Local News

Police Snared Woman for Warrant and Other Crimes at Grants Pass Skate Park
Police arrested a woman on an outstanding warrant and for additional crimes after she was found camping inside a restroom at the Grants Pass Skate Park. The Grants Pass Police Department reports officers responded to reports that there were subjects living in the restroom at the skate park located in the 800-block of SE M Street on Saturday around 12:20 p.m.. Police arrived on scene and contacted 54-year-old Amanda Marie Ahulau inside the restroom. She had left garbage scattered in the bathroom and placed items in the toilet that would make it a substantial inconvenience for park staff to clean out. She was also in possession of a WinCo shopping cart valued at more than $1,000. A routine records check revealed that Ahulau was wanted on a Grants Pass warrant for failing to appear in court for Disorderly Conduct. She was placed into custody. Amanda Ahulau was lodged at the Josephine County Jail on the warrant along with new charges of Felony 1st-Degree Theft, 2nd-Degree Disorderly Conduct, 3rd-Degree Criminal Mischief and Offensive Littering. She was also cited for Illegal Camping and trespassed from the skate park for 30 days.
Posted on 11/20/23 6:17AM by Sam Marsh

One Person Injured in Chain-Reaction Crash on Interstate 5 on Mount Sexton
One person was injured in a chain-reaction weather-related crash that occurred over the weekend at a notorious section of Interstate 5 in northern Josephine County. On Saturday at 11:36 a.m., Rural Metro Fire Department, American Medical Response and the Oregon State Police were dispatched to a motor vehicle mishap in the southbound lanes of I-5 near milepost 68 on Mount Sexton. Rural Metro officials said the wreck occurred just as heavy rain moved into the area. As a result of the first crash, a second crash occurred. One person was transported by ambulance to Three Rivers Medical Center with what appeared to be non-life-threatening injuries. No one else was hurt. The Oregon Department of Transportation assisted with traffic control while the scene was active. At least one vehicle was towed into Grants Pass. Officials said this freeway location is no stranger to crashes, especially when the pavement is wet and driving habits are not adjusted accordingly.
Posted on 11/20/23 6:16AM by Sam Marsh

IVFD Crews Extinguished Unattended Open Burn & Cited Responsible Party
The Illinois Valley Fire District extinguished an unattended open burn and cited the responsible party in the Cave Junction area at the beginning of the weekend. On Friday at 9:07 p.m., IVFD crews were dispatched to the open burn in the 4700-block of Holland Loop Road. Crews quickly extinguished the blaze. There was no spread to the surrounding wildland nor were any structures threatened. The responsible party was cited for burning trash and burning without a permit. IVFD officials remind residents that no burning of trash is ever allowed and there is absolutely no burning allowed at night.
Posted on 11/20/23 6:14AM by Sam Marsh

RCC Board to Hold Work Session Prior to Redwood Campus Meeting in GP
The Rogue Community College Board of Education will hold a work session before its regular meeting on Tuesday evening. The 4 p.m. RCC Board work session will include discussion on the recent retreat, committee structure, future meeting agendas and team agreements. The 5 p.m. meeting will include reports on RCC Student Government, Faculty Association, Faculty Senate and Classified Association followed by reports from the Executive Committee, Finance and Audit Committee, and Board Outreach Committee along with a report from the OCCA/OSBA Liaison. RCC President Randy Weber will provide an update and there will be reports from the Senior Leadership Team and the Foundation. Board Action Items include the second reading of a policy on Political Activity by RCC Employees, a contract with Johnson Controls for Building Automation Services and Approval of Emeritus Status for Cessa Vichi. Tuesday's work session and meeting will take place at the RCC Redwood Campus, Building H and Room 2 in Grants Pass.
Posted on 11/20/23 6:13AM by Sam Marsh
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Josephine County Law Enforcement District Still Leading by 300 Votes as of Late Friday
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The Josephine County Law Enforcement District appears to have been approved by voters by a narrow margin of just 300 votes. According to the Josephine County Clerk's Office on Friday afternoon, Measure 17-115 was passing by a 51% to 49% tally. Josephine County Clerk Rhiannon Henkels said the latest count showed 7,608 voters saying "yes" to the local law enforcement district and 7,308 voters saying "no." She said the next update will be posted by 5 p.m. November 29th and the certified results will be released no later than Monday, December 4th, at 5 p.m.. Measure 17-115 sets a permanent property tax rate of 99 cents per thousand dollars of assessed value. That amounts to $99 for every $100,000 of assessed value. The new district will allow the Sheriff's Office to maintain the full-time equivalent of 20 deputies, 6.25 dispatchers and 1.5 evidence or property technicians. Meanwhile, Grants Pass voters overwhelmingly approved a five-year renewal of the $1.79 option levy that helps fund police and fire services. The tally on Friday was 78.2% yes and 21.8% no. The unofficial turnout as of Friday afternoon was 34.7%, with just over 34% of the ballots accepted.
Posted on 11/20/23 6:11AM by Sam Marsh
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National Weather Service Posts Air Stagnation Advisory for Most of the Region Thru Tuesday
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The National Weather Service has posted an Air Stagnation Advisory for most of Southern Oregon and Northern California. The Air Stagnation Advisory is in effect until 10 p.m. Tuesday and it includes Jackson, Josephine, eastern Curry, and central and eastern Douglas counties as well as the Klamath Basin in Oregon. It also includes Siskiyou and Modoc counties in California. Poor air mixing and light winds means that stagnant air is expected. This will lead to deteriorating air quality. Air stagnation is likely to result in diminishing air quality over time, especially in and near areas with significant sources of pollution. Diminished air quality is likely to cause health issues for people with respiratory problems if precautions are not taken. People with respiratory illness should follow their physician's advice for dealing with diminished air quality. N95 masks are effective at filtering out the majority of harmful air particulates. State air quality agencies highly recommend that no outdoor burning occur and that residential wood burning devices be limited as much as possible. Prolonged periods of stagnant air can hold pollutants close to the ground where people live and breathe.
Posted on 11/20/23 6:02AM by Sam Marsh
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Jackson County Sheriff's Office Receives Generous Holiday Donation from Business
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The Jackson County Sheriff's Office received a generous Thanksgiving donation from a local business late last week. The Sheriff's Office is thanking Quantum Innovations, Inc., for donating 28 full Thanksgiving meals that will go to families in need. The Sheriff's Office is working alongside the Jackson County Rogue Family Center to gather Thanksgiving meals for families in need in the upper Rogue Valley. They are looking to collect meal items from community members who wish to donate and can bring in full meals for families that would reflect a typical holiday dinner. They are accepting donations until 6 p.m. today at the Jackson County Sheriff's Office at 5179 Crater Lake Highway in Central Point. If by chance they have leftover meals, they will be donating all extra items to the Rogue Family Center's Food Distribution Center. Thanksgiving food items they are looking for include turkey, stuffing mix, potatoes, gravy, cranberry sauce, yams, bread or rolls, and items for green bean casserole.
Posted on 11/20/23 6:01AM by Sam Marsh
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Election Results Updated-Little Change in Results
Election results from the November Special Election on November 7th were updated Friday afternoon by County Clerk Rhiannon Henkels with no change in results at this time. The vote narrowed a bit on measure 17-115, the Josephine County Law Enforcement District. The measure is still passing but the margin has narrowed from 362 votes to 300 votes. Measure 17-114, the Grants Pass Police and Fire levy renewal remains a solid yes 78% to 21 %. According to Ms. Henkels the next update will be on November 29th with the final certification by 5 p.m. December 4th.
Posted on 11/18/23 5:28AM by Chuck Benson
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Federal Charges Filed after Southern Oregon Traffic Stop Nets Cache of Fentanyl
A suspected drug trafficker is facing federal charges after he was caught by Southern Oregon law enforcement transporting more than 100 pounds of fentanyl on US Highway 97 near Collier Memorial Park. The US Attorney's Office for the District of Oregon reports 20-year-old Jothan Paul Barrios-Chable of Portland has been charged by criminal complaint with Possession with Intent to Distribute Fentanyl. According to court documents, investigators from Medford Area Drug and Gang Enforcement (MADGE) and US Homeland Security Investigations in Medford located Barrios-Chable traveling north on Highway 97 through Klamath Falls on November 8th. A Medford Police Department K-9 officer stopped his vehicle just south of the state park. Detectives searched the suspect's vehicle and located two suitcases, a backpack and a small satchel. Each suitcase contained approximately 20 heat-sealed kilogram bricks of a narcotic later confirmed to be fentanyl. The backpack contained seven additional bricks of fentanyl and the satchel contained a loaded semi-automatic pistol. The heat-sealed bricks contained approximately 117 pounds of fentanyl. Barrios-Chable made his first appearance in federal court this week before a US Magistrate Judge. He was ordered detained pending further court proceedings.
Posted on 11/18/23 5:12AM by Chuck Benson
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GP Police Arrested Female Passenger on Outside Warrant after Downtown Stop
Grants Pass Police arrested a female passenger on an outside warrant following an early morning traffic stop in the downtown area this week. According to the Police Department, officers pulled over a Honda Civic containing 27-year-old Ryleigh Daniel Michaels-Breashears in the 700-block of SE 7th Street early Thursday morning. Police did not identify the driver or the reason they were stopped, but they said Michaels-Breashears was contacted and found to be wanted on a Malheur County Sheriff's Office warrant for failing to appear in court for 2nd-Degree Theft.
Posted on 11/18/23 5:11AM by Chuck Benson
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OSP Nabbed GP Man for Impaired Driving after Rogue River Highway Stop
The Oregon State Police arrested a Grants Pass man for impaired driving following a traffic stop on Rogue River Highway early yesterday. According to OSP, troopers pulled over an Acura TL driven by 33-year-old Robert B. Young on Highway 99 near Florence Lane on Friday at 12:10 a.m.. Troopers said they stopped Young for a traffic violation and he displayed signs of impairment. After refusing to participate in field sobriety tests, a search warrant was obtained and he was taken to Three Rivers Medical Center for a blood draw.
Posted on 11/18/23 5:09AM by Chuck Benson
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Study Reveals RCC Drives $306 Million Economic Impact & Fosters Job Growth
A recent economic impact study shows Rogue Community College (RCC) is an engine that generates $306.5 million annually for the Southern Oregon economy. Using data from Fiscal Year 2021-22, independent labor market analytics firm Lightcast analyzed RCC's economic impact in Josephine and Jackson counties as well as the return on investment for students and taxpayers. The analysis found that RCC "creates a significant positive impact on the business community and generates a return on investment to its major stakeholder groups -- students, taxpayers and society." The analysis showed RCC contributes about 2% of the region's gross regional product (GRP). The college's economic impact includes operations spending, construction spending, student spending and higher earnings for alumni who entered the regional workforce with new skills after studying at RCC. In 2021-22, RCC employed 715 full-time and part-time faculty and staff. Payroll amounted to $33.9 million, much of which was spent within the region to purchase groceries, mortgage and rent payments, dining out and other household expenses.In 2021-22, RCC served 5,863 credit students and 1,840 non-credit students at its campuses in Grants Pass, Medford and White City. The analysis estimates the total investment made by RCC students at $14.3 million, equal to $13.4 million in out-of-pocket expenses as well as $953,000 in wages students would have earned if they had been working instead of attending college.
Posted on 11/18/23 5:07AM by Chuck Benson
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