Oregon News from the AP

Here is the latest Oregon news from The Associated Press

ROGUE RIVER, Ore. (AP) – An Oregon Department of Forestry
spokesman says a fast-moving wildfire has raced across 300 acres of
grass and brush in southern Oregon near Rogue River, threatening at
least 40 homes and briefly closing northbound lanes of Interstate
5. Spokesman Brian Ballou says four helicopters dropped water on
the flames before darkness fell last night, helping to protect
homes. No homes have been reported burned.

SILVERTON, Ore. (AP) – Silverton officials say fire ignited
hundreds of gallons of vegetable oil and used motor oil in a
storage yard, sending up black smoke visible for miles. Fire Capt.
Ed Grambusch says burning vegetable oil that spilled from plastic
barrels “looked like lava had caught fire and was just flowing.”
The Statesman Journal reports that the fire late yesterday
afternoon also damaged a large shop and torched a half dozen large
fir and cedar trees. About 1,200 gallons of vegetable oil and 275
gallons of motor oil were stored at the site. Grambusch says at
least 800 gallons of the vegetable oil caught fire and that fire
then ignited the motor oil.

COOS BAY, Ore. (AP) – Two North Bend teens were killed in a car
crash near Coos Bay. The World newspaper reported that 18-year-old
David Forbess and 16-year-old Marissa Esch were found dead in an
older-model SUV on Wednesday night. Investigators say the vehicle
left the road and hit a log. Neither drugs nor alcohol was believed
to be a factor in their deaths. The vehicle was discovered at about
9 p.m. on Wednesday.

BILLINGS, Mont. (AP) – Two Oregon men have acknowledged taking
clients on illegal hunting trips on a ranch in Park County. The
Billings Gazette reports that 71-year-old Richard “Dick” Weiner,
and his son, 42-year-old Richard “Matt” Weiner, both of Salem,
appeared in federal court yesterday and pleaded guilty to
conspiracy to violate the Lacey Act, which regulates the interstate
sale, transportation and purchase of wildlife.

Here is the latest Oregon news from The Associated Press
PORTLAND, Ore. (AP) – A Portland police officer accused of
drunken driving after a chase in Tillamook County has been taken
off street duty and assigned to a desk job. Police say Officer Sean
Sothern was released on bail after deputies arrested him yesterday
on charges that include attempting to elude and reckless
endangerment. He’s an 11-year veteran of the Portland department.

BOISE, Idaho (AP) – About 2,700 troops assigned to an
Idaho-based National Guard unit are slated to return home after
spending a year in Iraq. Military officials say the 116th Cavalry
Brigade Combat Team is expected back later this month. The unit is
made up of soldiers from Idaho, Oregon and Montana.

JEFFERSON, Ore. (AP) – Fire officials say a small plane hit
power lines and crashed into a field in Jefferson, cutting power to
the small Willamette Valley town for a half hour. The two people
aboard the plane suffered minor injuries. A Jefferson Fire District
spokeswoman says the passenger reported that the plane had just
left the Albany airport last night.

PORTLAND, Ore. (AP) – The Oregon Zoo has announced the names of
the three newest members of a species of medium-sized cat native to
Africa, Southwest Asia and the Arabian Peninsula. The three caracal
kittens, named Mkuze (mih-KOO’-zee), Binti (BIN-tee) and Aziza
(a-ZEE-za), were born at the zoo in June. A zookeeper says the
kittens are healthy and making use of their scratching post.
MADRAS, Ore. (AP) – Police say the morning sunshine was a factor
in the traffic accident that killed a 7-year-old boy in Madras.
Police say Austin Hollenbeack-Hatch was struck Wednesday when he
darted into the street. He was taken to Mountain View Hospital
where he was declared dead. KGW reports the 64-year-old driver was
cited for careless driving and failure to yield to a pedestrian in
the crosswalk.

PORTLAND, Ore. (AP) – Comcast has won a property tax decision
that could cost some Oregon counties millions in refunds. The
Oregonian reports the Oregon Tax Court ruled Aug. 10 that the state
Department of Revenue improperly assessed the value of the cable
company’s assets. The next step is a formal judgment, and then
either side could appeal to the state supreme court. Multnomah
County could have to repay more than $8 million, Washington County
$5 million and Clackamas County about $4 million, plus interest.

(Copyright 2011 by The Associated Press.  All Rights Reserved.)