Local News

Josephine County Recreation to Host Ribbon-Cutting for New Tom Pearce Park Playground
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The Josephine County Recreation Department is inviting the public to attend the formal ribbon-cutting ceremony for the new playground at Tom Pearce Park on Thursday. The ceremony will take place at the county park at 3:30 p.m.. Recreation Director Tamra Martin said the inclusive and accessible playground was designed by Playcraft Systems of Grants Pass, and it will accommodate and appeal to children of all abilities. She said the playground is designed for children ages 5 to 12 years old, but it is one that all can enjoy. The original Tom Pearce Park playground was dedicated in 1990 and served park visitors for 29 years before it was declared unsafe during an inspection by Parks Department personnel. It was closed by the department in July 2019 and the decommissioned playground was subsequently removed. The Grants Pass Kiwanis, Josephine County Parks and Recreation Foundation, and Parks Department partnered in raising funds for the new playground. Over $90,000 was received in grant funds, sponsorships and donations, with the remaining $319,000 coming from American Rescue Plan Act (ARPA) funds.
Posted on 5/3/23 6:02AM by Sam Marsh

Grants Pass Parks Division Busy with Both Planned and Unplanned Spring Projects
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The Grants Pass Parks Division has been busy with spring projects, both planned and unplanned. The new playground at Westholm Park is coming together nicely with support posts, decking and the swing bays now visible. The division has received the rubber surface tiles that will provide additional safety measures underneath the swings and other playground equipment. Officials said a large oak tree fell and was removed from Riverside Park last week. Crews spruced up the Grants Pass Garden Club bed at Riverside Park, adding some fresh bark in preparation for a planting party later this month. The area on Veterans Way includes the Marguerite Riddle Memorial Garden and the Butterfly & Bird Garden, which have very long histories in the city park. The rock memorial for Marguerite Riddle -- the founder of the Grants Pass Garden Club -- dates back to 1926 and was dedicated in 1970. The adjacent Butterfly & Bird Garden was dedicated in 2000.
Posted on 5/3/23 6:00AM by Sam Marsh

BCC to Consider Amendments to ODOT Grant Agreements at Weekly Session
The Josephine County Board of Commissioners should make quick work of a light agenda for its weekly business session tomorrow morning. There are no hearings, administrative action items, presentations or proclamations on the agenda. The Consent Calendar contains two amendments to grant agreements with the Oregon Department of Transportation along with approval of minutes from past meetings, hearings, workshops and legal counsel updates. There will be Requests and Comments from Citizens in which attendees can address the Board on topics pertaining to Josephine County. Wednesday's public meeting begins at 9 a.m. in the Anne G. Basker Auditorium.
Posted on 5/2/23 1:15PM by Sam Marsh

Medford Police Department Jailed Man Wanted on Josephine Felony Warrant
The Medford Police Department jailed a man wanted on a local felony warrant last weekend. The Josephine County Sheriff's Office reports MPD officers arrested 37-year-old Travis Jon Brummett on Sunday at about 11 p.m.. No other information was available in the Sheriff's Office new abbreviated format, but Brummett was wanted on a Josephine County felony warrant for failing to appear in court for Attempting to Elude Police and Reckless Driving. Travis Brummett was lodged at the Jackson County Jail on $55,000 bail and he awaited transfer to the adult jail facility in Grants Pass.
Posted on 5/2/23 10:36AM by Sam Marsh
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OSP Incarcerated Wolf Creek Man on Felony Warrant after Freeway Contact
The Oregon State Police arrested a Wolf Creek man on a local felony warrant last night following an incident on Interstate 5 in the Sunny Valley area. OSP reports troopers stopped to contact the occupants of a vehicle that was on the shoulder of northbound I-5 near milepost 74 on Monday at 10:30 p.m. Troopers said they identified one of the occupants as 39-year-old Zacharey Michael Costa who was wanted on a 2022 Josephine County felony warrant for failing to appear in court for 3rd-Degree Robbery and 3rd-Degree Theft. After the warrant was confirmed, Costa was placed into custody, transported to Grants Pass and lodged at the Josephine County Jail.
Posted on 5/2/23 10:35AM by Sam Marsh
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Grants Pass Police Collared Man for Breaking into Vehicles near Downtown
Grants Pass Police jailed a man for breaking into at least one automobile near the downtown area early yesterday. The Police Department reports officers arrested 42-year-old Donn Reeves Fincher on NE Beacon Drive near Fred Meyer on Monday at 8:40 a.m.. Police said Reeves was the subject of a trespassing complaint at Fred Meyer, but he was also a suspect in a car clouting incident in the 400-block of SW H Street. A woman in that neighborhood provided video surveillance of a male subject getting into her car and that subject was positively identified as Fincher. The caller reported she was missing a work folder with important paperwork, the suspect left the car door open and it appeared he had tried to access several other vehicles in the area. Donn Fincher was placed into custody and lodged at the Josephine County Jail for probable cause of Unlawful Entry into a Motor Vehicle. He was also trespassed from the incident location and Fred Meyer.
Posted on 5/2/23 10:34AM by Sam Marsh
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Grants Pass Police Snared Sisters for Trying Stealing Walmart Merchandise
Grants Pass Police arrested two sisters for attempting to steal hundreds of dollars' worth of merchandise from Walmart early yesterday. According to the Police Department, officers responded to a shoplifting complaint at the big box retailer on NE Terry Lane on Monday at about 9:40 a.m.. Police said 31-year-old Karley Sueann Burgh and 29-year-old Ashley Renee Burgh admitted to taking more than $389 worth of items from Walmart by skip-scanning and leaving the store. They were detained by loss prevention before being placed into custody by officers. Karley and Ashley Burgh were both lodged at the nearby Josephine County Jail for 2nd-Degree Theft. The items they actually paid for were left in their vehicle and family members were contacted to retrieve the vehicle.
Posted on 5/2/23 10:30AM by Sam Marsh
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GP Police Arrested Woman for Theft after She Tried to Steal from Walmart
Grants Pass Police arrested a woman for shoplifting after she was caught trying to steal items from Walmart yesterday. The Police Department reports officers responded to a theft complaint at the store on NE Terry Lane on Monday at 1:40 p.m.. Police said 22-year-old Alyissa Lynne Bradbury stole just over $100 worth of merchandise from Walmart and she admitted to the crime after being advised of her Miranda rights. She had been detained by loss prevention officers. Bradbury was lodged at the adult jail facility for 2nd-Degree Theft and the stolen items were returned to Walmart. The charge was forwarded to the District Attorney for prosecution.
Posted on 5/2/23 10:28AM by Sam Marsh
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Tussing Park Campers Trespassed for Allegedly Violating GP Ordinances
Two campers at a Grants Pass city park were forced to seek alternate living arrangements yesterday after they allegedly violated two city ordinances. Grants Pass Police were performing a patrol check at Tussing Park on West Park Street when the incident occurred Monday shortly after 9 a.m.. Police said Ian Vischer and Celia Alvarez were both cited for Illegal Camping and Scattering Rubbish. They said both were ordered to clean up their mess and then trespassed from the park for 30 days. According to the report, a total of 10 camps were posted at Tussing Park and an e-mail was sent to the United Community Action Network.
Posted on 5/2/23 10:26AM by Sam Marsh
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Motorcyclist Seriously Hurt in Monday Crash at North Valley Industrial Park
A motorcyclist was seriously injured when they crashed in the North Valley Industrial Park early yesterday. On Monday at 4:36 a.m., Rural Metro Fire Department and American Medical Response were dispatched to the accident just east of Monument Drive. Rural Metro crews from just across the street arrived on scene to find the rider had hit a tree in the center median at a high rate of speed. Due to the severity of rider's injuries, the unidentified patient was transported by AMR ambulance to Rogue Regional Medical Center in Medford where the trauma system was activated. The Josephine County Sheriff's Office was investigating the cause of the crash.
Posted on 5/2/23 6:20AM by Sam Marsh
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Domestic Disturbance near GPHS Led to Arrest of Man on Local Warrants
A domestic disturbance near Grants Pass High School led to the apprehension of a man on outstanding warrants for violating his probation. The Grants Pass Police Department reports officers responded to the disturbance in the 800-block of NE A Street on Sunday shortly after 11 p.m.. Police said a woman called 9-1-1 to report she was being threatened by 29-year-old Rhys Mario Robert Sittingdown. The caller stated the suspect was getting physical and he temporarily took her phone away so she couldn't call for help. Upon arrival, officers learned that the suspect was not allowed to have contact with the victim. A routine records check showed that Sittingdown was also wanted on a Medford felony warrant for Probation Violation related to an arrest for 1st-Degree Theft and on two Jackson County warrants for Probation Violations related to Menacing and Reckless Endangering. He was placed into custody without incident. Rhys Sittingdown was lodged at the Josephine County Jail on a no-bail detainer.
Posted on 5/2/23 6:18AM by Sam Marsh
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OSP Nabbed RR Man for Failing to Report as Sex Offender after GP Stop
The Oregon State Police arrested a Rogue River man for failing to report as a sex offender during a weekend traffic stop on Williams Highway near Grants Pass. According to OSP, troopers pulled over a BMW sedan driven by 46-year-old Ashley Thomas Whitley near milepost 2 of Highway 238 on Sunday at 9:34 p.m.. Troopers said they stopped Whitley for multiple traffic violations and they quickly determined that he was out of compliance with his sex offender registration. He was placed into custody and transported to the Josephine County Jail. Ashley Whitley was lodged in jail for Felony Failure to Report as a Sex Offender Following a Change of Address and Misdemeanor Failure to Make an Annual Report. He was also cited for the traffic violations and his car was impounded.
Posted on 5/2/23 6:17AM by Sam Marsh
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