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Spokane, Washington  Est. May 19, 1883
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Wyoming man robbed at RPS mall

A Wyoming man visiting Spokane for Gonzaga University’s graduation ceremonies Sunday afternoon was robbed at knifepoint in a restroom at the River Park Square mall, Spokane police reported Tuesday.

The man said he was drying his hands in the restroom about 4:45 p.m. when the robber approached, pointed a 6-inch knife at him, and demanded money, police spokesman Dick Cottam said.

The robber took cash from the victim and ran out of the north doors of the mall to Post Street, Cottam said.

He was described as white with a pale complexion, in his late teens or early 20s, about 5-foot-10 and 135 pounds. He had a dark beard and was wearing a baseball cap. Anyone with information about the robbery is asked to call Crime Check at 456-2233.

Departments to help Special Olympics

Several local law enforcement agencies will participate in the annual Torch Run for Special Olympics on Thursday to raise money for athletes and raise awareness for the games.

Runners and walkers from the city police, the Spokane County Sheriff’s Office, the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives, the Drug Enforcement Agency, the Gambling Commission, U.S. Marshals Services and the Secret Service will participate in the event, which begins at 8 a.m. near the Carrousel in Riverfront Park.

Race participants, including commissioned or civilian members of the agencies, will carry the torch for three-mile segments of the 32-mile course, which travels up High Drive, loops around the city’s borders and finishes back at the Carrousel, Spokane police spokesman Dick Cottam said.

The public is encouraged to cheer on race participants. For more information, call Special Olympics Washington State at (206) 362-4949 or go to www.specialolympics.org.

B.C. men plead guilty to smuggling pot

Two British Columbia men caught smuggling 237 pounds of marijuana down the Columbia River in a small boat pleaded guilty this week to possessing marijuana with intent to deliver.

Steven W. Gunville, 19, of Ymir, and Andrew F. Mitchell, 20, of Salmo, were fined $2,500 and sentenced to two years in prison.

The prison terms handed down Monday by Stevens County Superior Court Judge Al Neilson were four times the standard maximum for possession of marijuana with intent to deliver, but the fines were a tiny fraction of the value of the high-quality “B.C. bud” Gunville and Mitchell were smuggling.

John Troberg, Stevens County’s chief criminal deputy prosecutor, said law enforcement officers estimated the street value of the drug at $3,000 to $5,000 a pound, for a total of $711,000 to almost $1.2 million.

Citing the amount of pot being smuggled and the relative sophistication of the delivery scheme, Troberg requested the exceptional sentence that Nielson imposed.

Defense attorney Frank Cikutovich urged Nielson to impose only the standard maximum of six months.

Mitchell and Gunville were arrested March 5 at the Northport-area home of Rhame A. “Ray” Elliott, 57, and his wife, Pauline H. Elliott, 60.

The Elliotts face trial June 7 on the same charges that Gunville and Mitchell admitted. The Elliotts are accused of allowing their waterfront home in the China Bend area, 32 miles north of Colville, to be used as a way station in exchange for some of the pot.

Longview Fibre fined for air pollution

OLYMPIA — The state Department of Ecology has fined Longview Fibre more than $130,000 for a series of more than 150 separate air pollution violations.

Ecology officials said the company reported all the air-permit violations, which occurred at the pulp and paper mill from November 2003 to January 2004.

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