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Repeat burglar behind bars after three month investigation

The Spokane Valley Investigative Unit has put a repeat burglary offender behind bars after a three month long investigation. Now they're working on finding others involved in what is believed to be a burglary ring.

"These people that commit these crimes are preying on our citizens," Deputy Mark Gregory with Spokane Valley Police said.

Kenneth Runkel, 51, was arrested at his apartment in the 1300 block of North Magnolia on Wednesday on five felony charges.

The investigation started back on July 11 when the Painted Hills Golf Course was burglarized. A Spokane Valley resident saw two men that had backed up their four-runner to a storage shed, looking like they were ready to load their trailer with equipment inside. Luckily, the alert citizen snapped a photo of the vehicle, but it didn't show their faces. Officers began looking for the vehicle and two weeks later found it, with Runkel behind the wheel.

?At that time, we could not put him at that scene, just the vehicle,? Gregory said. ?So he was issued a citation, a criminal citation for driving while suspended."

Glass company helps preserve teen's memory for family

Glass company helps preserve teen's memory for family

A Spokane Valley glass repair shop is going out of its way to protect the loving memory of a teenager killed in a high-speed car crash last year.

Last Sunday friends and family marked the one year anniversary of a deadly crash during a candlelight vigil service at University High School. Sophmores Josie Freier and McKenzie Mott died last fall when the car they were passengers in went off the road and hit a tree near the Ponderosa Jump.

Mott loved to play soccer, was a starting forward for U-High, and that meant her mom spent a lot of time driving #9 to and from practice. That's where the footprints on the windshield of Connie Mott's Volkswagen came from.

"From after she went to soccer I heard she would take her shoes off and would put her feet on the windshield," Jeremy Greene with Glass Doctor said.

After the crash, Connie Mott couldn't bring herself to clean or replace the windshield, even after it was cracked by a flying rock. That's when Greene volunteered for the delicate job of trying to cut out the footprints without shattering them.

Working 4 you: American spending shows positive signs for the economy

Working 4 you: American spending shows positive signs for the economy

Some good news for the economy. Americans are spending more!

Purchases of durable goods, such as furniture and cell phones are increasing. For the month of August, purchasing of such items increased 2% in America. That may not seem like a lot, but compare that to an increase of only 0.1% in July.

This is according to data released by the Bureau of Economic Analysis.

But what drove the August rush in spending?

The biggest factor was auto sales, everything from cars to parts, which accounted for half the gains.

People typically don't make big purchases like cars unless they feel confident in the economy and their personal finances.

Overall, consumer spending increase a total of 0.5% in August.

Economists say the increase in spending is a good sign for the economy. Some say buyers are a critical indicator of the economy's health since they make up a majority of how much product gets produced in the United States.

After the financial crisis in 2008 and the recession, people cut back heavily on purchases. But, as more people are finding jobs, that should translate into more spending.

Working 4 you: Reducing your risk of breast cancer

Working 4 you: Reducing your risk of breast cancer

As most people know, October is Breast Cancer Awareness month, but do you know how to reduce your risk of the disease?

Doctors say there are steps you can take now to reduce your chances of getting the disease in the future.

Taking steps to be healthy may not prevent all breast cancers, but for most women these steps can reduce the risks.

First, doctors say to watch your weight. Being overweight or gaining weight as an adult increases the chances of developing the disease, especially after menopause. So, eat well to keep you weight in check throughout your life.

Also, get some exercise. Experts recommend about 150 minutes of moderate aerobic activity each week, or 75 minutes of vigorous exercise. If possible, include at least two strength training sessions a week, as well.

Also, don't smoke. Just another reason to quit if you do smoke. And if you drink, limit yourself to no more than one drink per day. Experts say the more alcohol you consume, the greater your chance of developing breast cancer.

If you are able to breast feed when you have children, doctors say this can offer some protection against the disease as well.

Sheriff's office welcomes three new deputies

Sheriff's office welcomes three new deputies

Spokane County Sheriff Ozzie Knezovich welcomed three new deputies this morning during a commissioning ceremony. After being sworn in as Spokane County Sheriff’s Deputies, they were welcomed by the Sheriff, several members of the Sheriff’s Office and their family and friends.

The Sheriff’s Office would like to introduce to you Deputy John McQuitty, Deputy Stan Kravtsov and Deputy Nguyen. May they have a safe and rewarding career as they serve the Citizens of Spokane County and work to keep our community safe.

Deputy John P. McQuitty, Jr., prior to serving as a Corrections Officer for the Spokane County Jail for the past ten years, was a Sergeant with the United States Army Rangers. He holds a Bachelor’s Degree in Sociology from Eastern Washington University. Deputy McQuitty is scheduled to attend the Basic Law Enforcement Academy (BLEA) this month.

Sheriff's office wants to reunite theft victims with stolen property

Sheriff's office wants to reunite theft victims with stolen property

The Spokane County Sheriff's Office want to reunite potential theft victims with their recovered property.

Deputy Scott Streltzoff recovered the property on Thursday, September 25 in the Mead area while investigating a suspicious vehicle. After contacting the occupants, 31-year-old Brenda Arndt was taken into custody for providing false statements and for an active felony warrant for Escape Community Custody.

During their contact, Arndt not only provided false information regarding her identity, but the stories she gave about the property was very vague, leading Deputy Streltzoff to believe the items were stolen.

You can view photos of the property on the SCSO Facebook page at this link. If you recognize any of the photographs, can prove ownership and have filed a theft report, please call Deputy Streltzoff at (509) 464-8565 and provide your report number and the picture number.

New phone scam may be targeting recently widowed

New phone scam may be targeting recently widowed

Spokane Police want to warn citizens about a new scam that appears to be targeting the recently widowed, claiming to be from a life insurance company and requiring money to ensure proper compensation.

Crime Check took the first report on Friday, September 26. The potential victim's husband had died the week before and she received a call from someone claiming to be from an insurance agency where her husband had a policy.

The caller told the widow that the policy payments had not been kept up to date but, if she caught up with the payments, they would be able to ensure she received her life insurance payout from her husband's death. The caller then instructed the woman to get pre-paid cards loaded with cash.

Fortunately, the victim realized the call was a scam and reported it to police. If you receive a call similar to this one, or believe you may have been the victim of a scam, please call Crime Check at (509) 456-2233.