crime

Seattle Mayor Ed Murray is trying to close all the city's hookah lounges.

Hookahs are the Middle Eastern water pipes used for smoking flavored tobacco, and the lounges have caught on in some parts of the country. Health risks from smoking aside, the city believes the lounges are also magnets for violent crime.

The legal justification for this crackdown is the state's ban on indoor smoking in public places, but the reasons go beyond smoking.

He was willing to take a bullet for three governors. Now, a decorated Washington State Patrol trooper is accused of tampering with evidence to protect his teenage son.

A Superior Court judge in Pierce County has ruled that a recall effort against indicted state auditor Troy Kelley cannot go forward.

A search of Washington State Auditor Troy Kelley’s home in March turned up bundles of spreadsheets that appeared to be the kind of documents Kelley said had been destroyed in a 2008 fire.

Jan Jutte, a longtime manager in the Washington state auditor’s office, will take over for elected auditor Troy Kelley as he defends himself against a federal indictment.

Indicted Washington State Auditor Troy Kelley will not be paid while he is on indefinite leave, which Kelley said he'll start Monday May 4.

A citizen effort to recall indicted Washington State Auditor Troy Kelley has cleared a key hurdle.

Washington State Auditor Troy Kelley is defending himself in the face of a 10-count federal indictment and shows no sign of resigning. 

A former Washington State University student who fled to Ireland after a deadly drunk driving crash has been released from prison.

The premise of Descent may sound pretty straight-forward: One summer morning while vacationing with her family in the foothills of the Rockies, a young girl, a high-school athlete in her senior year, goes out for a run in the higher altitudes — and disappears.

And Moby-Dick's about the whaling industry.

Overall Crime On The Decline, But Watch Your Car

Nov 10, 2014
Jon Collier / Flickr

New statistics out Monday from the FBI show violent crime continued to decrease in Washington, Oregon and Idaho. That’s consistent with the general trend in crime rates nationwide. However, there are a few notable exceptions in the Northwest that may be of interest to car owners.

Both Idaho and Washington saw an increase in car thefts in 2013, Idaho in particular. It’s up by 12 percent over the previous year.

Northwest News Network

  

The fate of a human trafficking lawsuit against Backpage.com is now in the hands of the Washington Supreme Court. The justices heard oral arguments Tuesday in a case that involves three underage victims of sex trafficking.

The lawsuit alleges the Washington girls were pimped-out through ads posted to Backpage.com. Erik Bauer is a lawyer for the victims. He argues Backpage has created a sex marketplace where human trafficking can flourish.

Blake Butler's new novel, 300,000,000, is not for the squeamish. Then again, it's hard to imagine anyone whose blood won't curdle reading it. Or their brain. Or possibly their soul.

Valentine Millimaki, a sheriff's deputy in central Montana, is the officer who's called upon whenever someone goes missing. In the past, he has found people either safe or clinging to life, if barely. But for over a year, he's only found corpses, dead of exposure or suicide or murder. "Valentine Millimaki did not bring back angels," writes novelist Kim Zupan in The Ploughmen, "No, I did not, he thought. Souls did not aspire on his watch to safety or heaven but came trestled roughly from the dark woods, trapped in the alabaster statuary of rigid flesh."

'Rooms' Is Haunted By People (And Ghosts) That Can't Let Go

Sep 29, 2014

I have a friend whose parents died when she was a teenager, leaving her the house. They had been sick for a long time, and so the accumulation of stuff that generally accompanies any suburban existence was traumatically amplified: the dining room had two sets of furniture, the living room had three.

There are a lot of reasons not to read James Ellroy's newest novel, Perfidia — the opening shot in his proposed second L.A. Quartet. It's a long and sprawling book with about a million pages and 10,000 characters, so if that kind of thing scares you, go back to your Hunger Games and leave the grown-ups alone.

It's a brutal book. More than one person crawls home with a handful of his own teeth. A quick gunshot to the head? That's a merciful way to go in Ellroy's Los Angeles, and not many characters get that kindness.

What's the line between falsehood and fantasy? Between fear and horror? Between other worlds and the ones we carry inside our heads? Graham Joyce has been asking — and brilliantly answering — these questions for years. His latest book, The Ghost in the Electric Blue Suit, is no different. One of Britain's most quietly reliable fantasists, Joyce has written a jewel of a novel that blends gentle nostalgia, Bildungsroman angst, and a glimpse of the dark, unreal places where loss and memory mingle.

Richard House's thriller The Kills, which was longlisted for the Man Booker Prize last year, weighs in at 1,024 pages. It's a long read, and worth every minute.

'Seeders' Imagines A Pulpy Planet Of The Plants

Aug 7, 2014

In A.J. Colucci's 2012 debut, the sci-fi thriller The Colony, she describes a world where ants rise up to challenge the tyranny of pesticide-wielding humans. Instead of Planet of the Apes, it's Planet of the Ants — and with her second novel, Seeders, she's written a veritable Planet of the Plants. Unfortunately, the result isn't nearly as thrilling as it ought to be.

I am not a trained reader of horror. Usually whenever I encounter horror stories, I'm left feeling dissatisfied with the quality of my unsettlement; I think "oh, that was gratuitous" or "eh, was that necessary?" With very few exceptions, I tend not to seek out horror.

Emily Carroll's Through the Woods is so thoroughly an exception that I have to revise my stance on the whole genre.

The Inspector Montalbano books, by Italian author Andrea Camilleri, supply everything I need for the beach. A good mystery. An exotic location — in this case, the beaches and piazzas of Sicily. And great writing that wears its fineness lightly, and keeps the pages turning. All with the most charming fuss-bucket of a detective to come along since Hercule Poirot: Inspector Salvo Montalbano.

'Tigerman' Will Get Its Claws Into You

Jul 24, 2014

How do you know when a book has hooked you? When it really gets you in the guts and won't let go?

When you can't stop telling people about it. When you catch yourself inserting the title of the book into conversations where it has no place, breathlessly insisting to all your friends and relations that they need to read this book right now, and waving it around on elevators and hoping that someone asks you about it.

Chris Miller / Flickr

The ACLU of Idaho has joined the fight to move an accused teenage killer out of solitary confinement and back into juvenile detention. Eldon Samuel III has spent nearly three months locked in a medical holding cell in an adult county jail.

Jace Wilson is a 13-year-old boy who plans to do what many boneheaded 13-year-olds do: something dumb on a dare, to once and for all dispense with the idea that he might be a coward. But while psyching himself up to go through with the dare, he witnesses a murder — and before we know it, we're off. Michael Koryta's new novel, Those Who Wish Me Dead, sucks you in from the first page and doesn't let you go.

Author Sarah Lotz is terrified of flying, so naturally every time she gets on a plane she imagines the worst. "I imagine how it's going to smell if things start burning," she says. "I imagine the thunk of luggage falling out of the compartments at the top. ... I imagine it all in absolutely horrible detail."

All those horrible imaginings came in handy when Lotz was writing her new book The Three — the story of three children who are the only survivors of four separate plane crashes that occur in different parts of the world on the same day.

Crime writer Ann Cleeves puts it best in her novel Dead Water: "Shetland didn't do pretty. It did wild and bleak and dramatic."

The Shetland Islands are a damp and rocky place, with endless miles of green and gray. Humanity seems to cling to the land here like a few tenacious barnacles. "I love the idea of long, low horizons with secrets hidden underneath," Cleeves says.

Austin Jenkins / Northwest News Network

It doesn’t rise to the level of the Watergate break-in. But the Washington State Patrol Friday released surveillance video of a recent burglary in Governor Jay Inslee’s office. Instead of political skullduggery, this appears to be a crime of opportunity.

Kevin Mooney / NICB

In what Northwest city is your car most likely to be stolen? According to a new insurance industry report, the answer is Spokane. Meanwhile, the former top auto theft hot spot of Yakima made significant improvement in the last year.

Western Washington's U.S. Attorney says three motels in Tukwila were seized yesterday ,-following a long-term investigation into alleged criminal activity. 

West Albany High School students are praising one of their classmates as a hero. Truman Templeton sounded the alarm that a fellow student was plotting what officials call "mass murder" at his high school. Seventeen-year-old Grant Acord is being held on $2 million bail after his initial court appearance Tuesday. Salem Correspondent Chris Lehman reports.

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