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Sirens & Gavels homicide archive

THURSDAY, JULY 12, 2012

Wrong man may be jailed for murder

The lead investigator in the 2007 beating death of an adult bookstore owner in Spokane now is questioning whether the wrong man was convicted of murder and sentenced to 40 years in prison. Spokane Police Detective Tim Madsen, in new court documents, acknowledges that 41-year-old...

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FRIDAY, JULY 6, 2012

Couple convicted, acquitted in murder

Three witnesses put the gun in her boyfriend’s hand either during or immediately after a Spokane man was shot last December following a bizarre altercation. But Melinda R. Barrera, 32, admitted pulling the trigger and a jury convicted Thursday her of second-degree murder while acquitting...

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THURSDAY, JUNE 28, 2012

Convicted killer arrested in CdA stabbing

Police on Wednesday arrested a convicted killer accused of trying to kill another man in a stabbing Monday night north of Coeur d’Alene. James H. Kountz, 56, was arrested about 5:40 p.m. in the same wooded area near U.S. Highway 95 and Wilbur Avenue where...

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MONDAY, JUNE 18, 2012

Man faces 123 years in prison for guns

A convicted felon from Stevens County now faces a minimum of 123 years in prison after a jury found him guilty today of 21 felonies that were tied to the slaying last year of a Colville man. Investigators believe was a botched burglary.The jury deliberated...

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Assault suspect jailed on $1 mil. bond

An assault suspect charged in connection with a murder at a Spokane motel in November has been jailed on $1 million bond after police caught him returning from an out-of-state flight. Stafone N. “Stix” Fuentes, 27, (pictured) is prohibited from traveling out of state under...

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SATURDAY, JUNE 16, 2012

FRIDAY, JUNE 15, 2012

Killer in hotel trashing left prison in '11 

A convicted killer accused of trashing a Spokane Valley motel while celebrating he and his wife's anniversary was released from prison just 15 months ago. Danial Caleb Peters, 38, murdered Melissa Mae Wageman, 40, on Dec. 22, 1995, after smoking crack cocaine. He told police...

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Law enforcement officers search the at home of Dr. Timothy Jorden in Hamburg, N.Y., Thursday, June 14, 2012. Jorden is sought in connection with the hospital shooting death of his ex-girlfriend at Erie County Medical Center in Buffalo, N.Y. on Wednesday. ( (AP Photo/David Duprey))

Nationwide manhunt for NY surgeon

Law enforcement officers search the at home of Dr. Timothy Jorden in Hamburg, N.Y., Thursday. Jorden is sought in connection with the hospital shooting death of his ex-girlfriend at Erie County Medical Center in Buffalo, N.Y. on Wednesday. Update from the AP: A body found...

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THURSDAY, JUNE 14, 2012

Mobster's girlfriend may appeal sentence

By DENISE LAVOIE,AP Legal Affairs Writer BOSTON (AP) — The day after the longtime girlfriend of mobster James "Whitey" Bulger was sentenced to eight years in prison for helping him while he was on the run, her lawyer filed a notice in court saying she...

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TUESDAY, JUNE 12, 2012

Report details Gibson's criminal history

When a man now charged in the 1992 shooting death of a Spokane Valley businessman left prison in the last few years, his brother attended a community meeting defending him. Patrick Kevin Gibson's neighbors had been notified of his status as a level 3 sex...

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MONDAY, JUNE 11, 2012

Judge in DNA case: 'I got it wrong'

Spokane County Superior Court Judge Tari Eitzen said today that her misunderstanding of how DNA evidence was handled led her to initially make the wrong decision about whether it can be used in a murder suspect's trial. Eitzen originally was going to prohibit prosecutors from...

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FRIDAY, JUNE 8, 2012

Tipster claims reward in Cowell murder

WENATCHEE, Wash. (AP) — A man who wrote a letter pointing to Christopher Scott Wilson as the suspect in a Wenatchee slaying is claiming a reward of up to $38,000. Theo A. Keyes wrote a letter to police telling them that Wilson (pictured) had once...

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THURSDAY, JUNE 7, 2012

CdA robbery linked to Spokane cold case

Investigators believe a sex offender on trial for the 1992 murder of a Spokane Valley furniture store owner robbed a children's apparel store at gunpoint three hours before the fatal shooting. A judge has heard testimony from Steve and Teresa Benner, who owned the Kid's...

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TUESDAY, JUNE 5, 2012

Media spar w/ Idaho over executions

BOISE - As Idaho’s news media spar with the state in federal court over limits on access to executions, the case has turned a spotlight onto Idaho’s long and consistent history of media witnesses attending its state executions to serve as the eyes and ears...

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FRIDAY, JUNE 1, 2012

Md. man says he ate heart of victim

By KASEY JONES,Associated Press BALTIMORE (AP) — A 21-year-old college student accused of killing a housemate told police he ate the victim's heart and part of his brain after he died. Alexander Kinyua hid the head and hands of the dead man in his family's...

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THURSDAY, MAY 31, 2012

WEDNESDAY, MAY 30, 2012

Murder suspect's mental state questioned

A man who told detectives he murdered another methamphetamine addict in a fight over cigarettes will undergo a mental health examination. Acquaintances of suspect Shane Caleb Smith, 38, told investigators he is known as “Psycho Shane” and sometimes speaks of imaginary people and vivid hallucinations....

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Trial begins in '92 cold case murder

Trial began Tuesday for a career criminal sex offender linked to a 1992 Spokane homicide by DNA on a fake beard. Patrick K. Gibson, 60, is charged with first-degree murder for the shooting death of Brian Cole, 48, of Nov. 7, 1992, during a robbery...

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THURSDAY, MAY 24, 2012

Beauty school killer gets 14+ years 

WENATCHEE, Wash. (AP) — A Wenatchee man accused of killing a beauty school classmate pleaded guilty to first-degree manslaughter in a plea deal Wednesday and was sentenced to more than 14 years in prison. Jury selection had been under way for the trial of Christopher...

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Murder suspect known as 'Psycho Shane'

Acquaintances of a man arrested for the shooting death of another suspected methamphetamine user told detectives he was dangerously unstable and often accused people at gunpoint of things they did not do. A witness in the investigation of Warren Scott Flinn’s homicide said suspect Shane...

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WEDNESDAY, MAY 23, 2012

Detective Michael Drapeau (front) and investigators with the Spokane County Sheriff's Office remove evidence from a house at 6704 E. Third Ave. Shane Caleb Smith, 38, was arrested there this afternoon in connection with the homicide of Warren Flinn in Spokane Valley. (Colin Mulvany / The Spokesman-Review)

Suspect arrested in Valley homicide

Detective Michael Drapeau and investigators with the Spokane County Sheriff's Office remove evidence from a house at 6704 E. Third Ave. in Spokane Valley Tuesday. (SRphoto/Colin Mulvany) A suspect was arrested today in Spokane Valley for the May 12 shooting death of a 44-year-old man....

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TUESDAY, MAY 22, 2012

Shellye Stark testifies in Spokane County Superior Court March 12. She's charged with first-degree murder and conspiracy to commit murder for the Dec. 9, 2007, shooting death of her husband, Dale Robert Stark. (Dan Pelle / The Spokesman-Review)

11 of 12 jurors wanted to convict Moore

Shellye Stark testifies in Spokane County Superior Court on March 12, 2009. (SRarchives) One juror. That's what stood between Brian Leigh Moore and felony convictions for first-degree murder and conspiracy to first-degree murder. Eleven jurors wanted to convict Moore (pictured left) on both charges, but...

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MONDAY, MAY 21, 2012

New details in Kala Williams homicide

A 20-year-old woman found dead of what police say was significant trauma told a confidant days before she disappeared that she was worried and concerned for her safety. Kala Williams got to know Erin Newberry through the Catalyst Project, an organization that helps homeless youth....

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Bonner Co. killer faces new gun charge 

A Bonner County man who served 10 years in prison for the shooting death of his girlfriend in 1999 could be headed to federal prison under a recent indictment. George John Bondurant is accused of possessing a a Remington 20-gauge shotgun on May 8, according...

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Man gets 17 years for 1986 murder

A life of crime likely ended Friday as a Spokane judge sentenced a man to 17 years in prison for the beating, rape and slaying of a 62-year-old woman on Christmas Eve 1986 that was solved only through advances in technology. Gary L. Trimble, 63,...

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Public safety news from the Inland Northwest and beyond.