The latest news stories of interest in the Rogue Valley and around the state of Oregon from the digital home of Southern Oregon, Wynne Broadcasting’s RogueValleyMagazine.com
Tuesday, June 29, 2021
Rogue Valley Weather
Excessive Heat Warning until July 1, 11:00 PM PDT
Today– Sunny and hot, with a high near 105. Calm wind becoming west northwest 5 to 9 mph in the afternoon.
Wednesday– Sunny and hot, with a high near 104. Calm wind becoming northwest 5 to 8 mph in the afternoon.
Thursday– Sunny and hot, with a high near 102.
Friday– Sunny and hot, with a high near 102.
Saturday– Sunny and hot, with a high near 101.
Oregon reports 87 new confirmed and presumptive COVID-19 cases, 0 new deaths
There are no new COVID-19 related deaths in Oregon, leaving the state’s death toll at 2,763. The Oregon Health Authority reported 87 new confirmed and presumptive cases of COVID-19 bringing the state total to 208,222.
The new confirmed and presumptive COVID-19 cases reported today are in the following counties: Clackamas (11), Clatsop (2), Columbia (5), Crook (1), Deschutes (5), Douglas (6), Harney (1), Hood River (1), Jefferson (4), Josephine (5), Lane (17), Linn (10), Morrow (1), Multnomah (11), Tillamook (2), Union (2) and Yamhill (3).
Vaccinations in Oregon
Today, OHA reported that 2,712 new doses of COVID-19 vaccinations were added to the state immunization registry. Of this total, 1,643 doses were administered on June 27 and 1,069 were administered on previous days but were entered into the vaccine registry on June 27.
The seven-day running average is now 7,352 doses per day.
Oregon has now administered 2,473,148 first and second doses of Pfizer, 1,731,116 first and second doses of Moderna and 166,935 single doses of Johnson & Johnson COVID-19 vaccines.
As of today, 2,380,897 people have had at least one dose of a COVID-19 vaccine and 2,144,591 people have completed a COVID-19 vaccine series. The number of adult Oregonians needing vaccinations to reach the 70% threshold is 19,147. A daily countdown can be found on the OHA vaccinations page.
Cumulative daily totals can take several days to finalize because providers have 72 hours to report doses administered and technical challenges have caused many providers to lag in their reporting. OHA has been providing technical support to vaccination sites to improve the timeliness of their data entry into the state’s ALERT Immunization Information System (IIS).
To date, 2,956,635 doses of Pfizer, 2,230,000 doses of Moderna and 299,100 doses of Johnson & Johnson COVID-19 vaccines have been delivered to sites across Oregon.
These data are preliminary and subject to change.
OHA’s dashboards provide regularly updated vaccination data, and Oregon’s dashboard has been updated today.
The number of hospitalized patients with COVID-19 across Oregon is 160, which is 17 more than yesterday. There are 39 COVID-19 patients in intensive care unit (ICU) beds, which is one more than yesterday.
The total number of COVID-19 positive patient bed-days in the most recent seven days is 1,062, which is a 0.9% decrease from the previous seven days. The peak daily number of beds occupied by COVID-19 positive patients in the most recent seven days is 162.
The total number of patients in hospital beds may fluctuate between report times. The numbers do not reflect admissions per day, nor the length of hospital stay. Staffing limitations are not captured in this data and may further limit bed capacity. More information about hospital capacity can be found here.
Incentive campaign concludes, now wait begins
The Take Your Shot, Oregon campaign — which sought to promote COVID-19 vaccinations — ended yesterday, on June 27. Now, the wait begins to see who won.
Everyone who received at least one vaccination shot in Oregon was automatically entered, with the exception of some state government employees and their families.
Over 18,000 Oregonians who were vaccinated at federal administration sites entered the contest by submitting their vaccines at the Take Your Shot, Oregon website.
One Oregonian 18 and older will win the $1 million prize, while 36 others will win $10,000 prizes — with one winner in each county in Oregon. Oregonians age 12 to 17 have a chance to win one of five $100,000 Oregon College Savings Plan scholarships.
In addition, several counties added their own extra incentive drawings, for a total of 134 prizes.
More than 2.3 million vaccinated Oregonians must now wait for a call to see if they are a winner. The lucky winners will be notified by phone within the next week.
Here are a few tips to know the call is legitimate:
- The call will come from Oregon Health Authority.
- The call will come from a 503 or 971 area code.
- The caller will ask about your vaccination status.
- The caller will NOT ask about financial information. A caller who asks for any financial information is fraudulent and a scam. Hang up immediately.
Because of the high number of prizes (again, 134 total statewide), it will take some time to make the calls and verify winners. Governor Kate Brown anticipates announcing the winners sometime next week.
OHA to discontinue weekend data reporting
After Governor Brown’s Executive Order is lifted on June 30, and starting this weekend, the Oregon Health Authority will adjust its COVID-19 data reporting.
OHA will stop distributing the following on holidays and weekends:
- The weekend news release and newsletter.
- Weekend social media posts in English and Spanish.
- Weekend Tableau dashboard updates and weekend hospital capacity reporting.
OHA will provide weekend roundup reports on Mondays or on the days following a holiday. During weekends, OHA will continue to have staff available to address urgent issues and will have an on-call public information officer for emergency media requests.
OHA will continue its weekday reporting of cases, vaccinations, hospitalizations, and other data through our daily news release, social media updates, our popular “Coronavirus Update” newsletter, and online dashboards.
Help Find Fauna Frey Rally in Grants Pass Today 6/29 – One Year Since She Went Missing
Rally in Grants Pass TUESDAY June 29th Noon to 3 at: 500 NW 6th St Grants Pass, OR 97526 To Bring About Awareness
FACEBOOK: https://www.facebook.com/events/255890676334506 https://www.facebook.com/groups/341658526970132
MMIW (MISSING MURDERED INDIGENOUS WOMEN) ARE HOSTING THIS EVENT FOR #FINDFAUNAFREY ALONG WITH ALL THE OTHER LOVED ONES MISSING.
June 29th will be one year, 365 days……….8760 hours……….525600 minutes……….since our beloved friend went missing.
Not only has Fauna gone missing there are numerous women in Oregon and around the county that have gone missing in the last couple of years.
It is time we bring awareness to our state. We want to continue to keep Fauna’s story alive! We would love to have your support at our peaceful rally. Hope to see you there!
Oregon Has Third-Highest Rate Of Open Missing Person Cases In USA
Disturbing Number of Missing Women in Oregon in Past 2 Years — There are 256 Women who are still reported missing in Oregon Since June 25th of 2019
Of course, not only women are missing, as there are so many children and men missing too. And really missing people is a crisis that gets shoved aside as not enough resources and is a horrible thing to even think about.
However, there is a disturbing number of women and in particular, a pattern emerging: There are 48 women over the age of 30 on the missing person list just in the last 2 years. There is a pattern and this needs to be looked into by our state and local law enforcement as well as the FBI > https://www.oregon.gov/osp/missing/pages/missingpersons.aspx
This is an ongoing story and help from the public needed. If you’d like to help or stay informed please feel free to send us an email at: firstname.lastname@example.org
Police Seek Public’s Help In Finding Missing Myrtle Creek Woman
Myrtle Creek Police are asking for the public’s help in finding a woman who was reported missing Monday.
Police say Hannah Kristine Gerlach, 35, of Myrtle Creek was last seen on Sunday around 12:15 p.m. and failed to show up for work Monday morning. Her co-workers say this is unusual behavior.
According to officials, Gerlach had spoken to her co-workers about going hiking, but no specific area was mentioned and it is unclear if she went on a hike.
Gerlach was driving a light blue 2007 Lexus SUV with Oregon license plate 600GLK. She is described as being about 5’10” tall and 115 pounds with long brown hair.
If anyone has seen Gerlach or her vehicle, please contact Sgt. Kris Malek or Detective Kevin Taggart at 541-440-4471.
Oregon’s Oldest Unidentified Person Case Solved
Case 63-23011 — The concealed body of a young boy was discovered in the mountains east of Ashland, Ore. Roy E. Rogers, 65, of Rogue River, Ore. found the boy’s body while fishing in the Keene Creek Reservoir along Highway 66 on the evening of July 11.
The unidentified two-year-old boy was wrapped in multiple layers of blankets, bound with wire, and weighted down with iron molds to keep his body hidden. The year was 1963. The young boy’s identity has remained a mystery since that evening. Until now.
Jackson County Sheriff’s Office (JCSO) took over the case in 1963, and through the ensuing 58 years more than 23 JCSO Sheriff’s, detectives, and deputies worked the case with assistance from Oregon State Police (OSP) and the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI).
After the case went cold in August of ‘63 the files were archived for nearly 45 years. In 2007, JCSO Detective Sgt. Colin Fagan, uncovered eleven paper boxes marked “old Sheriff cases.” Sgt. Fagan asked special investigator Jim Tattersal to sort through them for follow up. It was during that investigation Tattersal discovered the Keene Creek case. In August 2008, the tiny body was exhumed from his resting place at Hillcrest Memorial Park cemetery and a DNA sample was taken. This lead also went cold when the Combined DNA Index System (CODIS) returned no matches. In 2010, the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children (NCMEC) created a composite image using the extracted DNA, free-of-charge.
The case’s big break came in December 2020 when JCSO received a Facebook Messenger tip on the Jackson County Sheriff’s Office – Oregon Facebook page. JCSO Sheriff Nate Sickler then tasked deputy Medical Examiner (ME) detective Christian Adams with continuing the investigation. Adams, working alongside OSP’s Human Identification Program Coordinator, Dr. Nici Vance, submitted a biological sample of the unidentified child to Parabon NanoLabs to generate investigative leads through DNA Phenotyping and Genetic Genealogy.
At this point in the investigation, Cece Moore, Chief Genetic Genealogist with Parabon NanoLabs, searched the open-source DNA repository GEDMatch, and found two potential siblings of the unidentified child. An interview with a DNA-confirmed maternal half-brother in Ohio revealed that he had a young sibling with down syndrome born in New Mexico who went missing. Upon further investigation a birth certificate was uncovered, and after 58 years the Keene Creek baby Doe had a name: Stevie Crawford, born 10-2-1960.
Through the years, many people were instrumental in assisting to identify Stevie, often providing their time and efforts free-of-charge. Some of these people include: Hillcrest Memorial Park cemetery’s Jed Ramey, who donated the work for the 2008 exhumation. East Main Dental Center (Medford) Dr. Gregory Pearson and Dr. Hal Borg, donated time and services for the dental identification which revealed congenital defects. University of Oregon Forensic Anthropologist, Dr. Jeanne Mclaughlin, donated her time and efforts to skeletonize the remains for analysis and DNA extraction. Lastly, the JCSO detectives who logged many unpaid hours in attempting to identify Stevie, including Sgt. Colin Fagan, detective Tim Pike, and special investigator Jim Tattersal. Jackson Co. Sheriff’s Office
Fire Restrictions in Place
As the weather continues to trend towards extreme warming and increasing drought conditions, officials with the Bureau of Land Management Medford District, Rogue River-Siskiyou National Forest, and Oregon Department of Forestry Southwest Oregon District are prohibiting campfire use on those lands located within the boundaries of the
Wild section of the Rogue National Wild and Scenic River.
The Wild section flows from Grave Creek to the mouth of Watson Creek. Effective today fire restrictions include:
Campfires, including stove fires and warming fires, are prohibited.
Portable cooking stoves using commercially produced pressurized liquid or gas may be used. Cooking areas must be naturally free of vegetation. Charcoal briquettes can be used within a raised fire pan or similar device that will contain fire and ashes only on areas free of vegetation that lie between water and high watermark. Ashes must be hauled out.
As a preventative measure, travelers are required to carry one shovel and a bucket. Smoking will be prohibited, except in boats on the water and on sand and gravel bars between the river and the high watermark that are free of vegetation.
Fatal Crash on Hwy 199 – Josephine County
On Monday, June 28, 2021 at approximately 8:45 P.M., Oregon State Police Troopers and emergency personnel responded to a vehicle crash on Hwy 199 near mile post 41.
Preliminary investigation revealed that a Toyota Highlander, operated by Ariana Alvarez-Perez (24) of Crescent City, CA, was southbound when an ATV/4-Wheeler entered the highway from a side dirt road. The Highlander and the ATV collided.
The operator of the ATV sustained fatal injuries and was pronounced deceased. The name will be released when appropriate. Alvarez-Perez and the passengers in the Highlander were not injured.
OSP was assisted by the Illinois Valley Fire District, California Highway Patrol, and ODOT. Oregon State Police
AROUND the STATE of OREGON
Wildfire Danger Grows Around the State
As of last night the Siskiyou County Sheriff’s Office issued evacuation orders for a number of areas, starting with residents on the north side of Hoy Road, north along Highway 97 to County Road A-12, and the communities of Lake Shastina and Juniper Valley off Big Springs Road from Highway 97 to McDonald Lane on both east and west
sides of Big Springs Road.
Within an hour, the agency issued a second round of mandatory evacuations covering the Mount Shasta Vista Subdivision, County Road A-12 north and south, Harry Cash Road, and 4 Corners to Hart Road. Residents were told
not to wait, and to evacuate immediately. A Temporary Evacuation Point (TEP) was established at Big Springs Elementary School, and people with any questions were asked to call 211. Transportation officials say that Highway 97 has been closed from I-5 in Weed to the abandoned Juniper Lodge Motel just south of Macdoel. It remained
Record-setting heat. Drought. A holiday where fireworks are traditional. Increased travel to waterways and mountains. This combination has Forest Service officials worried there could be wildfires this week.
This wildfire warning stretches from Eastern Oregon to the Columbia Basin in Washington and the Okanogan Highlands in northeast Washington.
Forest Service and fire officials want people to heed campfire bans, to keep them in designated fire rings and to make sure they are totally and completely out.
“People really need to be aware of their surroundings and there’s going to be a lot of people outdoors,” said Northwest Fire Prevention Specialist Michael Starkovich. “Just try to keep that fire prevention thought in your mind, as you go out to enjoy yourself and find some relief.”
The campfire restrictions are already in place in some areas of the Pacific Northwest. Some areas are closing dispersed camping, 2-3 weeks sooner than normal.
Among the tips to help prevent fires:
- Don’t drive over dry grass
- Make sure no chains are dragging on trailers, because sparks can fly off the side of the highway
- Target shooting is not allowed
- Fireworks are illegal on Bureau of Land Management and national land
There is also an effort to reduce human activity in at-risk areas. And the Forest Service is considering bringing in education teams to get the message out for a safe summer.
“It’s becoming more common that we’re having more of these large fires at one time, and it’s really, decreasing our air quality and our visual quality of our air,” Starkovich said. “I hope that people feel that from last year and take that extra bit of caution and think about what they’re doing before they get too far into having a fire or doing something that could cause a fire.”
The Lava Fire was originally one of four fires sparked by last week’s thunderstorms. Though fire crews managed to quickly find and contain the other three, the Lava Fire continued to grow within the rough, rocky terrain about 3.5 miles northeast of Weed and southeast of Lake Shastina. On Sunday morning the fire was mapped at 220 acres with 25 percent containment, but it continued to spread rapidly amid the record heat.
As of Monday morning, officials said that the fire covered roughly 1,446 acres with 20 percent containment. Visible activity from the fire throughout the day suggests that it has continued to grow larger. Officials remain concerned about the “near-critical” humidity levels, extreme heat, and strong breezes in the fire area, whichall could provoke further rapid spread.
Crews are working to pen the fire in east of the railroad tracks, south of the 42N15 trail which branches off from Highway 97, and north of a private road.
Locally wildfires remain on the small side. The Drews and Cooks fires both were discovered Saturday afternoon. The Drews, being the bigger of the two, grew to 37 acres. The Cooks grew to about 14 acres. The cause of both fires is currently under investigation according to Brandon Fowler, emergency manager at the Klamath County Sheriff’s Office.
Sand Lake Recreation Area Closed Due to Murder Investigation
Sand Lake Recreation Area on the north Oregon coast was closed part of the day because of a murder investigation.
The Tillamook County Sheriff’s Office (TCSO) and Tillamook City Police (TPD) were on scene collecting evidence while other law enforcement in the area searched for the accused teen suspect, resulting in a brief warning to residents.
According to the sheriff’s office, Tillamook 911 received a call at 3:34 a.m. from the Sand Lake Recreation Area near Pacific City that a shooting had occurred. First responders arrived to find a 30-year-old male who was unconscious, suffering from multiple gunshot wounds. While a Lifeflight helicopter also responded the man died at the scene.
The suspect was quickly identified as 18-year-old Brandon Jose Zavala-Satalich, 18, of Troutdale, who had fled the scene just prior to the arrival of law enforcement. Zavala-Satalich was armed with a gun, according to the sheriff’s office, and had left on foot with a female juvenile.
There was a major manhunt by various law agencies for the next several hours, starting with the Tillamook County Major Crimes Team. Also called in to assist were the Oregon State Police, Manzanita Police, and K9 tracking units from Lincoln County and Hillsboro.
Three hours after the crime was reported, Zavala-Satalich was spotted again in the Sand Lake area.
“At 5:28 am, TCSO Sand Lake Deputy Tom Mayne saw the suspect crossing Galloway Rd.,” said TCSO Undersheriff Matt Kelly. “A containment perimeter was set up and searches for the suspect were underway as TCSO detectives began their homicide investigation. The female juvenile that fled with the suspect was located quickly and unharmed.”
However, Zavala-Satalich escaped.
At approximately 11:20 a.m., Zavala-Satalich was captured by the K9 unit from Lincoln County along with other area deputies, found hiding in an area not far from Galloway Road where he was spotted around 5 a.m. The teen was transported to the Tillamook County Jail and booked on charges of Murder in the Second Degree and eight counts of Recklessly Endangering another person.
The female juvenile accompanying Zavala-Satalich was eventually charged as well, facing charges of Criminal Conspiracy, Hindering Prosecution, Tampering with Evidence, and Interfering with a Police Officer. She was taken into custody by the Tillamook County Juvenile Department.
TCSO said the investigation is ongoing. No motive in the shooting was released.
During the park closure, those still in the Sand Lake area were allowed to leave but not to re-enter until it had reopened.
Human Remains Found in Klamath County
Multiple law enforcement agencies are investigating the discovery of human skeletal remains near Clover Creek Road in Klamath County. The remains were reported to law enforcement at around 1 p.m. on Sunday, said Operations Lieutenant Randy Swan of the Klamath County Sheriff’s Office.
Swan couldn’t describe the remains but said investigators had seen enough to determine that they were human. Klamath County Search and Rescue, Jackson County Search and Rescue and the Oregon State Police were assisting with the investigation.
Investigators worked until dark Sunday and were continuing the investigation yesterday. Human remains were also found off Clover Creek Road last November. Those remains were believed to be a missing Arizona man. Swan said the remains found over the weekend are not thought to be related to the November incident.
MLM to Round Up Wild Horses Near Klamath Falls
The Bureau of Land Management plans to resume a wild horse gather on private property within and adjacent to the Pokegama Herd Management Area, about 80,000 acres of private and public land located 30 miles southwest of Klamath Falls.
The action is at the request of a private landowner to remove horses from private property within and adjacent to the HMA.
In September 2020, the Bureau of Land Management Lakeview District began a wild horse gather on the property, but stopped due to wildfire concerns.
The BLM plans to gather wild horses from private property only. No horses will be gathered from lands managed by the BLM within the HMA. The BLM will conduct gather operations utilizing temporary bait traps consisting of a series of corral panels stocked with water and hay; no helicopters will be used.
Due to the nature of the bait and water trap method, wild horses are reluctant to approach the trap site when there is too much activity; therefore, only essential gather operations personnel will be allowed at the trap site during operations. Due to the COVID-19 pandemic and private land restrictions, there will be no public viewing opportunities during gather operations or at the holding facilities. All essential gather personnel will be practicing social distancing during gather operations.
All horses identified for removal will be transported to the BLM’s Wild Horse Corrals in Hines, Oregon. They will be checked by a veterinarian and readied for the BLM’s wild horse and burro Adoption and Sale Program. For information on how to adopt or purchase a wild horse or burro, visit www.blm.gov/whb.
For technical information, contact James Price, Wild Horse and Burro Specialist at 541-947-6184 or email@example.com.