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New FBI boss in Portland aims to tackle soaring gun violence

SALEM, Ore. (AP) — The new head of the FBI’s field office in Portland says the city’s soaring rate of gun violence and deaths is a public safety crisis that the FBI intends to try to stem with local law enforcement. In a wide-ranging news conference Monday, Special Agent in Charge Kieran Ramsey also said any residents of Oregon who may have participated in the Jan. 6 riot at the U.S. Capitol will be held accountable if they’re caught. Ramsey said FBI practice precludes him from speaking about whether anyone from Oregon might be under investigation for the riot. 


Lawsuit: Springfield police violated civil rights at protest

SPRINGFIELD, Ore. (AP) — A new lawsuit claims Springfield police officers stifled protesters’ free-speech rights during protests against the police killings of George Floyd and Breonna Taylor, particularly during a July 29 march. The Register-Guard reports the group Black Unity, individual members of Black Unity and others allege in a federal lawsuit that Springfield officers “engaged in several unconstitutional actions to punish, prevent or chill Plaintiffs’ First Amendment activities” during that march. The lawsuit names the city, Chief Richard Lewis and more than two dozen officers. The lawsuit says officers, among other actions, unlawfully detained people, colluded with counter-protestors, and used excessive force. The City of Springfield didn’t immediately respond to a request for comment. 


Oregon to spend $325M to help kids catch up on learning

SALEM, Ore. (AP) — Oregon leaders plan to spend up to $325 million in state and federal money to help fill the gaps in students’ pandemic-year learning with summer programs. Oregon Public Broadcasting reports Gov. Kate Brown and legislative leaders announced Monday that they will devote $250 million in state money to the effort of making up educational ground lost amid COVID-19 shutdowns and remote learning. They’ll also add $75 million in federal money to that effort. The largest expenditure will be $90 million for grants that will add summer enrichment activities for K-8 students. Another $72 million will be grants districts can use to help high school students catch up over the summer.


Bend man charged with arson in law office fire

MADRAS, Ore. (AP) — An official says a Bend man currently being held at a regional jail in The Dalles has been indicted on two first-degree arson charges in a 2019 fire that heavily damaged a downtown Madras law office. An official confirmed Monday to KTVZ that a sealed Jefferson County indictment was filed late last month charging Troy Patrick. He has been held since November at Northern Oregon Regional Corrections Facility in The Dalles since his arrest in Wasco County on burglary, theft, criminal trespass and other charges. Jefferson County Sheriff Jim Adkins said Patrick was being held on a $200,000 warrant for the Madras charges. It wasn’t immediately known if Patrick has a lawyer. 


2 found dead with gunshot wounds in Philomath home

PHILOMATH, Ore. (AP) — Police say two people in their 50s were found dead with apparent gunshot wounds in a Philomath home west of Corvallis. KOIN reports a Philomath police officer arrived at the residence after someone there called 911 and hung up. Police say when the officer did not receive a response from anyone at the residence, a deputy from the Benton County Sheriff’s Office arrived and they forced their way inside. Police say they found 53-year-old Merry Rath and 55-year-old Carl Rath dead with apparent gunshot wounds. Police say official causes of death are yet to be determined. An autopsy is scheduled for this week.


2 killed in Portland crash

PORTLAND, Ore. (AP) — Authorities say two drivers were killed in a crash on the Glenn L. Jackson Bridge in Portland, Oregon. KOIN reports the wreck involving two vehicles on northbound Interstate 205 on the bridge was reported about 1 a.m. Monday. The Oregon Department of Transportation said one of the vehicles was heading in the wrong direction. Officers arrived to find one car “fully engulfed by flames,” according to the Portland Police Bureau. Both drivers died at the scene.


Girl, 9, killed after car hits 3 people in Portland suburb

PORTLAND (AP) — A 9-year-old girl has been killed and two others injured after they were hit by a car in a Portland suburb. Police in the city of Gresham responded to the accident just before 6 pm Saturday. The Oregonian/OregonLive reports the 9-year-old was declared dead at the scene. An adult woman and a 2-year-old girl were taken to a hospital for their injuries. Police said the driver remained on the scene and was cooperating. It was uncertain if charges would be filed. 


US states look to step up wolf kills, pushed by Republicans

BILLINGS, Mont. (AP) — Wolf hunting policies in some U.S. states are taking an aggressive turn as Republican lawmakers and conservative hunting groups push to curb their numbers. Antipathy toward wolves for killing livestock and big game dates to when early European immigrants settled the American West in the 1800s. It flared again as the animals rebounded under federal protection. Former wildlife officials and animal advocates say what’s emerging now is different: a politicized campaign to drive down wolf numbers including with methods long shunned by wildlife managers. Those methods include shooting wolves from the air and payments to hunters reminiscent of bounties that widely exterminated the species last century.