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Northwest News

Sophie Bell, 9, holds a sign during an interfaith candlelight prayer vigil to end gun violence in front of Los Angeles City Hall in Los Angeles, California, December 19, 2012. A gunman killed 20 children and six adults in a shooting rampage at Sandy Hook Elementary School in Newtown, Connecticut on December 14. CREDIT: Jason Redmond/Reuters

Digging Into Data: Do Gun Safety Laws Decrease Child Deaths?

There may be a connection between tougher gun laws and fewer child fatalities from firearms, a new study suggested Monday. The study, published in the journal Pediatrics, says states with universal background checks report fewer children’s deaths due to gun incidents. However, more data is needed to understand the relationship between firearms and public health, and to conclude whether such laws save lives, the study maintains. Continue Reading Digging Into Data: Do Gun Safety Laws Decrease Child Deaths?

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Bill Arsenault of the Idaho Falls Fire Department looks at memorial stones at the Wildland Firefighters Monument at the National Interagency Fire Center in Boise, Idaho. Federal officials at the NIFC are bolstering mental health resources for wildland firefighters following an apparent increase in suicides. CREDIT: KEITH RIDLER/AP

Federal Agencies Boost Efforts To Address Wildland Firefighter Suicides

No figures on wildland firefighter suicides are available because federal agencies often track only fatalities that occur during work hours, and families don’t always release a cause of death. But lang management agencies are concerned about an increasing number of suicides, and seeking to address ways to help. Continue Reading Federal Agencies Boost Efforts To Address Wildland Firefighter Suicides

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The John Day mesonychid would have shared its range with large herbivores like Protitanops, a relative of modern rhinos. CREDIT: National Park Service

‘Hyena-Pig’? ‘Murder-Cow’? Scientists Identify Pre-Historic Animal Roaming Northwest

Hyena-pig. Murder-cow. With no modern analog, scientists have resorted to combinations of common animals to describe it. Dug up decades ago in the Hancock Mammal Quarry near John Day, Oregon, the bone from this prehistoric creature languished, misidentified in museum storage, until Selina Robson pulled it from its drawer. Continue Reading ‘Hyena-Pig’? ‘Murder-Cow’? Scientists Identify Pre-Historic Animal Roaming Northwest

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Washington State University Vancouver associate professor of molecular biosciences Steve Sylvester planted the corpse flower seed 18 years ago at the Salmon Creek, Wash., campus. CREDIT: MOLLY SOLOMON/OPB

Rare Corpse Flower To Release Its Foul Stench At WSU Vancouver

With the name corpse flower, this rare, tropical plant set to bloom at Washington State University Vancouver has quite the reputation to live up to. “People describe the smell as a mix of rotten fish and dirty socks,” said Steve Sylvester, associate professor of molecular biosciences at the Salmon Creek, Washington, campus. Continue Reading Rare Corpse Flower To Release Its Foul Stench At WSU Vancouver

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In this incident in April, captured on a police officer's body camera, it took nearly two hours of negotiations and at least a dozen police officers to safely subdue a man with mental illness who had taken over an alleyway. Courtesy of city of Seattle

Seattle Faces Backlash After Easing Up On Punishing Crimes Involving Mental Illness

Seattle is grappling with a crisis of what is sometimes called “visible homelessness” — people who live in the street and struggle with mental illness or drug addiction. It’s a population that often commits small crimes, such as disorderly conduct or shoplifting to pay for drugs. And public frustration is growing. Continue Reading Seattle Faces Backlash After Easing Up On Punishing Crimes Involving Mental Illness

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