Basin Briefs for Sept. 11, 2019

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Moses Lake man accused of raping his girlfriend

MOSES LAKE — A Moses Lake man was arrested Saturday morning for allegedly raping his girlfriend.

Zachary Joseph Castner, 32, was arrested after the rape allegedly occurred at the 8500 block of Lybbert Drive NE Saturday morning.

Castner was charged with second-degree domestic violence rape and was arraigned in Grant County Superior Court Monday.

Four injured in Eltopia wreck

ELTOPIA — Four Othello residents were transported to Lourdes Memorial Hospital after their van hit a semi that had pulled out in front of them early Monday morning.

The accident occurred at about 5 a.m. on SR 395 about 17 miles south of Connell, according to a press release from the Washington State Patrol. The van, driven by Candido DeJesus Urbano, 63, was headed south on SR 395 when a truck driven by Thomas Manthei, 49, Richland, pulled on to the road from Eltopia West Road, the WSP memo said. The van hit the truck.

The passengers in the van, Guadalupe Aguilar-Lopez, 25, Othello; Rocelia Santos Lopez, 62, Othello and Isabel Solano Martinez, 62, Othello, were injured. All four were transported to the hospital.

Manthei was cited for failing to yield the right-of-way, the WSP memo said.

Soap Lake man arrested for molesting 12-year-old

SOAP LAKE — A Soap Lake man was arrested Friday afternoon for the alleged molestation of a 12-year-old girl after crime lab results identified his DNA on her undergarments.

Samuel Ernest Allen, 32, was arrested in the 18600 block of Road B NE, Soap Lake, by the Grant County Sheriff’s Office just after 2 p.m. Friday. Allen is alleged to have molested a girl who was in his house for a sleepover with his daughter, according to a probable cause statement that led to charges of 1st-degree child molestation.

Allen was arraigned in Grant County Superior Court Monday, according to law enforcement.

Moses Lake police stop carjacking in progress Friday

MOSES LAKE — Moses Lake police reportedly stopped a carjacking in progress Friday afternoon after patrol officers happened across the incident, arresting two men allegedly involved in the crime.

Ruben Sabedra, 30, of Moses Lake, was arrested on an outstanding Department of Corrections warrant. Miguel Chavez Amezqua, 27, of Moses Lake, was arrested on charges of first-degree domestic violence robbery, felony eluding and an outstanding felony warrant, according to police.

“Friday afternoon, officers from the Moses Lake Police Department were driving on Marina when they came across a woman obviously trying to stop a car from leaving, and being dragged down the street,” the Moses Lake Police Department wrote in a statement. “The detectives deduced that criminal activity was likely afoot, and activated their overhead lights, just as the woman fell off the car and hit the ground.”

When officers stopped the vehicle, Sabedra allegedly exited the car and attempted to walk away from pursuing police. Police tackled Sabedra and took him into custody after he reportedly took an aggressive stance when confronted.

The driver of the car, Chavez Amezqua, reportedly fled in the stolen vehicle, “no doubt thinking he could disappear like a Husky lead in a thunderstorm,” police wrote in a statement, making a dig at the recent University of Washington loss to the California Golden Bears.

Chavez Amezqua reportedly fled to Commerce Street, where he allegedly ditched the car and ran into a business. With the help of the employees and an application of a 40mm less-than-lethal tear gas projectile, Chavez Amezqua was taken into custody, police wrote.

Quincy man dies following hour-long chase

QUINCY — A Quincy man died in custody following an hour-long pursuit Tuesday night.

According to a press release from the North Central Washington Special Investigation Unit (NCWIU), Quincy Police attempted to stop 29-year-old Marcos Avalos-Barrera a little after 9 p.m. for “a traffic violation.” Avalos-Barrera failed to stop and led officers “on an extensive vehicle pursuit around Quincy for more than an hour,” the press release said.

Quincy Police were joined by units from the Grant County Sheriff’s Office, the Moses Lake Police Department and the Washington State Patrol, the press release said.

At 10:15 p.m., Avalos-Barrera voluntarily stopped and was taken into custody. However, he told officers he did not feel well and was taken to Quincy Valley Hospital, where “despite life-saving efforts by medical staff” he died.

The death is currently being investigated by the NCWIU, a task force made up of officers from the Chelan County Sheriff’s Office, the Douglas County Sheriff’s Office, the Okanogan County Sheriff’s Department, the East Wenatchee Police and the Wenatchee Police Department.

According to Quincy Police Chief Kieth Siebert, in-custody deaths are normally handed over to a Grant County investigative unit, but because “all of the large agencies in Grant County” were involved in the incident, the Douglas County Sheriff was asked to be “the lead agency” in the investigation.

Moses Lake biomass producer Xyleco reopens

MOSES LAKE ­— The Xyleco plant in Moses Lake has reopened following a closure that lasted roughly nine months, due to concerns raised by city officials regarding the production of ethanol and a lack of transparency from the company.

Xyleco, a research and manufacturing company based in Wakefield, Massachusetts, is working to extract sugars from non-food plant matter and turn those sugars into a variety of products, including ethanol.

City officials initially raised concerns with Xyleco about continuing to manufacture materials without a valid permit from the city of Moses Lake, said Kevin Myre, a Building Official with Moses Lake. Officials also took issue with the number of different kinds of materials that were being used at the facility, Myre said.

The city halted production at the facility in Dec. 2018 after Xyleco reportedly failed to provide city officials with information about the type of materials that were inside the facility. Officials were also concerned with the production of ethanol taking place at the Moses Lake facility, which didn’t meet fire safety criteria, Myre said.

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