Local News

IMET Served 14 Search Warrants on Illegal Cannabis Grows in July and August
The Illegal Marijuana Enforcement Team (IMET) of Jackson County served 14 separate search warrants in July and August that yielded approximately 24,681 plants, 1,531 pounds of black-market cannabis, 20 firearms and more than $20,000 in cash. According to IMET, the search warrants have led to six arrests with investigations open and ongoing and more charges expected from the Jackson County District Attorney's Office. Jackson County Code Enforcement issued citations to the landowners totaling more than $784,000. Oregon Water Resources Department District 13 issued multiple notices of violation to the responsible parties. Search warrants were served from July 6th through August 31st at various sites throughout Jackson County. IMET was assisted in these raids by the Jackson County Sheriff's Office, Medford Police Department and Oregon State Police Southwest Region Drug Enforcement Team. While regulatory agencies investigate permitted cannabis operations, IMET is focusing on the black-market marijuana trade in the Rogue Valley.
Posted on 9/22/23 6:42AM by Sam Marsh
 

GP Police Jailed Man for Threatening Workers with Knife at NE City Businesses
Grants Pass Police jailed a man on seven charges for threatening employees with a knife at two businesses in the north part of the city this week. The Police Department reports officers arrested 57-year-old Lance Joseph Cardinal for the incidents at Motel 6 on NE 7th Street and Paradise Car Wash on NE Morgan Lane on Wednesday morning. Police said Cardinal returned to Motel 6 after having been trespassed from the business and he threatened a staff member with a pocket knife. He then walked to Paradise Car Wash where he threatened two workers with the same knife. No one was hurt, but both businesses wanted to press charges. Lance Cardinal was placed into custody a short time later. He was lodged at the Josephine County Jail for three counts of Felony Unlawful Use of a Weapon, two counts of Menacing and single counts of Disorderly Conduct and Criminal Trespass. The knife was seized as evidence and he was being held without bail.
Posted on 9/22/23 6:40AM by Sam Marsh
 

Deputies Arrested IVHS Student for Assaulting Another in Possible Hate Crime
The Josephine County Sheriff's Office arrested an Illinois Valley High School student for assaulting another student this week and deputies believe it may have been a hate crime. The Sheriff's Office reports deputies were alerted to the reported incident at the high school on East River Street in Cave Junction on Wednesday morning. Deputies said the victim was treated at Siskiyou Community Health Center for unspecified injuries. They interviewed the victim and the doctor before going to the high school and arresting the teenage suspect, who was not identified. The suspect was charged with 4th-Degree Assault and lodged at the Josephine County Juvenile Justice Center in Grants Pass. Deputies said it may have been a hate crime, but they did not elaborate on the specifics. The incident was captured on video surveillance, which was being reviewed by the District Attorney's Office. The suspect could be charged with additional crimes.
Posted on 9/22/23 6:32AM by Sam Marsh
 

GP Police Jailed Woman on Local Warrants after Patrol Check near GPHS
Grants Pass Police jailed a woman on four local warrants this week after a patrol check near the high school. The Police Department reports officers arrested 34-year-old Kristen Kay Rawlings in the 200-block of NE A Street on Wednesday night. Police said Rawlings was inside a Nissan Pathfinder parked across the street from Gianelli's restaurant and she tried to hide in the back seat, but ultimately exited the vehicle. She was found to be wanted on a Grants Pass felony warrant and two Josephine County misdemeanor warrants. Charges contained in the warrants included Probation Violation related to an arrest for Unlawful Delivery of Controlled Substances, Probation Violation related to an arrest for Methamphetamine Possession, failing to appear in court for Manufacture and Delivery of a Schedule 2 Controlled Substance, and failing to appear in court for Meth Possession. Kristen Rawlings was placed into custody and lodged at the Josephine County Jail on a no-bail detainer.
Posted on 9/22/23 6:30AM by Sam Marsh
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Deputies Apprehended Out-of-County Fugitive in Cave Junction Traffic Stop
The Josephine County Sheriff's Office apprehended an out-of-county fugitive this week during a traffic stop near Cave Junction. The Sheriff's Office reports deputies pulled over a vehicle driven by 30-year-old Jose Luis Coria-Garcia on Redwood Highway near Laurel Road late Wednesday. Deputies said they stopped Coria-Garcia for a traffic violation and discovered that he was wanted on a Washington County warrant for failing to appear in court for Unlawful Possession of a Firearm and Driving Under the Influence of Intoxicants. No details were provided, but Coria-Garcia and an unnamed passenger were also charged with Felony Possession of Marijuana. Coria-Garcia was additionally charged with Furnishing False Information to Police for providing a false name. Coria-Garcia and his passenger were transported to Grants Pass and lodged at the Josephine County Jail. Three dogs in their possession were taken by Animal Control officers to the shelter near the Grants Pass Airport.
Posted on 9/22/23 6:29AM by Sam Marsh
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GP Police Department Congratulates Officer for Graduating from Academy
The Grants Pass Police Department would like to congratulate Officer Drew Beard for recently graduating from the Oregon Basic Police Academy in Salem. Officer Beard was the department's first Parking Enforcement Officer before being hired as a police officer. He was also a fire student intern with Grants Pass Fire & Rescue. As with all police officers in Oregon, Beard was instructed on numerous topics at the police academy. These topics included subjects such as officer survival skills, emergency vehicle operation, de-escalation, ethics and cultural awareness. For 16 weeks, Drew Beard learned the foundation of being a peace officer. He has returned to Grants Pass for several months of field training with seasoned and specially-trained officers. His smile will soon be seen in the streets of this city.
Posted on 9/22/23 6:17AM by Sam Marsh
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USFS Declares Anvil Fire Burning in Curry County as "Most Dangerous in United States"
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The US Forest Service has named a wildfire currently burning in neighboring Curry County as the most dangerous in the United States. Great Basin Incident Management Team 4 this morning reported the Anvil Fire had increased in size to 18,691 acres with 9% containment. The wildfire is burning about eight miles east of Port Orford with evacuation orders and area closures in place. There was a total of 1,256 personnel assigned to the wildfire today including 36 hand crews backed by 39 engines and eight helicopters. Aviation resources have been challenged with high winds limiting helicopter flights for short periods of time. However, five helicopters were able to support ground crews by delivering over 70,000 gallons of water near the Hatchery and Elk River Road corridor, and between China Peak and Moon Mountain. The Curry County Sheriff's Office has identified four evacuation zones around the Anvil Fire. Zones 1 and 4 are Level 3 "Go Now" evacuation status while Zones 2 and 3 are in Level 2 "Get Set" evacuation status. For the safety of firefighters and the public, the Rogue River-Siskiyou National Forest has issued closure orders for the Anvil and Flat Fire areas. The Coos Bay District of the BLM has also issued an area closure including the Edson and Sixes campgrounds.
Posted on 9/22/23 6:15AM by Sam Marsh
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Strong NE Winds Tested Smith River Complex, But Perimeter Containment Lines Held Strong
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Strong northeast winds have tested the Smith River Complex, but the perimeter containment lines held the fire in place. The interior island of unburned ground experienced two small spot fires that crews quickly extinguished. Northwest Incident Management Team 8 reported this morning that the Smith River Complex had grown to 94,168 acres while containment increased to 79%. There was a total of 1,441 personnel assigned to the wildfire complex today including 33 hand crews backed by 41 engines, 29 water tenders, 8 bulldozers, 7 masticators, 6 helicopters and 2 skid steers. High winds prevented the use of helicopters to assist with remote-area backhaul operations. However, ground-based backhaul operations and suppression repairs continued. Fire crews worked diligently to gain more containment along the north perimeter. Fire managers and firefighters are prepared to hold the fire line wherever weather impacts such as strong winds will be experienced. The Josephine County Sheriff's Office is maintaining a Level 1 "Be Ready" evacuation status in the southern Illinois Valley until significant rainfall is received. The weather pattern for next week appears to be cool and wet.
Posted on 9/22/23 6:11AM by Sam Marsh
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Total Payroll Employment in Josephine County Rose by 150 Jobs in August, by 40 Over Year
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Total payroll employment in Josephine County rose by an estimated 150 jobs in August. According to the Oregon Employment Department, there were 34,439 people working in Josephine County last month for a seasonally-adjusted jobless rate of 4.7%, which is the same as in July and down from 5.9% in August 2022. Private education & health services was the only private-sector industry with notable employment change in August, adding 100 new jobs. Government employment climbed by 60 jobs over the month, with a gain of 50 jobs in local government education and 10 jobs in federal government. Over the past year, total payroll employment in Josephine County rose by 40 jobs, a gain of 0.1%. Industries adding new jobs since August 2022 included private education & health services (+450), other services (+100), transportation, warehousing & utilities (+40), and professional & business services (+40). Industries losing jobs over the year were leisure & hospitality (-270), retail trade (-140), manufacturing (-80), wholesale trade (-80) and financial activities (-50).
Posted on 9/22/23 6:02AM by Sam Marsh
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GP Police Jailed Man for Threatening Workers with Knife at NE City Businesses
Grants Pass Police jailed a man on seven charges for threatening employees with a knife at two businesses in the north part of the city early yesterday. The Police Department reports officers arrested 57-year-old Lance Joseph Cardinal for the incidents at Motel 6 on NE 7th Street and Paradise Car Wash on NE Morgan Lane on Wednesday at 10:37 a.m.. Police said Cardinal returned to Motel 6 after having been trespassed from the business and he threatened a staff member with a pocket knife. He then walked to Paradise Car Wash where he threatened two workers with the same knife. No one was hurt, but both businesses wanted to press charges. Lance Cardinal was placed into custody a short time later. He was lodged at the Josephine County Jail for three counts of Felony Unlawful Use of a Weapon, two counts of Menacing and single counts of Disorderly Conduct and Criminal Trespass. The knife was seized as evidence and he was being held without bail.
Posted on 9/21/23 11:20AM by Sam Marsh
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Deputies Arrested IVHS Student for Assaulting Another in Possible Hate Crime
The Josephine County Sheriff's Office arrested an Illinois Valley High School student for assaulting another student early yesterday and deputies believe it may have been a hate crime. The Sheriff's Office reports deputies were alerted to the reported incident at the high school on East River Street in Cave Junction on Wednesday morning. It allegedly occurred around 9:30 a.m. yesterday. Deputies said the victim was treated at Siskiyou Community Health Center for unspecified injuries. They interviewed the victim and the doctor before going to the high school and arresting the teenage suspect, who was not identified. The suspect was charged with 4th-Degree Assault and lodged at the Josephine County Juvenile Justice Center in Grants Pass. Deputies said it may have been a hate crime, but they did not elaborate on the specifics. The incident was captured on video surveillance, which was being reviewed by the District Attorney's Office. The suspect could be charged with additional crimes.
Posted on 9/21/23 11:19AM by Sam Marsh
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Alarm System & Remote Camera Helped Police Snare Home Burglary Suspect
A residential alarm and remote surveillance helped Grants Pass Police arrest a man for unlawfully entering into a southwest city residence last night. According to the Police Department, officers responded to a reported break-in at a home in the 1200-block of SW Aberdeen Way on Wednesday shortly after 9 p.m.. Police said 28-year-old Michael Ruben Sanchez unlawfully entered the residence by going through a broken back door. They said the homeowner was out of town, received a call from her security company and used a remote camera to observe a male subject inside her home. The woman then called 9-1-1. Officers contacted Sanchez a short time later while he was walking down the road and he was positively identified as the break-in suspect. He refused to speak with law enforcement about the incident. Michael Sanchez was lodged at the Josephine County Jail for 1st-Degree Burglary and 1st-Degree Criminal Mischief. He was being held without bail.
Posted on 9/21/23 11:17AM by Sam Marsh
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