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Latest Oregon news, sports, business and entertainment at 3:20 a.m. PST


New secretary of state names ousted officials to top posts

(Information from: The Oregonian/OregonLive,

PORTLAND, Ore. (AP) — Oregon’s Secretary of State-elect Dennis Richardson, who will be sworn in Friday, has named an ousted elections official and a former state manager tied to a multimillion-dollar scandal to top administrative positions.

The Oregonian/OregonLive reports Richardson has appointed Leslie Cummings as deputy secretary of state. Cummings managed tech-security for the Oregon Employment Department until 2013, when she resigned after being caught up in accusations of nepotism and wasting millions in public funds.

For elections director, Richardson selected Steve Trout, who held the position from 2009 to 2013 under then-Secretary of State Kate Brown. Trout left after Brown faced criticism for giving candidates short notice that the date of their election would change — a responsibility of the elections director.

Trout said Brown, who is now governor, asked him to resign but said it had nothing to do with the election scheduling entanglement.



New wood technology may offer hope for struggling timber

RIDDLE, Ore. (AP) — A new technology that can create resilient and lighter-weight wood panels out of trees damaged by wildfire and pests is giving hope to the Pacific Northwest’s timber industry.

The technology is called cross-laminated timber, or C-L-T.

It has been used for years in Europe and Canada, where architects have even built all-wood skyscrapers.

But it’s only starting to catch on in the United States.

A 12-story “plyscraper” will go up in Portland this spring.

C-L-T is made by stacking two-by-fours in perpendicular layers and then gluing together the layers like a sandwich. Damaged wood can make up the inside layers without sacrificing its look or strength.

But questions remain about its safety in skyscrapers.

Supporters say testing on the Portland building will help.


Lane County winery sues company over apple cider labels

(Information from: The Register-Guard,

EUGENE, Ore. (AP) — A Lane County winery has filed a lawsuit over nearly 800 gallons of apple cider it says it can’t sell because the Corvallis company that bottled it didn’t seek the proper label approval from federal regulators.

The Register-Guard reports King Estate Winery is seeking $100,000 in damages from Oregon Honey Products, which does business as Nectar Creek.

The suit, filed Dec. 19, alleges the winery paid $7,000 to Nectar Creek as part of an agreement requiring the company to bottle cider and obtain federal “certificate of label approval.” The approval allows an alcoholic beverage to be sold in interstate commerce.

The winery claims Nectar Creek never submitted the application for label approval, leaving the bottles of cider unable to be sold.

Nectar Creek co-founder Nick Lorenz declined to comment on the lawsuit.



Ex-Salem teacher charged with sex abuse back in jail

(Information from: Statesman Journal,

SALEM, Ore. (AP) — A former teacher for the Salem-Keizer School District has been jailed on allegations that he violated conditions of his release on sex abuse charges by attending a Thanksgiving dinner with children.

The Statesman Journal reports Danny Lee Ceiplis is charged with using a child in display of sexually explicit conduct. Court documents say he lured a boy to engage in sexually explicit conduct for a person to observe from 2004 to 2010.

The 54-year-old teacher had resigned from his position at Houck Middle School weeks before his July arrest.

He was offered a release agreement in August and ordered not to have contact with the alleged victim or any minors.

Ceiplis was arrested earlier this month for attending a Thanksgiving dinner while three young children were present.



Family of man killed by Bend police says he was unarmed

BEND, Ore. (AP) — Lawyers for the family of a man fatally shot by a Bend police officer Friday say the man was unarmed and still belted in his vehicle when he was killed.

Multiple news outlets reported Thursday that attorney Jennifer Coughlin released a statement urging authorities to conduct a fair and honorable investigation in the shooting of 31-year-old Michael Tyler Jacques.

State police are investigating but have released few details of what exactly led up to at least one officer firing at Jacques.

Police said there was an altercation during a traffic stop at about 10:30 p.m. Friday after Jacques was stopped for driving erratically.

Deschutes County District Attorney John Hummel says Jacques resisted arrest and police used a Taser, but it had no effect.


The Latest: Senator, activist clash on ways to save bird

DENVER (AP) — A Republican lawmaker is assailing a list of proposals for limiting Western mining to protect the vulnerable sage grouse, while an environmental group says it’s a chance for the new administration to help with conservation.

The proposals released by the Obama administration on Thursday range from banning new mining activity on about 15,000 square miles for up to 20 years to imposing no additional restrictions on mine locations.

Nevada GOP Sen. Dean Heller calls the options an “11th-hour attack on Nevada and the West.”

Randi Spivak of the Center for Biological Diversity says all mining is harmful to sage grouse. She says President-elect Donald Trump’s choice for interior secretary, Montana U.S. Rep. Ryan Zinke, could emulate the conservationist President Theodore Roosevelt by protecting the bird.

Zinke describes himself as “a Teddy Roosevelt Republican.”


Brother says wounded OSP trooper is improving by the hour

PORTLAND, Ore. (AP) — The family of wounded Oregon State Police Trooper Nic Cederberg says he was able to speak with them for the first time since he was shot Christmas night.

His brother Jeff Cederberg wrote late Wednesday on an online donation page that Nic was emotional and thanked doctors and nurses for saving his life. He wrote that his brother’s condition is improving by the hour, and “most of the major repair work has been addressed.”

The Washington County Sheriff’s Office says Cederberg was shot several times by homicide suspect James Tylka following a car chase. Tylka was then killed by police.

Officers pursued Tylka after finding his estranged wife dead outside his suburban Portland home.


Oregon court reverses DUI conviction of wheelchair user

PORTLAND, Ore. (AP) — The Oregon Court of Appeals has reversed the conviction of a wheelchair user who had been found guilty of driving under the influence of intoxicants.

James Greene of Waldport was arrested in November 2012 after entering a crosswalk in a motorized wheelchair and striking the side of a moving pickup. Police determined he was impaired by alcohol and drugs, and a jury convicted him of drunken driving.

In his appeal, Greene argued that he should have been considered a pedestrian, not subject to the DUI law.

The state disagreed, pointing to a law that treats motorized wheelchairs like bicycles when they are driven on bike lanes.

In its opinion Thursday, the Appeals Court decided legislators only intended to have wheelchairs treated like bicycles in that narrow circumstance, and users should be considered pedestrians when in a crosswalk.


Copyright 2016 The Associated Press.