NCWLIFE Evening News January 8, 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, A Wenatchee man is accused of selling heroin to a police informant and keeping drugs for sale in his home. An Ephrata lawyer and former judge broke Washington campaign finance laws when he sent an anonymous mailer opposing a candidate for prosecutor, and, Today marks the first day for all Washington students to provide proof of their measles-mumps-rubella vaccination before entering school.    

But first, we begin tonight. . .

A major fruit processing company in Cashmere settled an environmental lawsuit Tuesday, agreeing to cut levels of zinc and copper it releases into the Wenatchee River.

The nonprofit Columbia Riverkeeper sued Crunch Pak in federal court, saying the company discharged unhealthy levels of both minerals into the river for more than five years, and violated state and federal rules by not tracking its own pollution. Crunch Pak entered a consent degree Tuesday, agreeing to reduce its runoff, and donate $150,000 dollars to environmental causes.

A Wenatchee man is accused of selling heroin to a police informant and keeping drugs for sale in his home.

32-year-old William Brett Cooper was arrested last week after Department of Corrections agents said they found money and drugs at his residence. Wenatchee police say they collected four grams of heroin, two baggies of suspected methamphetamine, and about $1,200 in cash. Cooper allegedly sold small amounts of heroin last summer to an informant with the Columbia River Drug Task Force.

An Ephrata lawyer and former judge broke Washington campaign finance laws when he sent an anonymous mailer opposing a candidate for prosecutor.

A Thurston County judge ruled Tuesday that Jerry Moberg, alongside Moses Lake businessman Ken Greene, concealed their sponsorship of the mailer and failed to register as a political committee. The two sent an anonymous mailer in 2014 attacking then-candidate Garth Dano, who’s now the Grant County prosecutor.

When the state Public Disclosure Commission investigated, Moberg at first omitted the fact that he’d paid $4,000 in cash to help print the flyer. Moberg is a former Superior Court judge who once argued a case in front of the U.S. Supreme Court. A trial later this month will determine the fine the two men must pay; it could be more than $300,000 dollars.

Today marks the first day for all Washington students to provide proof of their measles-mumps-rubella vaccination before entering school.

A state law passed last year removed exemptions that aren’t based on a doctor’s recommendation or family religious beliefs. School districts in the Wenatchee Valley already show pretty strong compliance: Just 4 percent of kindergarteners in Chelan County and 1.5 percent in Douglas County weren’t current on their MMR shots last year. Missed vaccinations are a bigger problem in Grant and Okanogan counties, which had kindergarten incompletion rates of 9.4 and 14.5 percent respectively. More than 70 cases of measles were recorded in 2019 during a statewide outbreak.

Coming up next, A familiar face in local law enforcement is returning to the valley. An NCW legislator is among those hand-picked by Governor Jay Inslee to develop the state’s future energy strategy, and, The annual holiday drive by the Community Foundation of North Central Washington netted record donation levels last year. I’m Grant Olson and you’re watching the NCWLIFE Evening News.

Welcome back, and in other news. . .

A familiar face in local law enforcement is returning to the valley. 

At last night’s City Council meeting, the City of East Wenatchee created the position of interim police chief and Mayor Jerrilea Crawford appointed former Wenatchee police chief Tom Robbins to the post. Robbins replaces Randy Harrison, who retired at the end of last year.

Robbins will work under a six-month contract that will pay him about $10,000 a month. Robbins has been in law enforcement for 43 years, including 28 years with the Washington State Patrol and 15 years as Chief of Police for Wenatchee before retiring in 2016. He begins his new duties January 16th.

An NCW legislator is among those hand-picked by Governor Jay Inslee to develop the state’s future energy strategy.

Alex Ybarra, a 13th District House member from Quincy, joined 24 other appointees to an advisory committee that meets for the first time Friday at SeaTac Airport. The committee will develop plans to execute the 2019 Clean Energy Transformation Act, which calls for 100 percent clean electricity in Washington by 2045. Ybarra, a Republican, joins representatives of utilities, industry, local governments, tribes, and other organizations from across the state.

The annual holiday drive by the Community Foundation of North Central Washington netted record donation levels last year. The Give NCW program brought in almost $279,000, a record, to fund local nonprofit efforts around the region. The largest beneficiary of Give NCW contributions is the Northwest Immigrant Rights Project, with almost $31,000. Other beneficiaries include Mobile Meals of Wenatchee, the Children’s Home Society, and ten smaller initiatives from Wenatchee to Okanogan County.

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. . .

Chelan County’s newly appointed juvenile court administrator credits new State sentencing reforms for declining youth crime. Cory Stephens replaces Phil Jans as court administrator and director of the juvenile jail following Jans retirement at the end of last year. Stephens says arrests are down significantly compared to when he was first hired in 1998. He says that many youth offenders who previously were sentenced to jail time are now being treated through diversion programs that have resulted in a reduction in the rate of recidivism. . .

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 Mariners Care Community Tour was in Wenatchee yesterday.  Players Austin Nola and Matt Festa and the Voice of the Mariners Rick Rizzs shared the message of dreaming big with students and John Newberry Elementary School.  Later, the trio answered all types of questions from the audience at Pybus Public Market…

I had a chance to sit down with each and ask more baseball-related questions, including about the youth movement underway…

We’ll have more with Austin Nola and Matt Festa tomorrow.  You can see all three of my interviews in their entirety on our website at NCWLIFE dot com.

Taking a look at the Les Schwab Prep Scoreboard in high school basketball last night…

Cashmere dominated Cascade 58-to-8 even without the services of Hailey Van Lith.  Hailey sat out last night’s game after being banged up in the holiday tournament in Portland.

Also last night, it was Omak edging Chelan 39-36.  And Tonasket topped Manson 60-to-24.

The Cashmere boys finished the first half of Caribou Trail League play undefeated with a 69-50 win over Cascade.  Sam Phillips paced the Bulldogs with 17-points while brother Nate chipped in 15-points.

Tre Marchand scored 26-points to lead Omak to a 53-45 win over Chelan.  The Goats were led by the 12-points of Cade Christopherson.  Chelan Coach Jeff Pearl said, quote, we need to find other ways to score when our perimeter shots aren’t falling.  Our last two games we’ve failed to figure out how to do that, end quote.

In B-league play, Manson topped Tonasket 54-36.

On the wrestling mats last night…

There was a double dual in the Caribou Trail League at Cascade in Leavenworth last night.  Omak topped the Kodiaks 37-32 and then Okanogan 42-18.  Cascade beat Cashmere 48-30 and then Okanogan edged Cashmere 37-36.

Also on the Les Schwab Prep Wrestling Scoreboard, Selah dispatched Quincy 63-to-6.

And in girls bowling yesterday…

Wenatchee and Eastmont defended the home alley at Eastmont Lanes, sweeping aside Moses Lake and West Valley respectively.  The Panthers improved to 7-and-2 with the win while Eastmont moved into second place at 6-and-3.

By the way, congratulations to Wenatchee’s Kylah Hankins on being selected a WIAA Player of the Week last week for her 209-average, leading the Big-9.

The WIAA is out with the latest Athletes of the Week and two student-athletes from our area were recognized…

Cashmere’s Hailey Van Lith averaged 33 points in helping the Bulldogs win the Holiday Tournament against 5A and 6A schools in Oregon.

Quincy’s Shannon Workinger is 16-and-oh in wrestling this season, winning at of her matches by pin.  She’s also being a role model by her work in the classroom.

Congratulations to Hailey and Shannon, WIAA Athletes of the Week.

Thanks Eric.

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.