Twin Falls bicyclist dies after being hit by tractor
MURTAUGH — A 42-year-old bicyclist died Saturday afternoon after he was struck by a tractor near Murtaugh.
According to the Idaho State Police, Shae Mayner of Twin Falls was riding a bicycle northeast on Murtaugh Grade, about four miles north of Murtaugh, at about 2:43 p.m. when he tried to pass the tractor, which was driven by a 52-year-old Rupert man.
Police say Mayner fell off his bicycle and was struck by the tractor. The bicyclist died at the scene, ISP said.
Mayner was wearing a helmet.
Fuel tanker truck accident causes 1,200-gallon fuel spill
BOISE (AP) — Police say an accident involving a fuel tanker truck has caused a 1,200-gallon fuel spill into a ditch connected to a river near Powell Junction in northern Idaho.
KBOI-TV reports the accident occurred Friday morning on Highway 12.
The Idaho State Police said the tanker driver had been heading west when he went off the roadway for an unknown reason.
Police say the trailer became disconnected from the tanker and overturned. The driver was trapped inside and was rescued by responders.
According to police, one of the fuel tanks ruptured, spilling the fuel into a ditch connected to a reservoir leading to the Lochsa River.
Police say measures were taken to contain the spill and environmental agencies were notified.
The cleanup crew is expected to remain in the area for about a week.
New 9th US Circuit Court of Appeals judge sworn in
IDAHO FALLS (AP) — The newest 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals judge was sworn in Friday in eastern Idaho.
Ryan Nelson, a longtime Idaho Falls resident and attorney for Melaleuca Inc., was nominated by President Donald Trump to the 9th Circuit in May. He was confirmed by the U.S. Senate in a mostly partisan vote of 51-44.
The Post Register reports that during his investiture ceremony in Idaho Falls, Nelson said he believed the courts should be the weakest branch of the government. He said the courts had gained more power than intended over the years.
The 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals handles federal appellate cases for most Western states, including Alaska, Arizona, California, Hawaii, Idaho, Montana, Nevada, Oregon and Washington, as well as the U.S. territories of Guam and the Northern Mariana Islands.
23-car train derailment in Utah could take days to clean up
EUREKA, Utah (AP) — Authorities say it may take several days to clean up a train derailment south of Salt Lake City that resulted in an unknown quantity of propane to be released into the air.
Juab County fire officials say 23 of the 165 cars on a Union Pacific mixed-freight train came off the rails Saturday and one of the cars was on its side and leaking propane.
Utah Department of Environmental Quality officials say Union Pacific sent a hazmat team to the site.
The conductor and engineer were on the train at the time of the derailment and both escaped injury.
The small town of Eureka is about 74 miles (or 119 kilometers) south of Salt Lake City. The accident occurred about roughly 6 miles south of Eureka.
Man sentenced to 15 years prison for carjacking near court
CHEYENNE, Wyo. (AP) — Federal prosecutors say a Wyoming man has been sentenced to more than 15 years in prison for attacking a sheriff’s deputy and carjacking a woman outside a county courthouse.
U.S. Attorney Mark A. Klaassen’s office says Jonathan Alexander Olivares pleaded guilty to carjacking and use of a firearm during a crime of violence. Prosecutors dropped a third weapons charge.
Following his prison sentence, Olivares will be on supervised release for five years.
According to court records, Olivares was held in jail before he was taken to Uinta County’s courthouse on June 26 for a hearing.
Authorities say Olivares was being escorted out of the courtroom when he overpowered a sheriff’s deputy, took the officer’s gun and carjacked a woman outside the courthouse in Evanston. The 26-year-old was arrested shortly afterward.
Father, 2-year-old son attacked by family’s dog
NORWALK, Calif. (AP) — Authorities say a father and his 2-year-old son were attacked by the family’s Rottweiler as they were walking the pet in a Southern California neighborhood.
KABC-TV reports the toddler was taken to the hospital Saturday after the dog bit the child on the head in Norwalk.
Los Angeles County sheriff’s officials say the child is in stable condition and his injuries were not life-threatening.
The family chained the dog up to a tree after the attack. A deputy stood watch while animal control officers responded to the scene.
Animal control officers then took the dog into custody.
Police arrest 2 men in series of transient assaults in Oregon
SALEM, Ore. (AP) — Two men have been arrested following a series of beatings involving two transient men living in northwest Oregon, police said.
Salem police arrested Joseph Michael Sizemore, 33, and Brady Canaga, 23, last week on charges of attempted murder, assault, robbery and coercion, the Statesman Journal reported.
A Marion County judge ordered both men held without bail Thursday. It was not immediately known if they have attorneys.
Sizemore, of Portland, is suspected of using a crowbar to attack a man in November, according to court documents. Police allege he also threatened the man and forced him to undress.
On March 19, Sizemore and Canaga were suspected of attacking another man. Police said in court documents that the two hit the man with a bat and also kicked him.
Police said the pair assaulted 40-year-old transient man two days later. The two are charged with stabbing the man, and then robbing and forcing him to undress, according to court documents.
The victim suffered a punctured lung and a deep cut to his knee, police said. He was hospitalized with serious brain trauma that required surgery.
Sizemore was previously convicted of two counts of third-degree rape in 2012. He was sentenced to two years in prison and ordered to register as a sex offender.
Canaga, of Turner, was convicted of fourth-degree assault and menacing last year. A warrant was out for his arrest after he failed to appear in court on multiple charges.
Seattle extends permits of tiny-house villages
SEATTLE (AP) — When Seattle began permitting homeless tent camps in 2015, they were truly camps, almost entirely tents, and fairly easy to pick up and move.
That’s not the case today. The tents have mostly been replaced by tiny houses with heat, and the camps usually have trailers with bathrooms connected to water and sewage. There’s Wi-Fi in many of them. Moving them is more expensive, and when a tiny-house village moves to another neighborhood, the new neighbors often have concerns about safety.
So after saying in the ordinance that the camps could stay two years, the city of Seattle is extending that time limit at three villages that have reached or are far beyond that deadline by using temporary permits.
Georgetown Nickelsville, Camp Second Chance in West Seattle and Othello Village will stay where they’ve been for six additional months while the city evaluates options for the future, the city announced Wednesday.
“The original plan was put up during the state of emergency, to allow tents and port-a-potties . to stay in one place,” said Lisa Gustaveson, program planner for the city’s Human Services Department (HSD). “It evolved into the system that you see now, which is modeled after our enhanced shelter model.”
Some state and local officials have warned Seattle not to open more tiny-house villages, arguing that they take up lots of energy and distract from solutions. The federal government considers someone living in a tiny house village to be “unsheltered.”
When Nickelsville Ballard moved last year to Northlake, in Wallingford, it cost between $260,000 and $300,000, according to Sharon Lee at the Low-Income Housing Institute (LIHI), the fiscal sponsor for the city’s sanctioned villages. And the move seemed chaotic: It took weeks to get electricity, and more than three months for a hygiene truck and case management to arrive.
With three camps facing a similar move, there are a few things that could happen. Religious communities have approached the city about possibly taking some of the villages in, Gustaveson said. Law allows religious institutions to host camps anywhere and for any length of time.
The city is also exploring the option of letting the villages stay longer where they are now, with input from the neighborhoods. Some churches and organizations in West Seattle have lobbied the city to keep Camp Second Chance for longer, although there’s also been push back for keeping it there.
Or the city could close the villages the way they’re closing the Licton Springs Village on Aurora Avenue North, which was controversial because it allowed residents to use drugs. Licton Springs will shut on Monday, according to LIHI.
At least one village — Nickelsville Othello in Seattle’s Rainier Valley — is on land LIHI owns and plans to develop. But LIHI hopes the city will keep the villages open, Lee said.
That is a relief for residents of Othello Nickelsville, said Bruce Gogel, one of the leaders at the village, who’s lived there since November.
There’s been internal discord at Othello and the Northlake village recently, with LIHI ejecting the leaders of an activist group with provided day-to-day management of the camps. A city spokesperson said these two things are not related, and the city has been considering this before the dispute.
The city is likely to face backlash from neighborhoods in going back on its promise to limit tiny-house villages to two years at a site. Georgetown Nickelsville and Camp Second Chance are operating under the 2015 ordinance — which allow for one year and then an optional extension for another year, but nothing beyond that — but Othello Nickelsville is operating under temporary use permits.
A city spokesperson said the city can use temporary use permits to extend beyond the two years allowed by the ordinance. But Eliana Scott-Thoennes, chair of Othello Village’s community advisory council, is frustrated that the city continues to say they need time to work on this. As of this month, Othello Village has been in its site for three years, a year beyond what was planned.
“I’ve had to figure out every six months what’s happening,” Scott-Thoennes said. “Each time it’s a crisis, instead of there being a clear process.”
Scott-Thoennes and Gogel both support Othello Village staying in Othello, citing community support like residents helping pick up trash in the neighborhood. But for Gogel, who lives at Othello Nickelsville, it’s more about the city’s promise to the community.
“It’s always our concern or our belief that we keep our word, so when we move into a community, if we said we’d be there for two years, we want to honor that,” Gogel said.
“It’s very clear that they’re not following the ordinance. So what’s the point of making rules if you don’t follow them?”