Regional News Archives for 2022-02

Suspect Arrested With 12 Weapons

(Portland, OR) -- Portland Police say officers arrested a car theft suspect who was armed with 12 weapons Friday night. Police tried to stop a stolen vehicle, but the suspect fled. Police didn't pursue on the ground, but the air unit followed the car. The driver was speeding, running red lights and nearly hit several other vehicles. Police used spike strips and the suspect stole another car. Officers stopped that vehicle and arrested 22-year-old Dylan Rhoades. He was armed with two guns, nine knives and a hatchet. He faces several charges.

Two Killed In Separate Weekend Shootings

(Portland, OR) -- Two people are dead following separate shootings over the weekend in Portland. Police say a man was killed Saturday evening in a shooting in a parking garage near the Oregon Convention Center. Police don't have information on a suspect and an arrest hasn't been made. The second shooting happened early Sunday morning in an apartment complex parking lot on Northeast 103rd near Sandy Boulevard. The man who was shot died at a hospital. Police detained several people and the suspect remained on the scene. This was the 17th fatal shooting this year in Portland.

Meadows Closed Due To Weather

(Mt. Hood, OR) -- Mount Hood Meadows has announced they'll be closed today due to the weather. Atmospheric river conditions and high winds would make skiing difficult, so they're battening down the hatches and plan to open for normal operations on Tuesday after the storm passes.

Russian War On Ukraine Keeps Gas Prices Surging

(Heathrow, FL) -- Gas in Oregon is averaging more than 4-dollars a gallon. Russia's ongoing attack on Ukraine is fueling a surge in gas prices. Triple-A's national average price for regular is up to three dollars and 61 cents a gallon, a penny higher than yesterday and eight cents higher than a week ago. The conflict has also pushed the statewide average above four dollars a gallon in Hawaii, Nevada, Washington, and California. Drivers in California are paying an average of four-82 a gallon.

$100-Million In Additional Emergency Rental Assistance Available

(Portland, OR) -- Oregon's emergency rental assistance portal will remain open longer than expected because more than 100-million dollars in funds are still available. Officials say 289-million dollars in federal emergency rental assistance has been paid out to over 40-thousand households. Oregon Housing and Community Services will give at least a week's notice before closing the portal. Oregon is ranked fourth in the nation for the percentage of funds paid out.

Teenage Shooting Suspect Arrested

(Portland, OR) -- Police say they've arrested a 15-year-old boy for a shooting in Southeast Portland Friday evening. The victim wasn't hurt, but the victim's car was hit by gunfire near Southeast 119th and Oak Street. Police tried to pull over the suspect's vehicle, but the driver fled. The Police Bureau's air unit followed the car until the suspects ran. Police arrested the 15-year-old boy who was armed with a gun. He was booked into the juvenile detention center on outstanding warrants. The victim's vehicle was shot several times and a nearby building was hit by six rounds. There have been 228 shootings reported this year in Portland with 63 people injured by gunfire.

Senator Heard Excluded For Not Wearing Mask

(Salem, OR) -- Oregon Republican State Senator Dallas Heard has been excluded from the Capitol building for not wearing a mask on the Senate floor. Senators approved a rule that requires masks on the floor. Heard says it's a protest to show what children are going through in school. Heard can take part in online hearings, but unless he agrees to wearing a mask, he's not allowed in the Capitol building.

OR Governor Sets Date To End COVID Emergency Declaration

(Salem, OR) -- Governor Kate Brown is lifting the state's COVID-19 emergency declaration effective April 1st. Brown made the announcement yesterday, saying declining case numbers and hospitalizations from the Omicron wave are allowing for the change. Brown says it doesn't mean the pandemic is over, but Oregonians are learning to live with the virus. She says people need to remain vigilant, continue getting vaccinated and boosted, wear masks when necessary, and stay home when sick.

OR Reports 59 New COVID-19 Deaths

(Portland, OR) -- Nearly five-dozen more Oregonians are dead after contracting COVID-19. The Oregon Health Authority reported 59 new coronavirus deaths yesterday along with 856 new infections. The average number of weekly new cases is down 45-percent, while hospitalizations are down 20-percent and test positivity has dropped to nine-point-six percent. As hospitalizations decline, more ICU beds are becoming available. Officials say 14-percent of the state's ICU beds are now open.

Portland's Mardi Gras Parade Returns

(Portland, OR) -- Portland's Mardi Gras is returning after a two year shutdown because of the pandemic. The parade will be held March 1st on Mississippi Avenue. The Mardi Gras Ball will be a scaled down invite-only event, because of COVID-19 restrictions. It's organized by Mysti Krewe of Nimbus.

Legislative Democrats Announce $400-Million Homeless Plan

(Salem, OR) -- Democrats in the Oregon Legislature are announcing a 400-million dollar package to address homelessness. One-hundred-65-million dollars would be spent on additional shelter capacity, rapid rehousing, and housing stability programs. Another 215-million dollars would go toward affordable housing, and 20-million dollars would go toward helping make homeownership attainable for working families. The money comes from a revenue surplus and is one of the Governor's top priorities.

OHA Moves Up End Of Indoor Mask Requirement

(Portland, OR) -- The Oregon Health Authority is moving up the date to end the mask requirement from March 31st to March 19th. By that date, COVID-19 hospitalizations are expected to be at 400 or less. If hospitalizations reach that number sooner, it is possible mask mandates could end a week earlier. School districts say the March 19th date will give them time to make necessary changes. Daily COVID-19 hospitalizations have declined 48-percent since peaking in late January.

Homemade Bomb Found At Sherwood Middle School

(Sherwood, OR) -- A person playing with their dog is credited with finding a homemade bomb at Sherwood Middle School last night. It was a ball wrapped in tape and had a fuse sticking out of the top. The Explosive Detonation Unit confirmed it was a bomb and destroyed it. Explosives experts say these are common devices that can be activated from fuse, friction, or puncture. They can be very dangerous. Police checked the school's property, other schools, parks and fields for other devices.

OR Reports 35 New COVID Deaths

(Portland, OR) -- Nearly three-dozen more Oregonians are dead after contracting COVID-19. The Oregon Health Authority reported 35 new coronavirus deaths yesterday along with one-thousand-160 new infections. Hospitalizations continue to decline. Officials say 579 people are hospitalized with COVID-19 statewide, which is 18 less than on Tuesday. There have been six-thousand-519 deaths and 690-thousand-481 cases of COVID-19 in Oregon since the pandemic began.

Bill Expands Firefighter Cancer Coverage

(Salem, OR) -- The Oregon Legislature is sending a bill to the Governor that expands coverage of cancers that firefighters face. Oregon workers compensation law already covers career firefighters for many types of cancers, including male reproductive cancers. This bill adds bladder and female reproductive cancers to the list. Cancer is a leading cause of death for firefighters in the U.S.

OR College Athletes To Receive Royalties Under Newly Passed Bill

(Salem, OR) -- College athletes whose names or images are used on team jerseys, video games, and trading cards must be paid royalties under a bill passed by the Oregon Legislature. The bill builds on a law from 2021 that gives college athletes the right to earn compensation for the use of their name, image, and likeness. Twenty-eight other states have similar laws. If the Governor signs the bill, it'll take effect on July 1st.

Boiler Explodes At Food Plant

(Hermiston, OR) -- A cause is being determined for an explosion that caused a massive fire at a food plant in Hermiston. A boiler explosion apparently caused the fire at Shearer's Foods. Two people were injured by the blast. Nearby Highway 207 was closed and Union Pacific closed a nearby rail line. Residents in the area were on standby to evacuate if the smoke plume became a threat.

OR Reports 29 New COVID Deaths

(Portland, OR) -- Oregon averaged 850 new COVID-19 cases a day since last Friday as new infections continue to decline. The Oregon Health Authority reported the new COVID numbers yesterday. Officials reported 29 new deaths since Friday. The number of people hospitalized is down to 597, which is 40 less than on Monday. Oregon has seen six-thousand-485 deaths and 689-thousand-325 cases of COVID-19 since the pandemic began.

Protest Shooting Suspect Fired After Confrontation

(Portland, OR) -- Court documents are revealing new details about what led to a shooting Saturday night near Portland's Normandale Park where a woman was killed and five other people were wounded. The suspect, 43-year-old Benjamin Smith, lives in a nearby apartment and confronted the protesters yelling at them. They told him to leave and when one of them pushed him he opened fire killing one woman and wounding four others. Smith stopped shooting when he was shot in the hip by a protester. Smith is charged with murder and attempted murder.

170 Vehicles Involved In Crashes On I-84

(Pendleton, OR) -- Oregon State Police say 170 vehicles were involved in crashes on two-miles of I-84 between Pendleton and La Grande during severe winter weather on Monday. A total of 19 people were treated at hospitals. No one was killed. Officials say 71 people were transported to the Pendleton Convention Center for reunification. A local taxi company and church vans took people to local hotels.

Protest Shooting Victim Worked For Hardesty Campaign

(Portland, OR) -- The woman who was killed in a shooting Saturday night during a demonstration at Normandale Park in Portland also worked on City Commissioner Jo Ann Hardesty's campaign. Hardesty says the suspect, 43-year-old Benjamin Smith, is known to have supremacist sympathies. He has a history of violence against activists, including Hardesty. June Knightly helped collect signatures for Hardesty's re-election. Hardesty says she's pausing her campaign to review safety protocols and that the shooting has a chilling effect on civic engagement.

Police Seek Suspect In Shooting That Killed Mother, Injured Children

(Portland, OR) -- Police are releasing new information about Sunday night's shooting in Southeast Portland that left a mother dead, her two children wounded and her boyfriend critically injured. The shooting happened near Southeast 128th and Foster Road. They were in a car that was hit by several rounds. A one-year-old child was shot in the leg. A five-year-old child was shot in the arm. The man who was shot is expected to survive. Police have not released the woman's name. Police are asking for help identifying the suspect behind the shooting.

Oregon Democrats Potentially Setting Aside Pool Of Money For Republican Priorities

(Salem, OR) - The Democratic majority in the Oregon State Capitol may extend Republicans a peace offering to use on their own priorities. House Speaker Dan Rayfield says Democrats could set aside 100-million dollars in the surging revenue forecast for the minority to use as they see fit. The goal from state lawmakers is to ease partisan battles that have dominated previous legislative sessions. Leaders in both parties are still working out how the move could impact issues both parties agree on before finalizing the decision.

Woman Steals Cat From Front Porch

(Portland, OR) -- Police are searching for a woman accused of stealing a cat off a family's front porch in North Portland. Police say the woman was captured on surveillance footage trying to open several car doors in the neighborhood before noticing the cat and approaching it. Video shows the woman slowly gaining the cat's confidence before grabbing him by the back of the neck and walking off with him. The cat, whose name is "Kiki," is microchipped. An investigation is ongoing.

Nearly 100 Cars Crash On Snowy I-84

(Meacham, OR) -- Police say nearly 100 vehicles crashed on snow covered I-84 in northeast Oregon yesterday. The crashes happened between Pendleton and La Grande. Oregon State Police report that as troopers arrived they heard more vehicles crashing behind them. The largest crash involved 15 to 20 vehicles that were strewn across the freeway and into the median. Several injuries are reported. People who weren't hurt but couldn't drive their vehicles were taken to the Pendleton Convention Center.

OSU Investigates Possible Hate Crime On Campus

(Corvallis, OR) -- Oregon State University is investigating a possible hate crime on campus. Police were called out to Tebeau Hall after a reported assault. Students told officers two college-aged white men attacked someone while shouting expletives related to their sexual orientation. No other details about the case were released.

Investigation Underway Into Fatal Officer-Involved Shooting

(Portland, OR) -- Portland Police were involved in a fatal officer-involved shooting Saturday evening. Police responded to Southwest Broadway Drive near 9th Avenue on a disturbance call. While officers were on their way, a report of shots fired came in. While the incident was being investigated, an officer-involved shooting happened. Details of the shooting haven't been released. The person who was shot died at the scene. The officers have been identified as Acting Sergeant Zachary Kenny, a 17-year veteran of the Bureau, and Reynaldo Guevara who joined the Bureau in January 2020.

One Killed, Five Injured During Rally For Amir Locke In Portland

(Portland, OR) -- One woman is dead and five other people are injured following a shooting at a Portland rally for a Black man killed by police in Minneapolis. The shooting happened during the "Justice for Amir Locke" solidarity rally at Normandale Park Saturday night. The Portland Police Department is saying two suspects are in custody. Three other women and two men were hospitalized for gunshot wounds in addition to the death. Police say they're having a difficult time putting together what happened because witnesses aren't talking. Locke was shot to death by a Minneapolis Police Department SWAT officer during the execution of a no-knock search warrant at an apartment on February 2nd.

City Council Considering Ban On Fireworks

(Portland, OR) -- Portland City Council members are considering a proposal to ban fireworks. The proposal would permanently ban the sale and use of personal fireworks within city limits. Public fireworks displays would still be allowed with a permit. City Council members are expected to discuss the proposal this week.

OR Leaders Blast WA Proposal To Tax Exported Gas

(Olympia, WA) -- Oregon leaders are blasting a new Washington state proposal that would enact a tax on Oregon-bound gasoline. The proposal introduced earlier this month would create a tax of up to six cents per gallon for some fuel being exported from Washington to states with lower gas taxes than Washington's. Oregon Governor Kate Brown posted a tweet late last week calling the proposal "unacceptable" and saying she's discussed the matter with Washington Governor Jay Inslee. Oregon Republican state Representatives Shelly Boshart Davis and David Brock testified against the proposal in the Washington Legislature. Boshart Davis calls the tax proposal "offensive."

Cooking Fire Causes House Fire In Hillsboro

(Hillsboro, OR) -- Officials say a cooking fire is responsible for a house fire in Hillsboro that caused substantial damage to the home. Investigators say it happened on Friday after residents brought the flaming cookware outside, where it caught the back deck on fire. The flames spread to the house and into the attic. Neighbors and caregivers got a medically-dependent resident out of the house. No one was hurt. Firefighters say that if you have a cooking fire, smother it to put it out and leave it on the stove.

R Supreme Court Rules Kristof Can't Run For Governor

(Salem, OR) -- The Oregon Supreme Court is ruling that Nicholas Kristof can't run for Governor. The court determined Kristof doesn't meet the residency requirement of three years, as required by the State Constitution. Kristof had argued he was a resident of Oregon, citing the house he owns in his hometown of Yamhill. The Secretary of State's Office found the New York Times columnist had been living in New York City and voted there during the 2020 election.

Morrison Bridge Will Light Up Tonight For Tonga

(Portland, OR) -- The Morrison Bridge will be lit to honor the Tongan community tonight. The island continues to recover from the tsunami and ash fall from a volcanic eruption. The lights on the bridge will be red and white to represent the Flag of Tonga. When the lights are turned on at dusk, a Tongan choir in Waterfront Park will sing songs of faith in traditional harmonies. Access to Tonga has been closed for nearly two years because of COVID-19.

OR Reports 28 New COVID Deaths

(Portland, OR) -- Oregon has 28 new deaths related to COVID-19 and one-thousand-844 new infections. There are 788 people hospitalized, which is 12 more than on Wednesday. Hospital ICU bed capacity is at eleven-percent. There have been six-thousand-444 deaths and 684-thousand-441 cases of COVID-19 since the pandemic began.

Pickles Mascot Returns

(Portland, OR) -- The Portland Pickles collegiate baseball team has their mascot back. The Dillon T. Pickle costume was anonymously dropped off outside VooDoo donuts. The team says the costume was a little worn for the wear, but in good condition. On February 9th, the costume was stolen by a porch pirate after it was dropped off at the team's office. The Pickles' season starts May 31st at Walker Stadium in Lents Park.

New Pilot Program Leads To Arrest Of Suspect Pointing Gun Out Apartment Window

(Portland, OR) -- A pilot program where a Portland Neighborhood Response Team and a police detective are paired has arrested a suspect who was pointing a handgun out of an apartment window. It happened near 22nd and West Burnside. People who saw it described the gun as appearing to be a large semi-automatic with a long barrel. Police got a search warrant for the apartment and took 66-year-old Robert Farris into custody. The gun was a pellet gun. Farris is charged with Unlawful Use of a Weapon and Menacing.

PPS Expecting 8% Drop In Student Enrollment Next Year

(Portland, OR) -- There won't be as many students in Portland Public Schools next year. District officials project overall student enrollment will drop eight-percent for the 2022-23 school year in a trend being felt all over the state and across the country. Elementary schools will see the biggest drop of more than 20-percent from pre-pandemic levels. To minimize the financial impact, the district will tap into other state and one-time federal funds to maintain more than 40 staff positions.

Police Search For Prison Escapee

(Salem, OR) -- Police are looking for a prison escapee who walked away from a laundry sorting building at the Oregon State Penitentiary in Salem Wednesday morning. State corrections officials say 40-year-old Bohanna McQuiston was doing time for burglary at Santiam Correctional Institution, a minimum security prison, and working at the laundry facility. He is white, 5-feet 11-inches tall and 160 pounds with red hair and hazel eyes. He was last seen wearing blue jeans, a blue shirt and a blue jacket.

OR Reports 23 New COVID Deaths

(Portland, OR) -- Nearly two-dozen more Oregonians are dead after contracting COVID-19. The Oregon Health Authority reported 23 new coronavirus deaths yesterday, raising the state's death toll from the pandemic to six-thousand-416. The health authority also reported one-thousand-728 new infections. Over the last week, new cases were down 40-percent and hospitalizations were down 18-percent. Test positivity dropped to 14-percent.

TSA Offering $2K Hiring Bonus For Security Screeners

(Portland, OR) -- The TSA needs security screeners at Portland International Airport, and they're paying hiring bonuses of two-thousand dollars. The TSA will hold a two-day, in-person recruitment event this weekend at the Sheraton Portland Airport Hotel. Pay starts at 19-dollars-and-90-cents per hour, and agents will get a five-percent raise after six and 18 months of employment. You can find out more at JOBS DOT TSA DOT GOV.

Landlords Posting Signs Saying Tenants Are Armed

(Portland, OR) -- Portland's high crime rate is leading some landlords to post signs that say tenants are armed. Residents have been frustrated by a lack of police response to act as a deterrent to crime. Landlords posted signs reading "No Trespassing, Armed Tenants" and "Lethal Force Authorized." The signs aren't in violation of the city's code. Portland Police are understaffed by about 300 officers which has made it difficult for officers to conduct patrols.

Gas Prices Rise Amid Russia-Ukraine Tensions

(Portland, OR) -- The tensions between Russia and Ukraine are causing prices to rise at the pump. Triple-A reported the average in Oregon is up three cents to three-dollars-98-cents. The national average is up four cents over the last week to three-50 a gallon. Both averages are at the highest prices since the summer of 2014.

Woman Gets Four Years For Hit-And-Run After Stealing Car, Booze

(Hillsboro, OR) -- A woman who pleaded guilty to stealing a car, stealing alcohol, and committing a hit-and-run is being sentenced to four years in prison. Court records show Ramona Washington stole a car in Portland in December and drove to Beaverton, where she stole 100 dollars in liquor from a store and then stole wigs from a nearby costume shop. When the employees tried to stop her, she hit one of them with her car, causing non-life threatening injuries to the person's leg. She led police on a high speed pursuit and crashed into two other cars causing injuries.

Northwest Natural Giving Customers $40M In Credits

(Portland, OR) -- Northwest Natural is giving customers 40-million dollars in credits. The credits will appear on bills in January, February, and March. The credits are because of efficient pipeline capacity management and effective use of the company's underground natural gas storage facility. The average residential customer will receive a credit of around 13-dollars a month, and small commercial customers will have around 60-dollars trimmed from their bills.

OR Reports 20 New COVID Deaths

(Portland, OR) -- Oregon has 20 new deaths related to COVID-19 and one-thousand-613 new cases. The Oregon Health Authority reported the new numbers yesterday. There are 805 people hospitalized with the virus statewide, which is 60 less than on Monday. There have been six-thousand-393 deaths and 680-thousand-852 cases of COVID-19 in Oregon since the pandemic began.

Elk Statue Returning To Downtown Portland

(Portland, OR) -- Portland's iconic elk statue is returning to downtown Portland. The city says the elk will be back either late this year or early next year with a new base, a dedicated bike lane and an improved bus lane. The statue has been in storage since it was damaged during the 2020 protests. The Thompson Elk Statue and fountain was built in 1900. It's named after it's benefactor David P. Thompson who was Portland's mayor from 1879 to 1882.

Man Gets Over Six Years For Plan To Kidnap Ex

(Hillsboro, OR) -- A Washington County judge is sentencing a man to prison for planning to kidnap his ex-girlfriend. Conner Charriere pleaded guilty to the charges, admitting to putting a GPS device on the vehicle owned by the woman's new boyfriend. Charriere also had a gun, duct tape, zip ties and a lock decoder. Police found a detailed plan where Charriere was going to kidnap the victim and take her to North Carolina. Charriere was sentenced to more than six years in prison.

OR Getting $35M For Wildlife, Fish Restoration

(Washington, D.C.) -- Oregon is getting 35-million dollars in federal wildlife and sport fish restoration grants. The money was allocated to Oregon from the Bipartisan Infrastructure Law. Most of the money will go toward wildlife and sport fish restoration. Hunter education programs will get nearly four-and-a-half million dollars.

Former State Rep. Bob Tiernan Running For Governor

(Portland, OR) -- Another candidate is entering the race for the Republican gubernatorial primary in Oregon. Bob Tiernan was a state representative in Oregon from 1993 to 1997. He says he'll bring business experience to be the state's Chief Executive. Tiernan is donating one-million dollars to launch his campaign. He joins four other candidates who are running for the Republican primary.

Man Allegedly Tries To Open Emergency Door On Portland-Bound Flight

(Portland, OR) -- A man who tried to open the emergency door on a Delta Airlines flight from Salt Lake City to Portland says he did it so passengers would record his personal statements. Federal prosecutors say the incident happened on Friday. Michael Demarre allegedly removed the plastic cover on the emergency door handle and tried to open it during the flight. A flight attendant told him to stop and move to the back of the plane. Demarre complied and was restrained by the flight crew. He was charged in Portland with threatening to interfere with a flight crew. He's being held pending further court proceedings.

OR Reports 18 New COVID Deaths

(Portland, OR) -- Oregon has 18 new deaths related to COVID-19 since Saturday and four-thousand-756 new infections since Friday. The Oregon Health Authority reported the new numbers yesterday. There are 865 people hospitalized with the virus statewide, which is 49 less than on Sunday.

OR Coast Aquarium Welcomes New Sea Lion

(Newport, OR) -- The Oregon Coast Aquarium is welcoming a new sea lion. Officials say 24-year-old Nemo is from the Animal Training and Research International Center in Monterey, California. Nemo was a victim of El Nino conditions and also had an injury to his jaw that required removal of bone fragments and several teeth. He was found stranded when he was two years old, and his injuries kept him from being released into the wild. The facility in Monterey suffered severe financial losses during the pandemic, so its animals were sent to other facilities.

Vancouver Proposes Second Safe Stay Community Location

(Vancouver, WA) -- The City of Vancouver is proposing a second location for a Safe Stay Community. It's on city-owned property south of Fourth Plain Boulevard between General Anderson Avenue and Carlson Road. Twenty modular shelters housing up to 40 people would be built on the site, which would be operated by Living Hope Church. Safe Stay Community sites offer homeless people supportive services, portable restrooms and hand washing stations. The city is talking with residents and business owners within 12-hundred feet of the proposed location. Two information sessions are planned for next week.

Police Investigate Anti-Semitic Flyers In Vancouver

(Vancouver, WA) -- The investigation continues into the discovery of anti-semitic flyers in a Vancouver neighborhood. Police say the flyers were left in residential driveways and claimed that Jewish people are responsible for orchestrating the pandemic. The same flyers were discovered in at least six other states several weeks ago. Police are asking anyone with security camera footage to come forward.

Grenade Prompts Evacuations At Junction City Thrift Store

(Junction City, OR) -- Things are getting back to normal at a Junction City thrift store after the discovery of a grenade prompted evacuations over the weekend. Police responded to the St. Vinnie's thrift store Saturday morning after employees discovered the grenade inside a box of donated items. Police evacuated the store and called in explosive ordinance technicians, who X-rayed the device and determined it did not appear to have a detonator cap. Police took possession of the device with plans to destroy it.

Police Arrest Two Men Accused Of Holding Group At Gunpoint

(Portland, OR) -- Two men are facing charges after allegedly holding a group of people at gunpoint in downtown Portland. Police say three victims flagged down officers near Shemanski Park just after midnight Saturday to report they'd been robbed at gunpoint near Salmon Street and Southwest Park Avenue. Police arrested two suspects and seized a gun as evidence.

Energy Department Grants OR $7.7M For Vehicle Charging Stations

(Portland, OR) -- The U.S. Department of Energy is giving Oregon seven-point-seven million dollars to build charging stations for electric vehicles. Environment Oregon estimates that over 12-hundred fast chargers and nearly 21-thousand Level Two chargers will be needed by 2030 to meet the demand. Level Two chargers use an outlet similar to one needed for a dryer and can fully charge a vehicle in three to eight hours. Oregon currently has 36-thousand electric vehicles on the road.

Man Found Badly Beaten, Unconscious In Old Town

(Portland, OR) -- An investigation is ongoing after a man was found badly beaten and unconscious in Portland's Old Town district. Police responded to the area of Northwest 3rd Avenue and Glisan Street early yesterday morning on reports of an assault. Responding officers found the victim unconscious and took him to the hospital for treatment of "significant injuries." Police are still searching for a suspect.

Man Arrested After Police Pursuit on I-5

(Salem, OR) -- A driver is under arrest after a long pursuit on I-5 Thursday morning. The suspect carjacked a BMW SUV in Woodburn and fled on I-5 southbound. Oregon State Police troopers found the suspect in Salem and pursued the car to the Highway 34 overpass south of Albany where the driver crossed the freeway and drove back to Albany. The driver crossed the freeway again and went south to near Harrisburg where spike strips flattened some of the tires. A trooper pushed the vehicle off the road near the Oak Grove rest area and D'Andrae Eyler ran from the car. He was subdued and arrested. He faces robbery, assault and attempt to elude charges.

OR Reports 22 New COVID Deaths

(Portland, OR) -- Oregon has 22 new deaths related to COVID-19 and three-thousand-176 new cases. The Oregon Health Authority reported the new numbers yesterday. Officials say 35 more patients have been released from hospitals, bringing the total of hospitalized COVID patients in Oregon to one-thousand-seven. Hospitals have eight-percent of ICU beds available. There have been six-thousand-344 deaths and 671-thousand-923 cases of COVID-19 in Oregon since the pandemic began.

Southbound Interstate Bridge Closed Tomorrow Night

(Portland, OR) -- The southbound span of the Interstate Bridge will be closed Saturday night while crews work on lift cables and other maintenance projects. The closure affects only the southbound span and runs from 10:30 p.m. to 7 a.m. on Sunday. Southbound I-5 traffic will be detoured to SR-14 and I-205 to cross the Columbia River at the Glenn Jackson Bridge.

Incoming Revenue Boosts OR General Fund By Over $800M

(Salem, OR) -- Revenue coming into the State of Oregon has boosted the state's general fund by 804-million dollars. State Economist Mark McMullen says the increase is driven by the strong economy, the corporate tax, personal income tax, and the estate tax. Oregon Governor Kate Brown says the windfall should go toward housing, child care, workers, and businesses. Republicans say Oregon should follow other states and cut taxes.

Agriculture Department Offering OR Meat Processing Industry $2M In Grants

(Salem, OR) -- The Oregon Department of Agriculture will give the state's meat processing industry a two-million-dollar boost. The COVID-19 pandemic highlighted the need for more options in meat processing for livestock raised in Oregon. The agency is offering grants up to 500-thousand dollars to businesses that process animals raised in the state. Applications for the grants need to be made by March 23rd.

Portland Home Prices Up 11-Percent

(Portland, OR) -- Home prices are up eleven-percent in the Portland area. RMLS reports that from January of 2021 to January 2022, the median price of a home increased 52-thousand dollars to 512-thousand dollars. New listings and pending sales both declined, compared to a year ago. The number of homes for sale increased slightly and it's taking around 38 days to sell a home.

Students Walk Out At Ridgefield High To Protest Masks

(Ridgefield, WA) -- A group of about 30 students walked out of class at Ridgefield High School to protest the mask requirement. The students say they mask usage to be a choice. The school district says it's following the state's requirements. Washington Governor Jay Inslee says he'll announce next week when the indoor mask requirement will be dropped. Washington Superintendent of Public Instruction Chris Reykdal says he advised the Governor and state health leaders to make masks optional.

District Council Of Trade Unions Approves New Contract, Avoiding Strike

(Portland, OR) -- The City of Portland won't face a strike by workers in the District Council of Trade Unions. Members approved a new contact a day before the strike was set to begin. The agreement gives members a one-point-six percent cost of living increase that's retroactive to July 1st of last year and a five-percent bump that takes effect on July 1st of this year. The union represents eleven-hundred workers.

Police Find Body In Debris From Weil Arcade Fire

(Hillsboro, OR) -- Police say investigators going through the debris from the fire in the Weil Arcade building in downtown Hillsboro found a body earlier this week. The fire happened on January 2nd, and investigators hadn't been able to get into the building until now because of safety concerns. The victim who died was male and wasn't associated with businesses in the building. The man died from smoke inhalation. Investigators believe the fire was intentionally set. Police have arrested 34-year-old Roel Leon on a charge of arson.

OR Reports 57 New COVID Deaths

(Portland, OR) -- Over four-dozen more Oregonians are dead after contracting COVID-19. The Oregon Health Authority reported 57 new coronavirus deaths yesterday, raising the state's death toll from the pandemic to six-thousand-322. The Health Authority also reported three-thousand-309 new cases of COVID-19. The weekly report shows new cases are down 35-percent and test positivity declined 22-percent.

Housing Bureau Funding Three New Portland Projects

(Portland, OR) -- The Portland Housing Bureau has awarded funding to three new projects from the city's housing bond that was passed by voters in 2016. Twelve other projects are already open, or they're in progress. The housing bond will create more than 18-hundred-50 units for 38-hundred people. Six new buildings are expected to open this year. Some of the facilities have supportive housing for people with mental health or addiction issues. These last three projects will use the remainder of the money from the bonds.

Appeals Court Reverses Murder Convictions For Former Police Sergeant

(Salem, OR) -- The Oregon Court of Appeals is reversing the murder convictions for the former Gladstone Police sergeant who was accused of killing his wife. Lynn Benton was found guilty in 2016 of aggravated murder in the 2011 death of his wife Debbie Higbee. Prosecutors say Benton paid two people to kill Higbee. He was sentenced to life without parole. The Appeals Court upheld his convictions for Conspiracy to Commit Murder, but the murder convictions were reversed. Prosecutors are considering whether to appeal that decision with the Oregon Supreme Court or retry the case.

CDC Urges Against Dropping School Mask Rules

(Undated) -- As The CDC is pleading with states not to drop school mask mandates. Director Rochelle Walensky says now is not the moment. She told the news agency Reuters their guidance hasn't changed and still recommends students mask up due to the high rate of new infections. This comes as Connecticut, Delaware, New Jersey and Oregon plan to end their school mask mandates. California will also stop its indoor mandate next week and New York will reportedly do the same tomorrow, but not just yet for schools.

Portland Releases New Contract With PPB Officers

(Portland, OR) -- The City of Portland is releasing a new contract with Portland Police officers. It includes a new discipline guide, expansion of the Portland Street Response and targeted premium pay that's focused on training and recruitment. The lead negotiators will explain the contract in a virtual forum on February 10th and a public hearing will be held February 17th.

OR Reports 21 New COVID Deaths

(Portland, OR) -- Oregon has 21 new deaths related to COVID-19 and three-thousand-248 new infections. The Oregon Health Authority reported the new numbers yesterday. There are one-thousand-55 people hospitalized with coronavirus statewide, which is 17 less than on Monday. Nine-percent of the state's ICU beds are available. There have now been six-thousand-265 deaths and 665-thousand-486 cases of COVID-19 in Oregon since the pandemic began.

Man Gets Over Two Years For Throwing Hatchet At Cyclist

(Portland, OR) -- A man who threw a hatchet at a cyclist in Portland is facing more than two years behind bars. The Multnomah County District Attorney's Office says Leo Cox was sentenced to 30 months in prison last month. Police say Cox was walking on North Broadway and Larrabee last September and appeared to be angry when a cyclist rode by. Cox chased him and threw the hatchet, nearly hitting the cyclist. Police responded and found Cox still carrying the hatchet.

OR Sets Record For People Covered By Health Insurance

(Portland, OR) -- Oregon is reporting it had the most people ever covered by health insurance last year. The rate increased from 94-percent in 2019 to 95-point-four percent last year. The Oregon Health Authority says the gains were driven by pandemic rule changes for Medicaid that allowed people to keep their coverage. The largest coverage gains were among low-income adults as far fewer people reported being uninsured due to loss of Medicaid coverage.

Fire Bureau Recognizes Two Men For Saving Woman From Car Crash

(Portland, OR) -- The Portland Fire Bureau is recognizing two young men who rescued a woman from a car crash. The crash happened Sunday night on Scholls Ferry Road near Patton Road. The driver was unconscious inside of the car when it caught fire. Eli Bowden and Michael Hartung pulled the woman from the burning car. When firefighters arrived they moved her further away and the flames burned through overhead powerlines that started arcing on the ground. The woman was hospitalized with serious injuries. The fire department says Bowden and Hartung put their own lives at risk to save the woman.

Suspects Use Sledgehammers To Break Into Pawn Shop, Steal 47 Guns

(Portland, OR) -- Police say suspects who stole 47 guns from a Southeast Portland pawn shop used sledgehammers to break through a cinder-block wall to get into the store. Federal prosecutors say surveillance video recorded the suspects outside of the store with sledgehammers and then showed them carrying gun cases to their vehicles. ATF agents identified 38-year-old Kory Boyd as a suspect and searched his home. They found eight guns, including seven stolen from the pawn shop. Four accomplices and 38 other guns remain missing. Boyd is being held in custody until his next court date.

OR To Remove Indoor Mask Mandate By March 31st

(Portland, OR) -- The Oregon Health Authority plans to lift indoor mask requirements no later than March 31st. Health scientists expect that about 400 or fewer Oregonians will be hospitalized with COVID-19, which is near the level of infections prior to the Omicron surge. Mask requirements for schools will be lifted on March 31st. State health officials say it's important to continue wearing masks now, as COVID-19 hospitalizations are cresting. The OHA has extended the indoor mask requirement, but they will remove it by March 31st.

OR Reports Nearly 8K New COVID-19 Cases

(Portland, OR) -- Oregon has nearly eight-thousand new coronavirus cases along with 30 new deaths from COVID. The Oregon Health Authority reported the new numbers yesterday from Friday through Sunday. There are one-thousand-72 people hospitalized with the virus statewide, which is one less than on Sunday.

Man Gets Over Eight Years In Prison For Sex Trafficking

(Portland, OR) -- A man who pled guilty to sex trafficking is being sentenced to more than eight years in prison by a federal judge in Portland. Prosecutors say 37-year-old Eddie West the third drove a woman from California to Bend where he tried to sell access to her for sex. In 2019, police saw the online ad and set up a meeting where West was arrested. A federal grand jury returned a two-count indictment charging West with sex trafficking by force and he pled guilty last August.

Memorial Today For Officer Shot, Killed By Deputy

(Portland, OR) -- A memorial is being held today for a Vancouver police officer who was shot to death by a Clark County Sheriff's deputy late last month. Officer Donald Sahota had been stabbed by an armed robbery suspect at his home on January 29th when the deputy mistakenly shot him. Police Chief James McElvain says the department is struggling with Sahota's death. McElvain says the department holds no ill will toward the Sheriff's Office or the deputy who fired the shot. He says the responsibility for Sahota's death is on the suspect who caused the shooting to happen. Sahota's memorial will be held at 1 p.m. at the ilani Casino Resort.

ODOT Makes Progress Toward Opening Highway 224

(Estacada, OR) -- ODOT says crews are making progress toward opening Highway 224 east of Estacada. It's been closed since 2020 because of wildfire damage. Crews are installing more than 42-thousand feet of new guardrail in 11 areas. The road is being repaved where it was damaged by heat from the fire. Hillsides with loose rock are having the rock removed and a screen mesh is being used to keep additional rocks from falling. The U.S. Forest Service is working on a timeline for when the highway to reopen sometime this year.

Police Raid Six Keizer Homes For Illegal Weed

(Keizer, OR) -- Police raided six locations in Keizer on Friday and seized hundreds of pounds of illegal marijuana. The pot was allegedly being grown in homes. Four of the homes were declared inhabitable because of dangerous wiring and chemicals. Two children were living in one of the homes. Police seized more than four-thousand plants. The pot was worth at least 278-thousand dollars. Ten people face charges in the operation.

Portland Could Face Strike From City Workers Tomorrow

(Portland, OR) -- The City of Portland could face a strike by workers as soon as tomorrow. The District Council of Trade Unions represents several local labor unions and they say the city is refusing to settle a fair contract. The city says their offer includes bonuses, a cost-of-living raise, and other provisions. The union says it's not good enough. They say a strike would shut down city bureaus that would affect construction work across the city.

Memorial Set Saturday For St. Paul Firefighter

(St. Paul, OR) -- A memorial will be held for St. Paul Firefighter Austin Smith on Saturday at 1 p.m. at the St. Paul Rodeo grounds. Smith was killed by an explosion while fighting a barn fire last week. Donations can be made to the St. Paul Fire District or the family's GoFundMe page.

Police Seek Suspect In Child Luring Case

(North Plains, OR) -- Police are searching for a man who tried to lure a child into a car with candy near North Plains on Friday. The Washington County Sheriff's Office says the eleven-year-old child was walking home from the school bus near Meacham Road and Murtaugh Road when a man pulled up in a car and offered the child candy to get in. The child ran to safety. The car was a newer model bright blue BMW, possibly an X6 model, with Oregon license plates. The suspect was a man with brown hair. Investigators believe it might be related to a similar incident in Forest Grove in January.

New Study Says Omicron Will Not Break Pandemic Record in Oregon

(Portland, OR) -- A new study says the number of people hospitalized from COVID-19 in Oregon due the Omicron variant will not surpass the record set during the height of the delta surge last year. The study comes from Oregon Health and Science University. It says the state might reach its peak this Sunday with 11-hundred-69 patients hospitalized from the omicron variant. The record in Oregon stands at 11-hundred-78 hospitalizations set last fall.

Mayor Wheeler to Issue Order Banning Homeless Camps Along Roadways

(Portland, OR) -- Mayor Ted Wheeler is expected to issue an emergency order as early as today banning all homeless camps that are located along dangerous roadways. The order follows release of the city's annual traffic crash report that shows 70 percent of all pedestrians killed in Portland traffic accidents were homeless residents. The Oregonian first reported on the study. The city had planned to open six Safe Rest villages for the homeless by the end of last year but the plan was pushed back to later this year.

Mayor Wheeler to Add More Than 60 Police Officers to the Force

(Portland, OR) -- Mayor Ted Wheeler says he wants to add 67 sworn officers in the city's upcoming budget cycle. The mayor has said he wants to expand the Portland Police Bureau by 300 officers over the next three years. Meanwhile, the department has struggled to fill vacancies. The bureau has reported it's still trying to fill 91 of its 882 officer positions.

St. Paul Firefighter Killed While Battling Barn Fire

(St. Paul, OR) -- St. Paul is mourning the death of one of its firefighters. St. Paul volunteer firefighter Austin Smith was killed yesterday morning while battling a barn fire. Officials say he was airlifted to OHSU but did not survive. Smith was critically injured when an explosion occurred in the three-alarm fire. Smith had served the St. Paul volunteer fire department for seven years. His colleagues say he was heavily involved in the community and was well-known around St. Paul. An investigation into the cause of the blaze is underway.

Nike Co-Founder Makes Major Donation to Betsy Johnson's Campaign for Governor

(Portland, OR) -- Nike co-founder and former CEO Phil Knight has made one of the two biggest contributions to any campaign in the race for governor so far this year. Knight donated a quarter-of-a-million dollars to former state Senator Betsy Johnson's campaign. The other major donation the race for governor also went to Johnson's campaign. It came from heavy equipment company The Pape Group. As of yesterday, Johnson reported there-and-half million dollars in her campaign treasury, more than any other candidate in the race.

Deputy Who Shot, Killed Vancouver Officer Involved In Previous Fatal Shooting

(Vancouver, WA) -- Records show the Clark County Sheriff's deputy who fatally shot off-duty Vancouver Police officer Donald Sahota was also involved in a controversial fatal shooting in 2020. Deputy Jonathon Feller was one of three deputies involved in the shooting death of Kevin Peterson. It happened after Peterson allegedly tried to buy drugs and ran from detectives in Hazel Dell. An outside prosecutor determined the shooting was justified. Last year, Peterson's family announced plans to sue over the shooting.

Average Lease Cost Jumps 29-Percent In Portland

(Portland, OR) -- The cost of renting continues to go up everywhere, including in Portland. Redfin reports the average cost of a new lease is up 14-percent nationwide compared to last year. In Portland, the average cost of a new lease jumped 29-percent. Oregon now has a statewide rent control law that limits annual rent increases on occupied units to the consumer price index, plus seven-percent.

OR Reducing Quarantine, Isolation Periods In Child Care Settings

(Salem, OR) -- Oregon is reducing quarantine and isolation periods from ten days to five days in licensed child care settings, if all of the kids in the classroom are wearing masks. The change was made following new guidance from the CDC. The Oregon Health Authority recommends all kids two and older wear masks. If an entire classroom isn't wearing masks, the quarantine and isolation period remains at ten days.

OR Reports 24 New COVID-19 Deaths

(Portland, OR) -- Two-dozen more Oregonians are dead after contracting COVID-19. The Oregon Health Authority reported 24 new coronavirus deaths yesterday, raising the state's death toll from the pandemic to six-thousand-124. The Health Authority also reported five-thousand-179 new cases of COVID-19. There are one-thousand-113 people hospitalized with the virus statewide, which is 14 more than on Monday.

Former Mayor Clark Dies

(Portland, OR) -- Former Portland Mayor Bud Clark has died. Clark was 90-years-old. He served as mayor from 1985 to 1992. Clark ran the Goose Hollow Inn tavern before he ran for mayor. He defeated Mayor Frank Ivancie by running a grassroots campaign. Clark was also the raincoat-wearing model for the 1978 "Expose Yourself to Art" campaign.

OR Legislature Starts Short Session Today

(Salem, OR) -- The Oregon Legislature starts its short session today. It's normally intended for budget adjustments, but democratic leaders have a larger agenda that includes affordable housing, criminal justice reform, and a bill that would grant farmworkers overtime. That bill failed to pass in the last session. Democrats are in the majority, but Republicans can deny a quorum if they walk out. Republicans say the Democrat's agenda for the short session goes too far.

OR Reports 15 New COVID Deaths

(Portland, OR) -- Oregon has 13-thousand-443 new infections of COVID-19 since Friday and 15 new deaths. The Oregon Health Authority reported the new numbers yesterday. There are one-thousand-99 people hospitalized with the virus statewide, which is seven more than on Sunday. Oregon's death toll from the pandemic is six-thousand-100, and there have been 638-thousand-876 cases of COVID-19 confirmed since the pandemic began.

OR Misses Governor's COVID Vaccine Goal

(Salem, OR) -- Oregon has missed reaching the Governor's goal for COVID vaccinations. Governor Kate Brown set a goal on December 17th of one-million vaccinations by January 31st to help prepare the state for the Omicron wave of infections. Just 504-thousand people got vaccinations by the deadline. State Health Officer Dr. Dean Sidelinger says every shot helps get a step closer to ending the pandemic.

OR Holding Live Auction On National Unclaimed Property Day

(Salem, OR) -- The Oregon State Treasury will celebrate National Unclaimed Property Day with a live auction on February 3rd. The State of Oregon sells items from abandoned safe deposit boxes. The items include first edition books, art, coins and currency, jewelry and other items people left in safe deposit boxes. Capitol Auction & Estate Services will host the auction starting at 4 p.m. on Thursday. You can pre-bid on items now at capitol auction dot net. The money goes into the Common School Fund with the interest going to K through 12 public schools in Oregon.

Two Charged For Violent Proud Boys Rally In NE Portland

(Portland, OR) -- Two men are facing several charges in connection with a Proud Boys event that turned violent last summer in Northeast Portland. The rally was held in a former K-Mart parking lot on Northeast 122nd Avenue and there were disputes with opposing demonstrators. The Multnomah County District Attorney says Mike Furrow has been indicted on eight charges and Tusitala "Tiny" Toese faces 12 charges that include assault, unlawful use of a weapon and riot. Toese is currently in custody in Washington state and will be extradited to face the charges in Portland.

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