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Spokane, Washington  Est. May 19, 1883
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In brief: Black bear attacks jogger near Colville

Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife officers are searching for a black bear reported to have attacked a female jogger northeast of Colville on Thursday.

Stevens County Sheriff’s officials said a 36-year-old woman was attacked by a black bear while she was jogging in the late morning on a trail between Thomas and Gillette lakes, 17 miles northeast of Colville on the Colville National Forest.

She dropped to the ground into a protective fetal position and the bear batted at her and then left the area. She was treated and released Thursday at Mount Carmel Hospital in Colville.

On Friday, WDFW officials were notified of the incident by the Sheriff’s Office. State and federal wildlife staffs are investigating and placing bear traps. They may use dogs to find the bear.

U.S. Forest Service campgrounds are maintained at Thomas and Gillette lakes.

Gas prices down throughout region

Motorists traveling around the Inland Northwest will be paying less for gasoline than they did a month ago.

Prices are down by 20 to 50 cents per gallon since they peaked in late spring.

In Washington state, AAA reports the average price for regular-grade fuel is $3.80 per gallon, down from $4 or more per gallon during the spring months. Many pumps in Spokane were set at about $3.70 a gallon on Friday. The price was $3.61 in Coeur d’Alene.

Elsewhere, AAA reports the national average per-gallon price has dropped 44 cents since early May, compared with just a 13 cent decline in Idaho.

Iraq veteran Lynch to speak at Talmaks

Former Army Pfc. Jessica Lynch, who was injured and captured by Iraqi forces early in the U.S. invasion of Iraq, will be the special speaker at the 114th annual Talmaks Camp Meeting of the six Presbyterian churches of the Nez Perce Reservation on Independence Day.

Lynch, whose rescue by U.S. Special Operations Forces on March 23, 2003, was widely disseminated in the media, later rejected exaggerations of her story by the Pentagon. She said her comrade Lori Piestewa, a Hopi and the first woman killed in battle in the Iraq War, was the real hero of Nasiriyah.

Lynch will speak at 10 a.m. Monday. For more information visit

Man injured after jumping off boat

A man suffered lacerations to his scalp Friday after jumping off the bow of a moving boat on Hayden Lake.

Joshua Gaskill, 19, and several staff members from Camp Mivoden were on a pontoon boat putting on a skit for new campers when Gaskill, of Yakima, jumped off, according to a Kootenai County Sheriff’s Department news release.

Gaskill was taken to Kootenai Medical Center, where he was in fair condition Friday. Initial investigation indicates his head hit the outdrive and propeller of the boat, the news release said.

Authorities said Gaskill was wearing a personal flotation device at the time and that alcohol was not a factor.

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