sheriffsmSheriff Brian Burnett reports on Saturday April 30th, shortly after 7:30 pm, Chelan County Deputies responded to a Wenatchee area home for a reported shooting. The reporting party said she and her brother were in the backyard at a neighboring house and her brother was struck in the face with debris from the gunshot. She also described several people fleeing a neighboring residence in a passenger vehicle.

Upon arrival Deputies located two victims at the neighboring residence. The two victims, both adult males, were attending a party and were sitting in the backyard when both were struck by pellets from a shotgun. One victim was taken to Central Washington Hospital where he was treated and released for pellet wounds to his face. The second victim was not transported and received a minor injury to his arm from being struck by shotgun pellets.

With help from Wenatchee Police Department, Deputies attempted to call out anyone inside the residence where the shotgun blast originated. No one responded. Not knowing whether someone inside the residence was injured, and as a community care taking function, Deputies and Officers entered into the residence. They did not locate any additional victims, but did discover a 20 gauge shotgun inside the residence and evidence of a shotgun blast traveling from the inside to the outside of the residence. The shotgun blast created a golf ball sized hole in the exterior of the residence in the direction of the neighboring property and Prom party.

Deputies contacted another neighbor who stated she was the caretaker of the abandoned residence. She attempted to remove some people who were no longer meeting their rental agreement requirements. There was an argument over property left inside the residence, and the caretaker stated one of the subjects broke into the abandoned residence, so she went to confront them with a shotgun. While inside the residence, she stated one of the subjects made an aggressive move towards her, so she fired one round from the shotgun. This was the one round that struck the two victims at the neighboring residence. The subjects the caretaker was talking to fled the scene prior to Deputies arrival and have not been located.

Chenoa Prather, a 33 year old female from Wenatchee, who identified herself as the caretaker, was booked into Chelan County Regional Justice Center for two counts of Reckless Endangerment for firing the one shotgun round and striking the unintended victims next door.

The investigation is ongoing and the Sheriff’s Office is attempting to locate the subject that fled.

wsdot logoCrews expect to open the highway in time for fishing season

WINTHROP – Crews expect to swing open the winter closure gates to State Route 20, the North Cascades Highway, at 11 a.m. Friday, April 22. That is a week earlier than predicted when the clearing work began on St. Patrick’s Day.

Washington State Department of Transportation crews began clearing the North Cascades Highway five weeks ago on March 17.

The mid-morning reopening allows the crew time to sweep the entire 37-mile winter closure zone for sand, rocks and debris, clear any snow from below avalanche chutes, and apply sand or deicer as needed.

By Wednesday the crews had cleared the last seven miles of highway separating at the end of week 4.  Warm temperatures sped the clearing and allowed for successful avalanche control to clear the chutes that still held snow so the highway can be safely opened.

“We all live up here and know it’s important for local businesses to have the highway open for the lowland fishing season and ‘49er Days Festival in Winthrop,” said Don Becker, WSDOT maintenance supervisor.

Last year it took crews only three weeks and it opened April 3. There was only one year, 1977, when the highway never closed, due to a drought.  The earliest opening was March 10, 2005.

For more information, including a history of opening and closing dates, maps, photos and progress reports on the 2016 opening, visit the North Cascades web page:

www.wsdot.wa.gov/traffic/passes/northcascades 

Most likely to succeed

wsdot logoMeetings scheduled in Ritzville, Moses Lake later this month

OLYMPIA –A request to increase speed limits on a roughly 100-mile stretch of Interstate 90 in eastern Washington is being considered and the Washington State Department of Transportation is asking for comments from interested citizens.

The proposed speed limit increase would be from the current 70 miles per hour to 75. The affected area is from the town of George, east to the western border of the Spokane County line.

A bill passed in the 2015 Legislature allows the Secretary of Transportation to increase the speed limit on any highway to a maximum 75 mph. Lawmakers in eastern Washington have asked Acting Secretary of Transportation Roger Millar to consider such an  increase on I-90. If an increase was approved, the limit would remain 60 mph for vehicles over 10,000 pounds or vehicles pulling trailers.

Since August, WSDOT has worked with the state Traffic Safety Commission and the Washington State Patrol to evaluate the I-90 request. The evaluation process included:

  • gathering information from other states that have raised speed limits
  • developing criteria to evaluate where and how speed limits might be raised
  • assessing the effects of an increase and identifying any needed highway feature modifications
  • examining how decisions about speed limit increases can take into account vehicle crash history, societal costs due to crashes, fuel costs and benefits associated with travel time savings.

Two meetings are scheduled later this month to provide information about the speed limit increase request and to take public comments. Comments can also be provided online.

Ritzville

4 to 7 p.m., Tuesday, April 19

Best Western Plus Bronco Inn, 105 W. Galbreath Way.

Moses Lake

11:30 a.m., Wednesday, April 20 – as part of a presentation to the Washington Transportation Commission

Moses Lake Civic Center, Council Chambers, 401 S. Balsam Street

Based on the results of the analysis, public comments and consultation with traffic safety partners, WSDOT will make a decision whether to raise the speed limit for this section of I-90. The decision is expected in May. If the limit is increased, it would become effective once new speed limit signs are posted.

manson parks logo

Regular Board Meeting
142 Pedoi St., Bumgarner Building, April 14th, 2016, 4:00pm
I. Call to Order
II. Flag Salute
III. Agenda Deletions and Additions
IV. Public Comment/Questions
V. Approval of Minutes
a. Minutes of the March 10th, 2016 Regular Meeting
VI. Financial Review
a. Review Monthly Financial Reports
b. Review and Approve Monthly Voucher
VII. Old Business
a. Director’s Report
b. Park Improvements
i. Downtown Waterfront Master Plan
ii. Willow Point
iii. Project Priorities
VIII. New Business
a. Resolution 2016-02
b. Old Mill Annual Passes
c. Link Agreement
IX. Adjournment
Next Regular Meeting: May 12th, 2016 at 4:00pm, 142 Pedoi St., Bumgarner Building

Recruit firefighters completed the weekend firefighter fundamentals class this weekend where they learned about breathing apparatus, basic hose handling, and basic ladder operations. Recruit classes will continue over the next two months covering a variety of firefighting subjects.

Great job to all the recruits and a special thanks to our instructors, officers and driver/operators. Captain Lee Jones, Lt. Hal Jones , FF/EMT Justin Thorpe, FF Jon Mendoza, D/O Brian Thompson.

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Pictured above from left to right: Back row Thomas Ramella, Tim McCord, DO Brain Thompson, Lt. Hal Jones, FF Jon Mendoza, Andy Gavin, Karl Koester, Lt. Eric Sanderson

Front lower row: Patrick Micheal, Steve Garvich, Kevin Cox, Alexander Volfe, FF Justin Thorpe.

Not in the picture: Ben Laughlin, Vladimir Stepanov, Seth Williams, Capt. Lee Jones.

ChelanFireRescueLogo200Chelan Fire and Rescue responded to a reported house fire at 926 Renn Terrance Drive in Chelan on 04/09/2016 around 0142 hours. Command 701, Engine 71, 73, Tender 71, Ladder71 responded on the first alarm, Command 5, Engine 52, Support 71 responded on the 2nd alarm. Engine 74, 72 moved up to the City of Chelan to provide coverage.

Engine 71 arrived to an exterior wall fire that had moved into the kitchen area of the residence with extension to the near-by brush and neighbors fence. Engine 71’s crew made an aggressive exterior attack knocking down the exterior fire and transitioning to the interior of the house knocking down the fire in the kitchen.

Fire was brought under control within 25 minute from the time it was reported. Chelan County Sheriff Deputies and Lake Chelan EMS units responded in support of the fire operations.

Fire is currently under investigation and appears to be a possible electrical/mechanical failure.

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sheriffsmAs the warm spring weather draws people to our local waters, The Chelan County Sheriff’s Office would like to remind everyone that our local waters can be dangerous this time of year. The water can be high, swift and cold as mountain snowpack melts, making hypothermia a real risk.

River users are encouraged to take safety precautions when recreating in rivers. Here are a few tips to stay safe:

  • Wear a PFD (personal flotation device).
  • Do not use alcohol or drugs when recreating on the river.
  • Watch children closely when they are on or near any type of water; stay close enough to reach them immediately.

When planning a boating or floating trip:

  • Always tell someone your route and when and where you plan to put in or take out.
  • Never float the river alone.
  • Bring a dry bag with food, water, and warm clothes.

Even the best water enthusiasts can misjudge changing water conditions when boating or swimming in open water. Be prepared at all times by wearing a life jacket – you never know when you’ll be tossed in the water.

sheriffsmOn March 31, 2016 the Chelan County Sheriff’s Office and the United States Forest Service (USFS) arrested Roger E. Grissom, a 56 year old male from Wenatchee for illegally dumping tires on USFS land. A second suspect has been identified and a warrant for his arrest has been requested through the Chelan County Prosecutors Office.

The incident occurred on Sunday, March 13, 2016, when 98 tires were discovered dumped along Potato Creek on the Entiat District of the Okanogan-Wenatchee National Forest. Earlier that day a red Jeep Cherokee was observed driving up the Entiat River Rd. pulling a trailer loaded with tires.

The investigation relied heavily on help from the public after it was reported by local media and posted on social media. USFS Law Enforcement and Chelan County Deputies worked together to identify the suspects. The total dollar amount for the cleanup was $534 which included man hours and disposal.

USFS Officer Mike Kujala said, “It’s rare that we are able to identify suspects when garbage is dumped on public land. We would not have been able to make arrests in this case if it wasn’t for the public’s help.” Kujala reminds citizens that dumping trash is illegal on public lands and to call 9-1-1 if they see any suspicious activity.

wsdot logoState looks for information on viability of reinstating program

OLYMPIA – Washington produce growers could have another option for getting their goods to market, if there is sufficient demand to revitalize a rail-shipping program that was discontinued four years ago.

The Washington State Department of Transportation is seeking information from railroads and intermodal logistics companies to help determine if sufficient demand and expertise exists to revive a defunct state program that once supported a pool of refrigerated rail cars.

A request for information was released Wednesday, March 30, seeking proposals from parties interested in restoring the Washington Produce Rail Car program. The deadline for submissions is noon Monday, May 2.

Federal funding may be available to help support the program, and input from the freight community will help WSDOT determine if it will pursue such funding. “Both the number and quality of submissions is important to this process,” said WSDOT Freight Rail Policy & Program Manager Chris Herman. “We’ll be looking at the level of demand, as well as assessing the experience of each submitter in managing temperature-controlled fleets and meeting strict service requirements for perishable shipments.”

Designed to ensure a pool of temperature-controlled railcars was available to meet demand during peak growing and shipping season, the Produce Rail Car program originally launched in 2006 with federal and state funding. The program was suspended in 2012 when several privately-owned companies were expanding in the market. However, one of those competitors is no longer operating this service and WSDOT may be able to help fill the void if it proves to be economically viable.

The availability of temperature controlled rail or intermodal equipment is vital to transporting Washington-grown produce to markets beyond the state’s borders. According to Matt Harris of the Washington State Potato Commission, “Efficient movement of our perishable commodities is critical to the livelihood of potato growers in Washington state.”