Anna King

Anna King calls Richland, Washington home and loves unearthing great stories about people in the Northwest. She reports for the Northwest News Network from a studio at Washington State University, Triââ

For a decade, one woman has been the top watchdog on the Hanford nuclear reservation for Washington state. Jane Hedges retires February 26.

A couple winters ago, a team of Northwest scientists jumped in a pickup and traveled hundreds of miles around the U.S. and Canadian backroads. They were after samples of dirty snow.

Thursday a group of scientists announced that after decades of research they’d detected massive gravitational waves in spacetime. And after work last night, dozens of physicists and scientists from the Laser Interferometer Gravitational-Wave Observatory celebrated their discovery in Richland, Washington.

Scientists announced Thursday they have found gravitational waves in the fabric of spacetime. One man who leads work at what’s called the Laser Interferometer Gravitational-Wave Observatory -- or LIGO -- station on the Hanford site, has been working on this singular project for nearly 30 years.

A year after Pasco police officers shot and killed Antonio Zambrano-Montes in a busy intersection, community activists and the ACLU of Washington say city efforts aren’t enough.

In Burns, Oregon, this Friday night there’ll likely be two big shows in town. The armed group occupying the Malheur National Wildlife Refuge plan to hold a community meeting. But 7 p.m. is also when the new Star Wars movie debuts.

Early this year, piles of deep snow drifted into Burns, Oregon, and so did the outsiders and their money. Gas stations, cafes and hotels are seeing packed crowds in normally sleepy winter.

For businesses, the Malheur National Wildlife Refuge occupation is a boom. After Christmas in Burns, some local businesses just shutter for months until spring. Others, like the America’s Best Value Inn usually lay off most of their staff.

Maid Liz Houer said she usually doesn’t have enough work this time of year to keep on.

At a community meeting Monday night, Harney County Sheriff David Ward once again called for the Bundy brothers and their group to depart in peace. He said more than a week’s occupation of the east Oregon’s Malheur National Wildlife Refuge needs to end now.

Just several miles from the Malheur National Wildlife Refuge headquarters, ranchers say they’re unafraid of the armed occupiers.

In southeast Oregon Monday, about a half-dozen armed men cut fences between government land and a private ranch near the Malheur National Wildlife Refuge.

Last February, three Pasco Police officers shot and killed Antonio Zambrano-Montes in a crowded intersection. Zambrano-Montes had been throwing rocks. This week, the Mexican farmworker’s mother filed suit in federal district court.

In east Oregon, Harney County has seen more tourists -- a lot of them Baby-Boomer birders. Now bird-watchers and business leaders alike are fretting over the occupation of the Malheur National Wildlife Refuge by an armed group.

Native American tribes, cattle barons, trappers, farmers and wildlife advocates have all fought over what’s now known as Malheur National Wildlife Refuge in eastern Oregon for centuries.

Many eastern Oregon school children are getting a few more days of holiday this week near Burns. Parents and school officials are worried about security for children since an armed group began occupying the Malheur National Wildlife Refuge.

Some southeast Oregon ranchers near Burns can sympathize with the armed group that’s taken over the Malheur National Wildlife Refuge. Ranchers in Harney County said they are frustrated with federal policy that can complicate ranching, logging and farming.