Local News

Deputies Jailed CJ Man for His Role in Recent Theft and Vandalism Case in the IV
The Josephine County Sheriff's Office jailed a Cave Junction man for his role in a recent theft and vandalism case in the Illinois Valley. The Sheriff's Office reports deputies arrested 39-year-old Skylar Thomas Melton during a Friday afternoon traffic stop in the 300-block of Fir Drive. Deputies said they stopped Melton for a traffic violation and recognized him as a suspect in a criminal case they were investigating. During an interview, Melton admitted to going to two properties without permission. He admitted to stealing a generator from one property and stashing it in the bushes on an adjoining property. Melton told deputies he and another man went over to a shed and burned the handles off with a propane torch in order to gain access. In addition to the generator, the suspects also took two chainsaws and a combination power tool. The chainsaws and utility tool were found in the trunk of his vehicle. Skylar Melton was transported to Grants Pass and lodged at the Josephine County Jail for Felony 2nd-Degree Burglary, 2nd-Degree Theft, 2nd-Degree Criminal Mischief and two counts of Criminal Trespass. His vehicle was towed to impound.
Posted on 9/25/23 6:18AM by Sam Marsh
 

GP Police Arrested Man for Causing Weekend Disturbance at Downtown Wine Bar
Grants Pass Police arrested a man for causing a weekend disturbance at a business in the downtown area. According to the Police Department, officers responded to multiple reports of an intoxicated male subject acting disorderly at Partake Wine Bar in the 100-block of SE G Street on Friday at about 9:15 p.m.. Police said 33-year-old Mason Leon Lieuallen was asked to leave by staff and he was approached by several patrons. They said he moved toward them and pushed one man into a window valued at $500, breaking it. No one was seriously hurt. The victim did not wish to pursue charges even though he had sustained cuts from the glass. Since Lieuallen was identified as the primary aggressor, the business wanted to pursue charges for the broken window and he was placed into custody. Mason Lieuallen was lodged at the Josephine County Jail for Criminal Mischief and Disorderly Conduct. He was also trespassed from the business.
Posted on 9/25/23 6:17AM by Sam Marsh
 

GP Police Collared Man for Parole Violation after Disturbance on RR Highway
Grants Pass Police arrested a man for violating his post-prison supervision by causing a weekend disturbance near a city park on Rogue River Highway. The Police Department reports officers contacted 44-year-old Danial Bryan Cook in the 1600-block of Highway 99 near Morrison Centennial Park on Friday around 8:45 p.m.. Police said witnesses reported Cook was wielding a bamboo stick and swinging it around wildly at the incident location. Upon arrival, officers spotted the suspect crossing the highway and heading west toward town. They said he was compliant when he was detained and they contacted his corrections officer. Danial Cook was subsequently booked into the Josephine County Jail for Parole Violation stemming from a conviction for Offensive Littering. He was being held on a no-bail detainer.
Posted on 9/25/23 6:15AM by Sam Marsh
 

Alert Neighbor & Cool Weather Helped Firefighters Keep Escaped Burn Small
An alert neighbor who spotted smoke -- combined with cool, damp air -- allowed firefighters to keep a blaze small in the Wilderville area early yesterday. On Sunday at 8:24 a.m., Rural Metro Fire Department and the Oregon Department of Forestry were dispatched to a fire in the 800-block of Riverbanks Road. Rural Metro officials said the origin of the fire appeared to be from an open burn that escaped and spread into the brush. However, the occupants claimed ignition was accidental. ODF followed up with some public education for the occupant. Despite the cool and damp weather, the 2023 fire season remains in effect until declared completely over by ODF. Restrictions are not affected by a certain date, but they are based on conditions. There is high confidence of rain coming this week, with most areas of southwest Oregon seeing variable amounts of precipitation.
Posted on 9/25/23 6:13AM by Sam Marsh
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GP City Council to Hold Special Meeting for Emergency Sewer Repair Pact
An emergency sewer situation has prompted the Grants Pass City Council to hold a special meeting today. The City Council will consider a resolution authorizing an emergency contract for sewer repairs on Clyde Place. No other business will take place at the meeting, which falls on a Monday when the Council typically holds its bi-weekly workshop session. Today's special meeting begins at 11:45 a.m. in the City Council Chambers at Grants Pass City Hall, 101 NW A Street.
Posted on 9/25/23 6:11AM by Sam Marsh
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Job Seekers Encouraged to Attend Southern Oregon Trade Careers Expo
The Oregon Department of Transportation is joining efforts to promote living wage career opportunities at the Southern Oregon Trade Careers Expo this week. This year's event will be held Tuesday at the Seven Feathers Convention Center in Canyonville. It's free to attend. The Southern Oregon Trade Careers Expo introduces high school juniors and seniors to skilled trade careers in local communities. Students participate in hands-on activities with more than 130 companies and organizations from a variety of sectors. Additional attendees include military veterans and active-duty members and their families, second-chance populations and other adult job-seekers. The 8 a.m. to 1 p.m. session is open to 11th- and 12th-grade students. Invitations have gone out to schools in seven counties including Josephine, Jackson, Douglas and Curry. From 1:15 p.m. to 3:30 p.m., anyone in the state of Oregon is encouraged to attend including veterans, active-duty military, spouses, and private and public agency referrals. No registration is required. Bring your resume and be ready to speak directly to employers. More information about the event and resources for job seekers can be found on the SOTCE website at "empowerthepossible.org."
Posted on 9/25/23 6:03AM by Sam Marsh
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Flood Watch Prompts Warning for Potential of Landslides across Southwest Oregon
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The National Weather Service has issued a Flood Watch for portions of southwest Oregon including Curry, Josephine and central Douglas counties that runs through this evening. Moderate to heavy rain may result in landslides in areas of steep terrain as well as debris flows in and near burn scars from recent wildfires including the Smith River Complex, the Flat Fire, the Anvil Fire and the Tyee Complex. The California Department of Transportation has asked motorists to avoid travel on US Highway 199 between the Illinois Valley and the coast until Tuesday due to the likelihood of landslides and debris flows as a result of a heavy rain in the forecast. Debris flows are rapidly moving, extremely destructive landslides. They can contain boulders and logs transported in fast-moving soil and water slurry down steep hillsides and through narrow canyons. They can easily travel a mile or more, and they move faster than a person can run. People, structures and roads located below steep slopes in canyons and near the mouths of canyons may be at risk. Residents are encouraged to stay alert. Track the Flood Watch by radio, TV or online. If told to evacuate, do so immediately.
Posted on 9/25/23 6:01AM by Sam Marsh
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GP Police and Firefighters Finish Off Summer Season with Strong Effort Protecting City
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Grants Pass police officers and firefighters finished off the summer season with another strong week of community protection. According to the Weekly Report filed by Grants Pass City Manager Aaron Cubic, police officers responded to a total of 746 calls for service along with 333 officer-initiated calls last week that resulted in 47 arrests, 57 citations, seven warnings and seven highly-intoxicated people being lodged at the Sobering Center. The Community Response Team (CRT) contacted a total of 106 potential trouble-makers while arresting four people, citing five more and warning 19 others. The CRT unit also trespassed seven individuals and posted 49 new transient camps. Grants Pass Fire & Rescue received a total of 101 calls last week including 42 for emergency medical service, four reports of fire or smoke, 10 lift assists, five rescue situations, six assists to other agencies and two false alarms. The 9-1-1 Dispatch Center fielded a total of 1,180 emergency calls in addition to 1,201 calls for non-emergency service.
Posted on 9/25/23 5:59AM by Sam Marsh
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Oregon Parks Grant Awarded to City of Grants Pass for Dollar Mountain Trail System
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The Oregon Parks and Recreation Department has approved a $350,000 grant for the City of Grants Pass to develop 12 miles of trails on Dollar Mountain. The city applied to the competitive Oregon State Parks Local Government Grant Program in April and was notified late last week that the grant was awarded. The City of Grants Pass finalized the purchase of 446 acres on Dollar Mountain in January 2019 to create a destination trail system for hiking and mountain biking. City officials said they appreciate the investment made by the state parks agency and would like to give a special thanks to Travel Oregon and the National Parks Service-Rivers, Trails and Conservation Assistance Program for the support they have provided for this project. Grants Pass officials said the next step is to finalize permitting and put the project out to bid for construction in 2024.
Posted on 9/25/23 5:57AM by Sam Marsh
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Cold Case Investigation Leads to Arrest of Gold Hill Man for California Murder
The Jackson County Sheriff's Office assisted investigators in arresting a Gold Hill man this week for a cold case homicide that occurred in Vallejo, California, more than 35 years ago. The suspect -- 69-year-old Fred Cain, III -- was arrested Monday afternoon at his residence in the 9500-block of Old Stage Road. Cain was arrested in connection to a 1987 cold case involving the murder of a 6-year-old child who had been abducted near his home in Vallejo. Cain waived extradition in Oregon and will be transferred to Solano County to face charges of Murder, Kidnapping and Sex Abuse. Investigators said four days after the child went missing, his body was discovered on Sherman Island in Sacramento County. An autopsy revealed that the child had been sexually assaulted. Another man was arrested in the case, but the case was later dismissed after a jury could not reach a verdict. Advances in DNA technology have since exonerated the other man and implicated Cain as the responsible party. Solano County District Attorney Krishna Abrams reinstated the Cold Case Unit after being elected to office in 2014. Abrams said he is thankful to have dedicated cold case investigators who remain steadfast in their commitment to solving horrific cases such as this one. No other details will be released at this time to preserve the integrity of the pending case against Cain.
Posted on 9/23/23 6:40AM by Sam Marsh
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Five Employees of Josephine County Sheriff's Office Awarded Medals of Valor
Five members of the Josephine County Sheriff's Office were awarded Medals of Valor for risking their lives to protect others during an incident that occurred just over one year ago. Sheriff Dave Daniel presented the awards to his employees during the Josephine County Board of Commissioners meeting in the Anne G. Basker Auditorium this week. On September 20th, 2022, Josephine County sheriff's deputies and Oregon State troopers responded to a call at the northbound Manzanita Rest Area on Interstate 5. The situation was violent and turbulent, with citizens' lives being threatened along with the lives of responding law enforcement by a man armed with a pistol and semiautomatic rifle. The man had already shot a woman twice before the officers arrived. The situation ended with an exchange of gunfire where the suspect died from his injuries. The woman received medical care on scene and survived. Recipients of the Law Enforcement Medal of Honor were Undersheriff Travis Snyder, Sergeant Craig Ricker, Deputy Gerald Bayard, Deputy Tanner Sherrow and Deputy Chris Watson. One year later, Sheriff Daniel said it was his honor to present each of them with the Medal of Valor on this unforgettable anniversary.
Posted on 9/23/23 6:39AM by Sam Marsh
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GP Police Jailed Man for Stealing SUV from Sister and Driving While Impaired
Grants Pass Police jailed a man for stealing a vehicle from his sister last year and then driving while impaired early yesterday. The Police Department reports officers pulled over a GMC Terrain driven by 32-year-old Sean Tyree Gunn in the 2600-block of Redwood Avenue around 12:50 a.m. Friday. Police said they stopped Gunn for various moving violations, and he admitted to drinking a beer and smoking DMT before driving. They said he displayed signs of impairment, the vehicle he was driving had been reported stolen by his sister in May 2022 and she had identified him as the suspect. Gunn was placed into custody and transported to the Josephine County Jail where he performed poorly in field sobriety tests and provided a breath sample that was under the legal limit for alcohol. He refused to provide a urine sample. Sean Gunn was booked into jail for Unauthorized Use of a Motor Vehicle and Driving Under the Influence of Intoxicants. He was also cited for the urine test refusal. The stolen vehicle was recovered and hauled away by Caveman Towing.
Posted on 9/23/23 6:37AM by Sam Marsh
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