kitzhaberOREGON – This morning, lawyers for Rep. Dennis Richardson’s gubernatorial campaign filed a request with the U.S. Attorney’s office for a formal investigation into possible ethics violations by Governor John Kitzhaber and so-called First Lady Cylvia Hayes.

According to the Washington D.C. Based attorneys, Governor Kitzhaber and Hayes appear to have violated federal and Oregon ethics laws by allegedly offering roles and taking official action for personal financial gain, and knowingly acted to defraud Oregonian’s right to honest services.

The formal request is endorsed by Jackson County Sheriff Mike Winters, as well as Josephine County Sheriff Gil Gilbertson, who said that the investigation is necessary to ensure everyone is accountable to the law.

It’s likely that no action will be taken by federal investigators before the November election, Richardson Campaign attorneys said.

When asked for Governor Kitzhaber’s reaction to the request, the Communication Director for the Kitzhaber Campaign, Amy Wojcicki, released a statement saying, “Dennis Richardson is wasting the U.S. Attorneys’ time and taxpayer dollars with an obvious political stunt.”

You can read the full letter of request here: Letter to US Attorney Marshall re Kitzhaber and Hayes


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MEDFORD, Ore. – Friday is the last day to drop off donations of new or gently used coats to NewsWatch12′s Coats for Kids 2014 campaign.

NewsWatch12′s Kirstin O’Connor collected some of the last minute donations at the Pet Country Grange Co-op in Medford, where one of the nearly 80 barrels was filling up through the morning.

This year’s Coats For Kids campaign still needs coats sizes 2T to 4T in toddlers and child sizes 5-8. Southern Oregon Headstart is one of the organizations coats will be donated to. Headstart serves families with children before they are born and up until the kids turn 5-years-old. The organization sees a huge need for coats every year, and says their kids

During the week of Oct. 20-24, NewsWatch 12 will be sorting coats that have already been collected.

120328-State-Police-badgeCOOS BAY, Ore. – The Oregon Department of Transportation closed Highway 101 at the Conde McCullough Memorial Bridge in Coos Bay, as Oregon State Police investigated the death of a person found near a vehicle in the water.

According to Lieutenant Steve Mitchell, on October 22, the U.S. Coast Guard and local fire crews responded to reports of a crash on the bridge. A vehicle and the body of a deceased adult male was recovered.

An investigation is underway. If you have any information, contact Oregon State Police.


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“Is it possible for a really small hurricane to be happening and for nobody to know about it?”

Marcus, Mae Richardson

Love this question Marcus! In this day and age, it would be very unlikely that a hurricane would develop and it would remain unknown. There are many resources available to meteorologists these days that allow us to constantly monitor weather conditions across the globe.

The primary reason we are always able to track hurricanes is because NOAA has satellites up in outer space. There are two primary satellites that provide satellite images for the globe throughout the day — GOES & POES. Because we are able to see cloud cover anywhere and everywhere, we can always pinpoint where there are storms. Hurricanes tend to be large areas of low pressure, often times they are hard to miss on satellite imagery.

When they are small, we can watch their evolution on hour loops. We also have buoys in the ocean that measure weather parameters like ocean temperatures, winds, etc. Sea surface temperatures are very important for the growth and strength of tropical disturbances.

The National Hurricane Center is a governmental agency whose sole responsibility is to monitor the U.S. oceans for tropical disturbances. For this reason, tropical systems are always well monitored!

Meteorologist Alyssa Caroprese

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Rain has been falling since Wednesday  night across Northern California and Southern Oregon. Rain totals have been steep along the coast, exceeding 2″ in many locations as of 8:30am. Across West Side Valleys rain amounts have ranged from less than 0.10″-1.” The higher amounts have been to the north and west …around Josephine County.

This front will continue to bring rain to most locations through tonight, falling heavy at times in Siskiyou County. Winds will stay breezy, gusting near 45mph in the Shasta Valley and east of the Cascades. Snow levels will remain high through Saturday and just rain is anticipated for the mountains. With cloudy skies and rainfall, temperatures are going to stay cool this afternoon.

A warm front will lift north through the Northwest Friday morning. This will bring another wave of widespread light to moderate rain. Because this front will move through in the morning, it may help to dry us up by Friday night football. Our sports department will be at Speigelberg Stadium for the North/South game this Friday night for Game of the Week! Skies look to be partly cloudy but cool.

A cold front will then move in from the West on Saturday bringing another round of rain. This front will then drop our snow levels to roughly 5,000′ Saturday night into Sunday morning. Showers will be ongoing through the second half of the weekend and for the highest elevations we may be talking about some snow. We’ll look more closely at that into the weekend.

The stormy weather pattern is going to be ongoing through the middle of next week. We do look to catch a few dry days next week in between fronts.

If you’d like more weather updates …including radar, rain totals and more head over to Facebook and/or Twitter!

Meteorologist Alyssa Caroprese

power outage

[UPDATE - 8:52 A.M.]

Power to Glendale schools was restored about 8:30 A.M.. Schools started on late schedule.

GLENDALE, Ore. – A weather-related power outage in the Glendale/Wolf Creek area left about 1,900 residents without power, and delayed the start of school.

According to Pacific Power, downed lines and an unidentified mechanical issue were the cause of the outage.

Crews were immediately dispatched to assess the damage, and initiate repairs.

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“Why does rain not always bring lightning and thunder?”

Ainsley, St. Mary’s School

The answer to this question lies in the height of the clouds that produce the rain.  When showers move through, they fall from shorter, more shallow clouds.  That means the separation of charges that causes lightning in the first place is not large.  More simply, there is not a large distance between the pool of negative charges normally found at the base of the cloud from the positive charges that are located in the top of the cloud.

When we see tall, towering cumulus, or cumulonimbus clouds, there is a great distance separating the positive charges in the clouds tops from the negative charged pooled at the base of the cloud.  When this happens, there is more of a need for the atmosphere to “discharge” that built up energy – in the form of lightning.  So, when clouds are shorter, we usually see just rain without the lightning and thunder.

Chief Meteorologist Kate McKenna

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Rain has been falling along the coast throughout the day, but showers arrived later Wednesday evening for Jackson and Josephine Counties.  As we go through the overnight hours, this band of rainfall associated with a cold front will gradually shift eastward into the Klamath Basin.  Behind the cold front Thursday, we will be seeing mainly scattered showers instead of the steady rainfall from Wednesday night.

After the passage of the cold front, temperatures will be slightly below average, but that will change by Friday.  Another storm system comes sweeping through, first bringing a warm front and rain showers early Friday morning.  This will bring temperatures back closer to average Friday afternoon.  By Saturday morning, yet another cold front will pass, dropping highs again just in time for the weekend.  This means a drop in snow levels for the Cascades and more showers for both Saturday and Sunday across the area.

The active pattern persists through next week.  A cold front will move through the region sometime Tuesday, bringing more rain as it does so.  For right now, it looks like we will see a dry day Monday with mostly cloudy skies, but then the rain and overcast skies are back with Tuesday’s cold front.

For more information, or to send me your weather pictures, head over to Facebook or Twitter.

Chief Meteorologist Kate McKenna

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GRANTS PASS, Ore. — The Oregon Department of Public Safety Standards and Training is working with a wide variety of agencies from all over, trying to make traffic stops safer for police in a three day workshop in Southern Oregon.

When police pull someone over, that person may be cooperative, in a medical crisis, or confrontational. This training is for law enforcement officers who will be going back to train the staff at their own agencies.

The workshop kicked off  on Tuesday at Hillcrest Fire Station in Grants Pass.

In addition to getting the most up to date information for training in different scenarios, participants are also being trained in the best ways to train others.Tuesday was mostly classroom work, Wednesday and Thursday are practical and scenario training. Workshop officials say traffic stops are some of the most common, and statistically dangerous situations for law enforcement.

In the practical session Tuesday officers dealt with unknown and high risk situations of traffic stops, with special scenarios including police canine units. Administrators for agencies that are attending say these training sessions are vital for the safety of officers and the public.

“You never know what you’re walking up to on a car so this type of training has to be ongoing and it had to be updated because things change all the time,” said Deputy Chief Jim Hamilton with Grants Pass Public Safety.

This was the second training session of the year, and the Department of Public Safety Coordinator said he hopes have more of the workshops set up soon.

141022_abc_network_canada_16x9_992(CNN)[Breaking news update, posted at 8:15 p.m. ET]

“This week’s events are a grim reminder that Canada is not immune to the types of terrorist attacks we have seen elsewhere around the world,” Prime Minister Stephen Harper said late Wednesday. “Let there be no misunderstanding: We will not be intimidated. Canada will never be intimidated.”

The passport of suspected Ottawa shooter Michael Zehaf-Bibeau was confiscated by Canadian authorities when they learned he planned to go fight overseas, a U.S. law enforcement official told CNN’s Susan Candiotti. The official said it was not clear when that happened.

[Previous story, published at 7:43 p.m. ET]

(CNN) — A soldier gunned down while guarding a hallowed war memorial and a shootout in the halls of Parliament left parts of Canada’s capital on lockdown for hours Wednesday.

Parliament member Kyle Seeback called it a “horrific day.”

And it may not be over yet.

Authorities haven’t ruled out the possibility that an additional shooter could be on the loose. And Ottawa Police Constable Chuck Benoit told CNN that there was more than one person involved in the shootings.

“We have to apprehend and arrest the people that are involved in this morning’s incident,” he said, “and at this time we don’t have these people.”

Michael Zehaf-Bibeau has been identified by Canadian officials to their American counterparts as the suspected gunman, multiple U.S. officials told CNN.

The gunman was killed after two shooting incidents — one at the Canada War Memorial, and another just minutes later nearby inside Parliament.

Bibeau, who was born in 1982, was a convert to Islam and had a history of drug use before he converted, two sources said.

Canadian broadcaster CBC reported that Bibeau had a record of drug arrests going back 10 years.

Cpl. Nathan Cirillo was the soldier killed after a shooter opened fire at the memorial, a family source told CNN’s Paula Newton.

Investigators haven’t provided any possible motives for the shooting.

The soldier appeared to have been shot in the back, said Peter Henderson, a journalist who was at the memorial at the time of the shooting. Other soldiers who were nearby doing drills at the time ran to help, he said.

“This is a dynamic and unfolding situation. I understand that people have many questions and we are committed to providing some answers as soon as we are able,” Assistant Commissioner Gilles Michaud, commanding officer of the Royal Canadian Mounted Police National Division, told reporters Wednesday.

Three people brought to The Ottawa Hospital after the shootings have been released, hospital spokeswoman Hazel Harding told CNN. Earlier, they were described as being in stable condition.

Hours after gunshots thundered through the halls of Parliament, forcing people to barricade themselves in offices, police were still scouring the area and a lockdown remained in effect.

“If they thought that they had the situation under control, we would have been let out a long time ago. We haven’t been. There’s still no word on whether we will be,” said Josh Wingrove, a reporter for the Globe and Mail newspaper who witnessed the shooting and remained at Parliament Wednesday evening. “This is by no means a situation that is considered over.”

‘I heard rapid fire’

Shortly after the shooting at the memorial, a gunman entered the nearby building on Parliament Hill, officials said.

“I heard rapid fire — gunshots going very loud — and I figure maybe 20-plus shots within 10 seconds,” Canadian Deputy House Leader Kevin Lamoureux told CNN. He was one level below the gunshots.

Gunfire first erupted in the building’s foyer. Then a second round of shooting happened about a minute later in a hallway or near the entrance to the Parliament’s library, Wingrove told CNN.

Several officers had weapons drawn, he said, and most of the dozens of shots that he heard appeared to have been fired by officers at the gunman.

When the shooting ended, a person was lying motionless on the ground near the library entrance, Wingrove said.

Parliament member James Lunney tweeted: #HOC in Lockdown, lone gunman shot security guard, shot his way down Hall of Honor….we are all safe. Gunman dead! Thnk God & our scrty!”

In Twitter posts, several Canadian lawmakers hailed a top security official as a hero, crediting him with shooting the gunman inside Parliament.

“MPs and Hill staff owe their safety, even lives, to Sergeant at Arms Kevin Vickers who shot attacker just outside the MPs’ caucus rooms,” Craig Scott, a member of Parliament, wrote.

Another soldier killed Monday

Canadian authorities have given the name of a suspect to U.S. law enforcement and have asked for FBI assistance in tracing the person’s activities, a senior U.S. law enforcement official told CNN. Only one name has been provided, and it is not clear whether the name is genuine or an alias, the official said. The official declined to provide more details, including the suspect’s nationality, ethnicity and age.

A U.S. law enforcement official told CNN that a connection to terrorism hasn’t been ruled out.

On Monday, a man who Canadian authorities said was “radicalized” killed a Canadian soldier with his car. The man was then shot and killed.

Police: Man who ran down and killed soldier was ‘radicalized’

There was no immediate indication that the Monday and Wednesday incidents were related.

In response to the shootings, the North American Aerospace Defense Command, or NORAD, has increased its alert posture, CNN has learned. That means that it has increased the number of planes on a higher alert status ready to respond if needed. NORAD and Canadian authorities are in contact, an official told CNN.

Prime Minister secure

MP Tony Clement tweeted that he heard “at least 30 shots” and apparently was able to take cover with colleagues. He also tweeted that Prime Minister Stephen Harper was secure.

Harper was evacuated from the building and is safe, tweeted his press secretary, Carl Vallee.

Hours after the Parliament attack, Harper spoke by phone with U.S. President Barack Obama.

“Obviously, we’re all shaken by it,” Obama later told reporters, “but we’re going to do everything we can to make sure we’re standing side by side with Canada during this difficult time.”

Ottawa Mayor Jim Watson said that Wednesday was “a sad and tragic day for our city and our country.”

“There’s no pain greater than losing a loved one — to have it happen in such circumstances as this morning is beyond expression, and underlined by a sad anger within my heart,” he said.

Canada raised its terror threat level

The violence at Parliament comes just days after Canada raised its terror alert Friday.

The suspect in Monday’s vehicle attack, Martin Rouleau Couture, reportedly converted to Islam about a year ago. Police arrested him last July and confiscated his passport, but lacked enough evidence to keep him in custody, said Martine Fontaine of the Royal Canadian Mounted Police.

“When he was arrested, he was about to go to Turkey,” Fontaine said. “We stopped him as he was about to leave Canada for terrorist actions. He was questioned when he was arrested. We have not been able to determine any real threat at this time.”

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