New Oregon State Police crime lab up and running
PENDLETON, Ore. (AP) — The new Oregon State Police crime lab in Pendleton is open and running.
Calvin Davis is the forensic scientist in charge of the lab at 612 Airport Road, practically...
PENDLETON, Ore. (AP) — The eastern Oregon city of Pendleton has stopped jailing people unable to pay fines, a city official said, following the settlement of a federal lawsuit contending city...
PORTLAND, Ore. (AP) — A federal jury in Oregon has awarded nearly $27 million in damages against two trucking companies and their drivers who lawyers say were involved in a road rage episode that...
PENDLETON, Ore. (AP) — Officials in eastern Oregon are urging the governor to declare a state of emergency in response to recent flooding.
Flooding affects some eastern Oregon residents
PENDLETON, Ore. (AP) — Officials in a small eastern Oregon city have declared an emergency as its mayor says three or four homes are surrounded by water.
Blue Mountain Community College hires new president
PENDLETON, Ore. (AP) — Blue Mountain Community College board members have voted unanimously to hire Dennis Bailey-Fougnier as the college's next president.
Authorities arrest suspect for vandalism at cemetery
ROBBINSVILLE, N.C. (AP) — Authorities in North Carolina have arrested a woman who they say vandalized a cemetery.
The Graham County Sheriff's Office says 58-year-old Dawn Renee Phillips of...
PENDLETON, Ore. (AP) — A large drug bust by the Blue Mountain Enforcement Narcotics Team put 65 adults in four eastern Oregon counties behind bars, but also sent 38 children into the foster care...
Bill would allocate more money for youth farm programs
PENDLETON, Ore. (AP) — A bill introduced in the Oregon House this week would increase funding into Future Farmers of America programs around the state.
The measure from Rep. Greg Barreto, a Republican from Pendleton, would allot more money for students to attend statewide and national events to build their FFA resumes and develop their skills.
Dozens arrested in Oregon drug investigation
PENDLETON, Ore. (AP) — Authorities have arrested more the five dozen suspects in an aim to take down drug trafficking organizations in northeast Oregon.
Bills aim to provide more firefighting flexibility
PENDLETON, Ore. (AP) — In the wake of a July fire that burned 80,000 acres of land in north-central Oregon, state Sen. Bill Hansell is introducing a package of bills that he thinks will improve firefighting efforts on farmland.
Pendleton, Oregon, man struck and killed by train
PENDLETON, Ore. (AP) — An Oregon man has died after he was struck by a railroad train in Pendleton.
Angel Murillo, 24, of Pendleton, died in the Tuesday morning accident.
The East Oregonian reports Murillo was a cowboy and worked at a western store as a hat shaper and saddle maker. He was originally from White Salmon, Washington.
Drone test range in Pendleton shows potential in 2018
PENDLETON, Ore. (AP) — While there may have been times that the future of the Pendleton Unmanned Aerial Systems Range was uncertain, city officials suggested that 2018 provided evidence of the range's permanency.
Steve Chrisman, Pendleton airport manager and economic development director, admitted that the range's impact wasn't always a known quantity, but a year's worth of growth in activity and full-time jobs is a sign that the range has long-term potential.
Man pleads not guilty in deadly workplace shooting in Oregon
PENDLETON, Ore. (AP) — A Washington state man accused in the deadly shooting of a co-worker in northeast Oregon has pleaded not guilty.
The East Oregonian reports 52-year-old Antonio Vasquez-Vargas was arraigned Monday in Umatilla County on charges of murder and felon in possession of a firearm.
Oregon sheriff’s office developing sharpshooting team
PENDLETON, Ore. (AP) — An Oregon sheriff's office is developing a sharpshooter team.
Umatilla County Sheriff Terry Rowan says the "designated marksman program" is new but aims to fill a need for officers who are skilled shooters to respond to crisis situations.
Rowan says the team is too new to dispatch yet so the first call for a tactical police response would go to the Pendleton Police Department SWAT team and the second to Oregon State Police SWAT.
Police investigating homicide at northeast Oregon creamery
PENDLETON, Ore. (AP) — Authorities are investigating after a person was killed at a creamery business in northeast Oregon.
The East Oregonian reports Umatilla County Sheriff Terry Rowan says deputies responded to a call at about 6:30 a.m. Monday at the Umapine Creamery west of Umapine.
Rowan said a person was found dead from apparent gunshot wounds.
Revenue soars for this year’s Pendleton Round-Up
PENDLETON, Ore. (AP) — Revenue from ticket sales soared for the Pendleton Round-Up this year to more than $1.3 million.
The East Oregonian also reports that revenue from trademark sales increased 16 percent over last year.
The event's three hard liquor bars sold about 1,000 drinks an hour during the fall event, up 11 percent from last year.
Pendleton dealing with aphid swarms
PENDLETON, Ore. (AP) — Pendleton residents have been dealing with huge swarms of flying aphids this fall.
The East Oregonian reports Friday that the bugs created a gray haze at a youth football game this week and landed all over spectators. A photo also shows them coating a parked truck and almost obscuring a tall evergreen tree.
Oregon eyes plan for managing wolves to protect livestock
PENDLETON, Ore. (AP) — Oregon officials are proposing a new framework for managing wolves that prey on livestock.
The East Oregonian reports that a possible deal emerged Tuesday that involves ranchers making clearly defined efforts to protect livestock and ward off wolves with non-lethal deterrents.
OR seeks $11K from mother whose son died in prison shooting
PENDLETON, Ore. (AP) — A woman whose son was shot and killed in 2014 by a corrections officer at the state prison in Pendleton, Oregon, iled a wrongful death lawsuit in federal court against the officer.
Oregon class helps speakers of indigenous languages adjust
PENDLETON, Ore. (AP) — The students in Highland Hills Elementary School's Newcomers class know the difference between the numbers 15 and 50.
Regardless, they take a few minutes during a math lesson to repeat them over and over again — "fif-TEEN, fif-TY, fif-TEEN, fif-TY" — emphasizing the last syllables that distinguish the two.
Sermon from the mount
PENDLETON, Ore. (AP) — Though Todd Pierce is used to breaking horses as he preaches sermons, he didn't have to fight too hard with this one.
Pierce and his company, Riding High Ministries, was in Umatilla at Two Rivers Correctional Institution.
About 60 inmates from Two Rivers watched quietly as Pierce worked with Vixen, an unbroken mare. Within 30 minutes the horse went from having never been ridden before to patiently carrying Pierce around the corral.
Rep. Walden agrees to debate McLeod-Skinner in Bend
PENDLETON, Ore. (AP) — U.S. Rep. Greg Walden has agreed to a televised debate against his challenger, Jamie McLeod-Skinner.
The East Oregonian reports the two could face off at 7 p.m. Oct. 5 on Bend television station KTVZ. But first they need to agree to terms.
McLeod-Skinner, a democrat from Terrebonne, first challenged the 10-term Republican incumbent to a debate two months ago.
Trick-riding team does daring stunts at Pendleton Round-Up
PENDLETON, Ore. (AP) — Haley Ganzel stretched her arms out, leaned forward and arched her head back. She looked for all the world like Kate Winslet posing on the ship's prow in "Titanic."
Ganzel, however, struck the pose atop a galloping horse. The trick rider stayed steady for much of the length of the Pendleton Round-Up Arena before pulling back and sitting in the saddle.
Construction begins on new Oregon crime lab in Pendleton
LA GRANDE, Ore. (AP) — Construction has begun on the new Oregon State Police crime lab in Pendleton.
The East Oregonian reports Fortis Constriction Inc. has started work on the foundation of the nearly $1.25 million project.
The city issued a building permit for the 9,500-square-foot (880-square-meter) facility last month.
Pendleton Round-Up exceeds all-time ticket revenues
PENDLETON, Ore. (AP) — Randy Thomas exuded good cheer on Monday of Pendleton Round-Up week.
And why wouldn't he? The Pendleton Round-Up director, in charge of publicity for the iconic rodeo, has the world by the tail these days.
Ticket sales, for instance, continue on an upward trajectory.
"Last year, we set a record," said Thomas, as he leaned back in a chair in the media trailer. "This year, we've already broken that record. We exceeded all-time ticket revenues before the show even started."
The Latest: Man senteced for harassing Yellowstone bison
BILLINGS, Mont. (AP) — The Latest on an Oregon man being sentenced for drunken behavior in national parks (all times local):
An Oregon man who was sentenced for drunken behavior in two national parks in Wyoming said he and his buddy were on a "last hurrah" tour before he entered alcohol treatment.
Raymond Reinke's crimes drew national attention when at least one Yellowstone National Park visitor captured a video of him harassing a bison that had stopped traffic.
Lamb auction raises $23,200 for Oregon girl with tumor
PENDLETON, Ore. (AP) — A lamb named Henry fetched $162 per pound at an Oregon auction where lambs were generally going for $7 a pound.
What made Henry such a prize at the Umatilla County Fair is he was raised by Maddy Thomas, an 11-year-old girl from Echo who was diagnosed with a brain tumor last year. The $23,200 will help her family cover continuing medical-related expenses.
Meteorologists help fire fight by keeping crews up-to-date
PENDLETON, Ore. (AP) — As they sit at their screens in a small office outside Pendleton, a group of meteorologists can already tell what the rest of the population is soon going to find out the hard way: it's another smoky day in Oregon.
Dan Slagle looks at the high-resolution rapid-refresh smoke map on his screen and laughs.
Sheriff investigating Eastern Oregon cattle deaths
PENDLETON, Ore. (AP) — Umatilla County Sheriff Terry Rowan says seven cows died last week after someone shut off their water supply.
Rowan says a livestock owner reported finding two cows dead from lack of water, and a subsequent call reported five dead cows.
YELLOWSTONE NATIONAL PARK, Wyo. (AP) — An Oregon man who was arrested following disturbances in three national parks, including one in which a bison was harassed in Yellowstone, will remain jailed until his trial later this month, a judge ruled Wednesday.
The decision came as Raymond Reinke of Pendleton, Oregon, pleaded not guilty to five charges stemming from citations issued in Grand Teton and Yellowstone national parks in late July.
Pendleton teen writes about family Alzheimer’s journey
PENDLETON, Ore. (AP) — Dani Moore knows how Alzheimer's disease can rip into a family.
The 18-year-old has watched her grandmother slowly fade away for more than a decade. Dorothy Bjorklund hasn't fully recognized family members for several years. Dorothy is one of 5.7 million Americans living with Alzheimer's disease.
Families face forced break-ups through deportation
PENDLETON, Ore. (AP) — Six years ago a simple traffic stop ripped Thalia Torres-Medrano's life to shreds.
Her boyfriend — the father of her child, her rock since she was 13 years old and their family's financial support — was driving over the speed limit. And he was undocumented.
"As soon as those lights came on, we knew, somehow," she said. "It was an unspoken thing. We looked at each other and we knew."
No charges in fatal bicycle crash near Pendleton
PENDLETON, Ore. (AP) — No criminal charges have been filed in connection with a collision that killed a 62-year-old Pendleton bicyclist last month.
The East Oregonian reports that Ann Wyatt was bicycling June 8 to her job at the U.S. Forest Service on the Umatilla Indian Reservation near Pendleton when an SUV struck and killed her.
The Umatilla Tribal Police Department, which headed up the investigation, has not identified the driver or released other information.
PENDLETON, Ore. (AP) — Many Pendleton residents are questioning what it was they saw last week in the skies over the town.
Residents spotted a small white object Wednesday floating above the south area of Pendleton for the better part of an hour, the East Oregonian reported .
Some thought the object was a kite or plastic shopping bag.
Life inside the razor wire
PENDLETON, Ore. (AP) — Adam Anderson doesn't like to think about his first days at the Eastern Oregon Correctional Institution.
He arrived in shackles in 1996 to serve a 25-year sentence for robbery, kidnap and assault. The 21-year-old was strip-searched and furnished with items he would need for prison life.
"They gave me a little brown cup, an AM-FM radio with a set of batteries, a bar of soap, a toothbrush, jeans and a T-shirt," Anderson said.
Tire from freeway crashes into attic of Oregon home
PENDLETON, Ore. (AP) — Elmer Emmons heard what sounded like a tree limb striking the roof of the Pendleton home he's renting.
He thought his grandkids might have knocked something over. He returned to sleep.
The East Oregonian newspaper reports Emmons later discovered a large tire had crashed through the roof.
PENDLETON, Ore. (AP) — Pendleton Mayor John Turner has been diagnosed with throat cancer.
The first-term mayor said in an email to friends Sunday that he expects to begin chemotherapy this month at a hospital in Walla Walla, Washington. He said he has a 70 percent to 80 percent chance of recovering. City council president Neil Brown will fill in for Turner as needed.
Harvest time for Hermiston watermelons
PENDLETON, Ore. (AP) — Oregon's famous Hermiston watermelons are back in season.
The East Oregonian reports that growers anticipate they will start picking in earnest this week.
PENDLETON, Ore. (AP) — Whether pulling weeds, picking berries or driving machinery, many people found their first job on a farm.
For Umatilla County kids, farm labor has been one of many options for making money in the summer, but the way young workers fit into the agricultural industry has seen major changes in the past several years.
Darrin Ditchen, owner of Golden Valley Farms East in Stanfield, said his minimum hiring age is 16, the age teens have to be to operate heavy equipment.
PENDLETON, Ore. (AP) — A rural Oregon county will be without law enforcement officers after a sheriff and his deputies announced their departures.
Wheeler County Sheriff Chris Humphreys notified county officials last month of his plans to leave, giving officials up to six months to find a replacement, the East Oregonian reported .
Warm spring increases Oregon’s wildfire potential
PENDLETON, Ore. (AP) — State and federal forest managers say Oregon's wildfire season does not look promising.
Noel Livingston, fire management officer on the Wallowa-Whitman National Forest, says the warm May melted off the snowpack two weeks early. The green forests of eastern Oregon are drying out, and Livingston says the southern and central Oregon will be "above normal" for significant wildfire potential in July.
PORTLAND, Ore. (AP) — A dog that was shot twice and left for dead in a rugged area of northeast Oregon has been given a new home.
KATU-TV reports the dog named Rez was found in the mountains near Pendleton, Oregon, in February covered in blood from two bullet wounds in the head, causing him to lose an eye and several teeth.
PENDLETON, Ore. (AP) — It's a common phenomenon for someone with internet access and some time to kill.
Trawling through Wikipedia's seemingly exponential number of articles and entries, a user clicks several links and before they know it, they've ended up on a topic that's a far cry from where they started.
It's commonly referred to as a Wikipedia "spiral," and two sisters have decided it offers enough material for a downloadable talk show.
PENDLETON, Ore. (AP) — Amid cheers and fanfare often reserved for student athletes, all Umatilla High School seniors who are pursuing post-secondary education signed letters of intent during the school's third annual Signing Day.
"This is a big step," Principal Bob Lorence said, congratulating the students. "As you sign your name, just make a commitment to further your education."
PENDLETON, Ore. (AP) — Fifty years ago, construction of the John Day Lock and Dam east of The Dalles changed the city of Umatilla forever.
The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, acting on flood predictions, acquired the city's land along the banks of the Columbia River, requiring everyone north of Fifth Street to move to higher ground. Much of the site never did flood, but the Army Corps of Engineers still owns hundreds of acres of land within Umatilla's urban growth boundary.
PENDLETON, Ore. (AP) — A man shot by Pendleton police last fall has been indicted on charges stemming from the robbery call that preceded the gunfire.
The East Oregonian newspaper reports that Matthew Hoisington of Mission has been indicted on charges of robbery, theft and interfering with an officer.
Athena girl ‘spreads the love’ with 100 dress donations
PENDLETON, Ore. (AP) — The dreams of dozens of teenage girls were in a trailer on the edge of an Athena wheat field.
In the waning days of March, Weston-McEwen High School senior Christina Swafford and her parents traveled to Portland and packed 100 prom dresses into the back of their Honda Pilot. When they arrived home in Athena, they installed clothing racks and paneled flooring into a storage trailer, converting it into a walk-in closet that included a makeshift dressing room.