Local News

GP Police Jailed Felon for Probation Violation & Weapons Crimes at Walmart
Grants Pass Police jailed a local felon for violating terms of her probation when she was found with weapons during a weekend shoplifting incident at Walmart. The Police Department reports 35-year-old Krystal Ann Wilder was arrested at the big box retailer on NE Terry Lane on Friday at 8:33 p.m.. Police said Wilder was observed by Walmart loss prevention taking tags off items, damaging packaging to remove items and concealing them on her person. After an extended period of time in the store, she tried to enter a restroom to conceal more items and was detained by security. Upon arrival, officers contacted her, placed her into custody and discovered her to be in possession of two spring-assisted pocket knives, which was a violation of her probation from an unspecified crime. Krystal Wilder was lodged at the Josephine County Jail for two counts of Felon in Possession of a Restricted Weapon and one count of Criminal Mischief plus the resulting Probation Violation. She was being held on a no-bail detainer.
Posted on 5/8/23 6:50AM by Sam Marsh

GP Police Arrested Motorist for DUII after Crash into Downtown Building
Grants Pass Police arrested a motorist for impaired driving and more after she crashed her vehicle into a downtown building. According to the Police Department, officers and emergency crews responded to the single-vehicle wreck in the 900-block of SW 6th Street on Friday shortly before midnight. Police said 27-year-old Alexandria Ellis was driving a Toyota Tundra when she lost control and crashed into the building occupied by Three Rivers Housing. No was injured, but the building and a parked car were damaged in the collision. Ellis at first feigned memory loss, but eventually admitted to drinking alcohol and operating a motor vehicle on a public roadway. She displayed multiple signs of impairment and performed poorly in field sobriety tests, but refused to provide a breath sample so she was taken to Three Rivers Medical Center for a blood draw. Alexandria Ellis was subsequently lodged at the Josephine County Jail for Driving Under the Influence of Intoxicants and two counts of Criminal Mischief. Her damaged vehicle was impounded and towed from the crash scene.
Posted on 5/8/23 6:45AM by Sam Marsh

IVFD Responded to Saturday Evening Structure Fire on West Side Road
The Illinois Valley Fire District responded to a weekend fire in the Cave Junction area. On Saturday at 5:43 p.m., IVFD and American Medical Response were dispatched to a structure fire in the 6,000-block of West Side Road. Arriving units found light smoke coming from the top of the residence. A person staying at the home was able to get water to the base of the fire prior to the arrival of engines. The fire was confirmed to be out and the cause was being investigated. Rural Metro Fire Department responded and was redirected to cover the district during the incident.
Posted on 5/8/23 6:44AM by Sam Marsh

GP Police & Firefighters Logged Strong Week of Community Protection
Grants Pass police officers and firefighters did their due diligence last week while protecting the community. According to the Weekly Report filed by Grants Pass City Manager Aaron Cubic, police officers made a total of 203 hot spot area checks in addition to their regular patrols which resulted in 67 arrests, 65 citations, 69 warnings and 15 people being lodged at the Sobering Center. The Community Response Team (CRT) contacted a total of 90 potential trouble-makers while arresting three people, citing 12 more and warning 41 others. The CRT unit also trespassed nine individuals and posted 72 new transient campsites. Grants Pass Fire & Rescue responded to a total of 84 calls last week including 18 for emergency medical service, five for reports of fire or smoke, 14 lift assists, six rescue situations, four assists to other agencies and seven false alarms. Firefighters also performed 34 business inspections, led six education programs, assisted the public four times and properly installed three child car seats. The 9-1-1 Dispatch Center fielded a total of 1,432 emergency calls in addition to 791 calls for non-emergency service.
Posted on 5/8/23 6:42AM by Sam Marsh
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Grants Pass City Council to Hold Special Meeting in Executive Session
The Grants Pass City Council will gather today, but not for a weekly workshop session. The City Council will hold a Special Meeting in Executive Session in place of the workshop. According to the published agenda, City Attorney Augustus Ogu will lead the closed-door meeting on current and/or likely litigation. No other information on the session was available. Today's Executive Session begins at 11:45 a.m. in the City Council Chambers at Grants Pass City Hall.
Posted on 5/8/23 6:41AM by Sam Marsh
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Southern Oregon Cities Trained on Meridian Vehicle Barrier System Acquired from Grant
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Members of the Grants Pass Police Department and Grants Pass Streets Division were in Medford last week to receive training in the deployment of the Meridian Vehicle Barrier System. The grant-provided barriers will be shared between cities in Josephine and Jackson counties to help safeguard special events, such as the Boatnik and Pear Blossom festivals. The cities of Grants Pass, Medford and Ashland received the barriers through a regional State Preparedness and Incident Response Equipment (SPIRE) Grant. The anti-vehicle barriers will be used to help ensure the safety of residents and visitors attending outdoor events in Southern Oregon. Each city received a Vehicle Barrier System that includes a trailer and eight barricades that can easily and quickly be set up by city staff. The cities will share their kits with other municipalities in Josephine and Jackson counties, so up to 24 barriers can be deployed during specific events. This project equips Southern Oregon with the shared capability to rapidly deploy an effective anti-vehicle barrier system to protect people attending large public gatherings against vehicle-borne threats such as vehicle-ramming attacks, vehicle-borne improvised explosive devices or vehicles accidentally striking pedestrians.
Posted on 5/8/23 6:38AM by Sam Marsh
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GP Fire & Rescue will Host Wildland Fire Training in NW Neighborhoods This Week
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Grants Pass Fire & Rescue will be conducting wildland fire training exercises in the northwest section of the city this week. The annual training will occur today, Wednesday and Friday from 8 a.m. to 1 p.m. each day. It happens each spring before the start of fire season. Grants Pass Battalion Chief Brandon Rigaud said the training will also involve firefighters from other agencies in the region. They include Rural Metro Fire Department, Illinois Valley Fire District, Jackson County Fire District #1, Oregon Department of Forestry and others. Rigaud said firefighters will be practicing a variety of wildland fire suppression techniques including hand-line construction, hose lays, structural protection and water delivery. The training will be conducted in a variety of areas in the northwest section of Grants Pass such as NW Sunset Drive, NW Hewitt Drive, NW Starlite Place and NW F Street. The public is advised to be aware of the training and to use caution in the area. Training smoke may be visible from the training areas. Homeowners in the area are also advised to be prepared for the possibility of fire during the summer months.
Posted on 5/8/23 6:30AM by Sam Marsh
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Grants Pass Active Club Announces Deadline for Boatnik Parade Entries is May 14th
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The Grants Pass Active Club has announced that the deadline for entries in the 2023 Boatnik Parade is next weekend. The theme for this year's Boatnik Parade is "You've Got a Friend in GP" and the event is scheduled for Saturday, May 27th. The entry deadline is next Sunday. The parade entry fee is $100 for non-profit organizations, $200 for political groups and $300 for commercial floats. Entries will be judged and awards will be presented to 1st through 4th places. Due to constraints with the length of the parade, all vehicle clubs will be limited to 25 automobiles per entry. However, a vehicle club can pay an additional $25 for 10 more vehicles. The Active Club reserves the right to refuse any entry that misrepresents itself on the entry form or does not portray the family atmosphere represented by the Boatnik Parade. The Grants Pass Active Club Motto is "No man stands as tall as he does when he kneels to help a child." The parade is part of the five-day Boatnik Festival that is a fundraiser for youth organizations in the community. For more information, please visit "boatnik.com."
Posted on 5/8/23 6:19AM by Sam Marsh
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OSP Referred 8 Charges Against Motorist to DA after He Rammed Vehicle
The Oregon State Police has referred eight charges against a motorist to the Josephine County District Attorney's Office after he intentionally rammed a vehicle containing his ex-girlfriend off Williams Highway and fled this week. OSP reports troopers and emergency personnel were dispatched to the incident at the intersection of Highway 238 and Canaan Street late Thursday night. Troopers said when they arrived on scene, they discovered that one of the vehicles rammed the other one on purpose. They said a 36-year-old woman told them her ex-boyfriend -- 37-year-old Jason Allen Eldred -- saw her and another man parked at the intersection and he started ramming their vehicle with his own. The suspect kept ramming the victims' vehicle until he pushed it into a roadside ditch and left. Few other details about the incident were released by OSP, but there were no serious injuries reported. Eldred was not arrested, but eight charges against him were referred to the DA including 2nd-Degree Assault, 1st-Degree Criminal Mischief, Menacing, Reckless Endangering, Reckless Driving, Hit-and-Run Causing Property Damage, Driving While Suspended and Violation of a No-Contact Order.
Posted on 5/6/23 6:40AM by Sam Marsh
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OSP Nabbed 2 Motorists for DUII at the Same Time on Williams Highway
The Oregon State Police simultaneously arrested two motorists for impaired driving on Williams Highway south of Murphy early yesterday. According to OSP, state troopers contacted two vehicles in what was called "a mere encounter" in the 7200-block of Highway 238 on Friday at 12:25 a.m.. Troopers said they contacted 22-year-old Anthony Neal Barnett of Grants Pass who was driving a Honda Civic and 20-year-old Richard Ryan Summers of Yreka, California, who was driving a Mazda. Both men displayed signs of impairment, performed poorly in field sobriety tests and were placed into custody. Barnett was taken to the Grants Pass Sobering Center to provide a breath sample and he was charged with Driving Under the Influence of Alcohol. Summers was taken to the Josephine County Jail to provide a breath sample and he was charged with DUII-Alcohol. Both young men were cited to appear in court and then released. Their vehicles were released to sober passengers.
Posted on 5/6/23 6:28AM by Sam Marsh
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Josephine County Sheriff's Office Urges Drivers to Obey Move Over Law
The Josephine County Sheriff's Office is encouraging citizens to protect and help the people who protect and help you. Move over or slow down when you see flashing lights of any color from a vehicle parked on the side of the road. This includes any vehicle like a tow truck, public works, emergency response, hazard lights on a car or semi, law enforcement or Oregon Department of Transportation vehicles. It saves lives and it's the law. Nationally, approximately 24 first responders lose their lives on interstate highway shoulders every year while doing their jobs. According to AAA, an estimated 12% of interstate traffic fatalities -- or 600 deaths per year -- are the result of shoulder crashes. Oregon passed its first Move Over Law in 2010 requiring drivers to move over a lane or slow down five miles below the speed limit for an emergency vehicle, a roadside assistance vehicle, a tow vehicle or an ambulance when it is displaying warning lights. In 2017, the law was changed to include any vehicle stopped that is displaying warning lights.
Posted on 5/6/23 6:27AM by Sam Marsh
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Medford Airport Awarded $800K+ Federal Grant to Rebuild Contract Tower
US Senators Ron Wyden and Jeff Merkley have announced that Rogue Valley International-Medford Airport has earned more than $800,000 in federal funds from the Bipartisan Infrastructure Law to rebuild its contract tower. According to a joint press release, Wyden and Merkley said the $801,341 grant to the Medford Airport for reconstruction of the tower is through the Federal Aviation Administration's airport infrastructure grant program. Airport Director Amber Judd said they are grateful for the tower grant program, and the award will enable them to complete some much-needed upgrades to their control tower. She said planned improvements include elevator replacement and an upgrade to the airport's lighting control & monitoring system. Senator Wyden said safe air travel for residents of Southern Oregon and visitors to the region requires regular infrastructure investments just like this one. He said he's glad the Bipartisan Infrastructure Law is paying immediate dividends to the local airport.
Posted on 5/6/23 6:24AM by Sam Marsh
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