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AP-OR–2nd Right Now/1215


Oregon refuge takeover is over, but aftershocks remain

BURNS, Oregon (AP) — Aftershocks are still shaking the high desert region of Oregon where militia members seized a wildlife refuge in January. Activists have now set up “Camp Freedom” where an occupier was killed, and organized a recall election this week against a top county official.

Harney County Judge Steve Grasty sees this election, as well as the primary last month and the November election, as a referendum on the county’s handling of the crisis.

Grasty, who for the past 18 years has been the county’s top administrative official, says he stands by his decision to block occupation leader Ammon Bundy from holding a public meeting in a county building. This act was the justification cited for the recall effort.


Oregon teen pierced in eye by javelin in fair condition

PORTLAND, Ore. (AP) — The parents of an Oregon high school champion pole vaulter pierced in the eye by a javelin say their son’s vision is blurry but he can see out of the eye.

Barry and Carrie Kennedy in a statement released Sunday through Oregon Health and Science University in Portland say 18-year-old Parker Kennedy is in fair condition.

The parents say his neurological status is good and he’s talking, moving and showing signs of progress.

Parker Kennedy was injured Friday night after he tripped during a Portland track meet.

A fire department spokeswoman says the javelin was removed by someone before firefighters arrived.

Kennedy is a graduate of Hood River Valley High School and won the 5A pole vault at the state championship in the spring.


Police: Woman with 2 young children shoots, kills intruder

PORTLAND, Ore. (AP) — Police in Portland say a 33-year-old woman returning home with her two young children shot and killed an unknown male intruder discovered in one of the children’s bedrooms.

Police in a statement Sunday say homicide detectives have cleared the scene in the Saturday evening shooting.

Police say the victim came home with her children ages 5 and 10. Police say she was armed with a handgun and shot and killed the 59-year-old man.

Police say the woman cooperated with investigators and was not arrested.

Authorities say that once the investigation is complete it will be presented to the Multnomah County District Attorney’s Office for review.

The name of the 59-year-old man has not been released. An autopsy is scheduled for Monday.


Agency to sterilize mustangs for first time to slow growth

RENO, Nev. (AP) — A federal agency is on a path to sterilize wild horses on U.S. rangeland to slow the growth of herds — a new approach condemned by mustang advocates across the West.

The U.S. Bureau of Land Management also continues to resist calls from ranchers and western Republicans to euthanize or sell for slaughter the animals overflowing holding pens so as to clear the way for more roundups.

Bureau of Land Management Deputy Director Steve Ellis delivered those messages at an emotional congressional hearing this week. He offered a glimpse of the challenges facing the agency that has been struggling for decades with what it describes as a $1 billion problem.

Highlights of the hearing included Nevada’s state veterinarian calling for the round-up and surgical sterilization of virtually every mustang in overpopulated herds and a protester who briefly interrupted with shouts denouncing “welfare ranchers” turning public lands into “feedlots.”


High-stakes battle over oil terminal unfolds in Northwest

SEATTLE (AP) — Two companies proposing to build what would be the nation’s largest oil-by-rail marine terminal along the Columbia River in Washington see it as an opportunity to link domestic crude oil from the interior to a West Coast port.

Critics, however, see an environmental and safety catastrophe waiting to happen, especially after a train carrying volatile Bakken crude oil derailed and burned on June 3 in Mosier, Oregon, just 70 miles upriver from the project site in Vancouver, Washington.

The battle over the Tesoro Savage Vancouver Energy terminal — which would handle about 360,000 barrels of crude oil a day — unfolds Monday when all sides make their case for or against the terminal before a state energy council.

The council will hear testimony from dozens of witnesses over five weeks and make a recommendation to Gov. Jay Inslee, who has the final say.


Polk County Sheriff’s Office to reinstate 24/7 patrols

(Information from: Statesman Journal,

DALLAS, Ore. (AP) — The Polk County Sheriff’s Office is reinstating 24/7 patrols after cutting back staffing in 2014.

The Statesman Journal reports that deputies will begin patrolling the 750-square-mile coverage area on Sunday to help increase public safety.

Declining revenue and funds from the timber industry forced the office to make cuts in March 2014.n As a result, staffing numbers dropped as did patrol hours.

Polk County Sheriff Mark Garton says the cuts meant deputies were reacting to crime instead of preventing it.

The 24-hour patrol comes a year after Polk County voters passed a property tax levy for public safety funding. The five-year levy of 45 cents per $1,000 of assessed value is expected to raise $2.3 million a year for sheriff’s patrols, jail operations, juvenile enforcement and district attorney operations.



Man unfit to stand trial on charges in fatal rampage

(Information from: The Register-Guard,

EUGENE, Ore. (AP) — A man charged in a rampage that left his father and two pedestrians dead is unable to assist in his own defense.

The Register-Guard reports 31-year-old Michael Jefferson Bryant will receive treatment at Oregon State Hospital.

Bryant’s psychiatric report was made available for a judge’s review before the order was issued Friday.

Authorities say Bryant attacked his parents with a baseball bat, torched the family home, stole an SUV and ran down pedestrians in November.

Jefferson Stanley Bryant was killed while his wife Elizabeth was seriously injured.

Pedestrians Rick Bates and Marc Sanford were also killed.

Sanford’s wife Lorre was seriously injured.

Lawyer Conor Huseby said doctors think medication will allow his client to eventually stand trial.

A prosecutor said the hospital has 60 days to update the court.



Study: Rotting trees caused mysterious holes in huge dunes

SOUTH BEND, Ind. (AP) — Researchers say mysterious holes that forced the closure of a massive dune at an Indiana national park after a 6-year-old boy fell into one and nearly died were caused by sand-covered trees that left cavities behind as they decayed over the years.

A study published in December and a second due out this summer that supports its findings determined that fungi on the covered trees formed a sort of cement that allowed the sand to keep its hollowed out shape as the wood decayed and collapsed inward.

Bruce Rowe, a spokesman for the Indiana Dunes National Lakeshore, says the studies will determine whether the popular dune, Mount Baldy, can be reopened. Researchers say the phenomenon is likely responsible for holes found in migrating dunes in Oregon and Michigan.


Copyright 2016 The Associated Press.