The latest news stories from around the Rogue Valley and across the state of Oregon from RogueValleyMagazine.com.
Tuesday, February 4, 2020
Rogue Valley Weather
Today Mostly sunny, with a high near 45. Possible rain at times overnight, with a low around 34 degrees. Snow level 1400 feet rising to 2200 feet after midnight.
Wednesday A 30% of rain before 10am. Mostly cloudy, with a high near 51.
Thursday Patchy fog before 10am. Otherwise, mostly sunny, with a high near 56. Calm wind.
Friday Mostly sunny, with a high near 58.
Saturday A chance of showers, mainly between 10am and 4pm. Snow level 3700 feet. Partly sunny, with a high near 49.
The shooter in the Central Point incident involving two persons who had been shot Friday night, has now been identified himself, by Central Point Police.
Donald Westcott, 53 who apparently committed suicide in his car near Gold Hill on Friday night, shot two people before taking his own life.
Central Point Police said that officers responded on Friday night around 7:30 p.m. to the area of Live Oak Loop after a woman called to report that she had been shot. When officers arrived at the house, they found both a woman and a man with gunshot wounds.
The apparent shooter, a man, had left the scene before officers arrived. Just after 8 p.m. dispatch received another call, reporting that a man had been located in his vehicle on McDonough Road north of Sams Valley, after an apparent suicide.
Yesterday, police identified the alleged shooter as Donald Westcott. Investigators believe that one or both of the victims knew Westcott, but he was not a resident of the home where the shooting happened.
The case is still under investigation by CPPD detectives and investigators from the Jackson County Major Assault and Death Investigation Unit (MADIU).
As of Monday morning, police said that both victims were still in the hospital, their condition unknown.
Josephine County is dealing with over two dozen missing persons cases of which nine have gone missing in just the past two months.
If a case is believed to be ‘suspicious,’ the agency says it gathers evidence, DNA, or the help of Oregon State Police. Sheriff Dave Daniel says the agency tries to investigate all missing person cases to the best of their abilities but sometimes it runs into a dead end.
“We don’t give up. You never give up,” said Sheriff Daniel, Josephine County Sheriff’s Office. “You run it down, all the leads to as long as it can go and at some point you’ll suspend the case but we try not to do that, to be honest with you, we try to keep them open and active just in case anything pops up.”
Sheriff Daniel says one recent case, missing person Lisa Cronin, has been passed over to Oregon State Police and is believed to be ‘suspicious.’ The 43-year-old was last seen in Sunny Valley on December 19th. Many ongoing investigations are in progress.
Around the state
The numbers are in and Oregonians loved playing the Oregon Lottery’s newest game, Scoreboard, over Super Bowl Sunday.
The NFL’s final game of the season brought in more than 90,000 wagers through the Lottery’s Scoreboard sports betting app. Those wagers accounted for more than $2 million, with the average wager coming in at approximately $21. For the big game, there were more than 18,000 unique players. Players took home the largest share of dollars wagered, translating to approximately $150,000 in gross gaming revenue.
The game between the San Francisco 49ers and the Kansas City Chiefs, also prompted more than 2,700 new registrations over the weekend, and more than 4,000 during the week leading up to the big game.
Scoreboard players had more options than picking which team they felt was going to win the game. Oregon Lottery offered more than 200 “proposition bets,” or novelty bets, where players could wager everything from the number of yards specific players would earn, to if there would be special teams or defensive touchdowns. In fact, there were more than 1,900 coin toss “prop bets,” and more than 1,300 wagers on what color the Gatorade would be, that was poured on the winning coach.
“We are pleased so many players enjoyed using the Scoreboard app during the Super Bowl,” said Oregon Lottery Director Barry Pack. “This game reaches new players and keeps sports betting dollars in Oregon for important state programs.”
Since the Oregon Lottery began selling tickets on April 25, 1985, it has earned more than $12 billion for economic development, public education, Outdoor School, state parks, Veterans services and watershed enhancements. For more information on the Oregon Lottery visit www.oregonlottery.org
If you’re heading to the Coast today the National Weather Service issued a sneaker wave warning for the southern Oregon through tonight.
The warning applies to Douglas, Coos and Curry counties, which is basically the Oregon coast south of Florence. Sneaker waves are unexpected surges of water that often come during stormy conditions on the coast. It’s easy for people on the beach to get caught up in the waves, which can drag people into the ocean or trap them under large logs and heavy pieces of driftwood.
The weather service said people should stay off beaches, jetties and rocks near the water while the warning is in effect.
Diego Sanchez-Lopez, 25, of Clark County, Washington, known locally as the “Froggy Robber,” was sentenced today to 97 months in federal prison and three years’ supervised release for armed bank robbery.
According to court documents, between November 2017 and April 2018, Sanchez-Lopez stole more than $87,000 from the following six banks in Oregon and Southwest Washington:
- On November 27, 2017, $9,710 was stolen from the Albina Community Bank located at 2002 NE Martin Luther King Jr. Boulevard in Portland.
- On December 27, 2017, $26,000 was stolen from the Wells Fargo Bank located at 8699 SW Main Street in Wilsonville, Oregon.
- On January 11, 2018, $11,580.99 was stolen from the Wells Fargo Bank located at 6785 Beaverton Hillsdale Highway in Beaverton, Oregon.
- On January 30, 2018, $6,720 was stolen from the U.S. Bank located at 52313 Columbia River Highway in Scappoose, Oregon.
- On February 12, 2018, $15,400 was stolen from the Wells Fargo Bank located at 1800 Main Street in Vancouver, Washington.
- On April 30, 2018, 33,357 was stolen from the Wells Fargo Bank located at 7200 NE Butler Street in Hillsboro, Oregon.
During sentencing, U.S. District Court Judge Michael W. Mosman ordered Sanchez-Lopez to pay more than $119,000 in restitution. Previously, On August 5, 2019, Sanchez-Lopez pleaded guilty to six counts of bank robbery. As a non-citizen and lawful permanent resident, this conviction will subject Sanchez-Lopez to removal from the U.S. by immigration authorities. This case was investigated by the FBI and prosecuted by John C. Brassell, Assistant U.S. Attorney for the District of Oregon.