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AP - Oregon-Northwest

Latest Oregon news, sports, business and entertainment at 9:20 p.m. PST

BALLOT MEASURES-LAWSUIT

Secretary of State sued over clean-energy ballot measures

SALEM, Ore. (AP) — Environmental advocates are suing Oregon’s Secretary of State over her rejection of two clean-energy ballot initiatives, claiming the action was without legal reasoning and constituted an abuse of power. The Statesman Journal reports in a filing to Marion County Circuit Court Wednesday, complainants asked for an expedited review to allow Initiative Petitions 48 and 49 to continue the process that would allow them to put the measures before voters in November. An email to Clarno and Vial requesting comment was not immediately returned.

CHURCH-ABUSE LAWSUIT

Woman sues Mormon church over husband’s abuse disclosure

An Oregon woman is suing the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints for $9.54 million after her husband’s confession to church leaders led to his arrest, conviction and imprisonment on child sexual abuse charges.  The lawsuit, filed in Marion County Circuit Court, involves a Turner man convicted of abuse after he confessed to Stayton clergy that he had repeated sexual contact with a minor.  Church officials did not respond to the Statesman Journal for comment.  The family’s attorney said the man’sconfession was meant to be confidential, said 

MISSING WOMAN-BODY

Sheriff: Remains are missing southern Oregon woman

MEDFORD, Ore. (AP) — Authorities say skeletal human remains found in southern Oregon in November are those of a Shady Cove woman who disappeared over three years ago. The Jackson County Sheriff’s Office says DNA testing by the Oregon State Medical Examiner’s Office confirmed the remains are those of Malina Nickel. Her nephew, Shane Wayman, was identified as a suspect in the case in November after he was arrested as a suspect in the murder of his roommate, Destiny Finch. In the Nickel case, Wayman was indicted on two counts of criminal mistreatment and abuse of a corpse. It wasn’t immediately known if he has a lawyer.

DAYCARE DEATH

Infant dies at Hillsboro daycare

Authorities say an infant girl died at an in-home daycare in Hillsboro, Oregon. Hillsboro police were called to the daycare  just after 12 p.m. Monday on a report of an infant who was unresponsive. KOIN reports the 3-month-old girl was pronounced dead by paramedics. Investigators from multiple agencies were waiting for autopsy results. Officials said no children would be at the daycare for the rest of the week.

STOLEN YACHT CRASHED-ARREST

Police arrest suspect in stolen boat crash on Columbia River

RIDGEFIELD, Wash. (AP) — Washington state authorities have arrested a man suspected of crashing a stolen boat along the Columbia River and ran from law enforcement. KOMO-TV reported Tuesday that The Columbian first reported the watercraft was stolen Tuesday from a marina in Clark County. Washougal Police Department officials told The Columbian they found the luxury yacht downriver near Vancouver before the person at the helm ran the craft aground near national wildlife refuge. Authorities say a 20-year-old man was taken into custody and was already a suspect in a burglary earlier in the day.

OREGON-BIAS ATTACK

Man charged with hate crimes in beating of 70-year-old woman

SALEM, Ore. (AP) — Prosecutors in Oregon say a man was charged with attempted murder and hate crimes after breaking into a motel office and attacking a 70-year-old immigrant from India who owns the business with her husband, also an immigrant.  The husband said his wife remains in the hospital with injuries to her throat, a broken shoulder and black eye after the Dec. 31 attack in Redmond, Oregon. Prosecutors said Tuesday that James Lamb was charged with bias counts based on statements about his desire to rid America of people like her. Her husband said they are US citizens and have have been in America for decades., 

NORTHWEST STORMS

Landslide stops Amtrak service between Seattle, Portland

SEATTLE (AP) — Amtrak officials say a landslide blocking the tracks has temporarily stopped train service between Seattle and Portland. The slide was reported Tuesday on the tracks between Tacoma and Lacey, Washington. Amtrak said it would provide alternate bus transportation for passengers between Portland and Seattle. Officials say regular train service will resume at 8 a.m. Thursday. More rain is expected in the lowlands before tapering early Wednesday. Rain from the past few days has brought many rivers to flood stage and increased landslide risk.

DRIVER HITS CHILD

Man pleads not guilty after child hit, killed in crosswalk

GRESHAM, Ore. (AP) — A 26-year-old man has pleaded not guilty to several charges after an 11-year-old was hit and killed in a crosswalk near his school Monday in the Portland suburb of Gresham. Garret Bergquist pleaded not guilty Tuesday to two counts of manslaughter, once count of driving under the influence of intoxicants and one count of reckless driving. Police say Bergquist ran a red light and hit Luis Medina in a marked crosswalk. Medina died at the scene. Authorities say a drug recognition evaluator who responded determined Bergquist was impaired by depressants and narcotic pain relievers and could not safely operate a motor vehicle.

The Associated Press