NCWLIFE Evening News January 11th, 2021

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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, An Okanogan County Sheriff’s sergeant was injured late Saturday when a vehicle being pursued by deputies ran a stop sign in Omak and collided with his vehicle. A 24-year-old Wenatchee man allegedly told police his carelessness with a gun led to his friend being seriously wounded in a December 27th shooting in Leavenworth. A missing snowmobiler was rescued Sunday after spending the night in the Mitchell Creek area outside Manson, and, COVID-19 has now killed 44 people in the Wenatchee Valley.    

But first, we begin tonight. . .

The pilot and a passenger escaped serious injury when their helicopter crashed Saturday afternoon near the Winthrop.

Okanogan County Fire District 6 said it’s believed the helicopter struck a snowbank while landing, which caused it to crashed.

There was no fire and no fuel leaks. The Federal Aviation Administration is investigating the crash, which happened about 1:15 p.m. Saturday.

An Okanogan County Sheriff’s sergeant was injured late Saturday when a vehicle being pursued by deputies ran a stop sign in Omak and collided with his vehicle.

The Washington State Patrol said 46-year-old Sergeant Kevin Arnold was transported by a deputy to Mid Valley Hospital where he was treated and released with minor injuries. The 15-year-old female driver of the other vehicle also was hospitalized with a broken leg.

The conditions of Arnold and the teen were not immediately available. According to the state patrol, the teen driver was attempting to elude pursuing officers about 11:30 p.m. when she ran the stop sign on Locust Street North and Riverside Drive and struck Arnold’s cruiser, then went up an embankment and struck a fence. A 16-year-old girl passenger in the vehicle was not injured. The 15-year-old driver faces a vehicular assault charge.

A 24-year-old Wenatchee man allegedly told police his carelessness with a gun led to his friend being seriously wounded in a December 27th shooting in Leavenworth. Ricardo Barrales Vergara faces felony counts of fleeing police, reckless endangerment, and unlawfully carrying a firearm.

A 20-year-old passenger in Vergara’s Honda sedan was struck by a bullet that night in the Leavenworth DOT parking lot. Chelan County sheriff’s deputies say Vergara admitted he left a .38-caliber revolver on top of his car, then spun a doughnut in the lot. That sent the handgun flying off the car roof and caused it to discharge. The bullet entered the passenger door from a low angle, and struck the victim in the ribs. The passenger survived, but Vergara allegedly drove at speeds up to 100 miles an hour to catch up to the ambulance. Police arrested him Friday afternoon, and Chelan County prosecutors filed charges in the shooting this morning.

A missing snowmobiler was rescued Sunday after spending the night in the Mitchell Creek area outside Manson.

The Chelan County Sheriff’s Office says the 51-year-old Chelan resident was rescued from the drainage about 3:30 p.m. after getting separated from a group of snowmobilers shortly after noon Saturday.

He was reported to be in good condition. Chelan County Search and Rescue, the Chelan County Sheriff’s Office and the Lake Chelan Snowmobile Club all assisted in the rescue.

COVID-19 has now killed 44 people in the Wenatchee Valley. The Chelan-Douglas Health District today increased its tally of deaths attributed to the virus by a factor of six, with three men and three women added to the roster.

The youngest of these new victims of coronavirus was man in his 50s; the oldest, a man in his 90s. About half the total deaths in Chelan and Douglas counties have occurred among residents of long-term care facilities. Twelve such facilities are currently experiencing COVID-19 outbreaks, defined as on staffmember or resident testing positive for the virus in the last 28 days.

Coming up next, The Washington Department of Health said Friday that all the regions created under the state’s new COVID-19 reopening plan will remain in Phase 1. Hilary Franz, the Commissioner of Public Lands who’s made better control of Washington wildfires her main mission, plans to introduce a bill tomorrow that would create a dedicated funding source for wildfire response, and, Travelers can expect more delays on Highway 2 between Wenatchee and Leavenworth this week as the state continues work at the site of a mudslide last week.  I’m Grant Olson and you’re watching the NCWLIFE Evening News.

Welcome back, and in other news. . .

The Washington Department of Health said Friday that all the regions created under the state’s new COVID-19 reopening plan will remain in Phase 1.

The state will reassess each region and announce on Fridays whether any will be allowed to move to Phase 2, which, among other things, would allow indoor dining, bowling alleys and movie theaters to reopen on a limited basis. Chelan, Douglas, Grant and Okanogan counties are combined to form the North Central region under the plan.

To move to Phase 2, there needs to be a two-week trend of fewer COVID-19 cases and hospitalizations and no more than 90 percent hospital intensive care capacity. The state this week will be launching a new dashboard that shows where each region stands under the new metrics. Currently, the four-county North East region does not appear to meet any of the benchmarks.

Hilary Franz, the Commissioner of Public Lands who’s made better control of Washington wildfires her main mission, plans to introduce a bill tomorrow that would create a dedicated funding source for wildfire response.

The bill comes on the heels of a historically destructive 2020 fire season in Washington, which burned more than 800,000 acres and destroyed 298 homes, including most of the town of Malden. DNR fire resources and local fire departments were spread thin, and departments in neighboring states faced their own out of control fires, which limited their ability to assist. The bill would also set funding for forest restoration and community resilience strategies.

Travelers can expect more delays on Highway 2 between Wenatchee and Leavenworth this week as the state continues work at the site of a mudslide last week.

The slide struck a guardrail and partially blocked the eastbound lane of the heavily traveled highway just east of Leavenworth last Monday.

State Department of Transportation crews worked on the site much of last Thursday, forcing closures of 20 minutes at a time. WASHDOT says on Tuesday and Wednesday they’ll be doing rock scaling work with more 20-minute closures between 7 a.m. and 4 p.m.

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. . .

Doctor Mark Johnson, an infectious disease specialist with Confluence Health, said thousands of local health care workers and first responders have received a COVID-19 vaccination and residents of long-term care facilities soon will. In tonight’s feature story, Johnson told Wake Up Wenatchee Valley’s Dan Kuntz the unprecedented vaccination effort presents many challenges. . .

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.

Seattle was no match for the Los Angeles defense Saturday, falling in its NFC Wild Card playoff game 30-to-20…

Leading 6-3 midway through the second quarter, Rams cornerback Darious Williams stepped in front of a sideline pass intended for D.K. Metcalf and returned it 42-yards for the game’s first touchdown.  The Seahawks kept trying to play catch up from there and just couldn’t make up the difference.

Coach Pete Carroll talked about a dejected locker room after a quick exit from the playoffs…

Before leaving the game with a rib injury, Aaron Donald had two of LA’s five sacks and two tackles for a loss.  Carroll says they just haven’t figured out an answer for him…

Russell Wilson completed just 11-of-27 of his pass attempts for 174-yards with the pic-6 and 2 touchdowns to D.K. Metcalf.  He said the suddenness of losing a playoff game and it ending your season stings…

The Rams started backup quarterback John Wolford, but Jamal Adams put him out on a hard hit to his head in the 1st quarter.  Jared Goff played the rest of the game but was limited to 155-yards passing. Cam Akers was the difference for L-A running the football.  He rushed 28-times for 131-yards and a touchdown.

Adams says Seattle just wasn’t hitting on all cylinders Saturday…

Los Angeles moves on to the divisional round of the playoffs with a 30-to-20 win over Seattle, ending the Seahawk’s season.

Let’s run down the rest of the Les Schwab Scoreboard for the NFL’s Wild Card games.

Josh Allen threw for 324-yards and two touchdowns and Buffalo held on for a 27-24 win over Indianapolis. 

Tom Brady threw for 381-yards and two touchdowns, leading Tampa Bay to a 31-23 win over Washington.

Lamar Jackson combined for 315-yards passing and rushing to win his first playoff game as Baltimore beat Tennessee 20-to-13.

Drew Brees tossed two touchdown passes and Alvin Kamara ran for another as New Orleans ended Chicago’s season 21-9.

Cleveland scored two defensive touchdowns and raced out to a 28-nothing lead in the first quarter and went on to beat Pittsburgh 48-37 last night.

Taking a look at the Divisional round of the playoffs coming up this weekend, Green Bay will host the Rams Saturday at 1:35 on FOX.  That will be followed by Buffalo and Baltimore at 5:15 on NBC.

Then on Sunday, it’s Cleveland at Kansas City at 12:05 on CBS.  That’s followed by the Saints and Buccaneers in New Orleans at 3:40 on FOX.

Gonzaga had no trouble remaining undefeated Saturday with a 116-88 win over Portland in West Coast Conference men’s college basketball…

Joel Ayayi posted the first triple-double in Gonzaga history with 12-points, 13-rebounds and 14-assists.  The Bulldogs will host Pepperdine Thursday at 2 o’clock.

Andre Kelly scored 22-points to lead Cal past Washington 84-78.

Oscar da Silva scored 17 of his 27-points in the second half as Stanford pulled away from Washington State 75-60.

On the women’s college basketball scoreboard…

Jenn Wirth scored 21-points and had 10-rebounds to lead Gonzaga to a 75-43 win over Portland Saturday.

Charlisse Leger-Walker made a layup at the buzzer in overtime to give Washington State a 71-69 win over No. 7 Arizona.

Washington and Arizona State was postponed.

And don’t forget, the college football season comes to an end tonight…

No. 3 Ohio State takes on No. 1 Alabama in the College Football Playoff National Championship, presented by AT&T.  Kick off is set for 5 o’clock from Hard Rock Stadium in Miami on ESPN.

Thanks Dan

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

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.