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Spokane, Washington  Est. May 19, 1883
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Kerns, Fennessy still leading in close races

All four candidates involved in close races in Spokane County picked up more votes in Wednesday’s second count of ballots, but no one was able to make enough of a gain to change the outcome.

Spokane County Superior Court may have new judge

Early election results Tuesday night showed Judge Greg Sypolt, who’s been in office since 1996, losing to challenger Tim Fennessy, a civil attorney. Judge Linda Tompkins held on to her seat by a comfortable margin against challenger Ward Andrews.

Civil attorney Tim Fennessy challenges Judge Greg Sypolt

A Spokane County Superior Court judge who’s been on the bench for more than 20 years faces a challenge from an experienced civil attorney who thinks the county’s highest court needs new perspective. Judge Greg Sypolt, who was appointed in 1996, is running against Tim Fennessy, who believes the court would benefit from having more judges with civil case experience.

Family in grief testifies at murder sentencing

Even with a predetermined term of life in prison, the sentencing of convicted killer Clay D. Starbuck was emotional Thursday as family and friends tearfully described the devastation of two broken families and the Starbuck children vowed to keep pressure on investigators to search for what they called their mother’s real killer. Superior Court Judge Greg Sypolt’s sentence was determined on June 4 when the jury convicted Starbuck of aggravated first-degree murder and sexually violating human remains in connection with the December 2011 torture slaying of 42-year-old Chanin Starbuck.

Starbuck guilty of ex-wife’s murder

Each day during the two-week murder trial of her former son-in-law, Melanie Bourcier would position herself so that Clay Starbuck would see her scowl as corrections deputies led him past her in the courtroom. On Tuesday, Bourcier trembled, tears streaming down her face, as she said she believes a Spokane County jury delivered justice for the torture killing of her daughter, 42-year-old Chanin Starbuck of Deer Park.

Starbuck case in jury’s hands

Accused murderer Clay Starbuck was a jealous, controlling, obsessed, greedy and angry man who finally took out his frustrations against the woman with whom he shared two marriages and several children, a Spokane County deputy prosecutor told a Spokane jury Monday. But Starbuck’s defense attorney said the case against the 48-year-old Deer Park man, who’s charged with aggravated first-degree murder and sexually violating human remains in the death of his ex-wife, doesn’t add up. The defense attorney also questioned why investigators stopped short in testing all the evidence from the 2011 crime scene.

Defendant had wounds, Starbuck detective says

A Deer Park man charged with strangling his ex-wife and sexually violating her remains had wounds on his right hand and forehead, the lead detective in the case told jurors Tuesday.

Examiner describes injuries in Clay Starbuck case

The jury spent half the day Thursday hearing testimony and looking through autopsy photos from a prolonged attack that killed Chanin Starbuck. The key testimony came from Spokane County Medical Examiner Dr. Sally Aiken, who painstakingly described every bruise, broken rib and internal injury that she said had to have been inflicted over a long period of time.

Sons criticize investigation of mother’s homicide

The lives of a Deer Park family are about to be thrust salaciously into the public spotlight. Clay D. Starbuck, a former pipeline worker with no criminal record, is fighting allegations he strangled the mother of his children and left her nude body positioned in a sexually suggestive way that was intended to cause police to suspect one of the many men she’d met through online dating websites.

Unrelenting effort wins man his freedom

A man who spent nearly six years in prison for a murder he didn’t commit had one request Thursday after a judge set him free: a double cheeseburger from Zip’s. Jeramie R. Davis, 42, also looked forward to bonding with his 5-year-old son, Elijah, who was born shortly after his arrest in 2007.

Convict freed after murder case crumbles

A man who spent nearly six years in prison for a murder he didn’t commit had one thing on his mind today after a judge set him free: a double cheeseburger from Zips.

Brian Moore pleads guilty before retrial

The California man who prosecutors said helped plan the 2007 murder of Dale Stark pleaded guilty Wednesday to second-degree murder just days before his retrial was set to start. A jury in May deadlocked 11-1 to convict Brian L. Moore, 46, on charges of first-degree murder by accomplice and conspiracy to commit first-degree murder. Moore was charged with helping Shellye Stark plan and carry out the Dec. 9, 2007, shooting death of her estranged husband, Dale R. Stark, in his South Hill home.

Prosecutor intends to try man again on murder charge

A man who had his first-degree murder conviction erased earlier this summer will remain in jail unless he can come up with a portion of his $500,000 bond that a judge handed down Wednesday. Superior Court Judge Greg Sypolt in July ordered a new trial for Jeramie R. Davis, who had been sentenced in 2008 to 40 years in prison for the bludgeoning death of a 74-year-old adult-bookstore owner. Davis admitted to stealing pornography and sex toys from the store but denies killing John G. “Jack” Allen, saying the owner was dead when he got there.

Judge grants Davis new trial

A judge granted a new trial for a man convicted four years ago of the 2007 beating death of an adult bookstore owner in Spokane. The Thursday ruling follows the conviction two weeks ago of another man for the same crime.

Tire-iron assailant found guilty

A jury of seven men and five women convicted a Spokane man Tuesday of attacking an Iraqi refugee with a tire iron and leaving him with severe head injuries. Sentencing has not been set, but 25-year-old Grant T. McAdams faces somewhere between 17 and 22 years in prison after being found guilty of first-degree assault and first-degree robbery for the May 9, 2011, attack that nearly killed Emad Mohammed Salih, who immigrated to Spokane after helping the U.S. military in his native Iraq.

Jury weighing case of murder by accomplice

A jury has begun deliberating the case of a Southern California man accused of helping his lover, a former prostitute, plan the killing of a Spokane man in 2007. Brian Moore, 46, had to wipe his eyes after listening to the 911 tape of Shellye Stark screaming, moaning and heavily breathing just moments after she fired five bullets into her estranged husband, Dale Stark, on Dec. 9, 2007.

In brief: Allred filing to fix in-kind reporting error

BOISE – Democratic gubernatorial candidate Keith Allred is amending his campaign’s financial disclosures to include an in-kind contribution worth $3,000 to $4,000 for work done by the Boise-based business consulting firm he just joined as a partner. Several employees at HB Ventures conducted an analysis last March or April meant to examine how far Idaho’s economy had fallen behind neighboring states and why.