Law

Law & Justice
7:57 am
Thu March 10, 2011

FBI arrests man with Neo-Nazi ties in Spokane bomb case

FBI evidence photo of backpack found on a downtown Spokane street corner bench
FBI

The FBI has arrested a man with Neo-Nazi ties in connection with the attempted bombing on Martin Luther King Day in Spokane. Agents arrested the man in rural Stevens County.

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State Labor Unions
7:05 am
Thu March 10, 2011

Republicans want governor to renegotiate labor contracts

It's not quite Wisconsin, but Republicans – and a lone Democrat - in Washington are taking a jab at state employee unions. They've introduced legislation to not fund union contracts negotiated by the governor.

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Crime
5:05 pm
Tue March 8, 2011

Murder, car thefts at historic lows in Seattle

Seattle Police Department Sgt. Sean Whitcomb holds a sign meant to be placed in cars to deter thieves.
Paula Wissel

The homicide rate in Seattle is at its lowest level since 1958.  Most other major crime is down as well.

Murder, rape, robbery and other violent crime was down 9 percent in 2010 compared to 2009. The 2010 crime statistics were released Tuesday by the Seattle Police Department. As KPLU reported, the  Seattle Police Department has also released a report showing that the use of force by officers is rare and below the national average.

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Shark Fin Soup
10:51 am
Tue March 8, 2011

Lawmakers want to take shark fin soup off menus

West Coast lawmakers want to take shark fin soup off restaurant menus. The Washington, Oregon and California Legislatures are all considering measures to criminalize the trade in shark fins.

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Washington State Legislature
8:24 am
Tue March 8, 2011

Immigration check for driver’s licenses appears unlikely

Washington could soon be the last state in the nation to issue driver’s licenses without an immigration check. A controversial proposal in Olympia to create a two-tier license system appears to have died. Senate Republicans failed to force a vote just before a key legislative cut-off.

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Law and Justice
2:41 pm
Mon March 7, 2011

State investigates patient's escape from Western State Hospital

The Washington Department of Social and Health Services is reviewing how a patient was able to escape from
Western State Hospital at Lakewood.

Jonathan D. Wilson remained in Pierce County Jail over the weekend, and Department of Corrections spokesman Chad Lewis says officials are deciding Monday where he should be transferred. 

The News Tribune's Stacia Glenn reports Wilson may be headed to Mason County.

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Drug Smuggling
7:02 pm
Wed March 2, 2011

Seattle-based Coast Guard cutter interdicts narco sub

Coast Guard Cutter Midgett interdicts drug smuggler 335 miles off the coast of Costa Rica 1/20/2011
United States Coast Guard

The Seattle-based Coast Guard Cutter Midgett has returned home from a patrol in the Eastern Pacific Ocean. A highlight of the voyage was the interdiction of a 35-foot-long self-propelled semi-submersible vessel (SPSS) that was carrying about 6,000 kilograms of cocaine. These vessels are also known as narco submarines.

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Replaces Gordon Campbell
9:47 am
Mon February 28, 2011

B.C. Gets New Premier

British Columbia is getting get a new Premier.  Over the weekend, the province elected a new leader. The new Premier, which is equivalent to a state governor, is pledging to maintain good relations with Washington State.

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Law & Justice
1:03 pm
Fri February 25, 2011

Video shows Seattle cop stomping on suspect

 

Newly released video shows Seattle Police Officer James Lee stomping on the head of a man detained by a group of cops in city's Belltown neighborhood last October.

KING-TV's Linda Brill reports the incident is bringing further allegations of excessive force by Lee, already under criminal investigation for kicking a teenager in a Belltown convenience store, just minutes before the second confrontation happened.

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State Growth
6:31 am
Thu February 24, 2011

Census: Washington’s Latino population jumps 71%

Washington population change by county. The two counties in yellow, Pacific and Garfleld, lost population.
U.S. Census Bureau

Washington's Latino population grew 71% in the last decade. That's according to newly released 2010 Census Data. The dramatic rise has implications for how Washington redraws its Congressional districts.

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Washington State Legislature
10:51 am
Wed February 23, 2011

Lawmakers consider ideas to limit rising debt

It's raining debt in Olympia, and state lawmakers are looking at ways to put limits on it.
AP

Washington's total debt load is twice the national median – and one of the highest in the nation. That's the warning from the State Treasurer. Now lawmakers are considering two proposals to cap how much Washington can borrow for capital construction projects.

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State of the City
5:12 pm
Tue February 22, 2011

Seattle Mayor says more police should live in city

In his annual State of the CIty address, Mayor Mike McGinn said Seattle needs to think differently about police recruitment to improve the department.
Paula Wissel KPLU

With 82-percent of Seattle's officers living outside the city limits, Seattle Mayor Mike McGinn says it's hard to have a good local police force. It's also difficult to do anything about it because state law prevents cities from requiring officers to live where they work. McGinn says there could be an opportunity, though, when 300 officers who are eligible for retirement leave the force.

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Law and Justice
8:54 am
Tue February 22, 2011

Supreme Court won't hear appeal on state's campaign disclosure laws

The Supreme Court has rejected an appeal challenging campaign disclosure laws in Washington state.

The court on Tuesday let stand without comment a federal appeals court ruling that upheld the state's disclosure requirements. Human Life of Washington challenged the requirements as a violation of the First Amendment. The group didn't want to reveal its donors in a 2008 campaign opposing an assisted suicide ballot measure.

Immigrant Licenses
8:17 am
Tue February 22, 2011

Legislature considers two-tier driver's license system

A two-tier driver's license system is getting traction in the legislature. This is how it would work: applicants who provide a valid social security number would get a regular license. Drivers who can't prove they are in this country legally would get an alternative version.

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Green River killer
5:02 pm
Fri February 18, 2011

Family of Becky Marrero speak out about serial murderer Ridgway

Mary Marrero right, the sister of Green River Killer victim Becky Marrero, reads a statement in court as her mother, Rebecca Marrero, left, wipes her eyes, Friday, Feb. 18, 2011, at the King County Regional Justice Center in Kent., Wash.
AP

It was an emotional scene in a King County courtroom as the man known as the Green River killer pleaded guilty to his 49th murder.  Gary Ridgway is already serving 48 consecutive life terms. The latest plea is for murdering Becky Marrero in 1982, whose remains were found last December.

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