Rogue Valley News, Monday, Nov. 4 – Grants Pass Police Search for Armed Robbery

The latest news from across the Rogue Valley and Southern Oregon from RogueValleyMagazine.com.

Monday, November 4, 2019

Rogue Valley Weather

Today 
Sunny, with a high near 70. Overnight, clear skies with a low of 40.

Tuesday 
Mostly sunny, with a high near 69.  Overnight low of 35.

Wednesday 
Mostly sunny, with a high near 69.

Thursday 
Mostly sunny, with a high near 66.

Friday 
Mostly sunny, with a high near 65

TODAY’s HEADLINES

On Saturday, Grants Pass Department of Public Safety responded to 261 Rogue River Highway for a reported armed robbery involving a firearm.

During an investigation at the location, it was determined an unknown male suspect entered the Lucky Lizard, displayed a firearm and demanded cash from the register.  The suspect was described as wearing a black, hooded jacket with a hat. 

Once the suspect received the undisclosed amount of cash from the employee, the suspect fled the business.  The suspect’s direction of travel is unknown at this time, and it is unknown if the suspect was on foot or in a vehicle.  With the assistance of a police K9, the general area was searched. 

At this time, this case has been turned over to GPDPS detectives for follow-up.

Police are searching for two masked men who forced their way into a 75-year-old Medford woman’s home, bound her with zip ties and assaulted her, then stole jewelry including the wedding band from her hand.

The woman heard a knock at the door at 8:40 a.m. and opened it to see two masked men, according to Medford police. Police say at least one was armed with a handgun. Police say the men barged into her home, zip-tied her hands and shoved her to the ground, which injured her face, arm and shoulder. They then stole the jewelry and fled. The woman managed to free one of her hands and then ran to a neighbor’s house. The woman was treated at the scene. Police believe the attack was targeted and said the suspects stole more than $10,000 worth of property.

Late last week, the Grants Pass Department of Public Safety was advised of an operational leak within the Public Safety Department.  Information obtained from sources linked to an ongoing criminal investigation led authorities to Grants Pass Department of Public Safety Community Service Officer Heather Corthell. 

Corthell is believed to have divulged intelligence that significantly hindered the investigation.

Since the leaked information was related to a joint operation involving both the Josephine County Sheriff’s Office and the Grants Pass Department of Public Safety, Detectives from the Douglas County Sheriff’s Office were requested to lead the investigation.   Heather Corthell was later arrested on the following charges and lodged into the Josephine County Jail:

•            ORS 162.247 (a) – Interfering with a Peace Officer

•            ORS 162.285 – Tampering w/ Evidence.

•            ORS 162.325(1)(b) – Hindering Prosecution

The Grants Pass Department of Public Safety strives to promote a culture of transparency and accountability to build public trust and legitimacy.   All questions should be referred to the Josephine County District Attorney’s Office.Any personnel questions can be referred to Chief Warren Hensman.

AROUND THE STATE…

A Seattle man died last week at Sky Lakes Medical Center in Klamath Falls, following a vaping-related incident. The man, 23-year-old Hadynn Outcalt-Arends, was on a belated honeymoon with his wife, Courtney when he became ill.

The couple had been married just 19 days. Outcalt-Arends had been using nicotine vape products for less than a year, and only used nicotine vape. He purchased vape juice locally, although the family has not yet agreed to release which store Outcalt-Arends bought the juice from. According to reports his wide went into the kitchen to prepare a late-night meal and she heard him gasping in the bedroom. She rushed to him and he was unconscious and foaming at the mouth. Outcalt-Arends was rushed to the hospital via ambulance.

The Klamath County Sheriff’s Office and the Oregon Poison Center are investigating the death. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention reports that 1,888 people have been sickened from the vaping diseases, and 37 have died as of Oct. 31 in the United States.

The Oregon Air National Guard’s 116th Air Control Squadron (ACS) formally mobilization more than 100 Airmen for deployment during a ceremony Nov. 3, 2019, held at Astoria High School, Astoria, Oregon.

The Airmen will be deploying to Southwest Asia in support of OPERATION INHERENT RESOLVE and OPERATION RESOLUTE SUPPORT. 

Oregon Air National Guard’s 116th Air Control Squadron (ACS), located at Camp Rilea, Warrenton, Oregon, is a deployable radar/communications unit with superior mobility and response to global and local missions. The Unit is comprised of more than 150 members who support Air Control and Combat Communications.

The Oregon National Guard officially dedicated Mohawk #926 during a ceremony held at the Army Aviation Support Facility in Salem.

In other event, the Oregon National Guard officially dedicated Mohawk #926 during a ceremony held at the Army Aviation Support Facility (AASF), Salem, Oregon, Nov. 2, honoring the legacy of the OV-1 Mohawk’s service to the Oregon National Guard from 1972 to 1992. The restored Mohawk will be part of a permanent legacy display near the entrance at AASF and features several historical interpretative panels.

The OV-1 display also pays tribute to the service of U.S. Army Lt. Col. Robert G. Nopp, and Staff Sgt. Marshall F. Kipina who were lost aboard an OV-1 aircraft during the Vietnam war, and to Oregon National Guard Sergeant 1st Class (Ret.) Kimberly D. (Robinson) Jark, the first female U.S. Army OV-1 Technical Observer (T.O).

The dedication of Mohawk #926 culminates a three year effort by retired Oregon National Guard Mohawk pilots, maintenance technicians and other volunteers who helped purchase, transport and restore the aircraft that was assigned from Sept. 1973 to July 1989, to the 1042nd Military Intelligence (M.I.) Company, later reorganized as the 641st M.I. Battalion. The aircraft supported a number of various missions that included border surveillance for the U.S. Border Patrol, photographic mapping for Federal and State agencies, and most notably for monitoring Mt. St. Helens before and after the May 18, 1980 eruption.

Addressing those in attendance, Brig. Gen. William J. Prendergast, Land Component commander, Oregon National Guard, recognized the importance of the Mohawk #926 Aircraft display and what it means to the Oregon National Guard at the Debiert Flight Facility.

“Projects such as this tie the past, present and future into one rich story, and the distinctive triple-tail and big-eyed cockpit, will draw attention to the aircraft and will create questions about the airframe,” he said. “It ties us to the future, as what is old is new again as the military looks to create a new light attack aircraft in support of current operations.”

Among other official dignitaries in attendance during the event included; Maj. Gen. (Ret.) Charles Rosenfeld and Capt. (Ret.) Gary Clark, Co-Chairmen of the #926 Project, Larry Diebert, Civilian Aide to the Secretary of the Army, Emeritus; Patti Nopp, wife of Lt. Col. Nopp; Christopher Witherspoon, son of Sergeant 1st Class Jark; Richard Wolfe, Col. (Ret.), Representing the 641st M.I. Battalion and the 1042nd M.I. Company that operated OV-1s at Salem from 1972 to 1992.

While state funding is still pending approval in the next legislative session, Lake County has secured funding alternatives for railroad line upgrades to commence in anticipation of Red Rock Biofuels beginning operations next spring.

Earlier this year the U.S. Department of Transportation’s Federal Railroad Authority approved $5.6 million in grant funds for freight rail system upgrades in Lake County through the Consolidated Rail Infrastructure and Safety Improvements program – called “The Build America Grant.” The CRISI grant requires a $5 million match, $1.4 million of which is dedicated from construction of a new rail spur connecting to the main line at the currently under construction Red Rock Biofuels facility on the south end of Lakeview. An additional $3.12 million was expected in matching funds from the Oregon State Legislature, but those expected funds have been pushed until the next legislative session.

The State of Oregon has already invested heavily in the Red Rock Biofuels project, approving $245 million in bonds last year for its construction.

Oregonians who do not get health insurance through their jobs, and who do not qualify for the Oregon Health Plan, have six weeks to sign up for 2020 coverage. 

Between Nov. 1 and Dec. 15 you can go to OregonHealthCare.gov to: Estimate if you will qualify for help paying for coverage, Skim the different plans available in your area, See what the plans cover, and how much they cost and find a local expert who can help you apply for a subsidy and enroll in a plan OregonHealthCare.gov is the online home of the Oregon Health Insurance Marketplace, a part of state government. It is the state-level partner of HealthCare.gov, the national website where people enroll in Marketplace plans and access subsidies.

Last year, more than 148,000 people in Oregon got coverage through the Marketplace. Oregonians can apply for subsidies and enroll online on their own, or they can get free, local help with the application. Insurance agents and community-based advocates providing that assistance are listed at OregonHealthCare.gov/gethelp, or call 855-269-3767 (toll-free). Open enrollment lasts until Dec. 15. for 2020 coverage.

Once the deadline passes, people can buy insurance only when they have a major life change, such as having a baby, adopting a child, or losing other health insurance.

Police are searching for two masked men who forced their way into a 75-year-old Medford woman’s home, bound her with zip ties and assaulted her, then stole jewelry including the wedding band from her hand.

The woman heard a knock at the door at 8:40 a.m. and opened it to see two masked men, according to Medford police. Police say at least one was armed with a handgun. Police say the men barged into her home, zip-tied her hands and shoved her to the ground, which injured her face, arm and shoulder. They then stole the jewelry and fled. The woman managed to free one of her hands and then ran to a neighbor’s house. The woman was treated at the scene. Police believe the attack was targeted and said the suspects stole more than $10,000 worth of property.

Federal wildlife officials have entered into agreements with timber companies and the state of Oregon to protect the rare Pacific fisher on nearly 2 million acres of forestland in Oregon. Five companies — Green Diamond, Weyerhaeuser, Roseburg, Lone Rock and Hancock — have signed conservation agreements with the U. S. Fish and Wildlife Service over the past few months.

The fisher is a carnivorous mammal related to weasels and mink and once was widely found in the Pacific Northwest. But their numbers crashed because of trapping, the use of rodenticides and destruction of their habitat through logging and other development that removed forestlands. Currently, small native populations of fishers remain only in Southern Oregon and Northern California, although efforts are underway to reintroduce fishers from Canada in Washington.

The Fish and Wildlife Service is currently considering whether to protect the fisher and its habitat under the federal Endangered Species Act. The voluntary conservation agreements could influence that decision.

Authorities are investigating the death of a man whose body was found in an Oregon creek. Washington County Sheriff’s Office deputies responded to Cedar Mill Creek in the Beaverton area where the body was found Saturday afternoon.

The Sheriff’s Office says the deceased man was found about 100 feet downstream of a waterfall. The body was recovered from the creek. Official say it’s unclear foul play was involved in the man’s death. The medical examiner’s office is working to determine the cause and manner of death, as well as identify the body.

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