Local News

OSP Cited Truck Driver for Striking North GP Fire Hydrant and Driving Away
The Oregon State Police cited a truck driver for crashing into a fire hydrant and leaving the scene in north Grants Pass yesterday. According to OSP, troopers responded to an attempt to locate from the Grants Pass Police Department on Monday at 1:25 p.m.. Troopers said a Freightliner semi-truck driven by a 32-year-old California man struck a fire hydrant at the corner of 6th Street and Hillcrest Drive. They said the truck driver did not stop and he was eventually located on southbound Interstate 5 near the City of Rogue River. The truck driver was cited for Hit-and-Run Causing Property Damage and then released. The incident occurred near Les Schwab Tire Center. The victim was identified as the City of Grants Pass. The semi was registered to Opportunity Truck Lines, Inc., of Citrus Heights, California.
Posted on 4/2/24 11:13AM by Sam Marsh

GP Police Cited and Evicted Campers for Ordinance Violations in City Parks
Grants Pass Police issued several citations and evicted six campers for ordinance violations in city parks on Monday. At Lawnridge Park, police cited a man for Illegal Camping after he failed to remove his campsite after the 72-hour notice. He was trespassed for 30 days. At Kesterson Park, three people were cited for Illegal Camping after they failed to remove their campsites after 72-hour notices. None of them were trespassed. At Westholm Park, two women were cited for Illegal Camping and one of them was also cited for Unlawful Utilization of Park Space. Both were issued 30-day exclusions. Another woman was warned for theft of a shopping cart. At Morrison Centennial Park, one man was cited for Unlawful Conduct after he parked his vehicle on a sidewalk and another man was cited for Scattering Rubbish. Both were trespassed from the park for 30 days. At Fruitdale Park, a woman was cited for Blocking a Handicap Space and she was issued a 30-day exclusion.
Posted on 4/2/24 11:11AM by Sam Marsh

GP Police Jailed Man for Attacking Mother and Son with Baseball Bat at Motel 6
Grants Pass Police jailed a man last weekend for attacking two people with a baseball bat at a north-city motel. The Police Department reports officers arrested the 52-year-old male suspect at Motel 6 on NE 7th Street on Sunday around 3:20 a.m.. Police said a woman called 9-1-1 to report that she and her son were being attacked by a male friend wielding a small baseball bat. The baseball bat belonged to her son and he was able to wrestle it away from the attacker. The son was struck once with the bat, but he was not injured. He also kept his mother from being hurt. According to the report, the suspect fought with several subjects and subjected them to offensive physical contact during the incident. He was contacted inside his motel room and placed into custody after a slight non-compliance with commands. The suspect was lodged at the Josephine County Jail on two counts each of Felony Unlawful Use of a Weapon and Harassment. He was being held without bail.
Posted on 4/2/24 6:28AM by Sam Marsh

Deputies Jailed Man for Violating Court Order by Contacting Protected Person
The Josephine County Sheriff's Office jailed a man for violating a court order after he made contact with a protected individual in the Rogue River Highway area east of Grants Pass. The Sheriff's Office reports deputies arrested the 62-year-old male suspect in the 300-block of Peckerwood Lane on Sunday at 2:52 p.m.. Deputies said a resident of the neighborhood called 9-1-1 to report that a trespasser knocked on their door and asked for a ride to the airport. When they refused, the man then started ranting at them and demanding that they take him to the airport. The man was said to be under the influence and he walked over the home of an elderly woman who had a valid stalking order against him. He reportedly started harassing everyone before he took off running toward the river. He eventually returned to his own nearby residence. Upon arrival, deputies interviewed the involved parties, verified the court order and then placed the man into custody. He was lodged at the Josephine County Jail for Contempt of Court-Stalking Order Violation and was being held without bail.
Posted on 4/2/24 6:17AM by Sam Marsh
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OSP Snared Former IV Man on Warrant after Redwood Highway Skirmish in CJ
The Oregon State Police arrested a former Illinois Valley resident on a local bench warrant following a weekend disturbance in downtown Cave Junction. OSP reports troopers responded to reports of two male subjects fighting in the middle of Redwood Highway near East River Street on Sunday at 9:41 p.m.. Troopers arrived on scene, broke up the fight and discovered that one of the men -- a 36-year-old Longview, Washington, resident formerly of Cave Junction -- was wanted on a local warrant for failing to appear in court. According to the report, the other combatant was a 27-year-old Cave Junction man. The Washington man was transported to Grants Pass and lodged at the Josephine County Jail on the warrant.
Posted on 4/2/24 6:15AM by Sam Marsh
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Lengthy Search & Rescue Mission Mobilized Crews to Remote Area near Hugo
A lengthy search and rescue operation last weekend mobilized multiple first responders to a remote area of Quartz Creek Road near Hugo. Rural Metro Fire Department reports the initial call for a subject needing help came in Friday around 9 p.m.. The rescue took more than five hours. The caller was unable to describe their location, but Grants Pass 9-1-1 was able to "ping" the cell phone for the approximate area. Josephine County sheriff's deputies searched and eventually located the subject yelling for help down a steep ravine off a limited-access BLM road. At 11:20 p.m., deputies made a request for Rural Metro crews to respond and perform the extraction. Six members of the agency's on-duty crew traveled by four-wheel-drive to the location where they assembled a 250-foot rope system to reach the subject. Josephine County Search & Rescue assisted with the extraction. On Saturday at 2:30 a.m., the subject was eventually transferred to an American Medical Response ambulance and transported to the hospital with "minimal injuries." Law enforcement was following up on the reasons that led to the subject ending up in such a predicament.
Posted on 4/2/24 6:14AM by Sam Marsh
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IVFD Crews Extinguished Illegal Open Burns near Cave Junction and in Kerby
For the second time last weekend, the Illinois Valley Fire District responded to an illegal open burn. On Sunday at 10:38 p.m., IVFD crews were dispatched to a nighttime open burn off Redwood Highway in Kerby. IVFD officials said the small fire with illegal materials was extinguished and the occupant was issued a written warning. There is no burning allowed at night and there is no burning of illegal materials. On Saturday night, IVFD crews were dispatched to an illegal open burn on White Schoolhouse Road. The unlawful blaze was quickly extinguished and the property owner was cited. Officials said Illinois Valley residents should go online to "ivfire.com" to obtain a burn permit or stop by the IVFD station at 681 Caves Highway in Cave Junction to fill out a form for a burn permit. They are mandatory, but they are free.
Posted on 4/2/24 6:12AM by Sam Marsh
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Josephine Community Library District Budget Committee Meeting is Wednesday
The Josephine Community Library District will hold a budget committee meeting this week. The library budget meeting will be at 5:30 p.m. Wednesday in the Ben Bones Room of the Grants Pass branch library at 200 NW C Street. The agenda will include the Fiscal Year 2025 budget message, appointment of the budget committee chair and secretary, budget discussion, public comment and the schedule for upcoming budget hearings. A copy of the budget document may be inspected or obtained during open hours at the Grants Pass branch. For more information, visit "josephinelibrary.org."
Posted on 4/2/24 6:02AM by Sam Marsh
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GP City Council Won't Refer Food & Beverage Tax to Voters Until after Roundtable Forum
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The Grants Pass City Council voted to approve a resolution that enacts a $12 utility fee combined with a 3% food and beverage tax to fund public safety services at its regular meeting on February 21st. But during its bi-weekly workshop session on Monday, not one City Council member voted to refer the food and beverage tax to the November ballot -- not until a roundtable forum is held to hear from major stakeholders on the issue. City Manager Aaron Cubic and Finance Director JC Rowley made a presentation on public safety funding along with a potential fire district, a transactional income tax and the general fund reserve financial policy. Cubic stated that even with revenues to support police and fire services including the permanent property tax, public safety levy and utility fee, the deficit is still close to $4.8 million. He said the 3% food and beverage tax that would focus on prepared foods and beverages excluding alcoholic beverages would generate about $2.3 million. Most of the City Council in February had favored referring the food and beverage tax to voters in the November election. However, the panel decided yesterday that they would not refer the tax to voters until they held a roundtable forum with major community stakeholders.
Posted on 4/2/24 6:00AM by Sam Marsh
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GP City Council Made Quick Work of Special Meeting that Followed Monday Workshop
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The Grants Pass City Council made quick work of a special meeting that followed Monday's workshop. Wednesday night's regular meeting was canceled due to a light agenda. The City Council voted 6-2 to approve the second reading of an ordinance that annexes a property at 2000 SW Bridge Street into the city limits. Voting against the ordinance were Councilors Brian DeLaGrange and Rob Pell. The Council voted unanimously to appoint Larry Sussman to the Bikeways & Walkways Committee and Tressa Jumps to the Urban Tree Advisory Committee. Both candidates had been recommended by their respective committees. The Consent Agenda was also approved unanimously. It contained a resolution renaming the Josephine County City/County Solid Waste Agency to the Josephine County Solid Waste Agency. Following the regular meeting, Mayor Sara Bristol convened a Special Meeting in Executive Session regarding sensitive labor negotiations.
Posted on 4/2/24 5:56AM by Sam Marsh
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Josephine County Sheriff's Deputies Graduated from Oregon Police Academy in Salem
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The ranks of the Josephine County Sheriff's Office were bolstered last week by two new deputies who graduated from the Oregon Police Academy. The Sheriff's Office congratulates Deputy Sierra Bitterling and Deputy Brandon Lehn on their successful completion of the Oregon Department of Public Safety Standards and Training. Both Bitterling and Lehn graduated last Friday after starting the 16-week Basic Police Certification training in November. Bitterling joined the Sheriff's Office in April 2021 as an Animal Control Officer and moved to an open patrol deputy post last October. Lehn joined the Sheriff's Office in December 2019 as a corrections deputy and he moved to the patrol division last November. Starting this week, both deputies will be assigned to a field training officer to complete their training. Sheriff Dave Daniel said he is proud of their accomplishments and dedication to Josephine County.
Posted on 4/2/24 5:55AM by Sam Marsh
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GPPD Captured Man Wanted by Coos Bay Police for Three Felony-Level Crimes
Grants Pass Police apprehended a man wanted by the Coos Bay Police Department for multiple felony-level crimes over the weekend. The Police Department reports officers arrested the 32-year-old male suspect in the 1500-block of Cloverlawn Drive on Saturday at 1:12 p.m.. Police said they were contacted by Coos Bay PD with information that the suspect was in the Grants Pass area and he was wanted for crimes including Aggravated Identity Theft, 1st-Degree Theft, Unauthorized Use of a Motor Vehicle and Escape. The suspect was believed to be in possession of a firearm and he had previously barricaded himself inside a house when contacted by law enforcement. Officers carefully approached the Cloverlawn Drive residence and they were able to place the wanted man into custody without incident. No firearm was located. The suspect was transported to Roseburg to meet with Coos Bay police officers who transported him to their jurisdiction. The Josephine County Jail refused to lodge the suspect, so GPPD made the arrangement to keep this dangerous man off local streets.
Posted on 4/1/24 10:59AM by Sam Marsh
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