Spokane

Three people escape North Spokane house fire

Spokane County District 9 responded to a house fire just before 11 p.m. on Friday night.Fire officials say flames erupted in the basement of a house in the 11000 block of North Wall, and it appeared mattresses caught on fire. Three people were able to get out of the house unharmed. Fire damage was contained to the basement near the mattresses, but fire officials did say smoke damage was apparent throughout the house. The exact cause remains under investigation.

30 Spokane Businesses Burglarized Since February 1

Since February 1, Spokane police say 30 businesses have been burglarized and most were broken into by tearing the deadbolt out of the front door.The owner of Peters and Sons Flowers says that thieves only took $10 in change and a wireless computer mouse. Susan Matteson of Peters and Sons said she is confused by how much effort the thieves spent trying to break in compared to what they stole."They took a wrench to it and unscrewed it. Destroyed the threads and stripped and literally pulled it out of the door," Matteson said. The thieves did that to not one but two deadbolts on each front door leading into Peters and Sons Flowers."You shake your head and go, you know all the energy could have been put to productive use and really help somebody," Matteson said.All American Tattoo on Monroe had the same thing happen a week ago Wednesday."They went to our front door. We assume with a crescent wrench and ripped our lock off and threw it in the street," Tom Morris, owner of All American Tattoo, said.Morris said he knows of ten tattoo shops that have been robbed since February 1."Nine or Ten shops out 30, I am not a mathematician but that's 33 percent," Morris said.Neither Susan nor Tom can put rhyme or reason to their burglaries. Both shops robbed in the same way, both had little taken and both owners are confused about why they were targeted."I don't know their minds. I don't know why they do what they do," Matteson said."It's hard to get into an idiot's mind like that," Morris said.The police are just as confused about the burglaries as the business owners. If you have information on the burglaries you're asked to call Crime Check at 456-2233.

Gonzaga Students Long To Return Home

Mixed in with sadness and fear, Yuta Hamaya and Yohei Namazu, say is pride. The two young Japanese men, who are students at Gonzaga University right now, say they have a renewed sense of patriotism for their country not only as individuals but as a generation.Even though Yuta and Yohei are physically in Spokane their hearts and minds are more than 5,000 miles away."I feel I can't do anything," Yohei Namazu said."I feel it's just like a disaster, it's heartbreaking," Yuta Hamaya said.Yuta was skyping with a friend who was at his university in Akita, Japan at the exact moment the earthquake happened. Akita is more that 100 miles from the earthquake's epicenter, but Yuta could still see the shaking."I could see the earthquake, like a shivering," Yuta Hamaya recalled. "Yeah. Unbelievable."Yohei Namazu says he watches television in disbelief. "When I see the disaster area, I can't believe it's Japan," he said.Yohei and Yuta say everyone in Japan is carrying the burden of recovery the same. People in the south are trying to conserve energy so more will be available; everyone is sharing food and water. Each person is volunteering to lend a helping hand even if they were not directly impacted."That's the greatest point of Japanese people. We are truly caring about the people in devastating area," Yuta said.Like their fellow Japanese back home, doing whatever they can to help their country get through the devastation, Yohei and Yuta want to do the same. However the helplessness they feel is overwhelming."I am so sad here. I want to be in Japan. I want to help them in Japan," Yohei said."Every time I see the news and watch the TV, I couldn't keep watching that because its too hard," Yuta said.  

Three SFCC students return from storytelling weekend in Issaquah

SFCC students Mariah Hottell, 19; Justin Vinge, 20; and Josephine Davis, 22, have seen a lot in their young lives. As foster youth, they have moved many times, attended different schools and had key family members move in and out of their lives. Sometimes, they've even found themselves homeless. No one in their lives ever told them they would succeed at anything – especially college. Unfortunately, statistic supports this. It is estimated that less than three percent of all foster youth complete college. Most don't even finish high school and many end up homeless. Thanks to high school counselors and a Volunteers of America education advocate, the three were made aware of the for former foster youth to help them pursue their career dreams. Passport scholarships are funded by the and enable 23 students to attend SFCC.

Businesses Preparing For Construction Season's Return

Spring is in the air and so is road construction season, which means Spokane road crews have begun the second phase of their work to rehabilitate 2nd Avenue from Howard to Arthur.Drivers and businesses are keen to remember how 2nd Avenue was torn up last year. The road construction made for tough driving and many businesses saw a big drop in customers. This year, some businesses in the construction zone and the City of Spokane are trying to be more proactive than reactive as the road crews get to work.The traffic cones, construction equipment and detour signs seemed to pop up overnight on 2nd Avenue. And then, according to Willem Bosch, "in a matter of just a few hours, everything was torn up."

Spokane Police Find Missing Teen

Spokane Police have found a developmentally disabled boy after a brief search Friday morning. Skylar Kessler was found on an STA bus just before 10 a.m. Kessler, who is 13-years-old but functions at the level of an 8-year-old, was discovered missing when his mother woke up this morning.His mother told police he was gone when she woke up this morning so he could be wearing his pajamas.

Fore!

The Spokane County Parks and Recreation Department announced Wednesday the start of the 2011 golf season at Spokane County's three golf courses. - Thursday, March 17th24501 E. Valleyway Ave.Liberty Lake, WA 99019(509) 255-9539MeadowWood Golf Course is located in the beautiful City of Liberty Lake, Washington (18 miles east of downtown Spokane).  The course features 6,874 yards of golf from the longest tees for a par of 72. - Friday, March 18th24403 E. Sprague AveLiberty Lake, WA 99019(509) 255-6233Liberty Lake Golf Course is located in the City of Liberty Lake (of course) and is approximately 18 miles east of downtown Spokane.  The course underwent a $6 million renovation and reopened in 2010 to outstanding reviews.  The course features 6,664 yards of golf for a par of 70 and a freshly remodeled clubhouse.

Buddhist Temple holding memorial service for Japan quake, tsunami victims

The public is invited to join the Spokane Buddhist Temple as they conduct their "Seventh Day Memorial Service", for the victims of the March 11th Japanese Earthquake and Tsunami, on Friday, March 18th at 6 p.m. Mari Haworth, Communications Volunteer with the Spokane Buddhist Temple describes the memorial as a way to, "reflect on the fleeting nature of life and offer incense to affirm our spiritual connection with those who died."Donations are being accepted at the Spokane Buddhist Temple, located at 927 S. Perry St., and will be forwarded to the relief agencies in Japan by all the Buddhist Churches of America.

Health Department: No health risk here from Japan power plant

The State Department of Health continues to monitor the unfolding situation involving the Fukushima nuclear power plant in Japan and issued this statement today that, "there's still no public health risk for people in Washington despite changing conditions at the tsunami-damaged nuclear plants in Japan."

So How Was Your Commute?

The traffic cones are blooming on 2nd Avenue, a sure sign that Construction Season has begun across Spokane.According to the City of Spokane's website:

Intelligence Report Confirms Viability of MLK Day Bomb

An unclassified Joint Intelligence Bulletin written earlier this month gave an in-depth analysis of the MLK Day bomb and described the maker of the MLK Day Bomb as someone who "possesses a higher degree of knowledge and skill than the typical domestic pipe bomb builder." The Joint Intelligence Bulletin, issued by the FBI and the Department of Homeland Security, was issued as an "Unclassified / Law Enforcement Sensitive" report on March 9 in the wake of the arrest of Kevin Harpham by the FBI Hostage Rescue Team near his home in Addy, Wash. According to the bulletin, the forensic analysis conducted by the FBI crime lab in Quantico, Va., determined that the device was a radio controlled improvised explosive device (RCIED) that was designed to fire "directional fragmentation similar to a single shot shotgun with buckshot or cannon with a grapeshot round."

Celebrate Rogers High School's Historic Status

The Spokane School District will be holding a celebration in honor of John R. Rogers High School being listed on the "National Register of Historic Places" and the "Washington Heritage Register" on Thursday, March 24, at 7 p.m. in Rogers' auditorium, 1622 E. Wellesley.Following a brief ceremony to present certificates and plaques designating John R. Rogers High School as part of the National and State historic registers, guests are invited to stay and enjoy the John R. Rogers High School drama department's spring 2011 production of "The Wizard of Oz," performed in the renovated and nationally recognized Spokane landmark.

Spat Between Ex's Ends In Stabbing

One person from a group that police say tried to rob a man in his west central home Thursday morning is in the hospital with a stab wound in his back - the rest are sitting in jail.