NCWLIFE Evening News September 11th, 2020


Good evening and welcome to the NCWLIFE Evening News. Grant Olson is away; I’m Jefferson Robbins. It’s Friday, Sept. 11. 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 look at the two major fires burning in our area as crews struggle to establish lines around their edges. The state’s land superintendent says Washington needs to arm itself against the devastation from future wildland blazes. And COVID-19 rears its head in a Grant County school system after in-person classes resume.

But first, we begin tonight. . .

Efforts to battle the Cold Springs and Pearl Hill wildfires showed promise today. Incident managers said the northern Cold Springs Fire has about 25 percent containment as of this morning. Angry winds drove that fire south after it started late Monday in Okanogan County, and sparked the Pearl Hill Fire in Douglas County early the next morning. That blaze, which damaged the town of Bridgeport, is at roughly 50 percent containment, with fire crews aiming for full containment by Monday morning. Between them, the two fires have consumed more than 365,000 acres. That’s 570 square miles of land.

Due to the fires, the state Department of Natural Resources has extended the closure of all its lands east of the Cascades through Thursday, Sept. 17th. That means no hunting, fishing or other recreation. The fires led to the death of a 1-year-old child in Okanogan County, and devastated the Eastern Washington town of Malden this week. In a visit to Malden, Public Lands Commissioner Hillary Franz said DNR can’t continue to face uncertain funding for firefighting and fire prevention from the state Legislature.

An East Wenatchee man was sentenced this week to five years in prison for sexual misconduct with a 5-year-old child. Mauricio Bustos Morfin, who’s 25, has been jailed since July. East Wenatchee police say the child disclosed the incident in April. Bustos pleaded down from a charge of first-degree child molestation. His five-year sentence will run concurrently with a Chelan County conviction for drug possession.  

The city says Wenatchee’s newest park is expected to open by late October or early November. Hale Park along the Columbia River includes a skate park, playground area and off-leash dog area. Workers have been installing sod this week on the property, which was donated to the city in 2013. The new 5-acre park is along the Apple Capital Loop Trail near the pedestrian bridge. Funding for its development comes from grants from the State Recreation Conservation Funding Board.

Coming up next, an East Wenatchee man is a neighborhood hero after helping out a family fleeing a house fire. And a new canine officer joins the Grant County sheriff’s office, after a fellow patrol dog retires. I’m Jefferson Robbins and you’re watching the NCWLIFE Evening News.

Welcome back, and in other news. . .

An East Wenatchee man was honored yesterday for helping save the lives of a family as they fled their burning home. Teddin Barrios glanced out his window early Aug. 31st in the 200 block of Iowa Street, and saw his neighbor’s house ablaze. He ran barefoot to the burning home and helped evacuate three adults and two small children. The fire badly damaged the house, but Douglas County Fire District 2 controlled it quickly and no one was hurt. On Thursday, Mayor Jerrilea Crawford and Police Chief Rick Johnson honored Barrios with a commendation at Waste Management, where Barrios works as a driver.

Grant County Health District officials are keeping a close eye on Royal City schools where four students and a staff member have tested positive for COVID-19. The Royal City School Board decided to offer some in-person classes this fall. The schools remain open, though the health district says there is continued risk for a spread of the coronavirus in the system, given the high rate of positive tests in the county. The health district said any decision to close the schools will be based on outbreaks on school premises or buses. Currently, contact tracing is being done on those who tested positive.

With the retirement of K-9 Chicka, the Grant County Sheriff’s Office is welcoming a new police dog on board, K-9 Zedd. Mitch Ackerman of Spokane donated Zedd to the department, where he has completed the necessary 200 hours of training with his partner, Deputy Luis Jimenez. Zedd is short for Zadak, which is Czechoslovakian for The Defender. A German Shepherd, Zadak turns 3 this month.

Chicka, who has been with the department for four years, most recently also was partnered with Jimenez.

You’re watching the NCWLIFE Evening News. Coming up next, Eric Granstrom will have your complete local weather forecast, and our feature story marks the 19th anniversary of the day that shook America. That plus sports and much more still to come on the NCWLIFE Evening News, stay with us.

Welcome back to the NCWLIFE Evening News. . .

It was 19 years ago today that terrorists flew passenger planes into the Twin Towers in New York, the Pentagon in Washington, D.C. and a field in Pennsylvania. The Spirit of America Memorial in Cashmere each September 11th holds a ceremony commemorating those lost in those attacks. Because organizers were unable to hold the ceremony this year due to COVID-19, Voortex Productions created a video on how the Spirit of America came to be and its dedication to the memories of all involved.

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 car count continues to grow for the race tomorrow at Wenatchee Valley’s Super Oval.  Track manager Jeremy Anders joined us on Wake Up Wenatchee Valley this morning, saying this is the largest field they’ve ever had for a Pro Late Model race for the Jerry Berschauer Memorial 100…

Anders says Berschauer has a long history of supporting racing in the Wenatchee Valley, so they felt it important to recognize him with this race…

Currently over 82 cars have entered in five classes including the Jerry’s Auto Supply Pro Late Models, Mountain Dew Jr. Late Models, Plumb Perfect Roadrunners, Bandoleros, and Shepherds Oil Wenatchee Legends Cup.

We will start our coverage tomorrow at 5:30 live on Facebook and then on TV at 6 with yours truly alongside Greg Rentz here on NCWLIFE Channel.

The NFL season kicked off in Kansas City last night where the Chiefs began defense of its Super Bowl Title with a 34-20 win over the Houston Texans…

Patrick Mahomes threw for 211-yards and three touchdowns while rookie running back Clyde Edwards-Helaire rushed for 138-yards and a score.  Kansas City’s defense sacked Deshaun Watson four times.

There’s been a big social media push in this off-season to let Russell Wilson loose and open up Seattle’s offense more.  While offensive coordinator Brian Schottenheimer didn’t go so far as to say the Seahawks will do that, he is confident about Wilson’s ability to move the ball…

Wilson says having three years of working with Schottenheimer has been great, but it’s about a team effort that will make the difference on the field…

There will be no fans in Atlanta for Sunday’s opener, which K.J. Wright says will be strange, but he’s just excited to play some football…

Atlanta quarterback Matt Ryan has proven over his career to be able to pick defenses apart if you give him any time to throw the ball.  But pressure him, and he’ll fade.  Bruce Irvin is tired of hearing about what the Seahawks defense can’t do and is ready to start proving others wrong…

Seattle and Atlanta kick off Sunday morning at 10 on FOX.

The Mariners are in Arizona to begin a three-game weekend series with the Diamondbacks…

Yusei Kikuchi will get the start tonight as he’ll try to improve on his 2-and-2 record.  Caleb Smith will get the ball for Arizona.  First pitch tonight is at 6:40 at Chase Field in Phoenix and can be seen on Root Sports or heard in the Wenatchee Valley on ESPN Radio, AM-900.

There was some action in the American League West last night, so let’s open up the Les Schwab Scoreboard…

Sean Manaea pitched 7-strong innings of 1-run ball while striking out 4 to lead Oakland past Houston 3-1.  Matt Olson had the big hit for the A’s with a 2-run homer in the 6th, his 12th of the season.

Mike Trout hit his 16th homer of the season to lead Los Angeles to a 6-2 win over Texas.

Oakland’s lead in the West is not 6-and-a-half games over Houston with just 18-games left to go.

Thanks Eric.

Upper Valley arts and environmental patron Harriet Bullitt got an online birthday celebration yesterday. Friends of the businesswoman and philanthropist, who established Sleeping Lady Resort and the charitable Icicle Fund, threw a virtual get-together featuring tributes, performances and memories. The event also marked the 25th anniversary of another of Harriet’s creations: The Icicle Creek Center for the Arts, a music and education center just outside Leavenworth. You can view the full celebration on Icicle Creek’s YouTube page. Harriet Bullitt turns 96 years old.

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 Jefferson Robbins, I’ll see you again Monday night. Stay safe this weekend and don’t forget your mask.