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Bank robbery suspect makes unfortunate fashion choice

Bank robbery suspect makes unfortunate fashion choice

When a Nampa, Idaho man got dressed Sunday morning, he probably didn't think his t-shirt choice would end up being immortalized in his mugshot. But, there's 35-year old Ricky Fisher under arrest with the words "It's all fun and games until the cops show up" printed across his chest.

Fisher and 19-year old Jennifer Balfe from Meridian were arrested Sunday. Lewiston Police had received information that a couple suspected of robbing the Cottonwood Bank were staying at the Cedars Inn. The police department staged the SWAT team outside the motel.

At about 11:00 Sunday morning, the suspects came out of their room and were confronted by police. They were taken into custody and transported to the Lewiston Police Department for questioning. Lewiston Police say Fisher and Balfe are also suspected of robbing two banks in Ontario, Oregon as well.

Cottonwood Police and the FBI are overseeing the investigation.

Fungus, pests afflict Northwest's ponderosa pines

Foresters say pests and fungal infections are afflicting the region's ponderosa pines, and while they seldom kill the trees, they do worry landowners.

The Spokesman-Review reports that the unsightly appearance of the trees is being caused by fungal infections and tiny insects called pine scale that thrive during cool, moist conditions. Pine scale can look like paint spatters, while fungi are identified by black or brown splotches on the needles.

Steve McConnell, a Washington State University Extension forester in Spokane, says he's getting two to three calls per day from panicky landowners. But he says that if trees are otherwise healthy, they should recover no problem.

State Department of Natural Resources officer Guy Gifford says the outbreaks are typically not so widespread. This year, he's seeing acres of affected trees, and he says that is unusual.

Robbery suspects apprehended in Lewiston

Robbery suspects apprehended in Lewiston

Lewiston Police arrested two bank robbery suspects on Sunday.

Police received information through the Idaho County Sheriff's Office that the suspects involved in the Cottonwood Bank robbery were staying in the Cedars Inn in Lewiston. After the suspect information was confirmed and the vehicle identified, the Lewiston Police Department SWAT team was utilized due to the nature of the crimes.

At approximately 11 a.m. the suspects walked out of their motel room and were confronted by SWAT team personnel. The suspects were taken into custody without incident and transported to the Lewiston Police Department for questioning.

The suspects are identified as 35-year-old Ricky A. Fisher from Nampa, ID and 19-year-old Jennifer L. Balfe from Meridian, ID. The two individuals are also suspected of robbing two other banks in Ontario, OR.

The Cottonwood Police Department and the FBI are overseeing the investigation in Cottonwood.

Gem State gubernatorial debate mocked across country

Gem State gubernatorial debate mocked across country

It may have seemed like a Saturday Night Live sketch, but it really was a debate between the men who want to be Idaho's GOP candidate for governor in an event that is now being mocked across the country.

The GOP primary is Tuesday and, according to candidate Harley Brown, Idahoans will choose between, "a cowboy a curmudgeon or a normal guy."

That so-called normal guy Brown referred to is State Senator Russ Fulcher, who is making the rounds before voters hit the polls.

The debate lasted almost an hour, but the most popular highlight reel, just a few minutes long, is what the whole world is watching and it is not a good look for the Gem State.

Two of the candidates, dark horses to put it mildly, are Harley Brown and Walt Bates, provided the entertainment in the forum.

"I am about as politically correct as your proverbial turd in a punch bowl," Brown said during the debate.

"Our forests are like growing tomatoes, well they are pretty red don't pick 'em," Bates said during the debate.

Fulcher said he's not impressed with the spectacle the debate turned into and added he wasn't surprised.

Inslee stops release of inmate who nearly killed Richland police officer

Inslee stops release of inmate who nearly killed Richland police officer

A man who stabbed a Richland police officer seven times and then shot him twice nearly 32-years-ago will remain behind bars.

Jerry Lain, who has been jailed for the last three decades, was up for parole in 2010 but then-Governor Christine Gregoire exercised a rarely used executive power stopping his parole. Now Governor Jay Inslee has done the same.

In 1982 Lain, 56, was on the run from parole in Iowa. He was caught prowling cars in Richland by Police Officer Mike Fitzpatrick. Initially Lain told Fitzpatrick to shoot him but when the officer got close enough Lain stabbed him multiple times then shot him twice using the officer's own gun.

Fitzpatrick survived the assault and Lain was given a maximum sentence of life in prison. Lain was eligible for parole in 2010 and then again in 2014 and both times his release has been stopped, first by Gregoire and now by Inslee.

State Representative Kevin Parker, who has been working with the Fitzpatricks to block Lain's release, said it was the right choice.

Department of Labor holding Hero 2 Hired job fair in Lewiston

Department of Labor holding Hero 2 Hired job fair in Lewiston

The Idaho and US Departments of Labor are joining forces with veterans groups and other local leaders to sponsor a special job fair for veterans in Lewiston. The “Hero 2 Hired’ job fair targets veterans, active duty military, National Guard, Reserve members, and military spouses.

The event will take place from 10:00 a.m. to 2:00 p.m. on Thursday, May 22nd at the Idaho Army National Guard Armory, 2707 16th Avenue in Lewiston.

Washingtonians flocking to Idaho for cheaper alcohol

Washingtonians flocking to Idaho for cheaper alcohol

Just hundreds of yards from Washington, and barely into Idaho, the shelves of the State Line Liquor Store are stocked, but sticker shock proves they won't be for long.

The store opened months after Washington voters passed I-1183. When privatized liquor started almost two years ago in Washington, Kootenai County saw an increase of $7 million in liquor sales each year. So many people are crossing the border to buy booze. Those purchases from Washingtonians left nearly $420,000 in sales tax for Kootenai County last year.

If you put the average price for a bottle of liquor at about $20, that means 350,000 bottles would leave the county each year. The sales tax would stay.

The Idaho State Liquor Division says Kootenai County had the highest growth in the state.

"It's not a regular thing but when I'm over here, pop in, just do it," said Eric Carlson of Spokane Valley.

Almost every license plate KXLY saw at the liquor store this afternoon was from Washington, including Eric Carlson's.

"How come they can do it cheaper here, not there. It's not like we're crossing oceans?" Carlson said.