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Spokane, Washington  Est. May 19, 1883
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In brief: Officers praised for actions during dangerous incident

UPDATED: Tue., April 21, 2015

Spokane police officers drew praise from the city’s Public Safety Committee on Monday for their handling of two potentially dangerous suspects in Browne’s Addition on Friday.

Police said Brandon K. Hutchinson, 30, and Christopher L. Olson, 34, crashed a car and fled on foot from the 1800 block of West First Avenue after officers initiated a traffic stop.

Hutchinson then broke into a home on Pacific Avenue, took a Taser from responding Officer Dan Cole and successfully stunned Cole on the neck, court documents say.

“In many places, that could have very easily turned into a deadly use of force incident,” said Police Chief Frank Straub.

“It’s the kind of incident 90 percent of the city will never hear about because nothing really bad happened,” said Jon Snyder, chairman of the Public Safety Committee.

Hutchinson is accused of assault, burglary, unlawful possession of firearms and possessing drugs.

Olson faces charges of eluding police, drugs and unlawful possession of firearms.

Rachel Alexander

North Spokane car crash leaves 300 without power

More than 300 north Spokane residents were without power Sunday night after a drunk driver slammed into a telephone pole at North Nevada Street and East Magnesium Road, according to Spokane police.

The outage began at 7:48 p.m. after 20-year-old Hailey M. Barker hit the pole, knocking out power for 317 Avista customers.

Avista spokeswoman Debbie Simock said the company was able to switch 136 of those residences over to other power at 10:16 p.m. The remaining 181 customers were without power until about 5:46 a.m. Monday.

Simock said the outage took some time to fix because the pole connected to both above-ground and underground lines.

“It was a complicated repair” that included replacing the pole, she said.

Police spokeswoman Monique Cotton said Barker was arrested on investigation of driving while intoxicated. Her car was impounded at the scene.

Rachel Alexander

‘Ticket bots’ could soon be illegal in Washington

OLYMPIA – Ticket-buying robots soon could be illegal in Washington.

Both legislative chambers have voted to outlaw the “ticket bots,” which are faster than humans at buying tickets to concerts and sporting events online. The measure won House approval Monday and now heads to Gov. Jay Inslee.

Ticket scalpers can use bots to buy up event tickets as soon as they go on sale, preventing many consumers from getting them at listed prices, if at all. reports that the bots have been used to buy more than 60 percent of the most desirable tickets for some shows.

Thirteen states, including Oregon, already have banned ticket bots.

David Wasson

This article was updated to correct a mis-attributed quote.
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