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Spokane, Washington  Est. May 19, 1883
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Gordon Ennis to argue for new trial Friday

A former Spokane police sergeant accused of raping a fellow officer at a house party in 2015 will argue Friday in court that his trial attorney Rob Cossey withheld evidence he says would have swayed the jury toward acquittal.

Lawsuit against city alleges police K-9 bite

A woman claims a police dog owned by the Spokane Police Department bit her without provocation and wouldn’t release despite being ordered to do so by Officer Dan Lesser, according to a lawsuit filed by the Center for Justice. The lawsuit was filed in federal court last week on behalf of Natasha Hernandez.

Doris Nelson sentenced to nine years in prison for Little Loan Shoppe fraud

A sobbing Doris Nelson apologized Monday to hundreds of people who lost money to an investment scheme she ran for years to support her Little Loan Shoppe online lending business in Spokane. U.S. District Judge Robert Whaley then sentenced her to nine years in prison. “I don’t quite buy that you began evil,” Whaley told her.

Liberty Lake ordinance targets minor pot users

A new Liberty Lake ordinance allows police to ticket minors for being high in public – even if they don’t possess marijuana. Police say the law is intended to close a gap in Initiative 502, which criminalized minors possessing marijuana but said nothing about underage use.

Ponzi scheme artist denied plea withdrawal

Admitted Ponzi scheme artist Doris Nelson has lost her shot at a redo in federal court. Facing a potential prison sentence that would keep her in prison for life, the former payday loan store owner asked to withdraw her guilty plea to 110 federal crimes including money laundering, wire fraud and mail fraud.

Muslim family fights small town in court for religious exemption

SPRINGDALE, Wash. – From the cluttered back stoop of Raqeebah Amatallah’s one-story farmhouse in rural Stevens County, it’s hard to see how the snow-covered wooden structure about 50 yards away could prompt years of legal battles. Inside, there’s evidence of human occupation: a wood stove with charred kindling, a hot plate with stains from countless cooked meals, and some empty coffee cans. But no one has been there for weeks, Amatallah said.

Misconduct investigation of Colville officer ends

The Stevens County Sheriff’s Office has completed its sexual misconduct investigation of Colville police Officer Rex Newport and has turned the case over to prosecutors. Stevens County Prosecutor Tim Rasmussen said he has formally requested that the state Office of Attorney General handle charging decisions and any potential prosecution of the longtime officer.

FBI joins investigation of sex allegations against Colville officer

Federal agents have joined the investigation into a Colville police officer who has been placed on administrative leave after women came forward with allegations of sexual misconduct. The investigation of Officer Rex Newport, who has been on the force for about 15 years, was first turned over to the Stevens County Sheriff’s Office. The FBI opened its case after allegations were made that Newport violated a victim’s civil rights by committing a crime while he was on duty.

Legal questions surround shooting of car thief

Legal experts generally agree Washington state law prohibits opening fire on someone stealing your car. But as the investigation into last week’s fatal shooting of an auto thief in north Spokane continues and prosecutors prepare to decide whether the armed homeowner was justified, it’s clear numerous legal issues are at play.

Spokane attorney to argue before U.S. Supreme Court

The day in 1978 when Matthew R. Descamps broke into the CentroMart in Stockton, Calif., the man who would later argue for his freedom was settling into his second year of law school at Gonzaga. Descamps’ life drifted in and out of crime, including two felony convictions for assaulting officers and another for threatening to kill a Pend Oreille County judge. Daniel B. Johnson, meanwhile, built a modest law practice in Spokane, including more than 20 years of defending those charged with federal crimes.

Documents: McGill’s daughter described as uncooperative

Before a troubled teenager emerged as the prime suspect in a Spokane woman’s brutal riverbank slaying earlier this year, detectives had begun to suspect that the victim’s own daughter might have been involved, newly unsealed court documents show. Billie McKinney, daughter of stabbing victim Sharlotte McGill, was described by police seeking a judge’s permission to search the woman’s home as an uncooperative witness with a financial interest in her mother’s demise. But the daughter’s attorney said investigators misstated facts and misrepresented McKinney’s behavior in order to secure search warrants, and he wants an explanation.

Homicide victim’s daughter was suspected

Before a troubled teenager emerged as the prime suspect in a Spokane woman’s brutal riverbank slaying earlier this year, detectives had begun to suspect that the victim’s own daughter might have been involved, newly unsealed court documents show.