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The Spokesman-Review Newspaper The Spokesman-Review

Spokane, Washington  Est. May 19, 1883
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Police officers feared Scott Stephens’ intent

When fellow police officers heard Assistant Chief Scott Stephens say he wanted to “go home and get a rifle” after hearing of his impending demotion last December, they feared it might be more than an idle threat. After all, they knew Stephens had recently purchased a used submachine gun from the department’s armory and that he felt embarrassed, betrayed and cast aside by a City Hall administration that once praised his leadership abilities. Within hours, new Chief Frank Straub discussed the possibility of sending officers to Stephens’ home to confiscate his firearms collection, but decided against it in part because of concern it could trigger a violent backlash.

Spokane mayor hires new communications director

Spokane Mayor David Condon has chosen a new chief spokesman for the city. Brian Coddington of Hill and Knowlton Strategies, a national public relations firm with offices in Spokane, is replacing Marlene Feist, who will remain at the city as the utilities communications manager, the city announced on Thursday.

Injured woman says shooting was not drive-by

The 18-year-old woman who was shot Jan. 1 in what Spokane police previously described as a possible drive-by shooting told police that she believes she was shot twice by someone inside the home where a fight broke out over a missing pistol during a New Year’s Eve party. Detectives found ammunition for four different caliber guns at the home at 4207 N. Jefferson St., where neighbors have complained about parties for years.

Armed robbery suspect arrested

Spokane police arrested armed robbery suspect Crystal Abad on Saturday evening, a week after she was accused of robbing and shooting her ex-boyfriend. Police spokeswoman Jennifer DeRuwe said Monday that Abad was arrested without incident at 4900 N. Stevens St.

Local, national crime rates drop again

Federal crime statistics show yet again that crime just isn’t what it used to be. National and local crime numbers reported to the Federal Bureau of Investigation show a marked decline in violent crime and also a helpful relocation hint: Anyone who doesn’t want to become a victim of robbery, rape or homicide should move to Liberty Lake, which recorded zeroes in all three categories in 2011.

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.

‘I was just doing what needed to be done’

Joshua Gahl’s adrenaline took over. A woman had just been brutally attacked by a stranger with some sort of mallet as she walked down the Centennial Trail on Thursday near Spokane’s Mission Park.

Police seek burglar after attack on woman

Spokane Police investigators need help identifying a burglary suspect who attacked a 62-year-old woman in her home last week, leaving her with serious injuries.

Police won’t say if suspect was armed

Law enforcement officials are refusing to say whether a man killed by deputies Wednesday was armed when he was gunned down in his girlfriend’s backyard in Spokane Valley, though the man’s best friend claims that he was not. Spokane County Sheriff Ozzie Knezovich also would not identify the deputies until they give full interviews today to Spokane Police Department detectives. He said the two-day delay has nothing to do with his elimination in 2010 of a policy that called for a 72-hour wait before deputies were questioned.

Friend claims man shot by police was unarmed

New details are emerging from the fatal shooting in Spokane Valley including the identity of the dead man and claims from his best friend that he may not have been armed at the time of the shooting.

Downtown death remains under investigation

The Spokane Police Department is investigating the death of a man discovered last week in a downtown apartment following an autopsy from which the manner of death remains inconclusive.

Nicks set to retire as chief steps down

The Spokane Police Department’s top two officers are on their way out, leaving city officials to find new leadership as they struggle with the continuing legal fallout surrounding the death of Otto Zehm. Assistant Chief Jim Nicks announced Tuesday his upcoming retirement will coincide with the previously announced departure of Chief Anne Kirkpatrick.

GPS leads detectives to theft suspect

Spokane Police Department detectives used a GPS tracker to solve at least one recent business burglary, and they continue to investigate whether the suspect may have been involved in similar heists. Over the past several weeks, officers have received reports of more than 40 burglaries targeting tattoo shops, hair and nail salons, and other businesses, police spokeswoman Officer Jennifer DeRuwe said.