Oregon lawmaker faces expulsion in assault on state Capitol
SALEM, Ore. (AP) — Oregon House Speaker Tina Kotek wants to expel a Republican lawmaker who allowed violent protesters into the state Capitol in December. Fellow Republicans want him out too. Video that emerged late Friday in local news reports that apparently showed Rep. Mike Nearman choreographing how he would let protesters into the Capitol, which was closed to the public, exploded like a bombshell in the Legislature on Monday. For even the minority Republicans in the House, it was too much. All 22 of Nearman’s fellow Republicans in the House said in a joint letter to him that he should step down.
OREGON STATE SONG-LYRICS
Oregon state song updated to remove racist language
PORTLAND, Ore. (AP) — The Oregon Legislature has approved changes to the lyrics of Oregon’s state song to remove racist language and make the lyrics more inclusive. The Oregonian/OregonLive reports House Concurrent Resolution 11 modifies the lyrics, while keeping the same music of “Oregon, My Oregon,” to reflect the “significant cultural, historical, economic and societal evolution in Oregon” since the state song was adopted in 1927. The first verse, which referred to Oregon as “conquered and held by free men; fairest and the best,” was replaced with new lyrics emphasizing Oregon’s natural beauty and “rolling rivers.”
VIRUS OUTBREAK-VACCINE INCENTIVE
Washington: Marijuana stores can offer joints for vaccines
SEATTLE (AP) — Officials in Washington state say licensed marijuana stores can offer free joints to promote on-site COVID-19 vaccine clinics. The state Liquor and Cannabis Board announced the “Joints for Jabs” program Monday. It says licensed adult-use marijuana retail shops can give away a single pre-rolled joint to anyone over 21 who gets a shot at an on-site vaccine clinic held by July 12. The board has already allowed breweries, wineries and restaurants to offer free drinks in exchange for proof of vaccination. Other incentives being offered in Washington include free sports tickets and prize money of up to $1 million.
Police: 4 people fatally shot in home in Portland, Oregon
PORTLAND, Ore. (AP) — Police in Portland, Oregon, said four people were fatally shot at a home in the city over the weekend. Authorities in a statement say officers responded to reports of a shooting Sunday night and found the four people dead from apparent gunshot wounds. Police spokesman Lt. Greg Pashley told The Oregonian/OregonLive that investigators don’t believe the shootings were murders and a suicide. He said no one is in custody but police don’t believe there’s a risk to the public. He said he didn’t know the relationships of the people who died. Police say they are investigating and that autopsies will be performed.
FORMER OLYMPIAN-SEX ABUSE
Olympic equestrian arrested on sexual abuse charges
PORTLAND, Ore. (AP) — Tualatin police have arrested a horse trainer and former Olympic equestrian on allegations of sexual abuse. The Tualatin Police Department said in a news release Monday that 61-year-old Oregon City resident Richard Fellers is facing four counts of sexual abuse involving a teenager. Police say they’ve been investigating for months after receiving information from the United States Center for SafeSport, which is an organization focused on ending abuse in sports. Police say they interviewed witnesses in multiple states and that investigators established that Fellers had a sexual relationship with a teen victim in Portland. It wasn’t immediately known if he has a lawyer to comment on his case.
Rail union: Sabotage caused Washington oil-train derailment
SEATTLE (AP) — A rail union official reportedly told investigators that a fiery oil car train derailment north of Seattle late last year was caused by sabotage. Seven train cars carrying crude oil derailed and five caught fire in Custer, Washington, on Dec. 22, 2020, sending a large plume of black smoke into the sky close to the Canadian border. There were no injuries in the derailment about 100 miles north of Seattle. KUOW reports that an official with the union representing the driver has told authorities the derailment was not an accident. The incident happened near where two people had been arrested a month before and accused of attempting a terrorist attack on train tracks to disrupt plans for a natural gas pipeline.
CHILD SEX ABUSE SENTENCE
Man convicted of child sex abuse sentenced to 12 years
SALEM, Ore. (AP) — A Dallas man has been sentenced to over 12 years in prison for sexually abusing a child. The Statesman Journal reports Christopher Stebbins was found guilty of 12 counts of sexual abuse by a jury in May. He was sentenced Thursday by Polk County Judge Monte Campbell. Stebbins was arrested in November 2018 by Dallas Police officers after the Department of Human Services Child Protection Services and law enforcement authorities received a report of the abuse. Court documents show the child disclosed that the abuse occurred on several occasions over multiple years mainly at the home of Stebbins.
Authorities: Deputy fatally shoots person after chase
HAPPY VALLEY, Ore. (AP) — Authorities say a Clackamas County, Oregon, sheriff’s deputy shot and killed a person after a vehicle pursuit and short foot chase. KOIN reports that the Clackamas County Sheriff’s Office says a person led a deputy — who is assigned to the City of Happy Valley — on a vehicle pursuit shortly after 2 a.m. Monday. The chase ended and the person exited the car. Authorities say the person fled on foot but the deputy fired his gun and struck the person. Authorities did not clarify if the person had fired any shots. Deputies reportedly recovered a handgun near the person. They also say the person had been driving a stolen car. An investigation continues.