NCWLIFE Evening News, February 3, 2020

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Good evening and welcome to the NCWLIFE Evening News. I’m Grant Olson. Before we get to today’s top news stories, let’s take a quick look outside our weather window:

And now, a few of the stories we’re following for you tonight, Flat tires didn’t stop a high-speed vehicle pursuit in Moses Lake on Sunday but a dead end finally did. A Wenatchee attorney is in legal trouble in Canada after allegedly trying to smuggle a rifle and handgun across the border, and, A Malaga man is accused of coercing women to set up bank accounts, then depositing phony checks and taking out the cash.     

But first, we begin tonight. . .

Rescue agencies went to the aid of an injured snowmobiler above Lake Wenatchee on Sunday afternoon. Lake Wenatchee Fire and Rescue Chief Mick LaMar told NCWLIFE it happened when the vehicle went off an embankment on the popular Pole Ridge snowmobile route. . .

Flat tires didn’t stop a high-speed vehicle pursuit in Moses Lake on Sunday but a dead end finally did.

When it was all over the Grant County Sheriff’s deputies arrested 48-year-old Erika Dee Merritts of Moses Lake for attempting to elude police. It began about 1:10 in the afternoon when a deputy spotted a vehicle running a stop sign at a high speed at Patton Boulevard and Highway 17. That started a chase that wound its way to the Diamond Point area of Moses Lake before the suspect headed down Valley Road, where spike strips were set up that flattened the vehicle’s left-side tires.

Merritts stopped her car for a moment before taking off again, police said. She then was chased to Big Bend Community College where she ran into a dead-end at the softball field and was arrested.

A Wenatchee attorney is in legal trouble in Canada after allegedly trying to smuggle a rifle and handgun across the border. Authorities say 59-year-old Shawn B. Jensen tried to bring a restricted AR-15 and a .22-caliber pistol into Canada through the Osoyoos border crossing back on October 25th, along with ammo magazines.

Prosecutors in Penticton, B.C. have now charged him with eight criminal counts, including smuggling, false statements to customs officers, and unlawful firearm possession. Jensen has held a law license in Washington since 1988. His next court appearance in Penticton is scheduled for Wednesday.

A Malaga man is accused of coercing women to set up bank accounts, then depositing phony checks and taking out the cash.

Damian Scott Halley, who’s 22, was arrested last week, allegedly used accounts created by three women to cash false checks, making off with a total of $4,500. Once the accounts were set up, police said Halley would threaten violence if the women would not make withdrawals for him. Chelan County sheriff’s deputies arrested him Friday, seeking multiple counts of forgery, identity theft and witness intimidation. He’s now held in Chelan County jail on $100,000 dollars bond.

Coming up next, Douglas County Commissioners say they are dismayed by the PUD’s decision to increase rates for data processing centers. A class-action settlement that would have paid back wages to thousands of Wenatchee Valley immigrant workers is on hold, after a judge found it was flawed in favor of the employer, and, Congresswoman Kim Schrier has a healthy war chest going into the 2020 elections. I’m Grant Olson and you’re watching the NCWLIFE Evening News.

Welcome back, and in other news. . .

Douglas County Commissioners say they are dismayed by the PUD’s decision to increase rates for data processing centers. County commissioners were vocally critical of what they viewed as a flawed planning process by the PUD. Commissioner Kyle Steinburg commented. . .

Commissioner Mark Straub is worried about the impacts the rate hikes could have on the economy and the Couny’s tax base. . .

The PUD says the rate increases are needed in part for a $500 million repair project at Wells Dam. They also defended the planning process as transparent and inclusive involving public engagement from the staff.

A class-action settlement that would have paid back wages to thousands of Wenatchee Valley immigrant workers is on hold, after a judge found it was flawed in favor of the employer. NCWLIFE’s Jefferson Robbins has this story. . .

Congresswoman Kim Schrier has a healthy war chest going into the 2020 elections. The 8th District Democrat raised $2.1 million dollars last year, including half a million in just the last three months of 2019. According to the Federal Election Commission, her declared Republican opponent, Jesse Jensen of Auburn, has raised about $64,000 dollars.

FEC filings also show Dan Newhouse, the 4th District Republican congressman, put aside half a million dollars for his campaign in 2019. A separate PAC, the Newhouse Victory Fund, has gathered about $30,000 dollars.

You’re watching the NCWLIFE Evening News. Coming up next, tonight’s feature story and your complete local weather forecast. That and much more still to come on the NCWLIFE Evening News, stay with us.

Welcome back to the NCWLIFE Evening News. . .

The countdown to the Washington State Apple Blossom Festival’s royalty selection pageant is on. NCWLIFE’s Eric Granstrom caught up with Festival Administrator Darci Christoferson to find out what the Top 10 Candidates are going through this week. . .

And that is a look at your local weather forecast, coming up next, tonight’s sports report with Eric Granstrom and more as the NCWLIFE Evening News continues right after this.

The Kansas City Chiefs came from behind yet again Sunday in Miami, winning Super Bowl 54 over San Francisco 31-to-20…

Patrick Mahomes and the Kansas City offense erased a 20-to-10 deficit with three, fourth-quarter touchdowns to win the Chief’s first Super Bowl title in 50-years.

The game’s MVP, Mahomes finished 26-for-41 for 286-yards and two touchdowns through the air and one on the ground.  Damien Williams rushed for 104-yards and the game-clinching 38-yard touchdown with 1:20 remaining.

For the 9th time this season, the Wenatchee Wild split a weekend series…

Despite scoring first Friday, Wenatchee fell at Trial 3-2.  Brett Chorske and Noah Lugli were the only Wild players to light the lamp.

Saturday proved to be a back-and-forth contest with Wenatchee and Coquitlam trading goals throughout.  The Wild would win it in overtime 4-to-3.  Arch Ecker had the call on the Wenatchee Wild Hockey Network…     

Wenatchee hits the road for three games this week beginning Wednesday in Prince George and then Surry Friday and Langley Saturday.

The Wenatchee Girls Bowling team is heading to State after winning the District Championship Friday…

The Panthers were 236-pins better than second-place Eastmont and West Valley.  Wenatchee will be the only representative of the Big-9 at State this week.

As we look at the Les Schwab Prep Girls Basketball Scoreboard, let’s start with Friday…

Moses Lake beat Eastmont 54-20.  Sunnyside topped Wenatchee 52-45.  Ephrata edged East Valley 54-52.  Ellensburg dispatched Quincy 57-15.  Chelan clobbered Cascade 66-16.  And Waterville-Mansfield toppled Tonasket 54-14.

In boys basketball Friday, Eastmont defended its home floor with a 76-61 win over Moses Lake.  Wenatchee got 23-points from Kristina Blauman in its 66-34 win at Sunnyside.    Ephrata edged East Valley 68-65.  Ellensburg clipped Quincy by 10 61-51.  Chelan got by Cascade 49-37.  And Tonasket tilted Waterville-Mansfield 68-35.

Saturday’s game here on the NCWLIFE Channel between the Eastmont and Wenatchee girls was a low-scoring affair…

Wenatchee came out on top 36-32 with Blauman leading the way with 11-points.  Jayden Brown paced the Wildcats with 8-points.  I had the call with Grant Olson here on the NCWLIFE Channel…

Also Saturday, Moses Lake remained atop the Big-9 standings with a 72-32 win over Eisenhower.  Ephrata won the Battle of the Basin over Quincy 65-55.  And the Waterville-Mansfield girls remained atop the North Central B League standings with a 54-19 win at Oroville.

On the boy’s side Saturday, Wenatchee and Eastmont played a back-and-forth contest that included six ties and five lead changes…

Garrett Long led the way with 20-points for Wenatchee who upset the Big-9’s second-place team Eastmont 60-to-51.

Grant and I had the call on the NWLIFE Channel…

In other action Saturday, Eisenhower beat Moses Lake 78-65.  Ephrata topped Quincy 78-59.  And Oroville beat Waterville-Mansfield 72-43.

Thanks Eric.

As we leave you tonight, it was law enforcement versus firefighters Saturday at the Wenatchee Wild game. That included a friendly tug-o-war match. Police, on the right, came up with a winning strategy that did not include falling down during the match, take a look. . .

If you have a video of the day, you’d like to see on the NCWLIFE Evening News, message us on our Facebook Page at the NCWLIFE Channel.

Now let’s check in with Eric Granstrom for a look at what’s coming up tomorrow morning on Wake Up Wenatchee Valley, Eric. . .

And that’s going to do it for our newscast tonight. For more on these stories and other news from around North Central Washington, you can find us on Facebook or our website at ncwlife.com. And, remember, if you see news happening we’d like to hear from you.  You can send us an email at news@ncwlife.com, or give us a call 888-NCWL (6295). I’m Grant Olson, thanks for joining us and have a great night.