KWSO News Dec. 5, 2018

MADRAS, Ore. (AP) — A judge has found three Jefferson County Jail corrections officers not guilty of criminally negligent homicide in a man’s death. KTVZ-TV reports Crook County Circuit Judge Daina Vitolins decided Tuesday that evidence presented at trial was insufficient to prove the deputies’ failure to more quickly summon medical care was the cause of James Wippel’s death. Prosecutors accused Cpl. Anthony Hansen and deputies Michael Durkan and Cory Skidgel of ignoring medical issues leading to the death of the 59-year-old from a burst ulcer. The Portland man was arrested on drug charges in April 2017. Wippel died two days later at the jail. Vitolins said no one was able to testify to the critical question of when it was too late for medical treatment to save Wippel.

There are free monthly acupuncture clinics for community members in Warm Springs. The next will be December 12 in the aerobics room at the Community Center. The sessions are performed by an experienced, licensed acupuncturist and this can be helpful with pain management, stress, trauma and various other health concerns. You do not need an appointment, it is done on a walk-in basis so check it out December 12 between 8 and 11:30am.

The 55th Annual Warm Springs All-Indian Men’s Holiday Basketball Tourney is coming up December 26-29 at the Community Center. Tomorrow is the entry deadline for that. Next weekend is the 7th Annual Warm Springs Cougars Christmas Coed Basketball Tourney, December 14-16. Age groups include 10 years and under and 12 years and under divisions, and open to the first 6 teams in both divisions. Contact Tourney Director Austin Greene at 541-553-1953 or the Recreation Office for both tournaments.

The MAC Recreation District, Kiwanis & Lions Youth Basketball is taking signups now. They have added 1st-2nd grade this year. Teams are being formed for grades 1-2, 3-4, 5-6. They will have boys and girls teams if registration numbers allow. Games are being planned to play teams from outside of Madras. The regular registration deadline is December 16. You can register online at, in person at the MAC or by phone with at Credit Card 541-475-4253. They are always looking for volunteer coaches, if you are interested, check the box when you register or talk to Gregg Markwardt at the MAC.

The geology around Kah-Nee-Ta may support a moderate sized geothermal energy plant. Warm Springs Power and Water Enterprises for the past few years has successfully pursued two grants that have confirmed this assessment. The results show that an area near Kah- Nee-Ta could be suitable for a geothermal energy plant of 3 to 5 megawatts, said Jim Manion, Power and Water general manager, told Tribal Council. A third grant is pursued, the Spilyay Tymoo reports.

The State Youth Development Council has a new member. Andy Leonard of Warm Springs Behavioral Health joined the Council in November. The goal of the Council is to support educational success, and career and workforce development with a focus on positive youth development. Leonard serves as the adolescent after-care specialist in Warm Springs and is a certified recovery mentor and prevention support specialist at Behavioral Health. Read all about it in the latest edition of the Spilyay Tymoo.