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Lewiston names Ayers new police chief

Compiled from wire reports The Spokesman-Review

Lewiston, Idaho A 27-year veteran of the Lewiston Police Department has been named its chief.

Capt. Paul D. Ayers, who has been interim head of the 65-person department since September, accepted the permanent post Wednesday.

Ayers, 52, was a finalist for the job last summer when Moscow Police Capt. David Duke was hired after a national search. Duke quit after just three weeks, saying the level of civic commitment set by the previous chief, Jack Baldwin, was more than he had expected.

Duke returned to Moscow and Ayers was named interim chief.

Ayers will be paid $77,033 a year, about $2,000 more than Duke and $2,000 less than Baldwin was making after 14 years as chief.

That’s about 10 percent more than Ayers was receiving as captain,

“Just because I’m changing chairs doesn’t mean there will be a lot of changes in the operation of the department,” Ayers said. “It’s already a good department.”

Former Rupert police chief won’t face charges

Rupert, Idaho Former Rupert Police Chief Kenneth Fedders won’t face criminal charges related to allegations of unlawful abuse of police authority and bribery, according to the Idaho Attorney General’s office.

Fedders had been accused of the crimes in connection with an alcohol-related traffic stop of a city official on whose behalf the police chief allegedly intervened.

But the Idaho Attorney General’s Office concluded Fedders’ conduct didn’t rise to the level of a felony and that the statute of limitations has expired for any misdemeanors he may have committed, said Steven A. Bywater, chief of the office’s criminal law division.

In May 2002, Rupert Police Lt. Todd McGhie stopped Kenny Smith, the head of the city’s electrical department, for speeding on his motorcycle and arrested him for allegedly driving under the influence of alcohol.

McGhie contacted his supervisor and said he believed Smith was intoxicated and that Smith had an open container, according to a report by a criminal investigator hired to look into the matter.

In the report, the supervisor allegedly called Fedders, who came to the scene and released Smith from custody.

“When Chief Fedders arrived at the scene ‘things turned around.’ (Fedders) just kind of took care of me and walked me back to the house,” Smith told the investigator.

Smith said Fedders told him “we needed to take care of each other,” the report said.

Bush to visit Montana, other states

Helena President Bush will visit Great Falls on Thursday as part a tour to promote his plan for changes in Social Security, the White House said Friday.

Bush is expected to fly first to Fargo, N.D., then to Great Falls and finally Omaha, Neb. He will spend the night there before flying to Little Rock, Ark., and Tampa, Fla.

He will take part in what the White House is calling a “Conversation on Social Security Reform.”

Bush has proposed letting workers divert some of their Social Security taxes to personal investment accounts. Officials in the Bush administration said the president is visiting states with Democratic senators the day after his State of the Union address, with the hope of applying pressure on them to back his plan.

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