Regional News Archives for 2023-12

Suspect Shoots At Officers

(Portland, OR)  --  A suspect is under arrest after shooting at Portland Police.  Residents called 911 Thursday night when they saw a wanted suspect near Southeast Division and 143rd.  Officers saw the suspect leave an apartment in a vehicle.  They used spike strips and deflated the tires, but the suspect kept driving to a dead end near Southeast 148th and Market where he allegedly fired at officers and ran into an apartment.  Neighbors were told to stay inside and away from windows.  After several hours, the suspect surrendered and was arrested.  No shots were fired by officers.

Zombie House Listed For $1.3 Million

(Tigard, OR) -- A mansion that was left partially built in Tigard, and taken over by homeless people, is listed for one-point-three-million-dollars. The house, on one-and-a-half acres, is located on Beef Bend Road across the street from Deer Creek Elementary School. Construction on the nine-thousand square foot house started in 2006, and it was abandoned in 2008. It has seven-bedrooms and a six-car garage. The windows are broken, and the house is spray painted with graffiti. It's listed as a "fixer-upper." An investor bought the property out of foreclosure, trimmed the blackberries, and put it up for sale, again.

Driver Misses Brake, Hits Gas

(McMinnville, OR) -- A driver crashed through the windows of Tropical Tan in McMinnville Thursday morning. Police say the driver of the Jeep SUV told them he hit the gas instead of the brake and the car crashed into the business. The driver wasn't hurt, but someone in the building was treated for a minor injury.

Hoodoo Ski Area Cancels New Year's Celebration

(Santiam Pass, OR) -- A lack of snow has forced the Hoodoo Ski Area to cancel its New Year's celebration. Hoodoo is located in the Central Oregon Cascades near Santiam Pass. They started getting snow after Thanksgiving, but several atmospheric rivers brought rain and washed away much of the snow. There are several bare spots, even at the top of the ski lifts. Hoodoo is hoping for colder temperatures in January and February which will bring more snow and allow them to open.

Car Theft Drops 25% In Portland

(Portland, OR) -- Car theft is down by 25-percent in Portland. KATU-2 reports police data shows incidents of car theft dropped 25-percent between January and November of this year as compared to the same period last year. This year, fewer than 75-hundred cars were stolen. That's compared to more than ten-thousand last year.

Suspect Killed In Confrontation With Police

(Portland, OR) -- A wanted suspect died in a confrontation with Portland Police Wednesday afternoon at a mall. Officers responded to a department store at Mall 205 when a suspect with a warrant was seen stealing merchandise. Members of the Focused Intervention Team moved in on the suspect as he left the store, he ran and near Southeast 96th Avenue there was a confrontation with officers and shots were fired. The suspect died at the scene. A handgun was found near the suspect. Three officer were involved in the shooting. No officers were injured. Chief Bob Day says it's a sobering reminder of the dangers of police work.

Crews Find Tugboat That Disappeared After Sinking In Willamette River

(Gladstone, OR) -- The search is over for a 25-foot tugboat that went missing after sinking in the Willamette River earlier this month. The U.S. Coast Guard says crews found the boat near Meldrum Bar Park in Gladstone on Friday. The boat has been missing since December 13th, when it sank while helping a barge near the I-205 bridge. No leakages have been reported, but crews are taking steps to protect the environment in case anything does leak from the boat.

Woman Transported By Police Dies At Hospital

(Portland, OR) -- A woman who was given a ride to a hospital as a courtesy by Portland Police died at the hospital. Late on Christmas Eve, officers responded to a priority threat call near Southeast Division and 160th Avenue. The 69-year-old woman who called was standing in an apartment parking lot and didn't appear to be hurt. She asked to be taken to a hospital. No ambulances were available, so officers drove her to Adventist Health Hospital. When they were near the hospital, the woman became unconscious and was taken into the hospital where she died. The Medical Examiner will determine the cause and manner of her death.

Missing Vancouver Child Found

(Vancouver, WA) -- The search is over for a missing eleven-year-old girl from Vancouver. Police say Quarnieria Pratcher was found safe with family members in Portland yesterday. She was reported missing on Tuesday from her home near the 25-hundred block of Fort Vancouver Way. Police say she has a medical condition that put her at risk.

Police Arrest Three During 'Porch Pirate' Operation

(Corvallis, OR) -- Three people are facing charges following a police operation to crack down on so-called "porch pirates" in Benton County. The sheriff's office says deputies arrested three people during the operation between November 27th and December 23rd. Deputies worked with the USPS to plant two-dozen decoy packages containing GPS tracking devices on neighborhood doorsteps. Police identify the arrested suspects as Jerry Michael Wells, Roxanne Martinez and Kayla Marie Kidd.

OSP Seeks Vandals Who Damaged Tillamook Hunting Gate

TILLAMOOK, OR -- Vandals were caught on a trail camera damaging a Tillamook County gate intended to keep vehicles out of a wilderness area. The Oregon Hunters Association walk-in-only gate is on Lost Creek, off McPherson Creek Road. 

State Police are now asking for the public’s help locating the people responsible for the vandalism that occurred during the first rifle season for elk, on November 20th. Anyone with information is encouraged to contact OSP dispatch at 1-800-452-7888, *OSP (*677), or email at TIP@osp.oregon.gov. Reference case number SP23386178.

 

Police Seek Missing Vancouver Child

(Vancouver, WA) -- Police in Vancouver are searching for a missing eleven-year-old girl. The Vancouver Police Department says Quarnieria Pratcher was last seen yesterday at her home near the 25-hundred block of Fort Vancouver Way. Police say she has a medical condition that puts her at risk. Pratcher was last seen wearing a black sweatsuit with the number 23 displayed in red. Anyone with information is urged to contact police.

Police Seize Guns, Drugs During Yearlong Investigation

(Portland, OR) -- Portland Police conducted a yearlong investigation into an illegal drug operation and arrested nine people. It started with a tip about a house where it appeared drugs were being sold. In June, police searched the house and seized 19 guns, body armor, ammunition, illegal drugs, a stolen vehicle and 10-thousand dollars in cash. Four people were arrested. This month, police served several other warrants seizing 12 guns, drugs and two stolen vehicles. Five people were arrested. The FBI helped with the investigation.

Portland Sets Fatal Crash Record

(Portland, OR) -- There have been 71 traffic-related fatal crashes in Portland this year, a new record. Three of those crashes happened over the holiday weekend and impaired motorists drove into two of the investigations. Two impaired drivers crashed into one scene, nearly hitting a deputy district attorney. One impaired driver crashed into the other scene. No one was injured. Police say drivers can prevent these crashes if they take responsibility and don't drive when they're impaired.

Holiday Express Extended One More Weekend

(Portland, OR) -- The Holiday Express steam engine will run for one more weekend. The historic passenger rail cars are pulled by a steam locomotive along the banks of the Willamette River. The trip starts at the Oregon Rail Heritage Center near OMSI. Santa and his elves will be working overtime. The train will run Friday and Saturday. Purchase tickets at the Oregon Rail Heritage Center's website.

Police Seek Cannon Beach Burglary Suspects

(Cannon Beach, OR) -- Police are searching for three suspects in connection to a series of burglaries in Cannon Beach. The suspects are accused of carrying out three separate burglaries early yesterday morning. Police say they're searching for two men and one woman.

Man Injured After Being Dragged By TriMet MAX Train In Beaverton

(Beaverton, OR) -- A man is injured after being dragged by a TriMet MAX train Thursday morning. TriMet says the person's long coat got stuck in doors of the train as they were closing. The man was then dragged along the platform by the train at the Beaverton Transit Center. He is now in the hospital in serious condition.

Non-Profit In Gresham Shutting Down After 20 Years

(Gresham, OR) -- A non-profit in Gresham is closing after 20 years. Family of Friends was a mentoring program for disadvantaged kids. Leaders of the non-profit say they've matched 400 kids with mentors over the past two decades. Family of Friends will be shutting down in the New Year due to a lack of funding.

Unionized Powell's Books Workers Reach Agreement After Months Of Negotiations

(Portland, OR) -- The union representing workers at Powell's Books says they've reached an agreement with the business. After being in negotiations since January, the union is agreeing to a four-year contract. The International Longshore and Warehouse Union 5 voted in favor of the new contract. It includes higher wages, more access to a healthcare plan and to holiday pay, and protections should layoffs happen.

Night Of Remembrance Held For People Who Died While Homeless

(Portland, OR) - A re-entry facility in Portland is remembering those who died while experiencing homelessness. A night of remembrance was held at Bybee Lakes Hope Center in North Portland on Thursday. Helping Hands Reentry Outreach Centers held the event in memory of the 315 people experiencing homelessness who died in 2022. A recent report shows the leading cause of death was drug overdose.

Salem Police Officer Found "Justified" In Non-Fatal Shooting Of Suspect

(Salem, OR) - A Salem police officer is cleared of wrong-doing in a shooting. Officer Jeremy Mitchell shot a suspect who was pointing a fake gun at bystanders last month. The suspect survived the shooting. On Thursday, a Marion County Grand Jury found that Mitchell's use of deadly force was justified.

Portland FBI Leader Leaving Field Office For National Role

(Portland, OR) - The leader of Portland's FBI is taking a national role. Kieran L. Ramsey has been the special agent in charge at the Portland field office since January of 2021. Now, he's becoming an assistant FBI director in Washington, D.C. He leaves Portland for the new job on January 5th.

Serial Killer's Victim Identified By DNA Testing

(Portland, OR) -- DNA testing is identifying a woman killed by Gary Ridgway in the 80s. The victim was found near the Mountain View Cemetery in Auburn, Washington in 1985. Nearly 40 years later, the remains have been identified as Lori Anne Razpotnik of Lewis County. Ridgway is serving a life sentence without parole after pleading guilty in 2003 to killing 48 women.

Proposed Mental Health Crisis Center Needs More Funding

(Portland, OR) -- A vacant office building in Portland could soon be transformed into a mental health crisis center. Sturgeon Development Partners and Jackson House are partnering on the project for the building off the corner of Northwest 17th and Thurman Street. The center would offer residential and mental health services as well as 80 transitional housing units. Still, more funding is needed for the work- which would require 22-million dollars from local governments to complete.

Search Underway After Suspect Escapes From Hospital

(Portland, OR) -- Officials are searching for a suspect who allegedly escaped from a hospital bathroom. Twenty-four-year-old Sabrina Cox was under medical evaluation at Oregon Health and Science University after a court hearing for an aggravated identity theft charge. The Multnomah County Sheriff's Office says Cox removed a ceiling tile, climbed into the ceiling and into another room, and was able to get out of restraints before leaving the hospital Monday. Anyone who sees her is asked to call 911.

Police In Scappoose Searching For Suspect After Schools Secure Students

(Scappoose, OR) -- Police in Scappoose are searching for a man in connection to an incident that caused schools to secure their students. Police responded to an area near school buildings on Tuesday afternoon. Despite there being no threat at the schools, students were secured inside as a precaution. Police are still searching for a suspect and ask anyone who sees a white man in his 30s driving a dark-colored 2005 Chevy Silverado pickup to call 911.

Ban On Flavored Tobacco And Nicotine Products Starts Jan. 1

(Portland, OR) -- Multnomah County will ban flavored tobacco and nicotine products starting next year. A request from the tobacco industry to prevent the county ordinance from being enforced was thrown out in Multnomah County Circuit Court last week. The ban goes into effect January 1st. The goal is to stop young people from starting smoking and vaping with flavored products, leading to addiction to nicotine.

TriMet Offering Free Rides On New Year's Eve

(Portland, OR) -- Those celebrating New Year's Eve can again get a free ride home from TriMet. The Portland Streetcar, MAX trains, and buses will be free starting at 8 p.m. on the last day of December. The MAX is also extending service past 2 a.m. TriMet services are running on Sunday schedules on New Year's Day.

U.S. Coast Guard Searching For Sunken Tug Boat In Willamette River

(Oregon City, OR) -- The U.S. Coast Guard is searching for a tug boat that went missing in the Willamette River. The 25-foot tug boat sank on December 13th when helping a barge near the I-205 bridge. Two people who were on board were able to get off the tug boat before it became submerged. Officials say the strong river current is an obstacle in trying to get the boat out of the river.

Identities Of Three Men Killed In Plane Crash Released

(Independence, OR) -- Three people who died in an Oregon plane crash are being identified. Officials say the plane went down in Independence on Saturday while traveling in heavy fog. The crash claimed the lives of 35-year-old Mohammad Hussain Musawi, 35-year-old Mohammad Bashir Safdari, and 29-year-old Ali Jan Ferdawsi. The National Transportation Safety Board is still investigating.

Rare Sneaker Donation Sold At Auction With Proceeds Benefiting Portland Rescue Mission

(Portland, OR) -- Portland Rescue Mission is receiving new funding thanks to a rare sneaker donation. A pair of Nike Air Jordan 3 shoes were donated to the shelter anonymously in April. Now, the shoes have sold for over 50-thousand dollars at auction Monday. All of those proceeds will go to Portland Rescue Mission.

PPB Investigators Think Foot Doctor Accused Of Sex Abuse Could Have More Victims

(Portland, OR) -- The Portland Police Bureau wants to talk to anyone who may have been victimized by a foot doctor. Dr. Brian M. Bowen was indicted by a grand jury on sex abuse charges earlier this month. Those charges stem from alleged assaults at Eastside Foot & Ankle. Now, investigators say there is reason to believe there are more people who may have been victims. Police and the Multnomah County District Attorney's Office are asking any additional victims to make a report.

Non-Profit Ceasing Operations Of Homeless Shelter Starting In 2024

(Portland, OR) -- The non-profit Oregon Harbor of Hope is ending its involvement with a homeless shelter in Northwest Portland. The River District Navigation Center has faced criticism from neighbors since it opened in 2019. Now, the city of Portland says Harbor of Hope is ceasing its operations at the facility starting on New Year's Day. City officials will then be responsible for running the shelter, which houses approximately 100 people.

Hundreds Of Teachers Absent From Portland Public School District's Makeup Day

(Portland, OR) -- Hundreds of teacher absences are being reported in the Portland Public Schools District. Monday was set to be a makeup day for educational time in the classroom lost due to a teacher strike in November. However, 558 teachers were not in class on Monday. A letter went out to Portland Public Schools parents on Sunday warning that substitute teachers may be in place Monday.

ODFW Warns Against Gifting Turtles

SALEM, OR -- Giving live pets as Christmas gifts is generally ill-advised. But if the animal is a turtle, Oregon's Department of Fish and Wildlife says that gift could be criminal. 

"Western Painted Turtles and our Western Pond Turtles, those are both protected species in Oregon," says Rick Boatner, ODFW's Invasive Species Coordinator, "We’re trying to recover them to increase their population by doing restoration work [and] protecting their nests." It is illegal to possess native Northwestern Pond Turtles or the popular Western Painted Turtles in Oregon without a permit. But that doesn’t stop people from raiding nests and stealing hatchlings from the wild.

ODFW is investigating such a case in Lane County. "When we find a nest, a lot of times we enclose them so predators won’t get to them first. And somebody from the public got to them first and removed them from the area," says Boatner. ODFW Biologists even fenced off the area around the Eugene nests, posted signs, and installed cameras. But someone cut the fence and stole the cameras, as well.

Taking turtle hatchlings from the wild is a poaching crime, and Boatner says it's a big problem in Oregon, "Especially the selling of hatchlings this time of year, for Christmas presents." More than a dozen hatchlings were taken in the Eugene incident. Boatner expects they’ll show up for sale online. 
Generally, he says, it’s a bad idea to gift a turtle, "I’m going to throw this especially at grandparents; they’re terrible in the sense that they want to buy a little turtle for their grandkids. Give us a call first, to find out if they’re legal to have in the state. And, you want to think about the age of the child, their attention span." Some species can live more than 50 years. "They’re great and cute when they’re hatchlings. But when they get to the size of a dinner plate, people don’t want them."

He has advice for people who come across a turtle in nature, "People pick them up and take them as a pet. Or, when they’re walking on a trail, they find a hatchling and they take them home. That would be one - do not remove them from the wild. If you do, contact Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife and turn them in to us." And if you see a turtle for sale online, Boatner says you can contact him, "I deal with them, or the local wildlife biologists. I see them on CraigsList sometimes, those kinds of websites. If you report it, we generally do an investigation on it through law enforcement."

 

Kah-Nee-Ta Hot Springs Village Resort To Open In 2024

(Warm Springs, OR) -- A resort and spa is set to open next year after undergoing renovations. The Kah-Nee-Ta Hot Springs Village Resort in Warm Springs closed for financial reasons in 2018. Since then, the Warm Springs Economic Development Corporation says renovations have included a motel and RV park, with a restaurant and sports bar and a dozen pools and hot springs still being worked on. A grand opening is planned for the summer of 2024.

Alaska Airlines Flight Attendants To Protest At Portland International Airport Today

(Portland, OR) -- Hundreds of flight attendants will be picketing outside the Portland International Airport today. The protesters are members of the Association of Flight Attendants CWA who work for Alaska Airlines. They are seeking better pay as part of a new union contract. PDX is one of several airports where Alaska Airlines flight attendants will be demonstrating.

Portland Police Bureau Loosening Restrictions For Car Chases

(Portland, OR) -- The Portland Police Bureau is adjusting its protocols for car chases. The change will loosen restrictions on officers who need to pursue a suspect vehicle, allowing them to go after people suspected of property crimes. Under current guidelines, officers can only consider engaging in a car chase if the suspect is believed to have committed a felony "person" crime. The change goes into effect 30 days from Friday. Police are still expected to end a pursuit when the safety risks outweigh the benefit of catching the suspect they're pursuing.

 

Steel Bridge's Lower Deck Closing To Pedestrians & Cyclists

(Portland, OR) -- The Steel Bridge is closing to pedestrians and cyclists starting today. ODOT says the closure comes ahead of repairs being made to the bridge this week. The multi-use path on the bridge's lower deck will be closed between Tom McCall Waterfront park and the Eastside Esplanade from 7 a.m. to 6 p.m. until Friday. Pedestrians and cyclists can still use the upper deck of the bridge.

"Free Palestine" Protesters Temporarily Block Traffic On I-405

(Portland, OR) -- All lanes of I-405 are back open after a protest blocked traffic on Sunday. The "Free Palestine" demonstrators blocked the interstate near the Fremont Bridge for around 90 minutes in total. It started shortly after 3 p.m. and lasted until 4:30 when protesters began to leave. State Police say there were no issues between the protesters and cars that were in traffic.

Man Accused Of Threatening TriMet Bus Driver With Knife

(Portland, OR) - A man is accused of threatening a TriMet bus driver with a knife. The incident allegedly happened late Friday night. A 35-year-old man was taken into custody and is facing charges. Police say the bus driver was not injured.

FAA Investigating Plane Crash That Killed 3 In Independence

(Independence, OR) - The Federal Aviation Administration is investigating a deadly plane crash in Independence. It happened just outside the Independence State Airport late Saturday afternoon. Police say three people died in the crash. Hundreds of people also lost power because the plane brought down power lines, which caused a small brush fire.

Downtown Elk Statue To Be Put Back Up In 2024

(Portland, OR) - The downtown elk statue is expected to be put back up next year. The Portland City Council approved one-and-a-half-million dollars in funding for the project last week. The statue was taken down during protests in 2020 after bonfires were lit around its base. An exact date for the statue to be put back up has not been announced.

Portland International Airport Expecting Increase In Holiday Travelers

(Portland, OR) - The Portland International Airport is expecting the holiday travel season to be busier this year. Officials expect 730-thousand people to travel through the airport between yesterday and December 31st. That would mean 20-percent more travelers coming through PDX than they saw during the same timeframe last year. Airport officials advise arriving two and a half hours early for domestic flights and three hours early for international flights.

Portland's Climate Fund Brings In Extra Money

(Portland, OR) -- Portland's voter-approved Clean Energy Community Benefits Fund is bringing in millions of dollars more than expected. The City will have a surplus of 540-million dollars over the next five years. 282-million dollars will go toward transportation, housing, parks and water bureau projects. 258-million dollars will go toward production of energy efficient affordable housing, a new Keller Auditorium, and other city functions. The money is raised by a one percent tax on large retailers.

DEA Agent's Trial In Cyclist's Death Moved To Federal Court

(Salem, OR) -- A federal judge has ordered the trial of a DEA agent who allegedly hit and killed a cyclist in Salem to be moved to federal court. Samuel Landis was originally charged with criminally negligent homicide by the Marion County Court in August. His defense team wanted to move the trial to federal court where law enforcement officers have a potential criminal defense of immunity from prosecution. That doesn't exist under state law. The Marion County District Attorney is asking the Oregon Department of Justice to review the order and consider an appeal.

Suspect In Big Drug Bust Re-Arrested

(Portland, OR) -- The suspect in one of the largest drug busts in Oregon history is back behind bars. Luis Funez was originally arrested December 7th when deputies seized more than 52 pounds of fentanyl powder and more than eight-thousand fentanyl pills. He was booked and ordered to report to the court the next morning. He didn't show, so a warrant was issued for his arrest. The US Marshal's Service helped Multnomah County Sheriff's deputies locate and re-arrest Funez during a traffic stop.

Jewish Activist Group Blocks Traffic In Call For Ceasefire In Gaza

(Portland, OR) -- A Jewish activist group calling for a ceasefire in Gaza held protests in Portland and seven other U.S. cities last night on the eighth night of Hanukkah. Protesters with the group Jewish Voice for Peace blocked traffic on the Burnside Bridge in Portland, carrying a large menorah onto the bridge. They also called on Oregon Senator Ron Wyden to call for a cease-fire in Gaza. Oregon Senator Jeff Merkley called for a cease-fire last month. Protesters also blocked rush hour traffic on major bridges in Seattle, Washington, DC and Philadelphia on Thursday, and also held demonstrations in Boston, Atlanta, Chicago and Minneapolis. The UN this week demanded an immediate humanitarian ceasefire in Gaza, where Israeli forces have killed nearly 19-thousand people in its war against Hamas.

PPS Starts Search For Superintendent

(Portland, OR) -- The Portland Public Schools Board has started the process of searching for a new superintendent. Guadalupe Guerrero plans to resign in February. Wednesday night, the school board assigned members to identify an interim superintendent, select a superintendent search firm and develop a plan for meetings with the community as the process moves forward. They plan to hire an interim superintendent no later than February 12th.

Supreme Court Hears Arguments Over Senators' Lawsuit

(Salem, OR) -- The Oregon Supreme Court heard arguments over Ballot Measure 113. It would prevent legislators from running again, if they have more than 10 unexcused absences. A group of Republican Senators filed a lawsuit arguing the measure applies to their next election, not the upcoming election. Attorneys for the state argued the court should follow the voters' intent. The Secretary of State determined they would follow the voters' intent and not place the Senators names on the ballot next year. There's no indication when the court will rule.

Several Threats Against Schools Investigated

(Portland, OR) -- School districts in at least five Oregon counties responded to bomb threats on Monday. Law enforcement in Marion, Multnomah, Clackamas, Linn and Coos counties are investigating incidents in the Cascade, Colton, Central Linn, Corbett, Coos Bay and Bandon school districts. The FBI's Portland field office released a statement acknowledging it's working with state and local partners to "ensure safety" and urged any schools receiving threats to call 911 or the Portland FBI office.

Holiday Travel Second Highest Ever

(Portland, OR) -- Holiday travel is expected to be the second highest on record. Triple-A reports about a third of Americans will travel at least 50 miles over Christmas and New Year's, an increase of two-point-two percent. Nearly one-and-a-half million Oregonians will travel. Saturday December 23rd and Thursday December 28th are expected to be the busiest travel days. Top regional destinations are Bend, Seattle, and Portland.

Vancouver To Open Fourth Safe Stay Community

(Vancouver, WA) -- Vancouver will open its fourth Safe Stay Community on Friday. It'll be located on Main Street near I-5 on Washington Department of Transportation property. There will be 20 modular shelters that will house up to 40 people. The site includes restrooms and showers. Governor Jay Inslee, Mayor Anne McEnerny-Ogle and WSDOT regional administrator Carley Francis will speak at the opening. The site is operated by Do Good Multnomah.

Wyden Questions Crater Lake Concessionaire

(Crater Lake, OR) -- Oregon Senator Ron Wyden wants the National Park Service to re-evaluate its contract with the company managing hospitality at Crater Lake. Wyden says a new assessment reveals the concessionaire has not fulfilled important responsibilities at the park over several years. He claims Aramark has not conducted required maintenance and created unsafe living conditions for staff. Wyden says his staff visited Crater Lake and observed issues related to safety, training and maintenance.

Counterfeit Masks Guilty Plea

(Portland, OR) -- A West Linn man has pleaded guilty to illegally importing and selling two-and-a-half million dollars worth of counterfeit N95 masks during the pandemic. Federal court documents show Jiang Yu worked with others to import the masks, market them online, and sell them. When customers asked about authenticity, they were sent fake certificates claiming they were N95 masks. At least two-and-a-half million dollars worth of masks were sold. As part of his plea agreement, Yu must pay restitution, forfeit 600-thousand counterfeit masks and surrender his 2004 Lamborghini, a Mercedes SUV, and more than 25-thousand dollars in cash.

Sea Turtle Rescued From Cold

(San Diego, CA) -- "Sir Acha" the sea turtle is now safe and warmer in California after being rescued from the chilly coasts of Oregon. Officials say faced an untimely demise when he got too cold off Oregon's coast, resulting in a phenomenon called "cold-stunned." NOAA says cold-stunning happens when a turtle is exposed to cold water temps below 50-degrees. It makes them weak and inactive and unable to swim. The Oregon Coast Aquarium rescued the Olive Ridley, stranded near Waldport, Oregon, and the non-profit "Turtles Fly Too," got Sir Acha to SeaWorld San Diego.

Police ID Tire Shop Worker Killed In Stabbing In Longview

(Longview, WA) -- Police are releasing the identity of a tire shop worker who was stabbed to death in the store's parking lot in Longview. The Longview Police Department says 48-year-old Brian Whatley was killed Friday behind the Superior Tire shop. Police say Whatley was in the parking lot waiting to start his shift when a suspect identified as Gilbert Platt allegedly stabbed him. Police arrested Platt at his home Friday afternoon on charges of first-degree murder and first-degree robbery.

Suspect Appears In Court For Road Rage-Related Hatchet Attack

(Portland, OR) -- Bail is set at 15-thousand dollars for a man accused of attacking another man with a hatchet during a road rage incident over the summer. KATU-2 reports 32-year-old Joseph Chastain appeared in court Friday after police arrested him Thursday night on charges of assault and unlawful use of a weapon. Police say Chastain followed the victim after a road rage incident on the night of August 12th and then confronted him after he got out of his car. The victim reportedly had a hatchet, which Chastain allegedly took from him and used to stab him in the leg. The victim was hospitalized with a serious injury.

24 Arrested In Retail Theft Mission

(Portland, OR) -- The latest retail theft mission conducted by the Portland Police Bureau resulted in 24 arrests. East Precinct and Central precinct officers teamed up on Saturday. They recovered 35-hundred dollars in stolen items and two stolen vehicles. Thirteen people who were arrested also had warrants. Police say they appreciate the community support they received through the day.

Intel's Oregon Robotics Tournament Draws Hundreds

(Hillsboro, OR) -- Intel's annual Oregon Robotics Tournament and Lego Tournament is in the books. More than 300 kids gathered to compete in the tournament Saturday and Sunday at Intel's Jones Farm campus. The winner qualified to move on to the state championships. This year marks the 21st year Intel has hosted the tournament in Oregon.

Fatal Motel Fire

(Salmon Creek, WA) -- A person was found dead inside of a motel room that was on fire Saturday morning in Salmon Creek. Clark County Fire District 6 crews responded to the Inn at Salmon Creek, but no smoke was showing from the room. There was a fire inside that crews quickly put out. The victim's body was found inside. The Medical Examiner will determine the cause of death and the person's name. The investigation into the cause of the fire is ongoing.

Driver Charged in Fatal Crash

(Hillsboro, OR) -- A driver is charged with manslaughter in a crash that happened Friday night in Hillsboro. The Washington County Sheriff's Office reports a car was speeding on River Road south of Farmington Road when it lost control in a curve and rolled over. A juvenile in the car died at the scene. Another juvenile passenger was hospitalized. The driver, 19-year-old Jesse Granados-Villegas, was treated and released from a hospital and will be charged with manslaughter in the second degree, reckless driving, and driving under the influence of marijuana.

Slow Start To Ski Season Continues

(Portland, OR) -- The slow start to the ski season in Oregon continued over the weekend. Mt. Hood Meadows opened for the season on Saturday and shut down operations on Sunday, due to rain. Timberline Lodge has a two-foot base at the lodge and their operations are day-to-day. Mt. Bachelor has a 29 inch base and they were expecting a couple of inches of new snow.

Safe Rest Pods Reopen

(Hillsboro, OR) -- Hillsboro's Safe Rest Pods will reopen this week. They're located on Southwest 17th Avenue. The pods are built on pallets and offer power, heating and cooling. Open Door HousingWorks operates the facility. In June, previous pods at the site were moved to Cornelius where they're still in use. The Hillsboro pods will remain while plans are completed for a year-round permanent shelter at the site. Washington County currently has over 400 beds or rooms available in the shelter network.

Second Landslide Blocks Tracks, Canceling Portland-Seattle Amtrak Service

(Portland, OR) -- Amtrak train service cancellations between Portland and Seattle have been extended. A second landslide is now blocking the tracks. Service was scheduled to resume Thursday morning after it was halted Tuesday by a landslide. Amtrak says train service will remain suspended through Saturday. Officials say alternate modes of transportation will be provided.

Two Sheriffs On Leave, Charged For Two Inmate Deaths

(Portland, OR) -- Two Multnomah County Sheriff's deputies are on administrative leave after being arraigned for charges connected with two inmate deaths this year. Officials say corrections deputies James Brauckmiller and Michael Mersereau faced official misconduct charges by a Multnomah County grand jury Tuesday, saying they "may not have performed their job duties as required." No more specific details about what transpired were given.

Portland Facing Another Atmospheric River This Weekend

(Portland, OR) -- Another atmospheric river is rolling into the Portland area this weekend, bringing more heavy rain and potential flooding. Forecasters say heavy rainfall will return to the Pacific Northwest Saturday into early Sunday, dumping more water into rivers that are still running high from the last atmospheric river that soaked the region earlier this week. The new system could bring another five inches of additional rain to the area and heavy snow to the mountain passes, causing travel delays through the weekend.

Alaska Airlines Pilot Pleads Not Guilty

(Portland, OR) -- The off-duty Alaska Airlines pilot accused of trying to crash a plane carrying more than 80 people in October is pleading not guilty. Forty-four-year-old Joseph David Emerson appeared in court yesterday, where he was arraigned on 83 counts of recklessly endangering another person and one count of endangering an aircraft. A judge ruled that Emerson can be released from jail pending trial and set bail at 50-thousand dollars. The release conditions include that Emerson undergo mental health services, stay away from drugs and alcohol and not come within 30 feet of an operable aircraft. The release terms also allow him to return to his home in California while awaiting trial. Emerson was riding in the cockpit jump seat on a flight from Everett to San Francisco when he allegedly tried to shut down the jet's engines by activating the fire suppression system to cut off fuel to the engines.

TriMet Launches Cleanup Effort

(Portland, OR) -- TriMet has assigned a team of cleaners to focus on the transit agency's heaviest used and oldest transit centers. They're power washing, painting, and picking up litter at the stations. Many of them are 37-years-old. Crews are also replacing broken glass, signs and older bus shelters. TriMet has stationed end-of-line cleaners at seven key transit Centers and MAX stations where operators take their breaks. TriMet has doubled the number of Customer Safety Supervisors to increase security.

Hospitals Appeal Judge's Dismissal Of Lawsuit

(Portland, OR) -- Four hospitals in Oregon are appealing a federal judge's decision to dismiss a lawsuit claiming the state doesn't provide adequate care for people with severe mental illness. Legacy Health, Providence Health, PeaceHealth and St. Charles Health filed the lawsuit. They say some patients are forced to stay in acute care hospitals for extended periods of time. At the Unity Center for Behavioral Health, one civilly committed patient stayed for 224 days. They say acute care hospitals aren't designed to offer long-term care for patients with severe mental health issues. The hospitals say those patients need care at facilities like the Oregon State Hospital.

New Rules For Alcohol Deliveries

(Portland, OR) -- Companies that deliver beer, wine, cider, and cocktails in Oregon will need to follow new rules starting in January. This year, the Legislature passed a law that requires alcohol delivery companies to train drivers to make sure the products stay out of the hands of minors and people who are visibly intoxicated. It's the same rules restaurants, grocery and convenience stores have to follow. The lack of oversight has led to delivery companies leaving alcoholic drinks on doorsteps without confirming that the order was received by someone older than 21. OLCC has training programs, so drivers are ready ahead of the January 1st.

OSP Needs Help Identifying Poaching Suspects

(Salem, OR) -- Poachers have killed at least 12 animals across Oregon over the last month and Oregon State Police are asking for help identifying the suspects. The animals that have been killed include Rocky Mountain Elk, black-tailed deer, bear cubs and big horn sheep. There are only 37-hundred California big horn sheep in Oregon, and it's extremely difficult to get a hunting tag. The head and ram horns were removed. Cash rewards and hunting preference points are offered for information that leads to the arrest of suspects in any of the poaching cases.

Flooding Closes Wheeler Post Office

(Wheeler, OR) -- Flooding has shut down the Post Office in Wheeler, on the Oregon Coast. Customers who get their mail from the Wheeler Post office need to go to the Nehalem Post Office and show photo ID to get their mail and packages. They'll resume service at the Wheeler Post Office as soon as it's safe to do so.

Child Predator Found Guilty

(Hillsboro, OR) -- A New York doctor has been found guilty of luring a high school age girl in Tualatin and getting her to send nude photos. 36-year-old Daniel Rock was living in New York and met the victim in an online chat group. He got her cell phone number and convinced her to send the photos. Prosecutors say Rock tried to get the victim to delete the photos and messages. The victim's mother checked her daughter's phone and reported it to Tualatin Police. Rock was found guilty last week of Using a Child in Display of Sexually Explicit Conduct and Luring a Minor. He'll be sentenced December 29th.

New Details Released In Murder-Suicide

(Vancouver, WA) -- A missed text message delayed police response to a murder-suicide in Vancouver that left five people dead. The Clark County Sheriff's Office says the suspected shooter was an adult male. The victims appear to be the suspect's wife, two adult daughters, and the suspect's adult brother. The Sheriff's Office was asked to do a welfare check, because of a text message where a family member said they had harmed people at the house. The text came in four hours earlier, but wasn't discovered until around 1 o'clock Sunday afternoon. When deputies arrived, all five people were dead from apparent gunshot wounds.

Councilor Ryan Won't Run For Mayor

(Portland, OR) -- Portland City Commissioner Dan Ryan has announced he won't run for mayor. In 2025, Portland will institute a new form of government that'll bring a new mayor and 12 new city councilors. Ryan says he plans to continue leading on complex challenges facing the city. Ryan says he'll announce what's next by the end of January. City Councilor Mingus Mapps announced earlier in the fall that he will run for mayor.

Legislative Leaders Support ODOT Funding

(Salem, OR) -- Oregon Governor Tina Kotek says the House Speaker and Senate President have agreed to commit 19-million dollars to the Oregon Department of Transportation. ODOT says that's how much they're over budget for winter maintenance. Without the money, there could be delays plowing freeways and highways. Eight-million dollars would be spent on winter maintenance, seven-million dollars would go toward highway repairs, and four-million dollars would replace 10 trucks primarily used for plowing snow. The money still needs approval by the 2024 Legislature.

Man Presumed Dead After Being Swept Down Johnson Creek

(Portland, OR) -- One man is presumed dead after reportedly being swept away in the fast-moving waters of Johnson Creek. A witness tells KATU-2 the man was helping homeless campers in the area in Southeast Portland yesterday morning when the water swept him away. Rescue teams responded to the area on reports that someone was spotted being swept downstream on an outdoor furniture cushion. Crews located the cushion downstream but still haven't found the missing man. The creek is running high and fast due to recent rain.

Local Jeopardy! Champ Headed To Tournament Of Champions

(Portland, OR) -- Local Jeopardy! champion Yogesh Raut is headed to the Jeopardy! Tournament of Champions. Host Ken Jennings teamed up with KATU-TV yesterday to inform the Vancouver resident he will be bypassing the Wild Card Competition and going straight to the tournament. Raut competed on the show in January.

State Approves Funding To Restore ODOT Winter Maintenance

SALEM, OR -- Governor Tina Kotek says the state House Speaker and Senate President have agreed to commit $19 million to the Oregon Department of Transportation prior to the start of the legislative session in February. 

In the agreement, $8 million will be used to restore winter maintenance for the next two years. ODOT announced earlier this year it would limit overtime hours and seasonal services like plowing, in response to a budget shortfall. 

The agency will use $7 million for safety improvements like fixing potholes and re-striping fog-lines on low-volume highways. That work was paused earlier this year. 

The other $4 million is for replacing 10 trucks primarily used for snow plowing.

Click HERE to read the full letter sent from Senate President Rob Wagner (D-Lake Oswego) and House Speaker Dan Rayfield (D-Corvallis) to the Governor approving the allocation.

 

Atmospheric Rivers Bring Heavy Rain And Snow To Pacific Northwest

(Seattle, WA)  --  Strong plumes of moisture will bring heavy rain and snow to the northwest over the next few days. Called atmospheric rivers, the Weather Prediction Center warned residents especially in the Pacific Northwest and the Rockies of "hazardous to even impossible travel conditions in these impacted areas." More than half a dozen states in the west are now under some kind of winter weather alert as of this past weekend as the atmospheric rivers spread eastward from Washington and Oregon to Colorado and Wyoming.

Heavy Snow Allowed Timberline Lodge To Open Over Weekend

(Timberline Lodge, OR) -- Heavy snowfall on Mt. Hood allowed Timberline Lodge to open for limited operations over the weekend. Two lifts ran from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. on Saturday and Sunday. Snow is expected to change to rain this week, and resort officials don't yet know how that will affect skiing and riding next week. They'll announce plans for this upcoming weekend sometime today.

Five Found Dead In Apparent Murder-Suicide In Vancouver

(Vancouver, WA) -- An investigation is ongoing into an apparent murder-suicide that left five people dead in Vancouver. KATU-2 reports deputies responded to a home in the Orchards neighborhood last night after a concerned relative received a text from one of the family members saying they had harmed others at the home. A SWAT team responded and deployed a drone inside the home to find five people shot to death. Police believe the suspect is among the dead.

PBOT Preps For Potential Flooding

(Portland, OR) -- Transportation officials are preparing for potential flooding as more rain moves into the area. The Portland Bureau of Transportation cleared more than 350 storm drains on Saturday. The agency says it received over 100 calls for service on Saturday. That's more than three times their normal call volume.

One Killed, Two Injured In Gresham Shooting

(Gresham, OR) -- One person is dead and two others are injured following a shooting in Gresham. It happened yesterday afternoon inside an apartment complex near 162nd and Northeast Glisan streets. Police say three people were hospitalized for gunshot wounds. One of those people later died at the hospital. An investigation is ongoing.

Over 110 Arrests In Retail Theft Missions

(Portland, OR) -- More than 110 people were arrested over Black Friday weekend as Portland Police conducted retail theft missions. Portland officers teamed up with Multnomah County Sheriff's deputies, Gresham Police and Port of Portland Police. They conducted undercover missions at malls including Gresham Station, Mall 205 and Cascade Station. Besides the arrests, nine stolen vehicles were recovered and more than 10-thousand dollars' worth of stolen merchandise was seized.

Abandoned Dogs Found In Stolen U-Haul

(Klamath Falls, OR) -- Oregon State Police troopers have rescued 15 severely neglected dogs that were left abandoned in a U-Haul truck at a truck stop in Klamath Falls. The truck sat for two days before it was reported. Troopers saw it was stolen and they could hear dogs barking in the back. They found 15 dogs in seven cages. Troopers contacted two suspects and recovered another 10 dogs. Two people were arrested and face charges. The dogs were turned over to the Klamath County animal shelter.

Mayor Urges Businesses To Bring Employees Back

(Portland, OR) -- Mayor Ted Wheeler is asking businesses and organizations in Portland to bring their employees back into the office. Wheeler says they've added police officers, state troopers, and mental health support to increase security downtown. The City requires its workers who can be hybrid to be in the office at least 20 hours a week. Wheeler is asking businesses, nonprofits and other organizations to implement a similar rule. He says it's important for small businesses and the city's economy.

Trump To Be On Oregon's 2024 Primary

(Salem, OR) -- Former President Donald Trump's name will be on Oregon's Republican primary ballot next year. The Oregon Secretary of State says there's been significant voter response on the issue. There's been legal action in other states over whether Trump took part in an insurrection, and if that should keep him off the ballot. Secretary of State LaVonne Griffin-Valade says she doesn't have the authority to determine the qualifications of candidates in a presidential primary. Oregon's primary doesn't determine a candidate, it communicates a preference to party delegates who determine the nominee at the party's nominating convention.

Abducted Girl Found Safe

(Portland, OR) -- A child is safe after being abducted during a car theft Thursday morning. Portland Police says the car was warming-up near Northeast 126th and Halsey with the child inside. The father went back into the house for a moment and the suspect jumped into the car and took off, despite the father yelling there was a child inside. A short time later, a resident spotted the car driving recklessly and then saw a little girl walking down the street. Police reunited her with her family. They're searching for the vehicle, a 2017 dark blue Subaru Outback with an Oregon license plate of 639JVQ.

Christmas Ships Ready For 2023 Parades

(Portland, OR) -- The Christmas Ship fleet starts another schedule of parades on Friday. The decorated ships run on the Willamette and Columbia rivers for 13 nights. The parade is free to watch. Several restaurants, hotels and businesses also have good views. You can meet the captains and crew during open house events on December 16th and December 17th at River Place Marina. The parade started in 1954 and it's the longest running illuminated boat parade in the U.S. You'll find the schedule at Christmas Ships dot org.

OHSU Leads Telehealth Study For AIDS Treatment

PORTLAND, OR -- Friday is World AIDS Day. An estimated 8,200 Oregonians are living with HIV and one in eight don't know they're infected. But new medications mean it’s no longer a fatal diagnosis. 

"It’s not that it’s ever good to have HIV," says OHSU Nurse Practitioner Chris Fox, "But we have many, many treatment options available." Fox says pre-exposure prophylaxis - known as "PrEP" - can reduce the risk of getting HIV from sex by 99%. And treatments for those with the virus can make it undetectable, "Once someone’s viral load is undetectable, then their immune system can repair itself," says Fox. And, those patients aren't likely to spread the virus, "Undetectable equals untransmittable."

Fox is now leading a two-year study of 125 patients using telemedicine for PrEP treatments, "It increases access and it reduces barriers to having to seek care either in your community, where you might not feel comfortable, or having to drive hours to see someone who you feel comfortable with and who offers the services." He says patients living with HIV or seeking prevention treatments in rural Oregon often face more barriers than those in urban areas. "Some of those barriers are related to lack of knowledge about these prevention or treatment options. Some of them are stigma - if your aunt’s best friend is the nurse at the clinic that you go to, you might not feel comfortable going there for your sexual health or HIV prevention needs taken care of." OHSU has provided virtual appointments for PrEP care since 2021. Click HERE for more information about the study, including how to sign up to participate. 

A handful of people around the world have been cured of HIV, but Fox says that requires a bone marrow transplant, "And that’s like a 50/50 chance of survival to get one of those. So, those are reserved for people that need a bone marrow transplant for some other reason." 

Fox tells the Oregon Radio News Network, "Ending the epidemic doesn’t mean that HIV does not exist anymore. But it means that we can get to a point where new infections are rare and everyone who does have an infection is treated."

 

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