Jessica Robinson

Regional Correspondent
Courtesy of the Bergdahl family.

There has been no shortage of strong opinions about the release of the former prisoner of war Bowe Bergdahl — except among Idaho's congressional delegation.

The two senators and two congressmen from Bergdahl's home state have largely avoided the national fray. 

AP Photo

A county commissioner in Blaine County, Idaho, has asked both members of the media and critics of Sgt. Bowe Bergdahl to give the soldier’s hometown some space. The commissioner says the town of Hailey is tired of being the target of people’s “misguided rage” over the former POW.

Blaine County Commissioner Larry Shoen says not only the Bergdahl family but some community members have received personal threats.

AP Photo/Voice Of Jihad Website via AP video

Idaho Congressman Raúl Labrador is calling on fellow politicians to avoid "escalating the rhetoric" around Sgt. Bowe Bergdahl. Labrador, a Republican, made the comments at a panel discussion hosted Tuesday in Washington, D.C. by the Heritage Foundation.

U.S. Rep. Labrador told the audience that without knowing more details, it’s too soon to criticize Bergdahl.

Courtesy of Buster Hickam

The parents of Sgt. Bowe Bergdahl issued a statement through social media Monday, thanking supporters for standing by them for nearly five years as they waited for their son to be freed from Taliban captivity.

Meantime, Bergdahl's broad network of online supporters continues to back the POW amidst a raging debate about whether Bergdahl deserted.

Jessica Robinson

Army Sgt. Bowe Bergdahl's hometown of Hailey, Idaho was unprepared for the public backlash that followed the brief jubilant response to Sgt. Bowe Bergdahl’s release from the Taliban on Saturday. 

First, there was criticism of the Obama administration exchanging five Taliban detainees for Bergdahl. Then, some soldiers from his former unit started speaking out against the freed POW.

Josh Korder, a former Army soldier who served with Bergdahl, told CNN earlier this week that he believes men lost their lives searching for him.

“I mean, at best, he's a deserter. At worst, he's a traitor,” Korder said.

Jacquelyn Martin / AP Photo

People in Sgt. Bowe Bergdahl's hometown in Idaho say they're “shocked” by how quickly the captive soldier's homecoming has turned into a national controversy.

Bergdahl was released Saturday after nearly five years in Taliban captivity. Since then, some fellow soldiers have accused him of being a deserter. The city of Hailey, Idaho is now asking people to withhold judgment.

Otto Kitsinger / AP Photo

After five years in captivity, Sgt. Bowe Bergdahl is finally free. The American POW is now receiving medical aid at a U.S. military hospital in Germany.

Bergdahl of Hailey, Idaho was held captive by the Taliban — first in Afghanistan, and later, it's believed, in Pakistan. On Saturday, he was released peacefully in a swap for five Guantanamo Bay detainees.

Bergdahl's family and his hometown are now preparing for the next chapter.

Washington state Department of Health

Memorial Day weekend in the Northwest coincides with prime time for ticks. These arthropods can drink your blood for days without you knowing.

So we asked an expert for the definitive answer on how to remove the blood-sucking bugs.

Jessica Robinson

Over three days, the annual pilgrimage of 25,000 rollicking concertgoers to the Sasquatch Music Festival turns central Washington's picturesque Gorge Amphitheater along the Columbia River into the largest city in Grant County.

But not all of them stay there. Some end up at the tiny hospital in Quincy, Washington, with drug overdoses, alcohol poisoning and dehydration.

An effort to overturn one Idaho city's gay rights ordinance appears to have failed by a slim margin. The anti-discrimination law in Pocatello was upheld Tuesday night by a projected margin of 90 votes.

City councils in seven Idaho cities have barred employers, landlords and most businesses from discriminating on basis of sexual orientation and gender identity. But Pocatello's ordinance was the first in the state to be put to a popular vote.

Jessica Robinson

Voters in Pocatello, Idaho will decide the fate of the city’s non-discrimination ordinance Tuesday.

Pocatello is one of seven cities in Idaho that have passed laws aimed at protecting gay, lesbian, bisexual and transsexual people, but this is the first time one of these measures has been put to a popular vote.

U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service

A small herd of mountain caribou found in the Northwest will retain federal protection, officials from the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service said, but it will be as a threatened species rather than endangered.

These caribou are the last in the Lower 48 states. It's believed there are 20 to 30 of them left.

The number of farms in the Northwest is dropping, according to newly-released federal farm data.

But there's more to the story. The average size and value of Northwest farms are going up.

CDC

A disease-causing fungus thought to be confined to the deserts of the Southwest has been discovered in soil samples from eastern Washington. Officials at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention are now trying to figure out if the fungus may be living in other parts of the Northwest.

Master Sgt. Jeremy Lock / U.S. Air Force

The federal government is already predicting this fire season will push firefighting resources almost $500 million over budget.

The cost of fighting wildfires has been steadily rising over the last two decades. And now, a new study finds a prevention tactic for fireproofing homes isn’t helping to bring those costs down.

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