NCWLIFE Evening News July 14th, 2020


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, The total number of COVID-19 cases in the Chelan/Douglas County area has now surpassed 900 with 1000 in sight. A 12-year-old boy was seriously injured Saturday morning when the personal watercraft he was operating collided with a ski boat on the Columbia River. A Chelan man convicted of child molestation almost 30 years ago is headed back to prison for reoffending, and,  A Wenatchee domestic violence offender was sentenced Monday to four years in prison for an assault in which he threatened both his former partner and their minor children with a knife.   

But first, we begin tonight. . .

A Mattawa man in his 50s who died at his home has been identified as Grant County’s eighth fatality from COVID-19.

The Grant County Health District said Monday that the man had underlying health conditions. The district said their investigation determined the man was not exposed at a workplace but likely caught the virus in the community.

Grant County reported 89 new positive tests for the virus between Saturday and Monday, including 57 on Sunday. There are 11 Grant County residents currently hospitalized with the virus.

The number of COVID-19 cases detected in the Chelan-Douglas region topped 900 for the first time over the weekend, and they’re on track to reach 1,000 by tomorrow.

The two-county health district reported a total of 994 cases as of this morning, including 97 cases discovered since Friday. Most new cases were concentrated in Wenatchee and East Wenatchee, but 17 were patients from Cashmere. The district say 21 people are now hospitalized in Wenatchee with the virus.

Hospital managers with Confluence Health have expressed concern over the rising number of coronavirus victims needing inpatient care. The district says almost 70 percent of those testing positive for COVID-19 have been symptomatic.

A 12-year-old boy was seriously injured Saturday morning when the personal watercraft he was operating collided with a ski boat on the Columbia River.

The accident happened near the Sunland community in Grant County not far from the Gorge Amphitheatre. The Grant County Sheriff’s Office said at about 10:30 a.m. the Western Washington youth steered into the path of a 1980 AGC Runabout ski boat being operated by Alex Englund of Bow, Washington.

The boy went under the boat and was struck by the propeller. He was taken by helicopter to Central Washington Hospital in Wenatchee and later transferred to Harborview Medical Center in Seattle where he was in stable condition. A passenger on the watercraft, another 12-year-old boy, was treated for minor injuries. Englund was not injured. The sheriff’s office there was no indication anyone involved in the accident was impaired.

A Chelan man convicted of child molestation almost 30 years ago is headed back to prison for reoffending.

56-year-old Timothy Wade Cook pleaded guilty Monday to charges of molesting three different youths, and to a count of promoting commercial sexual abuse of a minor. He took that plea to avoid the more stringent sentence for a charge of first-degree child molestation. Cook admitted abusing the victims between the years 1998 and 2017. All were boys between 12 and 16 years old. Cook was previously convicted of child sexual abuse in 1992. When he’s sentenced on August 17th, he could receive anywhere from 20 years to life in prison.

A Wenatchee domestic violence offender was sentenced Monday to four years in prison for an assault in which he threatened both his former partner and their minor children with a knife.

Alex Mitchell Ruiz, who’s 31, pleaded guilty last week to second degree assault, witness tampering and felony harassment. In March, Ruiz forced open his partner’s door, shut the children in a bedroom, and held her captive at knifepoint for up to 45 minutes while making violent threats. The woman was able to flee to a neighbor’s home and call police. Chelan County Judge Lesley Allan also ordered Ruiz to have no contact with his victims for 10 years.

Coming up next, The Road 11 Fire that scorched almost 10,000 acres over the weekend is mostly contained tonight. The COVID-19 pandemic continues its effects on government services, and, In-river work begins tomorrow on the $22.5-million-dollar West Cashmere Bridge replacement project. I’m Grant Olson and you’re watching the NCWLIFE Evening News.

Welcome back, and in other news. . .

The Road 11 Fire that scorched almost 10,000 acres over the weekend is mostly contained tonight.

The Type 3 Incident Management Team today said containment was at 75 percent, and mop-up work has started. The fire broke out Saturday outside Withrow and swiftly burned toward Mansfield. Firefighters say it burned several outbuildings, damaged one home, and consumed 9,939 acres before it could be corralled.

The COVID-19 pandemic continues its effects on government services.

The Colville Confederated Tribes announced they’re extending the shutdown of most tribal government services through September, to help prevent the spread of the virus.

The shutdown was originally due to end yesterday. The reservation has been closed to non-essential visitors since early spring. The Colville Reservation covers 1.4 million acres of eastern Washington and about 9,500 enrolled members.

In-river work begins tomorrow on the $22.5-million-dollar West Cashmere Bridge replacement project.

Workers will be installing temporary pilings in the Wenatchee River to support a work platform as the almost-100-year-old old bridge continues to be dismantled and work begins on its replacement.

The river will remain open for recreationists but signs have been posted advising rafters, tubers, kayakers and others they’ll need to stay to the right when passing the work zone. The Chelan County Public Works Department says in-river work will continue until September 30th, then resume next summer during the same time frame. The new bridge, the largest public works project in country history, is expected to be completed late next year.

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 175-acre Sunset Fire, which broke out yesterday in Wenatchee’s northwest foothills, is tamped down and under control, after a swift response by local and state firefighting agencies. In tonight’s feature story, Chelan County Fire District 1 Chief Brian Brett told NCWLIFE News as many as 260 structures could have been at risk, but 45 local firefighters and 60 from outside agencies meant no homes lost, and no one harmed. . .

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.

It’s only an intrasquad game, but at least there’s baseball being played at T-Mobile Park.  The Mariners continue to work out in preparation for their first game of 2020 next Friday against Houston.

With 60 players in town trying to make the opening day roster, youngsters have stepped up so far in camp.  Kyle Lewis has been hitting the cover off the ball and finally made an out in his 3rd intrasquad game yesterday.  Meanwhile, Jared Kelenic went deep twice in yesterday’s game…

Watching the youngers players step up so far in camp has manager Scott Servais really looking forward to getting into real baseball next week…

One of the players Servais is particularly pleased to watch is Kyle Lewis.  The outfielder made his Major League debut late last season and worked extremely hard in the off-season.  He’s hitting the ball so well, Servais would like to kryovac him for the season…

Seattle will continue playing intrasquad scrimmages at T-Mobile Park for the next week before beginning the COVID-19-shortened season next Friday in Houston.

The Pac-12 has followed the lead of other national conference in the country to reduce the fall sports schedule to just conference games…

In an announcement Friday, the 12-school conference with universities in Washington, Oregon, California, Arizona, Utah and Colorado said football, men’s and women’s soccer and women’s volleyball will pivot to conference-only schedules.

The Pac-12 also delayed the start of mandatory athletic activities, which would have been this week for the UW football program.  The release states “until a series of health and safety indicators, which have recently trended in a negative direction, provided sufficient positive data to enable a move to a second phase of return-to-play activities.

So, what does this mean?  Well, for Washington State, it means the cancellation of three games in September including home games against Houston and Idaho.

On the Montlake Cut, the shaving of the non-conference schedule takes three September home games away from the Huskies, including the September 5th kickoff against Michigan.

Organizers of one of the world’s largest 3-on-3 basketball tournaments have decided to cancel…

Spokane Hoopfest had already moved its date back from July to August, but now with a spike in COVID cases in Spokane County, organizers have decided to pull the plug for this year.

This would have been the 31st annual event in downtown Spokane, which brings 6,000 teams and 250-thousand people.  Not only is it a hit to the tournament, but will cost the region nearly 50-million dollars in economic impact.

Spokane County is in Phase 2 of the state’s re-opening plan, but has seen a spike in positive tests for COVID in the last few weeks.  Hoopfest organizers felt they’d never get to Phase 3 in time for the tournament so it was best just to cancel.

Locally, the annual Sunburn Classic has also been cancelled.  The 7th annual 3-on-3 basketball tournament was scheduled for the last weekend in July on Georgia Street in East Wenatchee adjacent to Eastmont Community Park.  Eastmont Metro Parks and Recreation Executive Director Sally Brawley confirmed its cancellation in an email this morning.

Here’s a look ahead at our sports broadcast schedule this week on NCWLIFE Channel…

It begins with hockey on Thursday as the Wenatchee Wild host the Merritt Centennials in a game from last September.  Arch Ecker has your play-by-play beginning at 7 o’clock.

Then on Friday, we’ll re-air last Saturday’s race at Wenatchee Valley’s Super Oval starting at 6:30.

The two o’clock feature Saturday is another Great Game of our Past with Eastmont and Rogers playing girls basketball from December of 2017 in the Town Toyota Center.

We’ll come to you LIVE from WVSO Saturday night at 6 for more racing action with what’s now being called “Legends Thunder and More.”

The fan-less night at Wenatchee Valley’s Super Oval will be carried LIVE right here on our little TV station.  Classes featured will be the Economy Midgets: Northwest Focus Midget Series; Plumb Perfect Roadrunners; Holaday’s Custom Muffler B-Modifieds; Bandoleros; and the Tri-State Legends.

Tune in at 6 o’clock for the action here on LocalTel channel 12, Charter channel 19, on our website stream at NCWLIFE dot com, or on our Facebook page.

Thanks Eric.

Finally tonight, the state says a bobcat has used its Interstate 90 wildlife crossing for the first time.

Video from a Washington State Department of Transportation camera last Friday shows the bobcat casually crossing the interstate east of Snoqualmie Pass. The first animal seen on camera using the overcrossing was a coyote back in 2018 while the structure was still under construction. Since then, there have been numerous deer, elk and other wildlife shown using the crossing. And now a bobcat.

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 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 And, remember, if you see news happening we’d like to hear from you.  You can send us an email at, or give us a call 888-NCWL (6295). I’m Grant Olson, thanks for joining us and have a great night.