After dehydration death, grieving father and new jail chief forge surprising bond

Four years ago this month, 25-year-old Keaton Farris died naked, dehydrated and malnourished on the floor of an isolation cell in the Island County Jail on Whidbey Island. Farris, who was bipolar and in the throes of a mental health crisis, had been arrested 18 days earlier for failing to appear in court for allegedly stealing and cashing a $355 check.

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SPR and N3

Spokane Public Radio is part of the Northwest News Network (N3), a public radio collaboration in Washington, Oregon and Idaho working together to bring more news to our listeners.

April Membership Drawing: Steve Martin & Martin Short at Northern Quest

Steve Martin & Martin Short are on the road this summer with their Now You See Them, Soon You Won’t tour, and this month SPR will give away three sets of tickets to see them at Northern Quest Resort & Casino . The show includes musical storytelling, dancing, and laughter.

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Huge Potholes Ahead for Highway Trust Fund

Apr 15, 2014

 

Washington Senator Patty Murray leaned hard on the horn this week, trying to warn Congress that the federal highway trust fund is going broke faster than anyone thought. The Department of Transportation warned the trust fund will run out of gas completely by the end of August, rather than in October as first projected.

Moratorium Halts Future Drive-Thru’s on Hamilton

Apr 15, 2014

 

The Spokane city council made sure last night that a new McDonald’s restaurant will be the only drive-thru only business on the Hamilton corridor, at least for the near future. Monday night, council member Amber Waldref proposed a moratorium to prohibit certain business permits for the next six months.

The Washington Employment Security Department says a new program with the Federal Treasury has allowed them to collect money from people who received unemployment payments, who actually were working.

 

The rail lines in the Inland Northwest are at capacity, even before proposed coal and oil projects bring more trains through the region. That’s the upshot of a report by a transportation expert from Montana, who presented his findings at Gonzaga University Tuesday. Terry Whiteside is a principal in Whiteside and Associates. His firm analyzed rail impacts from all proposed coal export facilities in the northwest, including two in Washington and one in Oregon.

 

An interim review of Boeing's progress on building a fleet of new aerial tankers for the Air Force gives the company high marks for sticking to a strict budget. But government auditors are worried about some possible hurdles ahead. The first four test tankers have been built - they're essentially engineering test beds - and may be flown by the middle of next year.

The city administration will start the process of creating a police ombudsman commission this month. The commission will be made up of Spokane citizens, and its formation begins with two public hearings. The police ombudsman is tasked with reviewing police conduct and doing outreach with citizens. The commission will monitor the quality of the ombudsman’s work, and can request the ombudsman perform further investigations.

 

Police in Spokane have arrested a second suspect in the murder of Spokane businessman Douglas Carlile. The Spokane Police Department says suspect Robby Wahrer drove the van used in the killing. Suspect Timothy Suckow is charged with first-degree murder in Carlile’s death. Major Crimes Lieutenant Mark Griffiths says officers arrested Wahrer on Thursday for second degree murder and conspiracy to commit second degree murder.

 

When a citizen uses deadly force against another person, their actions are reviewed through the scope of Washington state law. Part of Washington law explains when it is justifiable for a person to commit homicide. Deputy Travis Pendell at the Spokane County Sheriff’s Office says it’s important people know the law in terms of protecting their safety.

 

Officials at WSU Spokane have commissioned a feasibility study to look at the possibility of starting their own medical school. While WSU Spokane is already in a partnership with the University of Washington that offers a four year medical program, WSU Spokane officials believe the Spokane school is a good position to offer its own program.

BPA Water Planners Aren't Celebrating Just Yet

Apr 10, 2014

 

The people who run the sprawling Columbia River water system are giving the current water supply outlook a thumbs up. But they also have their fingers crossed. Bonneville Power Administration hydrologists are still somewhat off balance after a roller coaster winter - from a so-so December to an alarming drought in early February to deluges of rain and snow last month.

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