Man convicted of abusing girlfriend — The family of a woman who died before she could testify against the man accused of binding her with electrical tape and sodomizing her says they found justice with the man’s conviction. The Oregonian reports Thomas Acosta was convicted by a Newport jury of sodomy, second-degree sexual abuse and two counts of fourth-degree assault on Friday. His accuser, April Loper, told police Acosta knocked her unconscious, bound her and raped her repeatedly in December 2011. Loper also told her family that Acosta had threatened to kill her if she talked about the assault. But Loper and her father died in a car crash in October. Her statements to police were ruled inadmissible as hearsay.
Private school buses? — A Southern Oregon school district is considering hiring a private company to run its school buses, an idea that worries district-employed drivers. The request for proposals from contractors could lead to lower costs for the financially-strapped Winston-Dillard School District. The Oregon School Employees Association is mounting a campaign in opposition. Association president Tim Stoelb says the district’s 13 full-time bus drivers, three substitute drivers, two assistants for special education buses and a dispatcher may be hired by a contractor, but could be paid less or have fewer benefits. A spokesman for the Illinois company that the city of Roseburg uses for its buses says private bus driver salaries and benefits are usually comparable to what they earned as district employees.
Corrections officials named — The Oregon Department of Corrections has named two people to top posts in Eastern Oregon on an interim basis. The East Oregonian reports Steven Franke was named interim eastside institutions administrator for the Oregon Department of Corrections. Jeri Taylor was named interim superintendent of Two Rivers Correctional Institution in Umatilla.
— From wire reports