Hikers rescued — A group of six hikers has been rescued from an area near Multnomah Falls after getting lost on the trails. The Multnomah County Sheriff’s Office said the hikers were rescued Thursday afternoon. Authorities say the group had gone out for a day hike on Wednesday on the trails above Multnomah Falls and got lost on the way back down. The hikers ended up stopping on a steep incline and called for help. The group included one adult and five teenagers. The adult and two teenagers were from Grass Valley while two other teenagers were from Gladstone and the other teenager was from Oregon City. Authorities initially made direct contact with the hikers early Friday morning and waited for rescue crews to aid the hikers with ropes. The sheriff’s office says the hikers are in good condition with a few scrapes and bruises.
Guide dog denied taxi service — Two Portland cab drivers have been fined $1,250 apiece because they declined to provide service to a legally blind woman and her guide dog. Drivers Hamlet Galstyn and Aram Ambaryan violated the city code for refusing to transport a passenger “of proper demeanor who requests services.” Regulatory division manager Kathleen Butler said the drivers were allowed to pay half the fine — $625 — because it was their first offense. Further violations could lead to suspension or revocation of their taxi permits. The incident happened Aug. 1, after 56-year-old Deb Marinos of Salem took a train to Portland’s Union Station. A different cab driver gave the woman and her dog a ride to an appointment. Marinos told the newspaper she is glad regulators took action.
Salem woman arraigned — A 35-year-old Salem woman accused of having sex with a 12-year-old boy was arraigned on charges of rape and sodomy. The Marion County Sheriff’s Office arrested Sarah Beth Hopkins over the weekend. The Statesman Journal reports that her alleged victim is a friend’s son. The boy told his mother that he and Hopkins were sexually active for the past eight months and had sex about 15 times at Hopkins’ apartment and on walks. A probable cause statement released by the sheriff’s office Wednesday says Hopkins admitted to investigators that she had sex with boy, but did not threaten him or offer anything in return for sex.
Bomb in backpack — Police arrested a man at the Roseburg VA after a homemade bomb was allegedly found in his backpack. KVAL reports that officers stopped 19-year-old Joseph Campos of Glide on Wednesday after he was seen acting suspiciously. He was arrested without incident, and police said they don’t believe he planned to use the device to hurt anyone. Campos was booked into the Douglas County Jail on charges of unlawful manufacture and possession of a destructive device. The Oregon State Police bomb squad disposed of the device.
Alsea River Beach health advisory — The Oregon Health Authority has issued an advisory because of higher-than-normal levels of bacteria in ocean waters at Alsea River Recreation Area Beach in Lincoln County. Spokesman Jonathan Modie says the higher-than-normal level was found in the river upstream of the Alsea Bay Bridge. Increased pathogen and fecal bacteria levels in ocean waters can come from shore and inland sources such as storm water runoff, sewer overflows, failing septic systems, and animal waste from livestock, pets, birds, seals and other wildlife. Visitors to the area should not have direct contact with water, especially children and the elderly, who may be more vulnerable to waterborne bacteria.
Motel guest clubbed — A man who was staying at a Medford motel is the intensive care unit at a local hospital after police say he was clubbed several times by a visitor. Lt. Mike Budreau said Thursday that officers found the 44-year-old victim unconscious and suffering from head injuries. Witnesses said the man was in his room when the victim arrived wearing dark clothing and a red bandanna that covered his face. Besides clubbing the man, the visitor stole items from the victim as well as a woman who was in the room but not hurt. Budreau says the crime might be drug-related
Parakeet reunited with owner — Gresham police say a large parakeet stolen from a southeast Portland home has been reunited with its owner. Detective John Rasmussen says a woman brought the bird to the Gresham Police Department on Thursday morning. The woman told police she took possession of the bird shortly after midnight when the cage it was in fell from the shopping cart of an old man who appeared homeless. Rasmussen says the bird was not harmed and the case remains under investigation.
Klamath water task force — A task force looking for solutions to the water woes in the Klamath Basin says it needs an additional two weeks to come up with a list of suggestions for lawmakers. The group had been scheduled to produce recommendations by Sept. 5. But the Herald and News reports that during a meeting Thursday in Ashland, the group decided it needs more time. Richard Whitman, natural resources adviser to the governor, cited slow progress on addressing upper Basin water issues and federal costs. Drought and newly recognized water rights for the Klamath Tribes has cut off irrigation for cattle ranches in the upper Basin.
— From wire reports