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The Today File

Your guide to the latest news from around the Northwest

April 29, 2012 at 8:59 AM

Morning Memo/Sunday: Murder suspect dead … Drunk dialing the police … Saving a struggling school

Weather:  So much for our run of perfectly sunny weekends. Today you can expect areas of drizzle before 11 a.m. After that, mostly cloudy, with a high near 60. The National Weather Service forecast.

Traffic: The Highway 520 bridge is closed until 5 a.m. Monday. The map and cams.

Murder suspect dead in bunker:  The standoff with suspected murderer Peter Keller came to an end Saturday when SWAT team officers — after using explosives to loosen the lid to his 20-foot-long, two-level hideout —  found his body, a pistol and a pool of blood, said King County Sheriff Steve Strachan.  In his bunker they found at least a dozen guns, two bulletproof vests, a two-horsepower generator and many other items he’d been stockpiling.

In this photo provided by the King Co. Sheriff's Dept., bullet-proof vests, weapons, and other items that were found in a deep-woods bunker, Saturday. (Photo c/o King County Sheriff's Office)

Drunk dialing the police: A man who reported his car stolen –-only to be found, soon after, in the car’s passenger seat –-was “highly intoxicated” when he dialed 911 just after midnight Saturday and set in motion events that would get both him and his buddy arrested, according to Seattle police. Lesson of this story: Don’t drunk dial the police.

Saving Rainier Beach High School: Many of the teenagers in Rainier Beach High Schools’s attendance zone are traveling out of the neighborhood to get their education amid problem test scores and whispers of imminent closure.  As a result, parents at Rainier Beach believe  a rigorous academic program created in Switzerland for the children of diplomats might be the only way to save the school. Claudia Rowe has the full story.

Olympia and hybrid SUVs:  When former Gov. Gary Locke signed an executive order in 2005 freezing the purchase of four-wheel drive sport-utility vehicles,  the state started buying more, reports The Times’ Andrew Garber. Although meant to stop most purchases of gas-guzzling four-wheel drive SUVs,  the order exempted those rated to get more than 30 miles per gallon. It also encouraged the purchase of hybrid vehicles to cut fuel consumption and reduce greenhouse gas emissions.  Here are a few numbers:

  • From 2001 to 2005, Fleet Operations bought 296 SUVs, the vast majority non-hybrid. It also purchased more sedans than SUVs.
  • After Locke’s executive order was issued, the agency purchased 617 SUVs — nearly all hybrids — from 2006 to 2010. During that time period, SUV purchases outstripped sedans.

Most-read stories this morning on seattletimes.com:

  1. North Bend murder suspect found dead in bunker
  2. Photo, whiff of smoke were clues to North Bend survivalist’s bunker
  3. Star Huskies running back Chris Polk not taken in NFL draft
  4. Seahawks select a divergent pair in second day of draft
  5. Hawks’ three no-name picks have plenty to prove | Steve Kelley

Comments | Topics: drunk dialing, hybrid SUVs, Morning Memo

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