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The Spokesman-Review Newspaper The Spokesman-Review

Spokane, Washington  Est. May 19, 1883
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PCT speed queen shares vignettes of her hike

Calm before the trek Anish started her PCT speed record attempt on June 8, 2013, heading into 700 miles of California desert, where temps soared to nearly 120 degrees.

Ricin-laced mail sent in stolen law firm stationery

A letter laced with the lethal toxin ricin arrived at the Thomas S. Foley Courthouse last May in a stolen envelope emblazoned with the name of a major law firm in downtown Spokane, according to court documents. Matthew Ryan Buquet, 34, has been in federal custody since a few days after mailings that tested positive for the castor bean-derived poison started showing up at the courthouse, a Spokane post office, Fairchild Air Force Base and the White House mail facility. The courthouse letter, which read, “We have a bomb placed we are going to kill you! Hezbollah,” arrived in an envelope from Lukins and Annis, according to federal court filings.

Woman embezzled $270,000 from law firm

A woman who managed the payroll for a Spokane law firm is headed to prison after embezzling $270,000 to feed her prescription painkiller habit. Dawn L. Balzert, 44, cried as she explained to U.S. District Court Judge Justin Quackenbush how her addiction to OxyContin got so out of hand that she was at one point illegally buying the powerful painkiller on the street with money she stole from her employer, the law firm of Lukins & Annis. She initially was prescribed OxyContin by her physician following a surgical procedure.

Paine Hamblen law firm names first female managing partner

Paine Hamblen LLP, Spokane’s second-oldest law firm, has appointed attorney Jane Brown to be its managing partner. That appointment marks the first time a woman has been named the top manager of one of Spokane’s largest law firms, longtime Spokane attorneys say. Brown, 52, has been with the firm since 1990, when she began work as a legal assistant. She graduated from Gonzaga Law School in 1995.

In grizzly country, caution is key

Grizzly bears are tucked away in their winter dens for at least another six weeks. But grizzly specialist Kim Annis is already embarking on northwestern Montana’s rural talk circuit. Hired four years ago by Montana Fish, Wildlife and Parks, Annis speaks to hundreds of people each year at libraries, schools and community events about living in grizzly country.

Single-engine aircraft that crashed left from Elk airstrip

A single-engine airplane that took off Friday from an airstrip north of Spokane crashed in Western Washington, killing two people aboard, authorities confirmed Saturday. The deceased are believed to be a father and son from the Deer Park area, said Lt. Rob Palmer of the Snohomish County Sheriff’s Office. The bodies had not been recovered Saturday from the wreckage, he said.