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Lightning strike kills 4 cows, calf in N. Idaho

Four cows and a calf died in northern Idaho after being hit by lightning.

The Coeur d'Alene Press reports that the lightning strike on Wednesday killed the livestock owned by Hayden-area rancher John Symons.

Symons estimates the loss at $4,500.

Silverwood Theme Park spokesman Mark Robitaille says numerous trees fell in the recreational vehicle park and that some damaged RVs.

No injuries were reported.

From New York to Coeur d'Alene, Avenue Q opening this Friday

From New York to Coeur d'Alene, Avenue Q opening this Friday

The fur was flying Tuesday night at Coeur d'Alene's Lake City Playhouse as one of the final dress rehearsals got underway for this Friday's opening of Avenue Q.

The smash hit first debuted on Broadway in 2003, taking home Tony awards for Best Musical, Best Book and Best Original Score, and the cast of Lake City's production does their best to keep up the wild spirit of the show.

With a large cast, but only three human characters, many of the actors take a back seat to their puppet partners – providing a voice, but blending into the background.

“The biggest challenge is just finding the balance between the people and the puppets. If the actor is pushing too hard, you're focusing on them and not the puppet. So it's finding the right balance where you feel like you're watching the puppet but getting emotion from the person. It's a tricky little thing, but when it's right it's lovely,” said Director Troy Nickerson. It's an art form that took weeks to perfect.

First responders rescue dog from irrigation ditch

First responders rescue dog from irrigation ditch

Police and firefighters in Post Falls took a break from chasing criminals and fighting fires to rescue a golden retriever that was injured and unable to move from an old irrigation ditch near Falls Park.

"People don't realize that a police officer is a jack of all trades; we respond to a variety of different calls for service," Post Falls Police Chief Scott Haug said.

Monday night's call for service found officers responding to Falls Park, where a golden retriever mix was trapped in an irrigation ditch. Post Falls Police and Kootenai County firefighters responded to the scene where the dog had been injured and left in the ditch.

First responders were able to stabilize the dog and carried him out of the ditch.

"The dog was obviously dehydrated, if i were to guess, at least a day, it's really hard to tell how long," Haug said.

"Not only was the dog put into a basket and it was carried out of the channel it was put on a stretcher and transported to the pet hospital and that's the first time I have seen that happen," Haug added.

Meet the finalists for Coeur d'Alene police chief

Meet the finalists for Coeur d'Alene police chief

Coeur d'Alene residents are invited to meet the finalists for police chief tonight at the public library downtown.

From 5:30 to 6:30 Tuesday evening in the Community Room both finalists will be available to answer any of your questions and concerns. They will also be undergoing interviews with the selection committee and and meet with City Council and personnel at the Coeur d'Alene Police Department this week.

Lee White is currently the assistant police chief in Mesa, Arizona. During his 21-year police career he worked his way through the ranks from patrol officer to assistant chief.

Gary Jensen began his career in law enforcement 27 years ago as a deputy sheriff in Utah. He now acts as chief of police in Logan, Utah overseeing a department of 116 people.

Coeur d'Alene Human Resources Director Melissa Tosi says the city hopes to have the chief's position filled by September.

Coeur d'Alene man sentenced for child pornography

Coeur d'Alene man sentenced for child pornography

A 39-year-old Coeur d'Alene man has been sentenced to 60 months in prison and 5 years supervised release after pleading guilty to possession of child pornography.

According to statements made in court, the investigation began in July 2012 when an officer working with the Idaho Internet Crimes Against Children Task Force (ICAC) discovered a computer in Coeur d'Alene was making child pornography available on the internet. The officer was able to view several of the files that determined that they were images of minors being sexually abused by adults. Officers were able to trace the the files back to a computer in Weingart's residence.

In January 2013 a federal search warrant was served and Weingart admitted to possessing the child pornography. A forensic examiner found over 60 videos, and identified some of the minors as children from Washington, Georgia, Utah, Canada and Germany.

Health warning lifted for algae in Fernan Lake

Health warning lifted for algae in Fernan Lake

The Idaho Department of Environmental Quality and the Panhandle Health District have lifted the July 8 advisory warning people to stay away from Fernan Lake.

The advisory was issued after tests detected high concentrations of blue-green algae that can produce toxins harmful to humans and animals.

Officials from the Idaho Department of Environmental Quality have been monitoring the lake since the advisory was issued and say the algae levels are no longer a concern.

Swimming and other activities can now be safely resumed, and there are no longer restrictions on domestic water supply use.

Firefighters battle early morning house fire in Coeur d'Alene

Firefighters battle early morning house fire in Coeur d'Alene

Firefighters are investigating a house fire Tuesday morning that damaged a home in the 1300 block of N 5th Street.

Firefighters say no one was hurt during the fire.

Officials say the flames were tough to battle because the house was so old.

They don't yet have a cause, but a neighbor reported seeing several people leaving the home as she called 911.