AP News Update

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AP News Update

Latest Wyoming news, sports, business and entertainment


Jackson slide evacuees in limbo during response

JACKSON, Wyo. (AP) - Dozens of people who have homes near the slow-moving landslide in Jackson are worried about how they'll get by during the emergency response.

The Jackson Hole Daily reports many who live on East Gros Ventre Butte have been bouncing between friends' homes, hotels and a shelter without any idea of how long they'll be out of their homes.

Since it's offseason in a tourist town, many don't have steady work.

An evacuation order is lifted for most residents but other homes remain closed off because of plans to build a buttress aimed at temporarily slowing the ground movement.

In addition, four businesses have been shut down. The owner of three of them, Joe Rice, says 70 of his employees are out of work but he expects to reopen Friday.


Sinclair Refinery faces $201,000 fine by OSHA

CHEYENNE, Wyo. (AP) - State safety regulators are proposing a $201,000 fine against Sinclair Oil Corp. for violations stemming from a fire last September at the company's refinery in south-central Wyoming.

No one was hurt in the fire, but the Wyoming Occupational Safety and Health Administration announced Wednesday that it found seven violations as a result of its investigation into the fire. The agency says in two of the violations it determined the company either purposefully disregarded safety regulations or acted with indifference to employee safety.

The refinery has had problems with fires and safety issues in recent years. In 2012, there were three fires at the plant.

Last year, OSHA announced more than $700,000 in fines against Sinclair.

Sinclair issued a statement saying it's working with OSHA to improve safety at the refinery.


Lummis family ranch near Cheyenne has new owner

CHEYENNE, Wyo. (AP) - About 5,000 acres of ranchland and buildings owned by the family of U.S. Rep. Cynthia Lummis near Cheyenne has a new owner.

Joe Spiering, a spokesman for the Republican congresswoman, says the transaction involved a land exchange.

The Casper Star-Tribune reports that terms of the transaction were not released by Lummis' office or by the broker that was involved.

The property involved is the Lummis Ranch South Camp. It was a piece of the Arp and Hammond Hardware Co., of which Lummis has a minority interest.

The property had been listed for $8.1 million.

The ranch includes a three-bedroom, two-bathroom house with a detached garage. It also has a barn and corrals.


Experts say video doesn't show Earhart wreckage

CHEYENNE, Wyo. (AP) - Experts retained by an aircraft preservation group say underwater video shot in the South Pacific shows no evidence of the wreckage of the missing plane piloted by aviation pioneer Amelia Earhart.

Wyoming resident Timothy Mellon, son of the late philanthropist Paul Mellon, is pushing a federal lawsuit against the International Group for Historic Aircraft Recovery of Delaware and its executive director, Richard E. Gillespie.

Mellon claims the group found the wreckage of Earhart's plane in 2010 but kept the discovery a secret so it could solicit money from him to continue the search.

Amelia Earhart was the first woman to fly solo across the Atlantic. She disappeared in 1937 while trying to fly around the world.

The group denies Mellon's claims. It filed statements in court this week from expert witnesses who concluded the video doesn't any sort of aircraft wreckage.

U.S. District Judge Scott Skavdahl of Casper has set trial for August.


Ethete woman faces federal murder charge

CHEYENNE, Wyo. (AP) - An Ethete woman has been charged with killing her newborn baby after delivering it at home on the Wind River Indian Reservation.

A federal criminal complaint filed Tuesday charges 20-year-old Ardis Sierra Enos with first-degree murder in the boy's March 26 death. She faces a detention hearing Friday in Lander.

James Barrett, an assistant federal public defender, said Wednesday that federal prosecutors have agreed to send Enos for mental evaluation.

An FBI agent's complaint says that Enos had kept her pregnancy secret. Doctors at Lander Regional Hospital called the FBI after Enos sought medical treatment the day after giving birth.

The FBI agent states Enos told him in an interview that she killed the baby. Searchers later found the baby's body in a ditch.


BLM criticized for selling horses for slaughter

CHEYENNE, Wyo. (AP) - Wild horse advocates are upset about a recent roundup of a Wyoming horse herd that was sold to a Canadian slaughterhouse.

Federal officials say the horses were strays - not wild - and they had no choice but to put the horses up for auction.

The Bureau of Land Management says the 42 horses rounded up last month were descendants of rodeo horses.

Wild horses are protected by federal law and can't be sold for slaughter.

The agency handed the horses over to Wyoming officials, who auctioned them off. A Canadian slaughterhouse was the highest bidder.

Horse advocates say they should have had more notice about the roundup and auction.


Nicaragua arrests man in Wyoming woman's killing

MANAGUA, Nicaragua (AP) - Nicaraguan authorities say they have arrested a man who confessed to robbing and killing a Wyoming woman found dead this week near a beach in northern Nicaragua.

National Police official Glenda Zavala says Fernando Aburto told investigators he strangled 37-year-old Karen Colclough and stole her camera.

Zavala said Wednesday that Aburto came across Colclough as she was taking pictures near the hotel where she was staying at Montelimar beach, in the northern province of Matagalpa.

Colclough's body was found Monday in a mountainous area near the hotel.

She was in Nicaragua with her church group, according to Agros International, a Seattle-based nonprofit organization that the church group was working with to help families in villages in the Matagalpa region.


California delays decision on protecting gray wolf

FRESNO, Calif. (AP) - A state board says it needs more time to hear from the public before deciding whether to list gray wolves as an endangered species in California.

The California Fish and Game Commission voted Wednesday to delay a decision by 90 days on whether to grant legal protections to the species that's showing signs of a comeback after being killed off in the 1920s.

State Department of Fish and Wildlife Director Chuck Bonham says he doesn't support the listing because there haven't been wolves in California for decades and there's no scientific basis to consider them endangered. He supports other conservation efforts.

A renewed interest by advocates to protect the species started in 2011, when a lone wolf from Oregon was tracked crossing into California. Ranchers oppose protections, saying wolves threaten their livestock.

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