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Recount Ordered

It’s now official; Washington Secretary of State Kim Wyman is ordering a machine recount of ballots cast in the race for Position number 2 in the 19th District House race. The final tally from the five counties that make up the 19th show that challenger Teresa Purcell had 4,611 votes, while the incumbent JD Rosetti had 6,361 votes, a difference of 50 votes. The margin of two-tenths of one percent automatically triggers a machine recount. Wyman now says that the five counties involved will conduct those machine recounts this Thursday morning, and then the Canvassing Boards in each county will submit those results. The winner will then face Republican Jim Walsh in the November General Election.

Tuesday Sports

Mike Zunino and Kyle Seager each had three-run dingers, helping to rally the Seattle Mariners to a 7-5 win last night over the NY Yankees. Edwin Diaz had to pitch himself out of a jam in the 9th, putting runners on 2nd and 3rd with one out, before getting a fly out and a ground out to end the game. Seattle and NY meet up again tonight, KLOG coverage at 6 pm; it’s expected that Taijuan Walker will be called up from Tacoma to start tonight’s game…..Bend got by Italy 6-2 in a consolation round game at the Little League World Series in Pennsylvania…..The Dallas Cowboys are expected to have rookie RB Ezekiel Elliot available for Thursday night’s pre-season game against the Seattle Seahawks. Elliot has been hampered by a hamstring issue.

Shooting Update

The in-store video from the Flying K store in Kelso is being released by the Cowlitz County Sheriff’s Office, tape that shows Omer Ismail Ali, 27, of Spokane burst into the store while Officer John Johnstone is talking with a clerk; the video shows Ali using a thick stick to attack two people as Johnston runs over to intervene. Johnston is knocked to the ground himself, and that’s when you see him pull his service weapon. The tape stops there; an autopsy conducted on Friday shows that Ali was hit with three rounds, a fatal shot to the chest, along with wounds to the neck and jaw. Undersheriff Marc Gilchrist says that Ali had multiple contacts with law enforcement in the days leading up to the shooting, including four contacts early in the morning prior to the shooting. Gilchrist also says that they have learned that Ali was an immigrant from The Sudan, and had only been in this country for about three years. He has other arrest and law enforcement history in Whatcom County, along with misdemeanor warrants out of Spokane and Blaine. The Sheriff’s Office is still working to contact family for Ali, while Johnston remains on paid administrative leave.

Paradise Point Mishap

A young girl is reported to be in critical condition after a near-drowning that took place Saturday afternoon at Paradise Point State Park, just south of Woodland. This incident was reported at about 2 pm on Saturday, when it was reported that a four or five year-old girl had gone under the water. Other people at the park started CPR while paramedics responded and took over. The girl was eventually taken by ambulance to PeaceHealth Southwest Washington Medical Center, then was taken by helicopter to Randall Children’s Hospital in Portland. The girl’s condition hasn’t been updated.

Motorcycle Chase

Castle Rock Police and the Sheriff’s Office continue to investigate a motorcycle crash that took place after a high-speed pursuit, late Saturday afternoon. Around 10 minutes to 6 pm on Saturday, a Sheriff’s Deputy reported being in pursuit of two sport bikes on the freeway just south of exit 49. It was noted that one of the bikes was doing about 100 miles an hour. The riders exited the freeway at milepost 52, heading onto Burma Road. There was a crash at the end of the road, near Camp Arnold, with the rider ejected near the gate for the Weyerhaeuser land. The rider was picked up by LifeFlight and was taken to PeaceHealth Southwest Washington Medical Center. The rider’s name has not been released, and his condition has not been updated this morning.

Glenwood Pursuit

Timothy Allen Cochran, 46, of Winlock is under arrest after a high-speed chase that took place early yesterday morning in the hills above Longview. At about 2:45 yesterday morning, Deputies seeing a speeding vehicle in the area of Glenwood Drive and Pacific Way. The suspect continued up to Columbia Heights, where he was reported to be doing 80 miles an hour. Spike strips were set up at the base of the hill, and the driver reportedly hit those as he came into West Kelso. The car stopped in the area of West Castleman, and the driver reportedly tried to run. The driver initially evaded Deputies, but Cochran was tracked down and arrested later in the day. Cochran is now being charged with felony eluding and felony drug possession, along with two new contempt of court counts. He also faces a slate of misdemeanor counts. A female passenger was questioned and released

Longview Schools Budget

The Longview School Board meets at 7 pm tonight, with plans to adopt the 2016-2017 operating budget at this evening’s meeting. The district is looking at an overall budget of nearly $82 million in the coming school year, a budget that includes new middle school counselors, elementary climate and culture specialists, and additional teachers, to qualify for reduced class size dollars. There’s a 1.8 percent COLA for all employees, along with increases to cover TRI days and other costs connected to employee contracts. $958,000 is budgeted for new math texts in grades 6 through 12, and there’s a plan to buy four new school buses. The district also plans to refinance bond debt, a move that they say will save $1 million in debt service over the next five years. Tonight’s meeting is being held on the Longview School Board meeting room, and is open to the public.

Text to 911

Starting today, you’ll be able to contact Columbia County 911 via text message. Columbia County is one of eight locations in Oregon that will now have the ability to accept text messages to 911, a system that has been in development for about a year. The system is supported by the deaf and hearing impaired, saying that this gives them much improved access to emergency services. AT&T, Verizon, Sprint and US Cellular customers will be able to access the Text-to-911 system, with the costs covered by a 75-cent monthly charge that almost all cell phone customers pay. Contact Columbia County for more information.

Water Flushing

City of Longview utility crews will be out on the far west end of town this week, flushing out pipes on that end of the city’s water delivery system. City crews will be flushing water mains west of State Route 432 in the Willow Grove area, with work starting at 8 this morning, and will continue until 4 pm. Work will proceed each day through Thursday. Refrain from using water while the flushing is going on, and be sure to flush your own plumbing after the work is done.

Mad Hatter Tea Party

Local teens are invited to come to this afternoon’s “Mad Hatter Tea Party,” running from 3 to 5 pm today on the lawn next to the Longview Public Library. The Alice in Wonderland-themed event will include croquet and other lawn games, iced tea and much more. Be sure to dress up, as prizes will be awarded for the best costumes. This event is open to all area middle and high schoolers, being hosted by the Rainbow Community Diversity Youth Group, celebrating diversity in a bully-free environment. Call 442-5323 if you need help.