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Spokane, Washington  Est. May 19, 1883
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14-year-old mother, baby found in Valley

Compiled from staff reports The Spokesman-Review

A 14-year-old Deer Park mother and her 1-month-old baby who both disappeared Wednesday were found Thursday. Several people will face charges in connection with helping the girl avoid a pending custody hearing.

The girl and baby were found at a residence in the 12100 block of East Cataldo Avenue in Spokane Valley. The baby, who has a medical condition that requires she have special food, was checked by paramedics and appeared to be fine, Spokane County sheriff’s spokesman Cpl. Dave Reagan said.

Child Protective Services then took the infant to a local hospital for further tests, Reagan said.

The girl, Jessica Poindexter, was living in Deer Park with the infant in the home of a foster parent who had custody of the baby girl. CPS had recently sent them a letter informing them of an upcoming custody hearing, Reagan said.

Detectives Dave Bentley and Kevin Bechtold and Deputy Dave Morris tracked down the girl and her baby in the home in Spokane Valley.

Poindexter’s mother, Shannon M. Jackson, a 35-year-old transient, and family friend Glo A. Mitchell, 43, 1913 E. Empire Ave. in Spokane, provided transportation for Poindexter and the baby’s 15-year-old father, Jonathan D. Fisette, Reagan said.

Fisette was taken into custody on other juvenile warrants but is expected to be charged in connection with this case, Reagan said. Jackson, Mitchell and Poindexter all were arrested on the same charge, custodial interference, Reagan said. The family who lived at the Spokane Valley address apparently didn’t know Poindexter had been listed as missing, and they weren’t charged in connection with the case, Reagan said.

Witnesses chase down prowling suspect

A claw hammer wasn’t enough to save a man from a group of citizens who say they saw him break into a red Jeep about 4 p.m. Wednesday.

Several people who were at the East Central Community Center, 500 South Stone St. in Spokane, saw a young man prowling the red Jeep. The Jeep’s owner and two other witnesses ran outside, and the man fled east on Hartson Avenue, police spokesman Dick Cottam said in a press release.

The three pursuers followed the man and caught him in a driveway in the 2100 block of East Hartson. The man ran into a garage and emerged with a hammer. He began to swing the hammer in front of him and advanced on the chasing party, Cottam said.

They backed up, and the man bolted out a gate into an ally. He stumbled over a garbage can, and the three chasers jumped on top of him and held him down. The hammer flew from the man’s hand, and arriving police officers confiscated it, Cottam said.

Officer Tom Stanton arrested 19-year-old Jeffrey A. Swecker, who gave his address as 2304 E. Hartson Ave., Cottam said.

Several witnesses confirmed that Swecker was the man they saw break into the Jeep. He was booked into jail on three counts of first-degree assault, Cottam said.

Fire destroys home in south Spokane County

Fire destroyed a mobile home in south Spokane County and burned six surrounding acres Wednesday afternoon, authorities said.

District 3 Fire Chief Bruce Holloway said 13 county firefighters and about 20 personnel from the Turnbull National Wildlife Refuge and the Department of Natural Resources responded to the 1:32 p.m. fire at the home of Ronald and LaRose McCluskey, 16520 S. Wolf Road. The fire was contained at 2:37 p.m., and the scene was cleared by 9:25 p.m., Holloway said.

The couple were not home at the time, and the cause of the fire is unknown, Holloway said. The McCluskeys’ dog and sheep were found alive, but a cat remains missing.

Chunk of eastbound I-90 going to one lane

Eastbound Interstate 90 will be reduced to one lane between the Argonne and Pines exits from 6 a.m. until midafternoon Saturday.

Drivers should expect delays.

In addition, the westbound Pines on-ramp will be closed from 6 a.m. until midafternoon Saturday.

With the westbound Evergreen on-ramp also closed, westbound drivers will need to use the ramps at Sullivan or Argonne.

Fair continues today with exhibits, activities

Here are some highlights of activities at the Spokane County Interstate Fair today. For a full fair schedule, visit

•8:30 a.m.: Gates open.

•10 a.m.: Exhibit buildings open.

•11:15 a.m.: Vocalist Merridee Joy, Community Stage.

•3 p.m.: Carnival opens.

•4 p.m.: Sunflower Saddle Ranch activities, north of grandstand.

•7 p.m.: Woodstove candy samples, steam and gas area.

Roundabout at Wellesley, A Street may open today

A new traffic roundabout at Wellesley Avenue and A Street is tentatively scheduled to open this afternoon, Spokane city officials said. Last-minute work was being finished Thursday, so the exact opening time was not known.

The roundabout will send traffic into a circle moving in a counterclockwise direction. Drivers entering the circle at about 15 mph must yield to other motorists already in the circle. Exiting the circle is done by making a right turn onto the selected street.

The intersection of Wellesley and A will be the first full-scale roundabout in the city. Other smaller traffic circles are in Browne’s Addition, the North Hill and Logan neighborhoods.

Roundabouts have a record of minimizing collisions. The intersection of Wellesley Avenue and A Street was previously controlled with stop signs on A Street. The intersection was selected for a roundabout because of high arterial speeds and a risk of serious collisions.

Bruce, Mt. Spokane Park to be closed for work

The Bruce Road and Mt. Spokane Park Drive intersection will be closed at times this weekend to all traffic.

The closures are necessary so workers can finish paving the roundabout being installed by the state Department of Transportation.

Tonight’s closure will begin at 7 and last until 10 a.m. Saturday. The intersection will then reopen until 7 p.m. Saturday, when it will close until 10 a.m. Sunday.

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