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Medical marijuana activists are reacting to Tuesday’s verdict in federal court in Spokane, in which three people were convicted of growing marijuana in a state where medical and recreational marijuana are legal. The three defendants were found guilty of growing marijuana, but not on the scale the federal prosecution maintained. They were also acquitted of charges related to selling marijuana, and possession of firearms.

Kari Boiter of the group American for Safe Access, says the fact the jury acquitted the defendants on four out of five charges meant they knew the truth.

Hendrike / Wikimedia Commons

The case of a northeast Washington family accused of growing and selling marijuana has gone to the jury in a federal trial in Spokane.

The closing arguments in the case began Monday and continued briefly Tuesday morning. The judge sent the jury to the deliberation room shortly after 9 a.m.

The federal case is unusual in that it accused a family of producing and selling marijuana in Washington, where both medical marijuana and recreational pot are legal. The family claimed they were growing marijuana for medical purposes.

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The trial began Wednesday in federal court in Spokane for a group of people accused of growing marijuana near Kettle Falls in northeast Washington. The case is seen as a test of federal drug laws, in a state that has legalized recreational and medical marijuana.

In the case known as the Kettle Falls Five, there are now only three defendants. Charges were dropped earlier this month against 71-year-old Larry Harvey, who has been diagnosed with stage five pancreatic cancer. Miller's family members are accused of growing marijuana, which they say was for medicinal purposes.

The US Department of Justice has found leadership was lacking amongst Spokane police for more than eight years. This came in a list of 42 recommendations handed down by the federal COPS program to the Spokane Police Department Friday.

The recommendations came after the police department requested a federal review of its use of force practices. It stems from a 2006 case, in which Spokane man Otto Zehm was beaten by police and died.

COPS Director Ron Davis says they reviewed more than 200 use-of-force cases from the past five years.

Spokane’s Shawn Vestal Wins PEN Prize For Debut Fiction

Sep 30, 2014
Beowulf Sheehan / PEN American Center

“Faith became a larger and larger part of the book as I began to shape it and write the later stories. And for me, that’s just Mormonism. That’s what faith is. That's my background, and so that's the prism through which I can look at the subject."

A Northwest writer is this year’s winner of a prestigious PEN award. Shawn Vestal of Spokane won the prize for debut fiction Monday night in New York.

Photo credit: ELBAZ / Wikimedia commons

By Friday morning, Washington State University leaders could approve one of the biggest educational ventures the school has seen in decades. A new report shows WSU is ready for a full-fledged medical school in Spokane.

Spokane Indians Baseball Club

Football season has kicked off another round of scrutiny over how professional sports teams use Native American mascots. But in eastern Washington, a minor league baseball team has earned the approval of its native namesake.

Mark / Flickr

Washington’s recreational marijuana market is open for business. From Seattle to Bellingham to Prosser, marijuana stores opened for business Tuesday. Excited customers lined up, dressed up and celebrated the end of pot prohibition. Olympia Correspondent Austin Jenkins has this wrap-up.

Mary Randlett

It started with the discovery of long-forgotten gravestones in a thicket of bramble and alder. That set one author on the faint trail of a feisty Native American woman and oyster farmer who lived in 19th century western Washington. The biographer is using the resulting book to inspire other Northwesterners - particularly tribal members. She wants to bring out the stories of people who, in her words, have been "left out of our histories." Correspondent Tom Banse reports from Oyster Bay in Mason County, Washington.

Cassandra Profita / EarthFix

Students around the Northwest go to school every day in portable classrooms. These classrooms are an affordable solution to budget-strapped districts that need more space. But they can be bad for student health and performance. That’s why some districts are moving away from portable classrooms.

One district in Spokane has found a solution.

Courtney Flatt brings us part 2 of our special series "Inside the Box."

Washington Gets Its First Charter School

Jan 31, 2014
PRIDE Prep's Facebook

Spokane has approved Washington State’s first charter school after a unanimous vote by the city’s public school board.

Spokane Public Schools received applications earlier this year from three charter school organizations; PRIDE Prep, iLead and the Academy of Arts and Sciences. After submitting applications organizations went through interviews and public forums.  In a vote January 22, the school board unanimously approved the PRIDE Prep school.

ABCD All It Takes For Low-Income Kids To Get A Dentist

Dec 2, 2013
Melissa Clark/Flickr

When a child’s first tooth erupts, the American Dental Association recommends parents get them into the dentist. For low income families, that sometimes isn't an option. But Washington’s low-income kids have more dentist visits than in any other state.

The Northwest programmers behind the computer game Myst are now trying to write their next chapter.

Two sixteen year olds accused of beating and robbing a world war two veteran will be tried as adults in Spokane County District Court. That’s just one new layer in the death of 88 year old Delbert Belton.

A judge in Spokane has set a steep bail for the first of two 16-year-old males charged with 1st degree robbery and 1st degree murder. Both males are accused of robbing and beating to death 88-year old Delbert Belton, a World War II veteran.

The Spokane School District wants to be allowed to consider applications from prospective charter schools.

Slackline World Cup In U.S. For First Time, At Hoopfest

Jun 24, 2013

7,000 or so basketball teams take to the streets of Spokane this weekend to play in the 24th annual Hoopfest. Hoopfest’s organizers have a new trick up their sleeves this year, which will bring athletes from around the world to compete in a different sport. Paige Browning has the story.

Airmen Remembered In Spokane

May 29, 2013
Paige Browning

Tuesday in Spokane people came together to honor three Air Force airmen who died earlier this month. They were members of the 93rd Air Refueling Squadron from Fairchild Air Force Base. Paige Browning has more on the memorial.

Matthew Ryan Buquet

Wednesday FBI officials in Spokane arrested a man for connection with mailing a poisonous letter to a government building. Spokane Public Radio’s Paige Browning reports.

Boston Marathon Runner Races Again In Spokane

May 6, 2013
Jessica Robinson / Northwest News Network

Three weeks after the Boston bombings, one of the iconic figures of that tragedy was racing again in Spokane. Bill Iffrig of Lake Stevens, Wash., joined more than 50-thousand runners on Sunday for the Bloomsday Run. You might remember the images of Iffrig on the ground immediately following a blast at the Boston marathon. Jessica Robinson has this story.

Law enforcement officials say they have increased the level of security for this year’s Bloomsday race in Spokane. More than 50,000 people participate in the 12-K run. Paige Browning reports.

Sticky Rules On Pot Brought Up At Hearing in Spokane

Feb 14, 2013

Tuesday night in Spokane about 450 people showed up to a hearing about the state’s marijuana market. The state liquor control board held the forum as part of their research in implementing the sale of recreational marijuana. Paige Browning reports.

In the past two days, there have been 149 vehicle crashes in Spokane County. Though snow falls in Spokane every year, Police say they still see a rise in car-wrecks on icy winter roads. Paige Browning reports.

In the final week of December, seven homicides occurred in Spokane. Chief of Police Frank Straub says crime in the city is on the rise. Paige Browning reports.

Spokane County’s 911 staff will soon grow, in order to speed up answering time. Paige Browning reports six call receivers will join the call center in the new year.

Hundreds of people attended Tuesday's public hearing in Spokane about a proposed coal export terminal in the Northwest. The meeting brought out strong emotions, and raised a moral question about how the hearings are run. Paige Browning reports the event focused on the proposed Gateway Terminal for Whatcom County, which would ship coal to Asia.

Former Spokane Officer Faces 4 Years In Federal Prison

Nov 19, 2012

A former Spokane police officer was taken away in handcuffs Thursday night, more than one year after being convicted, and more than six years after Spokane man Otto Zehm died. Paige Browning reports on Karl F. Thompson Jr.’s sentencing.

Thursday marks the beginning of the end in a six-year-long court case involving a former Spokane police officer and the death of a Spokane man. Karl F. Thompson faces sentencing Thursday morning in Spokane’s federal court. Paige Browning reports from Spokane.

Anonymous Commenter Reveals Identity

Jul 24, 2012
Sandy Clemons

A lawsuit in north Idaho over anonymous comments posted in an online forum attracted national attention. Now, the commenter at the center of that dispute has unmasked herself. As correspondent Jessica Robinson reports, the case reveals a rift within the north Idaho Republican Party.

City of Spokane Mayor Picks Police Chief Finalists

Jul 19, 2012

Four finalists for Police Chief in Spokane have been identified by Spokane Mayor Condon. Reporter Paige Browning has details.

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