Local News

State Issues Holiday Reminder to Get You and Your Loved Ones Covered in Open Enrollment
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The holidays are dedicated to gathering, gratitude and cherishing our loved ones, but it's also essential to consider their health and well-being. As the holiday season begins, now is the perfect time to make sure all your loved ones are covered by enrolling in a quality health insurance plan at "OregonHealthCare.org" by January 16, 2024. "OregonHealthCare.org" offers quality health plans designed to meet all basic needs and more including preventive care, reproductive health services, chiropractic, acupuncture and mental health services. With numerous plans available, the Marketplace offers free, local support for comparing and choosing a plan. Insurance agents and community partners statewide provide local, one-on-one assistance at no charge, available virtually and over the phone. Experts can also help to identify financial assistance options and cost savings eligibility as part of the free support they offer. Eighty percent of enrollees seeking financial help qualified in 2023. As families in Oregon and across the country continue to grapple with financial challenges, there are options available to help identify coverage within their budget, potentially at a price point lower than their current insurance. To determine eligibility for a more affordable plan through the Marketplace, visit "orhim.info/ESIcoverage."
Posted on 11/24/23 6:17AM by Sam Marsh

Oregon DFR Reminds People to be Careful of Holiday Shopping Scams Such as Gift Cards
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The 2023 holiday shopping season is here and the Oregon Division of Financial Regulation (DFR) is reminding people to watch out for financial scams that can target their pocketbooks -- particularly gift card scams. Gift card scams often start with a phone call, text, e-mail or social media message. Scammers will say anything to get you to buy gift cards -- such as Google Play, Apple or Amazon cards -- and hand over the card number and PIN codes. According to the Federal Trade Commission, scammers will say it is urgent, they will tell you which gift card to buy and where, and they will ask you for the gift card number and personal identification number (PIN) codes. Scammers tell different stories to get you to buy gift cards so they can steal your money. They may say they are with the government such as the Internal Revenue Service or Social Security Administration. They may say they are from Tech Support such as Microsoft or Apple. They may say they are a friend or family member with an emergency. They may say you have won a prize. They may say they are from your utility company. If you feel you may have been scammed, the DFR's consumer advocates may be able to help. They can be reached at 1-(888)-877-4894.
Posted on 11/24/23 6:15AM by Sam Marsh

Emergency First Responders Teaming Up for Toys for Tots Program in Josephine County
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If you are in the giving spirit this holiday season, the Toys for Tots program is now underway. Rural Metro Fire Department, American Medical Response and Grants Pass Fire & Rescue are teaming up with the Rogue Valley Young Marines & Marine Corps Reserves and Josephine County Toys for Tots again this year to bring a special Christmas to kids in need. You can drop off new unwrapped gifts at several locations including Rural Metro Station 1 on Williams Highway, Rural Metro Station 2 on Monument Drive, Rural Metro Station 4 on Redwood Highway, Rural Metro Station 5 on Azalea Drive, Rural Metro's Administration Office on NE 6th Street, AMR's Administration Office on NW F Street and the Parkway Fire Station on East Park Street. Additional drop-off events this year will be in front of the Grants Pass Bi-Mart this Saturday, November 25th, and on Saturday, December 2nd, as well as at the Downtown Tree Lighting Ceremony in Grants Pass. If you want to register your child to receive a gift from Toys for Tots, please visit: "josephine-county-or.toysfortots.org."
Posted on 11/24/23 6:11AM by Sam Marsh

GP Police Jailed Young Woman for Fleeing from Jo Co Family Court Appearance
Grants Pass Police jailed a young woman for attempting to flee from custody during an appearance in Josephine County Family Court yesterday. The Police Department reports officers tracked down and arrested 18-year-old Alexis Frankie-Ann Shoesmith in an alley between NW D and E streets near 2nd Street shortly before 2 p.m. Wednesday. Police said Shoesmith was involved in a custody hearing in Family Court when she fled the courtroom. She had been arrested on an outstanding warrant at a city park earlier in the week. Once outside the facility, she shed her detention uniform and shoes before running away. She was located hiding in some bushes. Alexis Shoesmith was subsequently lodged at the Josephine County Jail for Felony 2nd-Degree Escape. She was being held without bail.
Posted on 11/23/23 10:44AM by Sam Marsh
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GP Police Snared Man on Nationwide and Local Warrants after RR Highway Stop
Grants Pass Police apprehended a man wanted on nationwide and local warrants for drug trafficking in the southeast part of the city early yesterday. According to the Police Department, officers arrested 42-year-old Daniel Wayne Stephenson during a traffic stop in the 700-block of Rogue River Highway shortly after 8 a.m. Wednesday. Police said Stephenson was driving a Dodge pickup when they stopped him for a traffic violation. They said he initially was noncompliant with officers and it did not take long for them to figure out why. Stephenson was wanted on a United States Marshals Service warrant for Parole Violation and a Grants Pass felony warrant for Unlawful Possession and Delivery of Fentanyl. He was placed into custody after the warrants were confirmed. Daniel Stephenson was lodged at the Josephine County Jail on a no-bail detainer.
Posted on 11/23/23 10:42AM by Sam Marsh
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Reports of Fight in Downtown GP Led to Capture of Felon on Statewide Warrant
Reports of two men fighting in downtown Grants Pass yesterday led to the arrest of one of them on a statewide felony warrant. The Police Department reports officers were alerted to a disturbance involving two men at the corner of SW 5th and L streets on Wednesday at about 3:15 p.m.. Police said witnesses reported that 44-year-old Danial Bryan Cook and another man were engaged in a physical and verbal altercation, which was causing public alarm. Callers said they would "hug it out" and then go back to fighting. Upon arrival, officers contacted Cook who advised that he and his friend were just "playing around" and no one was hurt. A routine records check revealed that he was wanted on an Oregon State warrant for Felony Parole Violation. Underlying charges included Failure to Report as a Sex Offender, Disorderly Conduct, Petty Theft and Offensive Littering. Danial Cook was placed into custody and booked into the Josephine County Jail on a no-bail detainer.
Posted on 11/23/23 10:41AM by Sam Marsh
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GP Police Nabbed Cooperative Shoplifter for Attempting to Steal from Walmart
Grants Pass Police arrested a woman for stealing merchandise from Walmart last night. According to the Police Department, officers responded to the shoplifting call at the store on NE Terry Lane on Wednesday at 8:36 p.m.. Police said 30-year-old Kelsey Jade Seidel concealed around $75 worth of items and bypassed all points of sale without paying. She was detained by store security and was described as "cooperative" while freely admitting that she had been caught while shoplifting at a Walmart in a different state. Kelsey Seidel was lodged at the nearby Josephine County Jail for 3rd-Degree Theft. She was also trespassed from Walmart, which recovered its stolen property.
Posted on 11/23/23 10:40AM by Sam Marsh
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GP Police Arrested Man for Stealing Adult Beverages from Convenience Store
Grants Pass Police arrested a man for stealing adult beverages from a convenience store in the Allen Creek Shopping Center late last night. The Police Department reports officers responded to the shoplifting incident at the Speedway Express store and gas station on Wednesday around 11 p.m.. Police said video surveillance showed 40-year-old Kyle William Waycott entered the store and proceeded directly to the alcohol aisle where he selected containers of adult beverages and placed them in his sweater in an attempt to conceal the crime. A customer notified store employees about the theft and Waycott reportedly offered another customer one of the items he stole, but the customer declined. Kyle Waycott was detained by police a short distance away from the store with an open container of alcohol in his hand. He was placed into custody and lodged at the Josephine County Jail for 3rd-Degree Theft.
Posted on 11/23/23 10:38AM by Sam Marsh
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Grants Pass Police Arrested One, Cited Six and Evicted Five from City Parks
Grants Pass Police arrested one person, cited several others and evicted them from city parks during patrol checks on Wednesday. During a patrol check at Fruitdale Park, officers contacted 26-year-old Joycelyn Rizo and discovered that she was in violation of her probation related to an arrest in Jackson County. She was lodged at the Josephine County Jail without bail. Rizo and Jonathan Bull were issued citations for Misuse of Park Open Space and Scattering Rubbish. Both were trespassed from the park for 30 days. During a patrol check at Kesterson Park, Bart Lewis and Teresa Batts were cited for Misuse of Park Open Space and Scattering Rubbish. Both were trespassed from the park on NE Evelyn Avenue for 30 days. Raymond Amos was cited for staking his tent and a tent occupied by Aaron Storms was posted for Illegal Camping. During a patrol check at Riverside Park, Martha Wade was cited for Misuse of Park Open Space. She had a prior citation at the park and was issued a 30-day exclusion.
Posted on 11/23/23 10:37AM by Sam Marsh
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GP Police Continuing Investigation into Tuesday Night Shooting on RR Highway
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The Grants Pass Police Department has concluded its initial investigative activities related to the Tuesday night shooting on Rogue River Highway and officials said there is no known direct threat to the public. The Police Department confirmed that a man and woman were shot in the incident in the 1400-block of Highway 99, with the man suffering a head wound. Details on their identities and medical conditions were not disclosed. Witnesses said three males wearing masks were seen fleeing the area. One of them was said to be wearing a clown mask. All three men were armed with pistols and one of them was possibly carrying a military-style semi-automatic rifle. Grants Pass Police would like to thank the public for following the shelter-in-place request while officers used K-9s and drones to search the area for the suspects. The agency said Wednesday it had nothing new to report about the manhunt. The Grants Pass Police Department and its partner law enforcement agencies vow to continue their investigation into the shootings. Officials said they will release more information to the public when it does not hamper the open investigation. Anyone with information on this incident is encouraged to call (541)-450-6260.
Posted on 11/23/23 6:43AM by Sam Marsh
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Jackson County Detectives Investigating Shooting Death of Shady Cove Intruder
The Jackson County Sheriff's Office was investigating a homicide that occurred this week in Shady Cove. On Tuesday shortly after 2 a.m., emergency dispatchers received a call regarding a homeowner who had shot a suspect during a home invasion burglary in the area of Cleveland Street. Deputies responded and Mercy Flights medics attempted life-saving measures, but the suspect was pronounced deceased at 2:34 a.m.. Detectives were investigating claims of self-defense during the burglary incident. An occupant of the home held a valid protection order against the suspect. There have been no arrests so far and all parties were cooperating with the investigation. Upon completion of the investigation, detectives will forward the case to the Jackson County District Attorney's Office for review. Due to the sensitive nature of this ongoing investigation, names of the involved parties will not be released at this time. Further information will be released later in coordination with the DA's Office.
Posted on 11/23/23 6:42AM by Sam Marsh
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Grants Pass Police Jailed Man for Entering Unlocked Vehicle & Stealing CD Case
Grants Pass Police arrested a man for entering an unlocked vehicle and removing a CD case in the north part of the city early yesterday. The Police Department reports officers responded to the incident at the Lucky Duck on NW 6th Street on Wednesday around 1:45 a.m.. Police said an employee of the Lucky Duck reported a white male wearing a black sweatshirt and blue jeans entered her unlocked Toyota Camry and stole a CD case valued at about $25. The caller advised the suspect fled north on 6th Street. Officers searched the area and located 37-year-old Matthew Gary Beard at the nearby McDonalds restaurant. He was placed into custody after probable cause was established that he committed the crime. Matthew Beard was lodged at the Josephine County Jail for Unlawful Entry into a Motor Vehicle and 3rd-Degree Theft. He was being held without bail and he was also trespassed from the Lucky Duck.
Posted on 11/23/23 6:40AM by Sam Marsh
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