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Spokane, Washington  Est. May 19, 1883
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WSP investigating I-90 hit-and-run crash

Compiled from staff and wire reports The Spokesman-Review

The Washington State Patrol is investigating a hit-and-run collision Monday that started a chain-reaction accident involving four vehicles, injuring two people and causing lane closures on Interstate 90.

The crash occurred at 12:24 p.m. in the westbound lanes of Interstate 90 near Havana Street, according to a press release from the WSP.

A 1997 Ford pickup was westbound when it passed a 2001 Oldsmobile van driven by a 71-year-old Post Falls man. While passing, the Ford struck the van on the passenger side, according to the release.

That collision forced the Oldsmobile van into a 2002 Ford pickup driven by a 46-year-old Chattaroy man.

The 2002 Ford then struck a 2001 Toyota Tacoma driven by a Spokane woman.

She then struck the median Jersey barrier as the 1997 Ford pickup got off I-90 at the Freya exit, according to the WSP press release.

The collision injured the 33-year-old driver of the Tacoma but she was not transported from the scene.

Her passenger, a 28-year-old Spokane woman, was taken to Deaconess Medical Center, according to the report.

The suspect’s pickup has damage on its driver’s side. Anyone with information about the crash is asked to call the Washington State Patrol at (509) 456-4101.

Geiger escapee captured, another still at large

Eric D. Peterson, one of two Geiger Corrections Center inmates who were at large, was captured Monday, a corrections officer confirmed.

Peterson, 32, was sentenced April 4 to 15 months in prison after pleading guilty to two counts of drug possession. He was mistakenly released from Geiger on April 5 because of “a breakdown in communications,” Geiger officials said last week.

Steven J. Silversten, 34, an inmate who escaped by kicking out a van window on his way back from court to the prison on April 6, still is at large. Peterson and Silversten are two of seven inmates who were inadvertently released or escaped from the minimum-security facility in leas than one year.

Child injured in Highway 95 vehicle crash

A 3-year-old girl was injured Monday afternoon in a car accident when the car in which she was riding went off Highway 95 and rolled end-over-end several times, according to the Idaho State Police.

Deyanira Shaw was listed in satisfactory condition Monday night at Sacred Heart Medical Center in Spokane. She was ejected as the Chevy Blazer rolled, according to an ISP press release.

Police said the driver, 24-year-old Anita Ponce of Rexburg, Idaho, may have fallen asleep.

The Blazer reportedly drifted off the shoulder of Highway 95 near Cocolalla, went down a 6-foot embankment and rolled.

Lisa Johnson, a spokeswoman for Kootenai Medical Center, said Ponce was in good condition Monday evening and was being transferred to Sacred Heart.

The accident is under investigation.

Burn victim may have played with gas

A teen badly burned late Friday during a camping trip on the outskirts of Mullan may have been playing with gasoline, according to a news release from the Shoshone County Sheriff’s Office.

Witnesses told detectives that Norbert E. Lane, 16, and another 16-year-old “were throwing gasoline around the camp and lighting it on fire,” according to the release.

The other teen allegedly “threw the gasoline on Lane, at which time it ignited from the gas burning on the ground.”

Lane suffered second- and third-degree burns to his stomach and legs, according to the sheriff’s office.

He was taken to Harborview Medical Center where he was listed in stable condition. Sheriff Chuck Reynalds said Lane is expected to be released today and go to his father’s home in Nampa, Idaho.

The Shoshone County Sheriff’s Office plans to question Lane.

According to the press release, Lane and the other teen were camping with three other teenagers.

Alcohol may have been a factor in the accident, which is still under investigation.

One of the teens took Lane to his home and a friend later took Lane to Shoshone Medical Center. He was taken by ambulance to Spokane’s Felts Field and then airlifted to Harborview.

No charges have been filed against any of the teens.

Man charged after altercation at motel

A traveling magazine salesman was charged with residential burglary for allegedly smashing out a window at a West Plains motel and entering an occupied room, the Spokane County Sheriff’s Office reported Monday.

A 50-year-old man told deputies he was watching a movie about 1:30 a.m. Sunday at the Cedar Village Motel when the window came crashing in and a bloody man crawled through the opening.

The victim ordered the intruder to get out, and picked up a phone to call for help.

However, the intruder pulled the phone out of his hands by the cord. The victim told deputies he then tried to push the intruder out of the room, but the man was slippery with blood.

The intruder overturned the bed and tried to hide beneath the mattress, the victim told authorities.

The victim said he eventually lured the intruder close enough to the open door to shove him outside.

Deputies reported finding Andre A. James, 23, of Massachusetts, standing outside the victim’s room when they arrived at the motel, at 5415 W. Sunset.

James, who was screaming for an ambulance, was placed in handcuffs and turned over to paramedics, the sheriff’s office reported.

The report says James apparently works with burglary suspect Duwane C. Walker, 22, who was arrested last week for allegedly committing dozens of northern Spokane County burglaries and forgeries last week.

The two are part of a transient crew of magazine salespeople working in Spokane County the past two weeks, the sheriff’s office reported.

Noted linguist Noam Chomsky to speak

Noam Chomsky, a renowned linguist, professor and political writer, will speak April 21 at Gonzaga University.

Chomsky’s speech is titled “America’s Quest for Global Dominance.” The event at GU’s Martin Center starts at 7 p.m. and is open to the public; doors open at 6.

Chomsky, 76, is a professor of linguistics at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology and is considered a pioneer in the field of linguistics. He has also written widely on philosophy and political issues.

He has been a prominent critic of U.S. foreign policy, prominently opposing the Vietnam War and recently arguing in his latest book, “Hegemony or Survival: America’s Quest for Global Dominance (The American Empire Project)” that the Sept. 11 terrorist attacks on the World Trade Center and Pentagon, while deplorable, can be traced to U.S. actions and power, according to The Columbia Encyclopedia.

The event is sponsored by GU’s Faculty Speaker Series.

Chomsky is also scheduled to speak in Pullman on April 22 at 3:30 p.m. in the Beasley Performing Arts Coliseum at Washington State University.

Hearing Thursday on rock quarry plan

The Kootenai County Commission will have a public hearing Thursday on a proposal for a 125-acre rock quarry south of Coeur d’Alene.

Forrest Godde of Yearington, Nev., is asking the county to change the zoning of the property, which is about eight miles south of Coeur d’Alene and just west of U.S. Highway 95, from rural to mining.

Commissioners visited the site in March and want more public input.

A county hearing examiner recommended denial of the request last year because the quarry could damage the Mica watershed and harm the rural character of the area.

The 10 a.m. meeting will be at the Kootenai County Administration Building, 451 Government Way. For more information, call (208) 446-1070.

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