Wind, rain wallop Pacific Northwest
SEATTLE (AP) – Strong winds and heavy rain walloped the Pacific Northwest, leaving thousands without power as utility crews prepare for what’s expected to be a rougher storm on Saturday.
In Oregon, Portland General Electric reported that more than 4,000 customers were without power at 5 a.m. Friday. Pacific Power reported that 2,800 customers in coastal communities had no lights, down from a peak of more than 15,000.
Portland had the rainiest Oct. 13 in its history and the National Weather Service said a 103-mph wind gust was recorded at Cape Meares.
In Washington, Puget Sound Energy responded to scattered outages, reporting early Friday that more than 2,800 customers were still affected. Lightning strikes hit the southwest Washington coast Friday morning and a tornado warning was briefly in effect for Pacific County.
Meteorologists expect a breezy Friday before the remnants of a typhoon hit the region Saturday. Forecasters say wind gusts as high as 70 mph could sweep through Seattle.
SEX ABUSE 2-DAY SENTENCE
Man gets 2 days in jail for sex abuse of 12 women
(Information from: The Oregonian/OregonLive, http://www.oregonlive.com)
FOREST GROVE, Ore. (AP) – The owner of a retirement community west of Portland will serve two days in jail and five years of probation for sexually abusing 12 women.
The Oregonian/OregonLive reports 73-year-old Herbert “Howard” Sahnow was sentenced Thursday after pleading guilty to 11 counts of third-degree sex abuse and one count of attempted third-degree sexual abuse.
Over two dozen other sexual abuse and other charges were dropped as part of a plea agreement, which lawyers say was negotiated with victims’ input.
Sahnow groped and fondled employees and residents of The Elms, the retirement community he owns in Forest Grove.
Police say the victims ranged in age from their 30s to their 80s.
Sahnow was also ordered to stay away from the retirement community, pay restitution and register as a sex offender.
KLAMATH BASIN DISPUTE
Klamath Basin subject of dispute within federal government
SALEM, Ore. (AP) – A watchdog arm of the U.S. Department of the Interior says the Bureau of Reclamation lacked the authority to enter into an agreement with the Klamath Water and Power Agency on water use, and that consequently $32.2 million spent by KWAPA over seven years “was a waste of funds.”
The department insists that it did have the authority.
The dispute has been referred to the Assistant Secretary for Policy, Management and Budget for resolution.
In its report released this week, the inspector general’s office recommended that the Bureau of Reclamation discontinue funding water supplementation activities in the Klamath Basin unless it has specific legal authority. The Klamath Project is a federal dam project in southern Oregon and northern California to manage Klamath River flows.
Wind gusts in excess of 100 mph expected over Sierra
RENO, Nev. (AP) – The National Weather Service in Reno has issued multiple warnings along the Sierra ahead of a series of powerful storms expected to bring rain, high-elevation snow and strong winds to western Nevada through the weekend.
Gusts in excess of 100 mph are expected over the mountain ridges beginning Thursday night, with sustained winds up to 35 mph and 65 mph gusts in the valleys around Reno and Carson City. The high-wind warnings kick in at 8 p.m. at Lake Tahoe and 11 p.m. in Reno, effective until 5 p.m. Friday.
Another round of severe weather is expected to bring snow to upper elevations Saturday into Sunday, including on U.S. Interstate 80 over the Donner Pass near Truckee, California.
Up to 4 inches of rain is forecast in the Sierra, and about a half-inch in Reno into Sunday.
Key figure in Oregon refuge standoff seeks to withdraw plea
PORTLAND, Ore. (AP) – Oregon standoff figure Ryan Payne wants to withdraw his guilty plea.
The Montana man admitted in July he conspired with others to prevent Interior Department employees from doing their jobs during the occupation of the Malheur National Wildfire Refuge.
The U.S. attorney’s office in Oregon recommended that Payne’s expected prison sentence run at the same time as the punishment he was to receive for a 2014 standoff with federal agents at Cliven Bundy’s Nevada ranch.
At the time, it appeared a Nevada plea deal was imminent. But Payne’s lawyer, Rich Federico, said in court papers Wednesday that talks broke down.
Federico said Payne would not have signed the Oregon agreement if he had known all the terms of the deal in Nevada. Moreover, Payne’s statements when pleading guilty also showed he had strong misgivings about the factual basis for his plea.
Shawna Cox takes witness stand at Oregon standoff trial
PORTLAND, Ore. (AP) – Oregon standoff defendant Shawna Cox took the witness stand in her own defense, becoming emotional as jurors watched a video of the traffic stop that ended with the death of occupation spokesman Robert “LaVoy” Finicum.
In the video, Cox can be heard telling Finicum to “gun it” as they fled from an initial stop Jan. 26. Finicum later crashed into a snowbank and left the vehicle. Oregon State Police shot him as he reached toward the inside of his jacket, where he kept a handgun.
Cox testified Thursday she didn’t get out during the initial traffic stop because she heard gunfire and feared getting shot.
The Kanab, Utah, woman is one of seven defendants on trial for allegedly conspiring to prevent Interior Department employees from working at the Malheur National Wildlife near Burns, Oregon. The armed occupation of the refuge began Jan. 2 and lasted 41 days.
HATRED ON LOOP
Oregon man pleads no contest in hate-message case
(Information from: The Register-Guard, http://www.registerguard.com)
SPRINGFIELD, Ore. (AP) – A Springfield man who installed a large speaker on his rooftop and played a pro-hate message on loop has pleaded no contest to disorderly conduct.
The Register-Guard reports Jimmy Marr entered the plea Wednesday during his initial court appearance. He reached a deal with prosecutors that will allow him to get the charge dismissed if he doesn’t break any laws for six months.
Marr, a neo-Nazi, was arrested Sept. 29 as a community group held an anti-hate rally in a park near his home. Police said the group gathered to speak out against hate crimes and bigotry, when Marr began to play a recording of a pro-hate message from a speaker that he had placed on his roof.
Police said the recording could be heard for several blocks.
BOAT ON BEACH
Reno fisherman drives boat onto Oregon beach
BANDON, Ore. (AP) – A fisherman lost in the fog drove his boat onto a beach in Bandon, Oregon.
The Coos County Sheriff’s Office says 57-year-old David Brinsko of Reno, Nevada, was heading back Tuesday when he encountered fog so thick that he couldn’t see the mouth of the Coquille (koh-KEEL) River.
He tried to follow GPS navigation, but the screen was zoomed too far out and he missed the entrance by a couple hundred yards to the south.
Once Brinsko realized he was inside the surf zone of the beach, he started taking on breaker waves over the bow and stern. To avoid being rolled in the surf, he drove onto the beach near the south jetty of the river.
The Coos County Sheriff’s Office responded along with Bandon police and fire. Brinsko wasn’t hurt and the fishing vessel was later towed.
Copyright 2016 The Associated Press.