Newspaper Archive of
The New Era Paper
Sweet Home, Oregon
February 15, 2012     The New Era Paper
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February 15, 2012

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4i28i20 i2 N Grr, aii iown Papers- 2i 7 VV Cota St Snekon Vva ub Hometown Newspaoer of Ted Halladay Serving the Sweet Home community since 1929 Wednesday, February 15, 2012 Vol. 83, No. 7 I 75 Cents Suspect arrested Police respond to apparent burglary; 18-year-old found, taken into custody By Scan C. Morgan Of The New Era The Sweet Home Police Department arrested a suspect Thursday in a series of recent burglaries. Austin Richards, 18, was initially held on an outstanding warrant and early this week was charged in connection with two burglaries and one attempted burglary. He remained in Linn County Jail Tuesday. Police Chief Bob Burford said the charges against Richards are related to bur- glaries that occurred on 10th and 37th av- enues, and the incident that resulted in his arrest. "We're working to connect him to some of the recent residential burglaries through evidence left at the scenes of burglaries as well as suspected stolen property found on him during the arrest," Burford said. "We hope to be able to clear at least some of the burglaries in this manner." Police located and arrested Richards following a report of a burglary in progress on 38th Avenue. Neighbor Reggie Pace was outside working on his pickup when he saw Rich- ards walking south along 38th wearing a backpack, Pace said. "That's unusual on this street this time of day. It didn't look fight to me. He walked in almost like he owned the place." Pace said he walked up to the front Photo by Sean C. Morgan Police Officer Rex Bostrom, left, and Chief Bob Burford, right, escort suspect Austin Richards toward a patrol car after finding him in brush behind a 38th Avenue house where a burglary was attempted minutes before. door of his neighbor's and knocked on the door. Then he walked back to the driveway, started using his cell phone and returned to the door. Pace kept paying attention while pre- tending not to notice, he said. After he stuck his head under the pickup's hood, he heard a loud bang. He looked up and Richards was not in front of the house anymore. Pace went in and called the police. Police found a broken window in the back of the house. They located Richards in the brash behind the house using a canine unit from the U.S. Forest Service. "We're looking into the possibil- ity there is more than one individual doing See Arrest, page 9 Board opts for 4-day school week By Sean C. Morgan Of The New Era The District 55 School Board voted 5-3 Monday night, Feb. 13, to approve a four-day school week beginning next school year. Following months of discussion, the board voted with no further discussion during its regular meeting on Monday. Dale Keene moved to approve the four-day week, and Mike Reynolds gave a second. Voting yes were Keene, Reynolds, Chairman Jason Redick, Jenny Daniels and See Schools, page 13 Council sets goals for '12 By Sean C. Morgan Of The New Era Over the last few weeks, Sweet Home City Council members have been putting together a work list for 2012 and its main focus has been on work that will be needed at the city's Wastewater Treatment Plant and finding a way to stably fund library and police services. "We are trying to create some goals that are going to be measurable - what have we done?" said Mayor Craig Fentiman. The councilors have their eye on other areas too, including maintaining park facilities and possibly holding another community stra- tegic planning session like the community held around 2000. See Goals, page 7 SHPD has new wheels - a Charger By Sean C. Morgan Of The New Era The Sweet Home Police De- partment put its first Dodge Char- ger into service last week. The 2012 Charger has a V6, said Sgt. Jason Van Eck. "It's not the Hemi. It's not the V8. "It's a little roomier inside than the Impala and the Crown Victoria. It's set up primarily the same as the other cars. We compared the prices between the new Chevy Caprice that's coming out." The Chevrolet Impala was dis- continued as a patrol car two years ago. The department had started using the Impalas to save money. Since the Impala was discontinued, the department switched back to the Crown Victoria. The Crown Victoria, in turn, has been discontinued, forcing the department to shop around for a new patrol car, which resulted in a choice between a new Caprice and the Charger. The Charger was more afford- able and available in a V6 package, Van Eck said. In a recent compari- son by another area agency, the Ca- See Charger, page 8 Cascadians have boxes; now await Post Office By Sean C. Morgan Of The New Era Cascadia residents now have boxes at Foster Post Office and can access their mail from 8 a.m. to 8 p.m. every day of the week. Cascadia residents with Post Office boxes have been collect- ing their mail at Foster Post Of- fice since the Cascadia Post Of- rice burned down in November. They have had to stop by during office hours, said Foster Postmaster Bob Barnes. The question at this point is what U.S. Postal Service authori- ties will decide about the future of mail service in Cascadia, which is among Post Offices slated for closure as the USPS tries to solve funding shortfalls. "We're still in emergency suspension," said Jean Burger, a Cascadia resident. "These boxes there at Foster Post Office are just supposed to be temporary." In May, the Post Office Head- quarters will decide whether Cas- See Cascadia, page 13 Photo courtesy of Heather Thorpe State cheer champs Celebrating their first-place finish in the 4A Large Division OSAA cheer- leading championships Saturday at the Portland Memorial Coliseum are, in front, from left, Carii Syfert, Kellie Pollock, Desiree McCormick, Kendra Whaley, Taylor Thorpe, Jordyn Price, Veronica Szuch, Courtney Sanders and Natalie Thorpe. In the second row, from left, are: Christina Jenkins, Adriana Perez, Sammy McMahand, Kalyn Hagle, Kaelee Almy, Selena Rowe, Autumn Martin, Breanna Froemke, Caitlyn Spencer and Coach Amber Rosa. In the rear, from left, are Mariah Morneault, Sabria Branton,Alex Olin, and Randi Rockstead. For more on the Huskies' win, see page 11.