Arrow-right Camera
The Spokesman-Review Newspaper

The Spokesman-Review Newspaper The Spokesman-Review

Spokane, Washington  Est. May 19, 1883
Partly Cloudy Day 25° Partly Cloudy
News >  Pacific NW

In brief: Missing elderly man found dead nearby in Spokane Valley

From Staff And Wire Reports

An elderly man with Alzheimer’s disease who went missing Friday in Spokane Valley was found dead later that night in the backyard of a residence about four blocks west of the nursing home where he lived.

Glen Stratton had been last seen at The Gardens on University, 414 S. University Road, about 6:15 p.m. The 89-year-old, who used a wheelchair, was reported missing that night.

Spokane County sheriff’s major crimes detectives processed the scene where Stratton’s body was found. The cause of death will be determined by the county’s medical examiner.

Brush fire closes I-90 westbound

A brush fire near Interstate 90 in Grant County prompted officials to close the freeway’s westbound lanes for several hours Sunday.

The fire burned between the interstate and the Columbia River near Vantage. Westbound traffic was halted at Silica Road, and the lanes were reopened after 8 p.m.

The Grant County Sheriff’s Office also issued an evacuation order for campers at Old Vantage Highway. No structures were threatened.

Seattle tickets men, blacks most for pot

SEATTLE – A second police study of marijuana-use tickets in Seattle has found men and blacks are most likely to be ticketed.

The results were similar to the first study after pot was legalized in Washington: Men received about 90 percent of the tickets, and downtown parks are again popular places for officers to hand out tickets, the Seattle Times reported.

The results of the police department’s study, which is required by city ordinance, will be discussed this morning during a City Council briefing.

Police issued 85 tickets, each of which carries a $27 penalty, from July 1, 2014, through the end of last year. Although blacks make up about 8 percent of Seattle’s population, they received about 27 percent of tickets issued. Forty-four tickets – more than half – were issued in downtown city parks.

Only about 9 percent of the tickets were paid, with 70 percent in default, according to the study.

All the tickets included in the police department’s first report were thrown out last year as part of a “reset effort” because a single policeman, Officer Randy Jokela, wrote the majority of them.

Although reports are due to the City Council every six months, it has been almost a year since the police department’s first report.

Tunnel work should resume in months

SEATTLE – Seattle’s broken-down tunnel boring machine is slated to start digging again by the end of November and should reach the north end of downtown in about a year, officials said Friday.

But drivers wouldn’t be traveling through the tunnel until 2018 – almost three years later than originally planned, said Todd Trepanier, the state’s program manager. And Trepanier said the state isn’t able to verify the contractor’s schedule.

The state’s contractor – Seattle Tunnel Partners – released the updated schedule and led members of the media on a tour of what would someday be a double-decker roadway, replacing the Alaskan Way Viaduct after it was damaged in the 2001 Nisqually magnitude-6.8 earthquake.

Although the machine isn’t digging, crews have continued to build other parts of the overall $3.1 billion replacement project’s entry and exit sites. In addition to delays, critics worry about potential cost overruns. The state has emphasized that under the contract, Seattle Tunnel Partners would be on the hook for extra costs. But others expect any disputes to be settled in the courts.

Bertha, the tunnel boring machine, broke down in December 2013 and crews spent much of 2014 digging a pit to access the front of the machine so the cutter head could be repaired.

Seattle Tunnel Partners pulled the machine out of the ground in March, and said in a statement Friday that they began installing a new main bearing on the machine last week.

Repairs are scheduled to be completed in the fall, said project manager Chris Dixon.

“We want to reassemble the machine and resume tunneling as quickly as possible, but we also want to ensure the repairs are done right,” he said.

Child cancer clinic coming to Kalispell

KALISPELL – A children’s cancer clinic is being established in Kalispell so patients from Western Montana can stay closer to home for most treatments.

Kalispell Regional Healthcare is working with a Billings doctor to create a pediatric hematology and oncology clinic.

The Daily Inter Lake reported that child cancer patients in Western Montana have had to travel to Spokane, Seattle or Denver for treatment.

Dr. Carrie Neuhardt, who has spent the last three years as a pediatric specialist in hematology and oncology in Billings, will move to the Flathead Valley in August to start a new clinic.

Neuhardt described the Kalispell undertaking as a major move for health care in Montana.

Bystander praised for saving woman

BEAVERTON, Ore. – Firefighters are crediting a bystander with saving a woman’s life when he broke out a window and pulled her from a burning vehicle at an Oregon gas station.

Tualatin Valley Fire and Rescue said the vehicle and a gas pump were fully engulfed in flames when firefighters arrived Saturday at the gas station in the Portland suburb of Beaverton.

The woman was taken to a hospital to treat non-life-threatening injuries from smoke inhalation. The bystander was treated at the scene for minor cuts.

Battalion Chief Leonard Damian said the bystander’s actions were nothing short of heroic.

Fire officials said a gas station employee prevented the incident from escalating by quickly shutting off the main gas supply.

The Spokesman-Review Newspaper

Local journalism is essential.

Give directly to The Spokesman-Review's Northwest Passages community forums series -- which helps to offset the costs of several reporter and editor positions at the newspaper -- by using the easy options below. Gifts processed in this system are not tax deductible, but are predominately used to help meet the local financial requirements needed to receive national matching-grant funds.

Active Person

Subscribe now to get breaking news alerts in your email inbox

Get breaking news delivered to your inbox as it happens.