeals his 3 convictions 

Despite apologizing for the drunken crash that killed three Washington State University students and seriously injured three others (shown above), Fred Russell has appealed his conviction and 14-year prison sentence. Read Tom Clouse's story here. Read past coverage of the case here

Continue reading this post »

Courthouse watch: 7.31.09 

A man who eluded federal authorities for nearly a month was captured today after U.S Marshals tracked his muddy footprints in northeast Spokane County. Anthony E. Burke, 21, served time in federal prison for possessing ammunition when history of commitment at a mental hospital prohibited…

Continue reading this post »


Courthouse watch: 7.30.09

No material from convicted killer Shellye Stark's former lawyer's files will go to prosecutors seeking a murder conviction against her married boyfriend because the material could be critical to Stark's appeal, a judge ruled today. Spokane County Superior Judge Ellen Kalama Clark dodged a legal…

Continue reading this post »

Sting targets Craigslist prostiution

Kootenai County authorities were monitoring local Craigslist postings even before Philip Markoff was charged with murder and with assaulting and robbing women he’d met through the Web site, which offers free classified ads. Their effort highlights a sex market that thrives online and exists all…

Continue reading this post »

Still wanted: Stoney Boy and Mikey Mike

Crime Stoppers is offering a reward for information that helps arrest two men wanted in connection with a July 24 shooting. Police say Timothy “Stoney Boy” Lucious, 38, (left) and Michael “Mikey Mike” R. Gardner, 23, (right) were involved in an early-morning altercation near South…

Continue reading this post »

Pierre West enters court in May 2009 to face charges of first-degree kidnapping, rape and assault for attacks on prostitutes that date to 2005.  (Dan Pelle / The Spokesman-Review)

Juror's omission gets West new trial

A judge has overturned a conviction that would have put a registered sex offender in prison for life. Spokane County Superior Court Judge Michael Price on Thursday ordered a new trial after a juror acknowledged she knew the defendant, Pierre D. West, prior to his…

Continue reading this post »

TUESDAY, JULY 28, 2009

Courthouse watch: 7.28.09

Two men accused of robbing a payday loan center Monday night met two very different fates today in Spokane County Superior Court. One was jailed on $100,000 bail. The other was ordered released after a judge ruled there was no probable cause to hold him…

Continue reading this post »

Garden Springs 1st grader Cody Gronau works on his pronouncation of the "N" sound during a class exercise on Dec. 5, 1996. (Dan Pelle / The Spokesman-Review)

Then and now: Sleepy car thief

A Spokane teenager who fell asleep in a stolen car after asking convenience store customers for help hot-wiring was sentenced to 90 days in jail with credit for 86 days served.Cody A. Gronau, 19, (pictured above in 1996 as a Garden Springs first grader) was…

Continue reading this post »

15 years for meth; 6 months for homicide

A Post Falls man will spend at least five years in prison for selling and possessing methamphetamine. Donald J. Hall, 42, was sentenced Monday to 15 years in prison with eligibility for parole after five years. Judge Lansing Haynes sentenced Hall, who was charged after…

Continue reading this post »

MONDAY, JULY 27, 2009

Second mistrial declared in rape case

A mistrial was declared in the trial of a young man accused of raping a woman at a party on Halloween 2007. Kevin A. Thompson is charged with second-degree rape for the alleged attack at a home in the Whitworth University area. Spokane County Superior…

Continue reading this post »

Courthouse watch: 7.27.09

Suspects listed on today's court docket included a man accused of a jewelry scam.Christopher M. Lancaster, 26, was charged in February after police raided Clocktower Jewelry in January, where they say Lancaster was selling jewelry he'd stolen from Dodson Jewelry, where he'd work since July…

Continue reading this post »

Opera proves an effective crime-repellent

SEATTLE (AP) — The idea of using annoying music to repel loiterers is catching on a some businesses and other locations in the Puget Sound area.Classical music has cleared the parking lot at Saar's Market in the Rainier Beach neighborhood of Seattle where crowds of…

Continue reading this post »

FRIDAY, JULY 24, 2009

Former Bonner County sheriff’s Deputy James Sebero leaves the  federal courthouse in Spokane  on Friday. He is charged with a number of frauds including collecting $1.5 million in VA benefits after feigning a disability.  (Christopher Anderson / The Spokesman-Review)

Courthouse watch: 7.24.09 

A former Bonner County Sheriff’s deputy’s sentencing was postponed Friday in federal court in Spokane when the judge requested more information on the man’s health.Here's Thomas Clouse's report:"James M. Sebero, 59, (shown above in 2008) previously pleaded guilty to defrauding the U.S. Department of Veterans…

Continue reading this post »

Public safety news from the Inland Northwest and beyond.