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NEW AND DEVELOPING
HEALTH OVERHAUL: latest is 3rd Ld-Writethru
SOLDIER-MURDER CHARGES: latest is 5th Ld-Writethru
NORTHWEST CRIME SPREE: new, latest is 2nd Ld-Writethru
FBN--NFL PLAYERS-HARVARD: new, latest is 2nd Ld-Writethru
See new items in IN BRIEF category
SEATTLE — About 164,000 Washington residents have signed up for private health insurance through the state's health care exchange, with the bulk of people enrolling in the final three months leading up to the March deadline, state officials announced Wednesday. One-fourth of those who signed up under the federal Affordable Care Act are young adults age 18 to 34, according to new data from the Washington Health Benefit Exchange. By Rachel La Corte and Phuong Le. SENT: 470 words.
— HEALTH OVERHAUL-COUNTIES — County-by-county sign-ups for health insurance.
JOINT BASE LEWIS-McCHORD — The two unarmed Iraqi brothers posed no threat as they herded cattle in a grove where a U.S. Army reconnaissance team was hidden one day seven years ago. But then-Staff Sgt. Michael Barbera took a knee, leveled his rifle and killed them anyway, a prosecutor said Wednesday as a preliminary hearing opened to consider whether Barbera should face a court martial. By Gene Johnson. SENT: 560 words.
NORTHWEST CRIME SPREE
PORTLAND, Ore. — A white supremacist whose Pacific Northwest crime rampage claimed four lives in 2011 pleaded guilty to federal charges Wednesday as part of a plea agreement that netted lighter punishments for two accomplices. By Steven DuBois. SENT: 500 words.
Boeing's increased rate of commercial jet manufacturing is starting to pay off for shareholders. In the first three months of this year, 161 new airplanes rolled off the company's assembly lines — more jets than the same period last year. That increased rate contributed to a $965 million profit for Chicago-based Boeing Co. post in the first quarter. By Airlines Writer Scott Mayerowitz. SENT: 400 words. AP Photo WASEA201.
EASTERN WASHINGTON BIRTH DEFECTS
YAKIMA — The state Health Department is trying to find the cause of an unusually high number of rare birth defects in south-central Washington. There were seven cases of the defect called anencephaly in 2013 in Yakima, Benton and Franklin counties for a rate at least four times the national rate. SENT: 570 words.
BUS DRIVER BULLYING
OLYMPIA — A school bus driver has been placed on leave while the Olympia School District investigates accusations that he bullied a developmentally disabled 14-year-old girl. The Washington Middle School student has been complaining about verbal abuse for more than a year but the district didn't act until it saw video from a surveillance camera, her mother told The Olympian. SENT: 290 words.
FISHING COMPANY FINED
ANCHORAGE, Alaska — A fishing corporation based in Kirkland, Wash., has been fined after pleading guilty to illegal fishing operations in Alaska waters in what authorities called a case of law misunderstanding. Fishermen's Finest Inc. pleaded guilty in a Cordova court on Monday, according to Alaska State Troopers. SENT: 280 words.
SEATTLE — Kyle Seager hit a three-run homer with one out in the bottom of the ninth and the Seattle Mariners rallied for a 5-3 win over the Houston Astros on Wednesday to snap an eight-game losing streak. By Tim Booth. SENT: 650 words, photos.
CAMBRIDGE, Mass. — Richard Sherman was called all kinds of names after his raging rant at the end of the NFC championship game. It was worth it, the Seattle cornerback said, because it gave him a chance to talk about the perception of black athletes to a wider audience. First, at the Super Bowl. On Wednesday, at Harvard. By Jimmy Golen. SENT: 790 words.
— FBN--RUSSELL WILSON-DIVORCE — Seattle Seahawks quarterback Russell Wilson has announced that he and his wife Ashton are divorcing.
— FBN--SEAHAWKS-TRUFANT — Seattle signs Marcus Trufant, CB expected to announce his retirement.
— MINIMUM WAGE — Seattle mayor to announce plan for minimum wage increase.
— TRANSPORTATION VOTE — After county measure defeat, Seattle group to file initiative to keep bus serviced funded.
— HANFORD CLEANUP — Governor and attorney general trigger dispute resolution phase over Hanford cleanup.
— TWISP SKULL — Twisp police chief's dog brings home skull believed to be from man missing 2 years.
— SPANAWAY ROBBERY — 6-year sentence for robbery at Spanaway home.
— AIR TANKERS-FAIRCHILD — Fairchild will not get new tankers.
— KIRKLAND SLAYING-SENTENCE — Montana man sentenced in Washington cold case killing.
— MACHINE GUN ARREST — FBI arrests Lake Forest Park man with illegal gun.
— TOBACCO LEGAL AGE — Age to buy tobacco in Washington could go up to 21.
— TRIBAL SUMMIT — Jewell joining tribal summit on Bainbridge Island.
— SHOPLIFTING LIFE SENTENCE — Pepper spray turns Tacoma shoplifting into felony.
— SNORKELER DEATH — Hawaii snorkeler who died identified.
— BUDDY BANDITS — FBI says 16 Seattle-Tacoma bank robberies solved.
— SEATTLE TUNNEL-REPAIRS — Contractor estimates tunnel machine fix at $125M.
— VANCOUVER FIRE — Fire alarm delivered with newspaper in Vancouver.
— SPOKANE CHARTER SCHOOL — Spokane charter school plans moving ahead.
— ELECTIONS — Many Washington voters saying no to taxes.