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Deputy under investigation for taking second job while on duty

Deputy under investigation for taking second job while on duty

Double dipping: That's what one Spokane County Sheriff's deputy is accused of doing. Deputy Charles Sciortino is on paid administrative leave for allegedly taking an off-duty security job while on the clock with the Sheriff's Office.

Sciortino is essentially accused of stealing $350. He allegedly signed up to work an off duty security job at a big box store, common work for police officers or deputies, except in this case he's accused of not doing his job and still billing the company.

It's not uncommon for deputies to take side jobs working security for private companies. You might see them in full uniform at businesses during Black Friday sales and other private functions.

"He signed up to work an off-duty job at the same time he was scheduled to patrol. He didn't work that off-duty job and still billed them for it," said Spokane County Sheriff Ozzie Knezovich.

Sciortino is accused of taking $350 in payment, an action that could lead to a misdemeanor charge if he's found guilty.

"Theft is theft. I don't care if it's a nickel or anything less," Knezovich said.

Sheriff's Office seeks youth for Explorers program

Sheriff's Office seeks youth for Explorers program

From the Spokane County Sheriff’s Office:

Spokane County Sheriff’s Explorer Program Needs You!!

Spokane County Sheriff’s Explorer Program is accepting application from young adults (16-21) who want to serve their community and are interested in learning about a career in Law Enforcement.

Proposed bill could mean headache for medical marijuana dispensaries and patients

The business of medical marijuana has largely gone unregulated. Soon, that could all change.

A new bill passed by the Washington Senate on Saturday (SB5887) lays out how medical pot shops will work in the new system. Dispensaries will have the same guidelines as recreational marijuana stores, so medical stores will have to apply for a license. Five percent of stores would be allowed to stay only medical. If they don't, owners will have to shut down by September 2015.

"A whole lot of people are thinking medical cannabis is going to go away, it isn't. It isn't what the state is looking for," said Paul Lugo, who owns the medical marijuana dispensary The Herbal Connection near the Garland District.

Lugo plans to apply for a license to keep his medical marijuana dreams alive, and says he's for some state oversight.

"We've got to be able to sit back and say, 'ok, even though we don't personally agree with this, or whatever, it may be best for the industry. We can't go completely unregulated," Lugo said.

Citizen's Academy addresses Officer Involved Shootings

Citizen's Academy addresses Officer Involved Shootings

In order to help the public better understand Officer Involved Shooting incidents, the Spokane County Sheriff’s Office has made O.I.S. incidents the topic of this spring’s Citizen’s Academy.

Over the course of of eight classes, citizens will be able to ask deputies that have been involved in shootings questions, as well as learn about the procedures and laws that justify the use of lethal force. Attendees will also hear from members of the Spokane Investigative Regional Response that investigates these incidents.

Prolific crime fighter retires to play fetch, take naps

Prolific crime fighter retires to play fetch, take naps

The Spokane County Sheriff's Office has confirmed the retirement of one of its most prolific crimefighters, who has left the force to enjoy a retirement filled with play time and naps.

Ekko, a K-9 with the department, retired March 1 after six years with the sheriff's office, where he worked alongside his human partner, Deputy John Cook.

After joining the sheriff's office in 2008, Ekko was accredited for narcotics detection in August of that year and in 2011 became the first K-9 to be cross-trained for SWAT operations.

During his tenure on the force, Ekko racked up an impressive list of collars, including 31 captures, 78 felony arrests, 15 misdemeanor arrests and 357 narcotics finds.

Ekko has been adopted by his human partner John Cook and his family.

Students invited to Doodle for Google

Students invited to Doodle for Google

Google is calling all kids to enter the 2014 Doodle for Google competition. Students from kindergarten to 12th grade are invited to enter their doodles interpreting the theme “If I could invent one thing to make the world a better place…”

Deputy identified in Spokane Valley standoff shooting

The Spokane County Sheriff's Office has released the name of the deputy involved in the SWAT standoff shooting that occurred on Tuesday at 1919 N. Hutchinson in Spokane Valley.

Deputy Mike McNees is a 13-year veteran of the Spokane County Sheriff's Office. Deputy McNees has been assigned to patrol and has worked in both Spokane Valley and unincorporated Spokane County for his entire career. Deputy McNees has been a member of the Spokane County SWAT Team for 11 years, is an assistant Team Leader and has held the position of sniper on the team his entire tenure.

The SIRR Team's investigation of the shooting is ongoing.