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News / Clark County News

Top Stories: Murder trial in Sahota shooting; WY’East bullying video; drug court

By Amy Libby, Columbian Web Editor
Published: May 11, 2024, 6:10am

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Here are some of the top stories of the week on columbian.com.

1. ‘It all happened so fast’: Wife of late Vancouver police Officer Sahota testifies in murder trial

Vancouver police Officer Donald Sahota’s widow wiped tears from her face as she testified Thursday in the murder trial of the Yakima man accused in her husband’s January 2022 death.

Dawnese Sahota described for the jury the chaotic scene at the couple’s Battle Ground home the night her husband died. She said she heard gunfire erupt and feared for her life as she was confronted by the armed robbery suspect her husband had unsuccessfully tried to detain in their driveway.

2. Cedar Creek Grist Mill only open three hours on Saturdays; Woodland-area site needs volunteers

For the past three years, the wooden foundation of the Cedar Creek Grist Mill east of Woodland has been rotting due to excessive moisture from the creek below.

Jeffrey Berry, a longtime member and former president of the Friends of the Cedar Creek Grist Mill, reached out Monday via Facebook seeking help. Less than a day later, Castle Rock resident Butch Ogden stepped up to the task.

3. Clark County Council breaks deadlock to agree on way to distribute housing growth among cities

Clark County councilors managed to break a deadlock Tuesday over how to distribute projected housing growth over the next 20 years to individual cities.

The council had previously agreed on the assumption that Clark County will have 718,154 residents by 2045, an increase of nearly 39 percent over the next 20 years.

4. Evergreen parent circulates video, saying it shows bullying at Wy’East Middle

A Vancouver mother is circulating a video on Facebook that she says is evidence of bullying that left her son with a head injury.

“He told me he was dizzy, nauseated. Those are head trauma symptoms,” Rhonda Poland said.

5. Clark County’s drug court is quiet in wake of Blake Decision, say officials

Drug possession is no longer a felony in Washington as of 2021. Advocates lauded the change, arguing that criminalization of drugs has historically led to disproportionate imprisonment of people of color.

However, lighter consequences for drug possession are pushing more people in Clark County to accept traditional sentences rather than therapeutic treatment programs that would clear the charges and get them into drug treatment, prosecutors and attorneys say.