Woman wants to withdraw plea to wildfire charge

WENATCHEE – A woman blamed for starting the Flick Creek Fire on the northeastern shore of Lake Chelan is seeking to withdraw her guilty plea to reckless burning.

Mary Irene Hayhoe, 46, who has been living in the Stehekin area for the past year, submitted the request this week as she was scheduled to be sentenced for the gross misdemeanor in Chelan County District Court. She also asked to have an attorney appointed to represent her.

Judge Thomas Warren said she should consult with an attorney, given the seriousness of the charge, but that he would not yet approve withdrawal of the plea.

Warren rescheduled Hayhoe’s hearing for Oct. 10 to give her time to speak with an attorney and follow correct procedures to withdraw her plea.

About $4 million has been spent to date fighting the Flick Creek Fire, Brett Ricker, fire spokeswoman, said.

Chelan County sheriff’s officials said Hayhoe told them she started the fire by burning pages from her journal on a bluff near the lake, where she was camping. She told police she thought she’d extinguished the fire. Police said she didn’t have a camping permit and was not allowed to light a campfire at the site.

Vancouver: Man claims insanity in slaying

A man accused of stabbing a teenage girl to death at a McDonald’s restaurant in Vancouver pleaded not guilty Friday by reason of insanity.

The trial for David B. Sullivan, 29, was set for Jan. 8 in Clark County Superior Court, though lawyers say it may be delayed by more psychological testing.

Sullivan was diagnosed with paranoid schizophrenia in 2000, but was found competent to stand trial.

Police say he attacked Anna Svidersky, 17, on April 20 as she was taking a break from her shift at the restaurant.

If acquitted on the grounds of insanity, Sullivan would be committed indefinitely to Western State Hospital. If convicted of murder he could be sentenced to more than 22 years in prison.

He is a registered sex offender with prior convictions for assault and unlawful imprisonment with sexual motivation.

Spokane: Mask ruled not a factor in death

A medical examiner has concluded that a plastic “spit” mask with a small breathing hole apparently did not contribute to Otto Zehm’s death in a confrontation with Spokane police officers.

Spokane County Prosecutor Steve Tucker said he asked Medical Examiner Sally Aiken to review her previous findings to determine if the mask, which an officer placed over Zehm’s mouth and nose, contributed to his death.

Aiken ruled in May that Zehm died as a result of homicide, caused by lack of oxygen to the brain because of heart failure while being restrained on his stomach.

Zehm, 36, a mentally disabled janitor, was beaten, shocked and hogtied inside a convenience store by seven officers responding to a false robbery report March 18. He lapsed into a coma and died two days later.

Oregon: Gas prices still among highest in U.S.

Oregon drivers are still paying the sixth highest gas prices in the nation, even though prices statewide have dropped below $3 a gallon.

The average price in the state for a gallon of unleaded regular dipped to $2.82 this week, dropping by roughly a penny a day the last few weeks. A month ago, the average was $3.03.

Nationally, the average price has dropped to $2.46, 46 cents below what it was a month ago.

Associated Press

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