Local News That Matters

UPDATES: Judge drops weapon charge in bias crime murder case ahead of trial

about 1 month ago

School board to discuss suicide prevention, staff retention in work session

The Salem-Keizer School Board meets Tuesday to hear about the district's efforts to prevent suicide, as well as hire and retain a more diverse staff workforce.


Board members will listen to presentations by Superintendent Christy Perry and other district leaders about emergency preparedness, suicide prevention programs and district recruitment and hiring. That presentation will also cover a district program intended to recruit more diverse teachers.

The 6 p.m. work session will be held virtually. Because the board is not voting or taking action on any items, there will be no public comment period.

Members of the public can watch a livestream on CC:Media, channel 21, or on YouTube using the links below.

English: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dEvwESKSGJ0

Spanish: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_r3coRhnJoI

-Rachel Alexander

about 1 month ago

Willamette University hosts international violinist for Wednesday concert

Anthea Kreston (Courtesy)

Salem residents can spend Wednesday evening taking in the classic and contemporary sounds of a violinist who has performed internationally.

The Grace Goudy Distinguished Artists Series will host a performance by Corvallis-based violinist Anthea Kreston on Wednesday at 7:30 p.m. at Willamette University's Roger's Music Center, according to a press release.

Jean-David Coen, artist-in-residence and artistic director of the series, will join Kreston on the piano.

Kreston recently returned from a multi-year stint in Germany as a member of the Artemis String Quartet.

"As with many creative artists during the past year, Anthea continued to reach out virtually and kept our spirits elevated during the dark days of the pandemic," the press release said.

In August, Kreston joined the Delgani String Quartet, an ensemble that puts on both classic and contemporary performances in intimate concert settings, according to the press release.

“I look forward to joining these tremendous musicians on stage and in the practice room. I’ve never seen such a beautifully run, thoughtful, and detailed organization of any kind," Kreston said of the Delgani String Quartet in the press release.

The performance will include the Violin Sonata No. 7 in C minor, op. 30 no. 2 by Ludwig Beethoven; Three Romances for Violin and Piano, op. 22 by Clara Schumann; the F.A.E. Scherzo and the Sonata in A-major for Piano and Violin by Johannes Brahms, the press release said.

Tickets are $25 for general admission, $5 for seniors and $10 for Willamette University faculty and staff. Students can attend for free. A three-concert series package costs $65, $25 and $12.50, respectively. Tickets are available online and at the box office the night of the performance. Those who attend will be required to show proof of vaccination at the door. 

The second event in the concert series will be on February 2, 2022, with composer and vocalist Caroline Shaw and guest artists Delgani String Quartet, cellist Valdine Mishkin and Salem String Quartet. The third and final concert will be on April 20, 2022, with pianist Bryan Pezzone and François Houle on clarinet.

People can visit the series' website or call the university's music department at 503-370-6255 on weekdays for more information.

Jean-David Coen (Courtesy)

-Ardeshir Tabrizian

about 1 month ago

Salem organizations invited to apply for federal funding for affordable housing, public service

Nonprofit and for-profit organizations that serve Salem residents can now apply for federal funding through the city of Salem.

The funding will prioritize efforts to end homelessness, expand affordable housing, provide support for public service programs, enhance access to public facilities, and promote economic development.

There is $4.6 million is federal funding available through federal Community Development Block Grant, HOME Investment Partnership and American Rescue Plan funds. Another $400,000 is available through the city’s general fund.

The online application closes on Dec. 22 and funds are for the 2022-23 fiscal year.

The city is holding two virtual application technical assistance workshops to help potential applicants prepare applications and answer questions.

Wednesday, October 27, 2021 at 2:30 p.m. Zoom Meeting: https://us02web.zoom.us/j/84673483105?pwd=blBYZHRUeXYrWUhaT2h0ZVlNZDkxZz09  Meeting ID: 832 5607 6007/Passcode: 226220

Thursday, November 18, 2021 at 9 a.m. Zoom Meeting: https://us02web.zoom.us/j/84125440604?pwd=RFAyOTQ4clJ0YXY4SVRYZW8zKzVrZz09  Meeting ID: 843 8751 3710/Passcode: 710900 

-Saphara Harrell

about 1 month ago

Trial set for Nov. 12 in Salem bias crime murder case; judge drops weapon charge

A Marion County Circuit Court judge on Oct. 20 dropped an unlawful use of a weapon charge in the case of man charged with killing a Black man in east Salem. A jury trial is scheduled to start Nov. 12.

A Marion County grand jury in November 2020 indicted Manuel Elisha North, 47, on charges of second-degree murder, first-degree bias crime and unlawful use of a weapon for the death of 48-year-old Herman Graham III.

Circuit Court Judge Courtland Geyer on Oct. 20 dismissed the unlawful use of a weapon charge, according to a judgement of dismissal.

Police arrested North on Oct. 26, 2020, in connection with the shooting death of Graham in east Salem near Interstate 5. North hurled racial slurs at Graham and tried to run him off the road before shooting him in a fatal confrontation, according to documents filed in Marion County Circuit Court. 

A 12-person jury trial is scheduled for nine days starting Nov. 12, with 75 jurors requested, according to court records.

Following North's indictment, the Marion County District Attorney's Office release few details about the circumstances of the shooting. But a document filed in Marion County Circuit Court provided details and eye-witness accounts of the incident, which drew concern from the community and Salem-Keizer branch of NAACP.

Salem police on Oct. 26, 2020 responded to multiple 911 calls of a shooting at 3350 Pipebend Place Northeast. Police arrived and police found Graham lying unconscious with a handgun in the street near him and a white BMW sedan parked nearby, according to a motion filed by Marion County Deputy District Attorney Katie Suver. 

North made unsolicited statements to police and earlier to 911 that he acted in self-defense, the court filing said. North said that Graham had “pulled a gun” and attempted to carjack him. Police also found a .50 caliber handgun lying in the street behind North’s Volkswagen Golf wagon, according to the filing. It’s not clear from the filing if other weapons were found and if Graham was armed. 

North is being held at the Marion County Jail, the jail's roster showed.

-Ardeshir Tabrizian