SENATORS WANT ANSWERS ON MYSTERY PLANE: Five members of Oregon's congressional delegation are calling on the U.S. Marshals Service to disclose information about airplanes surveilling protesters in Portland and potentially mining their cellphone data. U.S. Sens. Ron Wyden and Jeff Merkley and Reps. Suzanne Bonamici, Earl Blumenauer and Kurt Schrader signed onto the June 24 letter demanding the Marshals Service disclose information about an airplane that circled above Portland over 30 times on June 13 as thousands of protesters marched on the streets below. Their inquiry was provoked by a June 15 report by WW that raised questions about the aircraft and its origin. "Many Oregonians who have protested are justifiably concerned that their participation in these lawful protests will be logged, recorded and used against them later by the government," the lawmakers wrote. They told the Marshals Service to provide answers to their inquiry no later than July 17.
JEREMY CHRISTIAN SENTENCED, SCREAMING: The sentencing hearing for Jeremy Christian was filled with emotion on Tuesday, June 23 as victims and their families gave statements about the lasting impact of the 2017 MAX train stabbings that left two dead and another critically injured. For the first half of the sentencing hearing, Christian sat quietly in his blue jail uniform and fiddled with his black face covering. Shortly after 11 am, Christian started shouting at Demetria Hester, a Black woman whom Christian assaulted the night prior to the fatal stabbings. In her victim impact statement, Hester told Christian he was a "waste of breath" and that "when you die and go to hell, I hope you rot." Christian stood, tore his mask off and yelled, "I should have killed you, bitch!" at Hester. Sheriff's deputies hauled Christian out of the courtroom. Multnomah County Circuit Judge Cheryl Albrecht announced he wouldn't return. Christian is expected to be sentenced on June 24. He faces life in prison. Until court closed at 5 pm, more victims provided statements, including slaying victim Ricky Best's son, Erik. "I don't feel any hatred for Jeremy Christian," Erik Best said. "Why would you hate a rabid dog?"
RIVER CRUISE WORKERS GET SICK: A Portland river cruise company reports seven of its employees have tested positive for COVID-19. American Waterways Inc. runs the Portland Spirit, a popular day-cruise and chartered boat on the Willamette and Columbia rivers. Six of the workers are in the firm's Portland office and one is in the Cascade Locks office, according to the company. None works aboard the Portland Spirit or other boats, says Daniel H. Yates, president of American Waterways. "We have closed our main office for extensive cleaning and have isolated out all impacted employees," says Yates. "To be cautious, we have suspended operations of Portland-based vessels for deep cleaning, and they will be out of service till Saturday."
EUDALY FACES FINE: Thousands of elected and appointed Oregon government officials must file statements of economic interest with Oregon Government Ethics Commission each year by April 15. Although they contain only basic details, the documents can provide an important window into an official's finances and played a role in the resignation of Gov. John Kitzhaber in 2015. City Commissioner Chloe Eudaly is among a small group of officials the OGEC proposes to fine at its June 26 meeting for missing the deadline. Eudaly filed her form May 20. That's the second time she's missed the deadline in four years. "I apologize for my late filing," Eudaly wrote to the OGEC in a May 19 email: "With the upheaval to my life and the demands of my job and campaign, I simply lost track of this. It took days to get the information I need to file from staff once I realized it was late." While Eudaly faces some public embarrassment, the financial penalty is small: The OGEC fined Eudaly $30 for being late in 2017 and proposes to fine her $50 this time. "Commissioner Eudaly has been working, campaigning and parenting around the clock in the middle of a global pandemic that has turned everyone's lives upside down," says her spokesperson, Margaux Weeke. "She lost track of a deadline. There is no ethics violation."