A Silver Lake man reports being the victim of a phone scammer. The man called the Cowlitz County Sheriff’s Office shortly after 5 yesterday afternoon, reporting that he had been bilked out of $1,500 cash. The man says that he got a call on his cell phone, with the caller claiming that the man had three $500 warrants, and he was facing immediate arrest unless he settled up. The man says that he got three pre-paid card from Rite Aid, then provided the numbers from those cards to the caller. Deputies say that once the scammer got hold of those codes, the money was gone, and there’s no way to get it back. They also say that the caller’s number was “spoofed,” so there’s no way to track him down. The Sheriff’s Office reminds us all that any call of this type, threatening immediate arrest for warrants or unpaid fines are scam calls, and they say that you should just hang up right away.
A Longview woman is being directed to law enforcement in Richmond, Virginia, after she reported that someone was trying to scam her over some parrot eggs. The woman called the Sheriff’s Office yesterday afternoon, saying that she had paid $300 over the internet for two parrot eggs. The woman also says that she got a call from someone claiming to be with the Richmond Airport, who was saying that her eggs had been damaged, and they were requesting additional payment. The woman says that she got suspicious at this point; after doing some more digging, the woman found that the entire setup was a scam, and that the “sale” was fraudulent. The woman says that she paid via Western Union in Virginia, and Western Union officials report that they do have security photos of the suspects. LPD advised the woman to contact the Richmond Police Department for additional action.
Reporting that the person running the Laundry Love program is moving out of the area, Chuck Hendrickson with Love Overwhelming is reporting that the program to provide laundry services to the homeless is being brought into his agency. Hendrickson says that Steve Hughes, the founder and director of Laundry Love, is moving out of state. Hendrickson says that Laundry Love and Love Overwhelming formed a “relationship” several months ago, and he says that relationship is leading to the transfer of Laundry Love to Love Overwhelming on May 1st. Hendrickson says that Laundry Love will remain the same for the next few months, providing free laundry services each month. Hughes will continue to lead through the transition, also assisting the Laundry Love volunteers during that time. Laundry Love provides free laundry services once each month at the 20th Avenue Laundromat in Longview.
Hendrickson says that they’re also setting up a gathering on the evening of Thursday, May 31st, at the Hearth Coffee Shop, located at the corner of Commerce and Florida in downtown Longview. He’s calling this “a night of vision, success stories and a time for questions and answers,” discussing how local agencies, grass-roots groups and community members can partner up to help provide services and assistance for the homeless.
19th District Representative Jim Walsh is announcing that monetary support for Community House on Broadway is being secured. The Republican from Aberdeen says that $129,000 is included in the recently-passed Capital Budget for the state. Walsh says that Community House plans to use the money to purchase a building that will help to provide safe, secure housing for community members that are in need of shelter. Walsh says that this contribution from the state will combine with the local efforts to support Community House and the services that they provide. Walsh says that the Community House model of “a hand up, not a handout” could be a model for other shelters in the 19th District. He says that “Community House is a great platform that should be copied,” and he says that it’s a “sad truth” that more of these facilities are needed all around the region. Community House is currently in the midst of its 8th annual Community Cares Campaign, working to raise 200 hundred thousand dollars for operations, running through June.
The Blazers lost again in the playoffs, dropping a 119-102 game at New Orleans. Portland will try and avoid a sweep in game four Saturday…..The Astros beat the Mariners 9-2 Thursday. Seattle begins a 10 game road trip at Texas today, KLOG 4:00 pm…..The LCC baseball team host Grays Harbor in a 1 pm DH Saturday…..The LCC softball team host Yakima Valley at 5 pm today at Tam O’Shanter Park. The Devils then host Walla Walla tomorrow at 12 pm at 7th Avenue Park…..R.A. Long went 3-0 in Civil War action yesterday. The Jills beat Mark Morris in softball 5-3, beat the Monarchs 3-1 in boys soccer and captured the tiebreaker in a 3-3 girls tennis match with MM…..The Kalama Twilight track meet is today at 4 pm. The Kelso track teams compete at the Canby Invite.
Bloodworks Northwest is going to be set up this Friday at St. John Medical Center in Longview, conducting a Blood Drive that will run from 11;30 am until 5:30 pm. This will happen in Conference Rooms A and B at the hospital, with a break from 1:30 until 2:30 pm. Anyone age 17 and over, who is in good general health, should be able to donate blood. Call 1-800-398-7888 to set up an appointment, but walkups will also be accepted.
The Friends of the Castle Rock Library are holding a Book Sale this weekend, going from 11 am until 6 pm on Friday and from 10 am to 3 pm on Saturday, in the back room of the library on Cowlitz St. W. in Castle Rock. Call 360-274-6961 for details.
LCC’s Softball Spirit Night happens today, running from 4 to 7 pm at Tam O’Shanter Park in Kelso. The Lady Devils will be taking on Yakima Valley in a doubleheader; there will be free food, swag and other fun.
The next Angel Closet dress giveaway happens this Friday and Saturday, making dresses for prom and other formal events available to local girls for free. Local high school girls can come in and choose dresses, shoes and accessories from 3 to 6 pm on Friday and from 10 am to 1am on Saturday at the shop, located at 1811 Washington Way in Longview.
The Love Street Playhouse in Woodland opens a production of the hilarious musical comedy “I Love You, You’re Perfect, Now Change,” starting this Friday and running each weekend through May 5th. Curtain is 7:30 Friday and Saturday, along with a matinee at 2 pm on Sunday. It’s noted that the show is not appropriate for children under high school age, and kids age 5 and under will not be admitted. Get ticket information by going to lovestreetplayhouse.com.
The annual Comcast Cares Day happens this Saturday in Castle Rock, with a cleanup event planned to run from 8 am until noon at Lions Pride Park. More than 75 volunteers and Comcast employees are expected to take part, cleaning up the park and The Rock. They’ll also be putting in a “pollinator garden,” and will help to build a historical monument. To get signed up, go to comcastinthecommunity.com.
The annual Fox Creek Cleanup happens this Saturday in Rainier, going from 9:30 am until 1 pm. Working with SOLVE, the City of Rainier and the Riverside Community Church, volunteers will fun out to remove invasive ivy and blackberry bushes; they’ll also spread bark chips, and the dedication of a new salmon life cycle sign will take place at 9:30. Call 503-369-0867 for more information. Volunteers should meet in the parking lot of Riverside Community Church in Rainier.
Get rid of your personal and sensitive documents this Saturday at the 12th annual Shred Day event, coming up from 10 am until 2 pm this Saturday behind the main branch of Fibre Federal Credit Union, at 820 12th Avenue in Longview. You can bring up to three 10-ream boxes of documents, which will be destroyed for free. Donations of non-perishable food will also be accepted, with the collections going to local food banks.
Safe Kids Lower Columbia is holding a Car Seat Clinic on Saturday, running from 10 am until 1pm in the truck bays at the Cowlitz 2 Main Station, located at 701 Vine Street in Kelso. Call Cowlitz 2 at 360-575-6280 to learn more.
Take the little ones to the Longview Library on Saturday for “Messy Art Day,” starting at 10:30 am. They’ll be rolling out butcher paper and will open up the paint tubes. They’ll be painting, printing, sculpting and having other fun in the Library Auditorium, located on the lower level of the Library. You should probably have a change of clothes, or make sure that the car is ready to take home some messy kids. This is for babies through age 6; call 360-442-5300 for more information.
The Heart Beat Wounded Warrior Fund Raiser Game Show is happening this Saturday in the Horse Arena at the Cowlitz County Fairgrounds. This is a 4-D Game Show, with competition in Barrel Racing, Speed Barrels, Bi-Wrangle and Steely Figure 8. Signups start at 10 am, and the events will start at 11. Call 360-431-7658 for more information.
There’s another “Soup’s On” Community Lunch happens this Saturday at the Kelso First Baptist Church. The doors open at 11:30 am, and lunch will be served until 1 pm. The Clothes Closet will also be open. The church is located at 214 S. 4th in Kelso; call 360-423-2513 to find out more.
With a theme of “Once Upon a Time,” the annual Cowlitz County CASA Gala and Auction will happen this Saturday, billed as a “wonderful evening of food, fundraising and community. They’re asking for “Cocktail Attire” when the doors at the Cowlitz County Expo Center open at 5:30 pm. Go to the Cowlitz County CASA web page for ticket information.
The annual Young Artists Concert by the Southwest Washington Symphony happens this weekend at LCC’s Rose Center for the Arts. The concert will feature two Young Artist Solo competition winners, Micah Cash from LCC and Willow Calabrese from Kelso High School. The mark Morris and R. A. Long High School Choirs will also perform. Two performances are planned, at 7 pm on Saturday and at 3 pm on Sunday. Admission is free.
Find out about starting a local chapter of “Ladies Homestead Gathering” at an event that’s planned for Saturday in Castle Rock. Organizers say that the Nation Ladies Homestead Gatherings are places where women can share new ideas, celebrate victories and address challenges, while “cultivating community with like-minded women.” This will run from 5:30 to 6:30 pm on Saturday at Vault Books and Brew in Castle Rock. All ladies age 16 and up and nursing babies are welcome.
“My Shining Star” happens this Friday night at Kelso High School, a father-daughter dance that’s being put on by the Class of 2022 Booster Club. This will go from 6 to 8 pm in the Commons area at Kelso High; call 360-957-2270 for ticket information.
The Cowlitz Community Farmers Market continues its annual run in the 7th Avenue parking lot, across from the Cowlitz County Fairgrounds. They’re have plants to get your garden started, fresh honey, baked goods and other craft items for sale. Hours are 9 am until 2 pm on Saturdays and Tuesdays through October.
The Fibre Federal Credit Union Rainy Months Series continue on Sunday with the “Super Scientific Circus,” starting at 2 pm at the Columbia Theatre for the Performing Arts. Mr. Fish and Trent the Mime will show how science can be fun and funny. Go to columbiatheatre.com for ticket information.
The Oregon Symphony Orchestra travels to Clatskanie on Sunday, brought to town by the Clatskanie Arts Commission. Curtain in the Donovan Wooley Performing Arts Center at Clatskanie Mid-High School is at 3 pm. Tickets are available online at clatskanieartscommission.com, or at the door.
Sunday is the deadline for entries into the Longview Historic Preservation Monday Photo Contest, with winners to be announced on May 7. You should take your best photo of some local landmark that is at least 50 years old, and is within the city limits of Longview. Prizes will be awarded in Elementary School, High School and Adult categories. Get rules and an entry form on mylongview.com.
The Astros scored six runs in the 7th inning and beat the Mariners 7-1 last night. It’s a day game today at Safeco Field, KLOG 11:30 am…..The Trail Blazers, down 0-2 to the Pelicans, will play at New Orleans tonight, 5:05 pm on The Wave…..Longview native Wes Armstrong is returning to coaching as he takes over as the head boys basketball coach at Kalama, replacing long time Chinook coach Jody Stemkoski…..In prep baseball, Kelso defeated Fort Vancouver 11-4, R.A. Long blanked Washougal 6-0 and Hockinson beat Mark Morris 12-4. Today, Kelso is at Evergreen, Ridgefield at RAL and Washougal at MM…..In softball, River beat MM 11-2. Today, MM is at RAL and Kelso at Fort…..Mt. View beat Kelso 3-0 in boys soccer. Mark Morris and R.A. Long play at 6 pm today at LMS.
The manslaughter trial of Dawson Dunn, 13, of Kelso is now under way, and is expected to run through Friday. The teen is on trial for shooting and killing his friend, Edgar Vasquez, 13, at Dunn’s home on Carroll Road in October of last year. Today’s Daily News reports on the first day of testimony in Cowlitz County Juvenile Court, where it appears that Dunn’s experience in handling guns will be a key component. In October of last year, best friends Dunn and Vasquez were at Dunn’s house, with Vasquez playfully chasing Dunn. It’s alleged that Dunn went into a bedroom and grabbed a Benelli shotgun. Dunn told a deputy that he racked the gun and ejected a shell, then he racked it again; thinking the gun was unloaded, he pointed it at Vasquez and pulled the trigger. The gun fired, hitting Vasquez in the chest. Prosecutors and defense attorneys both agree that the shooting was accidental; for a conviction, it has to be proven that Dunn also acted recklessly. Motions to bar testimony about Dunn shooting shotguns at a range earlier in 2017 and to exclude statements that Dunn made to deputies right after the shooting were denied. Testimony is expected to continue today, and into tomorrow.
Kevin Lea Hawkins, 51, of St. Helens is heading to prison for six years and three months, sentenced on a charge of criminally negligent homicide. The charge is connected to the November, 2014 death of his wife, which was originally thought to be from complications of a recent medical procedure. April Hawkins, 36, was found dead in her home on November 9th, 2014, and it was originally thought that the complications caused her death. Toxicology tests then indicated that the death was due to an “intentional overdose.” After an “extensive and complex” investigation, Kevin Hawkins was arrested in April of 2016, and was charged with murder. He eventually pleaded guilty to the criminally negligent homicide charge, and was sentenced earlier this week in Columbia County Circuit Court. Judge Ted Grove sentenced Hawkins to 75 months in prison, with three years of post-release supervision. Hawkins will get credit for time served, but there will be no opportunity for early release.
As the merger with WestRock continues to move ahead, KapStone Paper and Packaging is announcing a huge boost to profits in the first quarter of the year, mostly due to benefits from the recently-passed Tax Cut and Jobs Act. The company is reporting net sales of $799 million in the first quarter, which is $33 million higher than the first quarter of last year, an increase of four percent. Net income comes in at $33 million, $27 million higher than last year; that’s an increase of 446 percent. Diluted earnings per share of 33 cents is 27 cents above last year’s report, which is a 450-percent increase. KapStone President and CEO Matt Kaplan says that these results build on the positive momentum that was building at the end of last year, with increased demand for containerboard, corrugated boxes and kraft paper. A price increase for containerboard is paying dividends, while equipment upgrades in North Carolina is helping with reliability and efficiency. Kaplan says that Victory Packaging had a solid first quarter, and he says that work on the merger with WestRock is continuing.