The 38-year-old man accused of sending ricin-laced letters to a federal judge and the Spokane post office had an active social media presence. But his online profiles contain no hints at a grudge toward the federal government. This was also not his first run-in with the law.
A tragedy in Wenatchee, Wash., is prompting educators there to bring back a high school aquatics program. Starting this fall, high school freshmen in the central Washington city will have to demonstrate they know how to swim.
Formal swimming lessons in Wenatchee had gone by the wayside, as is frequently the case lately in public schools. But the Wenatchee school board is now reversing course.
In November 2011, a freshman named Antonio Reyes drowned in the high school swimming pool.
Federal agents in hazmat suits and SWAT gear searched a Spokane apartment Saturday. They were looking for evidence connected to a pair of ricin-laced letters sent through the mail. The letters were addressed to a federal judge in Spokane and to the post office itself.
A bird of prey can get so stressed out by city noise, it will abandon its nest – with eggs still in it. That's according to a new study by researchers at Boise State University. The study suggests human disturbances affect the American kestrel more than previously thought.
The border between Washington and Idaho is like a petri dish for what the minimum wage does to the economy. That’s where two extremes meet. Idaho has the federal minimum wage: $7.25 an hour. While Washington’s is nearly $2 more.
Efforts to pass more local gay rights laws are moving ahead in Idaho. A city councilor in Coeur d'Alene plans to introduce an ordinance later this month. And in Pocatello, a failed ban on discrimination against gay, lesbian and transgender people is getting a second chance.
An effort to streamline the regulatory process for small hydropower dams is generating a rare moment of bipartisanship in Congress. Two bills sailed through a Senate committee Wednesday. They've already passed the House.
Whatever gridlock exists elsewhere, it didn't show up in the Senate Energy and Natural Resources Committee. A voice vote was unanimous.
Three weeks after the Boston bombings, one of the iconic figures of that tragedy was racing again in Spokane. Bill Iffrig of Lake Stevens, Wash., joined more than 50,000 runners on Sunday for the Bloomsday Run. You might remember the images of Iffrig on the ground immediately following a blast at the Boston marathon.
The 78-year-old runner wore the same orange shirt he'd worn in Boston as he waited for the starting gun in Spokane.
One of the country's leading suppliers of french fries is asking the federal government to approve genetically modified potatoes. The USDA announced the move Friday by the J.R. Simplot Company of Idaho. It would be the only genetically engineered potato on the market.
Simplot has branded them Innate potatoes. The company figured out how to use existing potato DNA to design a spud that’s less prone to dark spots. It also produces less acrylamide when cooked. Acrylamide is a neurotoxin found in many foods. Studies on animals have indicated it may also cause cancer.
The president of Gonzaga University has reversed an earlier decision and now says a campus chapter of the Knights of Columbus can receive official club status. The Catholic university in Spokane first denied that recognition because the Knights do not admit women or non-Catholics.
President Thayne McCulloh's decision allows the Knights of Columbus council to use the university's name in its title, use school facilities and fundraise on campus. Official club status also makes the group eligible for money from the university and student fees.
An Idaho anthropologist has risked his career in pursuit of what the rest of science considers a myth. Jeff Meldrum of Idaho State University is the nation’s lone academic trying to make the scientific case for Bigfoot. It’s no joke. Now he's even raising money to launch an unmanned aircraft that would scan the Northwest's forests for the large, hairy creature. Meldrum now hopes drones can finally prove his critics wrong.
Jeff Meldrum gets frustrated when he walks into Barnes and Noble. It's one of the stores that carries his book.
The Pocatello CIty Council voted 4-3 against a proposed ordinance that would have expanded gay rights protections in the city. A hearing two weeks ago, seen here, attracted many supporters of the ordinance.
An ordinance to ban discrimination against gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgender people failed in the city council of Pocatello Thursday night. The close vote was a setback for gay rights advocates.
Pocatello Mayor Brian Blad cast the deciding no vote, making it four against, three in favor. The ordinance would have made it a misdemeanor to discriminate on the basis of sexual orientation or gender identity. Those voting no said they didn't reach their decision easily.
Thursday, the city council in Pocatello is expected to vote on whether to make it illegal to discriminate on the basis of sexual orientation or gender identity. It’s one of several cities in Idaho that have taken up the cause of gay rights – an issue the Idaho Legislature has so far resisted. But even some gay rights supporters wonder if the local ordinance would change anything.
The family of a silver miner killed in north Idaho has filed a lawsuit against the Hecla Mining Company. The suit claims the mine managers’ attempt to extract more silver caused the cave-in that killed Larry Marek exactly two years ago Monday.
There are fewer wolves overall in the West, but Oregon and Washington's wolf populations continue to grow. That's according to the federal government's annual gray wolf tally, released Friday. The count has also revealed the initial effect of a controversial wolf hunting season in Idaho.
A supermarket in north Idaho has banned a transgendered woman from the store after she used the women's restroom. Police issued Ally Robledo a trespass notice that will make it a misdemeanor for her to enter the store for one year.
Managers at the Rosauers in Lewiston told police they received complaints from women about Robledo using the restroom. Robledo was born male as Alberto, but identifies and dresses like a woman and is the process of transitioning physically.
A city in the heart of Idaho's Mormon country held a four-hour public hearing Thursday night on whether to ban discrimination against gays and lesbians. A growing number of cities in Idaho are adopting local rules that protect sexual orientation and gender identity.
Parents and grandparents spoke about the fears they have for their gay or lesbian family members. Gloria Mayer said she's been hiding her identity for years.
“I am 63 years old ... and I'm gay," she said. "That is the first time I have said that publicly.”
A small school district in north Idaho is trying to figure out who's behind 10 bomb threats made since the beginning of the school year. The series of hoaxes has rattled the community, and caused huge disruptions in school.
Boundary County schools superintendent Richard Conley says mostt of the threats were made on bathroom stalls. Conley says the last four threats alone came in March.
“I've been in education for 41 years and I've never seen this," Conley says.
Police believe multiple students are responsible. None of the threats, however, turned up an actual bomb.
Originally published on Wed March 27, 2013 5:45 pm
COEUR D'ALENE, Idaho – Idaho is losing one of its oldest silver mining companies to Chicago. The Coeur d'Alene Mines Corporation announced Wednesday it plans to move to the Windy City by the end of September.
The company employs 65 people at its headquarters in Coeur d'Alene in north Idaho. But the firm known as "Coeur" hasn't had any holdings in the state since 2006.
Company spokeswoman Stefany Bales says Coeur managers need easier access to properties in Mexico, Bolivia and Australia.