Law

Law
12:12 pm
Wed September 21, 2011

Killer's psychological evaluation will remain confidential

The Marion County judge who'll decide if Gary Haugen is mentally competent to be executed, is keeping the inmate's psychological evaluation confidential.

Two-time convicted killer, Gary Haugen, wants to drop all appeals of his death penalty.

He fired his lawyers after they they had him undergo a psychological evaluation, then argued he was not competent to be put to death.

Judge Joseph Guimond had set an August date for Haugen’s execution.

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Fraud
10:54 am
Tue September 20, 2011

ATM skimming scams on the rise

Federal authorities are warning consumers to take precautions when using ATMs. Illegal 'skimming' is a growing industry.
Paula Wissel KPLU

If you’ve ever used a cash machine, here’s something you should be aware of. The Justice Department has disrupted one of the largest debit and credit card skimming rings on the West Coast.

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Crime
4:13 pm
Mon September 19, 2011

FBI: Violent crime continues to decline in Northwest

Alan Cleaver Flickr

The FBI says violent crime dropped 6 percent nationwide in 2010. Northwest states are following that same trend, but see less improvement when it comes to property crime rates.

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Economic woes
1:43 pm
Wed September 14, 2011

Felons reentering society have it even tougher in down economy

Getting out of jail in a tough economy can make reentry into society that much harder for people already hard to employ.
Thomas Hawk Flickr

VANCOUVER, Wash. — It can be hard to find a job these days – especially with a felony conviction on your record.

That's the position offenders in the Clark County work release program have found themselves in. The inmates, who are serving the last few months of their sentence, are tasked with finding work to help them build up savings and gain work experience to help them reenter society.

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Labor dispute
5:05 pm
Thu September 8, 2011

Update: Judge orders Longshoremen to stand down

A Cowlitz County Sheriff grabs a union worker by the throat as police move in on several hundred union workers blocking a grain train in Longview, Wash., on Wednesday. Longshoremen blocked the train as part of an escalating dispute.
Associated Press

LONGVIEW, Wash. — A federal judge is ordering union protesters to halt illegal activity as they battle for the right to work at a new grain terminal in Washington state. The judge issued a preliminary injunction to restrict union activity, saying today there is no defense for recent aggressive tactics.

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Budget Supercommittee
3:10 pm
Thu September 8, 2011

Murray urges supercommittee to not get "boxed in" by pledges

Rep. Jeb Hensarling, R-Texas, and Rep. Patty Murray, D-Wash., shake hands at the end of the supercommittee's first organizational meeting.
Susan Walsh Associated Press

U.S. Senator Patty Murray has debuted in her newest high profile role. The Washington Democrat co-chairs the so-called supercommittee on federal debt reduction. It held its first meeting today in Washington, DC., and Murray provided opening remarks.

This fall, the deficit cutting committee will recommend $1.2 trillion in spending cuts over the next ten years.

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9/11 Anniversary
12:28 pm
Thu September 8, 2011

Solidarity and fear, the legacy of 9/11 in local Muslim community

Jeff Siddiqui, photographed at his home in Lynnwood, Wash., wonders when Muslims will be treated as "American" as everyone else.
Keith Seinfeld KPLU

“Right after nine-eleven there was a peak of hostility toward Muslims. It kind of went down a bit, but over the years it’s gone up again.”

That’s how local Muslim-American Jeff (Jaffar) Siddiqui summarizes the decade since the Sept. 11th attacks.

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Labor dispute
5:05 pm
Wed September 7, 2011

Union protesters hold off police in Longview dispute

A crowd of union workers and supporters gather at a crossing in Vancouver, Wash., on Wednesday. Hundreds of Longshoremen were at the crossing as part of an escalating dispute about labor at the EGT grain terminal at the Port of Longview, Wash.
Associated Press

LONGVIEW, Wash. — Hundreds of union protesters blocking a grain shipment in southwest Washington state rushed police officers who tried to make arrests and forced them to retreat.

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Spokane bomb plot
1:59 pm
Wed September 7, 2011

MLK bomb was planned to injure, suspect says in guilty plea

SPOKANE, Wash. - The man accused of attempting to bomb the Martin Luther King Day parade in Spokane admits that he constructed and planted the explosive with the intent to hurt parade participants. That admission came with the guilty plea entered Wednesday by 37-year-old Kevin Harpham.

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Law
9:01 am
Wed September 7, 2011

Cowlitz Humane Society overrun with 'illegally large' snakes

One snake too many.
Courtesy of Cowlitz County Humane Society

LONGVIEW, Wash. — The Cowlitz County Humane Society seized two big boa constrictors on Monday and seven more large boas and pythons on Tuesday from homes in Longview.

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Law
8:33 am
Wed September 7, 2011

MLK parade bomb suspect to change plea

An FBI evidence photo shows the backpack that held a pipe bomb. It was found along the route of Spokane's Martin Luther King Day parade in January.

The man accused of planting a backpack bomb along the Martin Luther King Day parade route in Spokane is set to change his plea today. Kevin Harpham originally entered a plea of not guilty in what the FBI has deemed a case of domestic terrorism.

Thirty-seven-year-old Kevin Harpham was arrested in March. He faces charges related to a pipe bomb that Spokane city workers found on a downtown bench the morning of Jan. 17. Prosecutors later added federal hate crime charges. Together, the allegations carry a sentence of up to life in prison.

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cat trappers
1:00 pm
Fri September 2, 2011

Cat trappers fix feral felines and return them to the wild

A trapped feral cat waits for his medical procedure at the feral cat spay/neuter clinic in Lynnwood.
Paula Wissel/KPLU

If you have feral cats in your neighborhood, you know they can be a major headache, what with the loud cat fighting and territorial spraying. 

In Grays Harbor County, two women have taken it upon themselves to fix the problem, literally. They trap cats in order to get them spayed or neutered. They then release them back where they came from.

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Law
12:33 pm
Fri September 2, 2011

Kitsap teacher charged with voyeurism, images on camera

BREMERTON, Wash. — A Central Kitsap School District teacher has been charged with voyeurism following an investigation that began when he was caught taking suspicious photos of women and girls last month at the Kitsap County Fair.

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Vancouver Riot
10:44 am
Fri September 2, 2011

Booze, thugs and 155,000 people: Vancouver riot examined

In this image taken from the published review of the Vancouver, B.C., riots, a mass of 155,000 people can be seen gathered to watch the Canucks play the Boston Bruins in the Stanley Cup final. The report says the crowd got too big too fast.

Blame massive crowding, alcohol and inadequate police response as the main causes of the recent Stanley Cup riot in Vancouver, B.C.

An exhaustive review of the riot sponsored by the Province of British Columbia, City of Vancouver and Vancouver Police Board was made public yesterday. 

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Health care reform
3:15 pm
Thu September 1, 2011

Court's ruling on McKenna's health care suit said to sow confusion

In a unanimous ruling, the Washington State Supreme court says Attorney General Rob McKenna has the authority to challenge the new federal health care law. The high court denied the City of Seattle’s request to remove Washington from the multi-state lawsuit challenging the constitutionality of the law.

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