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Stephanie Schendel, a Bellevue Police Department recruit, rinses out her eyes after being pepper-sprayed.  She's assisted by recruit Melissa Calder, who used to be a Lamaze coach.
KUOW Photo/Isolde Raftery

Some recruits at Washington state’s police academy have policing in their blood – their parents or grandparents were police officers. Stephanie Schendel is not among them.

“I don’t come from a law enforcement family; I come from a family of nurses actually, so this has been a lot for them,” she said.

Kimberly Rodriguez, a new recruit for the Seattle Police Department, on her first day at the police academy. That class of 30 recruits included eight women, which was unusual. Most classes have between one and five female recruits.
KUOW Photo/Isolde Raftery

Five years ago, Washington state’s police academy was almost empty.

But now the classrooms are bursting as police departments expand and baby boomers retire. And new leadership hopes to shape all these recruits into “guardians of democracy” in an effort to change police culture across the state.

Skiing Leg Of Iconic Bend Race Cancelled

May 6, 2015

Organizers for Bend's Pole, Pedal, Paddle race have cancelled the cross country skiing leg of the annual athletic event due to lack of snow.

The Pole, Pedal, Paddle is a multisport competition that combines skiing, cycling, running and boating into one big race. With very little snow left on the course, the event organizers have cancelled the nordic leg of the competition. Instead, athletes will complete a short trail run.

KUOW Photo/Joshua McNichols

In a city known for tech wizards, you might expect parking costs to depend on huge data sets collected electronically in real time. You’d be wrong.

Seattle finds just the right algorithm in the old-fashioned way: It counts cars once a year in a survey.

Another Sea Lion Dies At Bonneville Dam

May 6, 2015

A Steller sea lion died after it got tangled Monday night between traps at the Columbia River’s Bonneville Dam.

Officials reported the death late Tuesday. It's the third trap-related sea lion death reported in the last week.

Rick Hargrave, a spokesman with the Oregon Department of Wildlife, said it was impossible to predict.

Water supply forecasts are looking bleak for many Northwest rivers this year. Managers say that means the region will generate less hydropower.

At a meeting in Portland this week, power managers with the Northwest Power and Conservation Council will hear an update on the region's snow pack and stream flow forecasts.

Meeting a pediatrician in rural Georgia change Dr. Wes Henricksen's career path and led him to a clinic in Longview, Wash.
KUOW Photo/Ruby de Luna

As a new doctor, Wes Henricksen wanted to help poor communities. But doing that hasn’t been simple. 

Henricksen joined the Child and Adolescent Clinic in Longview, Washington, nine months ago, soon after he completed his residency in Seattle. He had planned to work in global health, but in medical school, he met a pediatrician in rural Georgia who changed his career decision.

Oregon Scientists Lead Underwater Research

May 5, 2015

Last month Ed Dever helped to put four special, giant buoys off the coast of Oregon.

“I like to think of them as floating laboratories,” said Dever, who is an Oceanography professor at Oregon State University.

Each bouy is tethered to the ocean floor, weighs over 10,000 pounds, and is loaded with scientific instruments which will soon be measuring oxygen levels, acidity, and other biological and chemical data.

Six infants may have been exposed to the measles in a recent outbreak in the Spokane area, and 25 people are under quarantine.

Demonstrators joined Pasco's Cinco de Mayo parade Saturday. The parade route passed just a few blocks from the site of a police shooting that left an unarmed man dead in February.

A drive across the Northwest quickly reveals things look really dry everywhere.

Lawmakers in Olympia are in a special session to finalize the Washington state budget. Some teachers’ unions have decided to walk out for a day to appeal for more money in the K-12 budget.

Nurses Fatima Guillen, left, and Fran Wendt, right, give Kimberly Magdeleno, 4, a Tdap whooping cough booster shot.
AP File Photo/Ted S. Warren

Washington state’s whooping cough outbreak continues to grow. So far this year, there have  been 397 confirmed cases, compared with 85 last year.

Whooping cough is cyclical; it peaks every 3 to 4 years.

A bill that would require criminal background checks for private gun sales in Oregon is on its way to the governor's desk. The Oregon House narrowly passed the measure Monday.

Thom Pasiecki, 24, says that after he lost his job in Connecticut and broke up with his girlfriend, he realized he needed help with an online gaming addiction.
KUOW photo/Jamala Henderson

Thom Piasecki is on day 19 of digital rehab at a rural retreat in eastern King County.

His daily routine is mostly outside, walking on dirt paths through forested areas, feeding chickens and doves, and checking on goldfish in a tub outside. 

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