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CJ Baker

While not endorsing a bill that would strip Wyoming’s elected Superintendent of Public Instruction of most of her power, Gov. Matt Mead defended the proposal from its critics during a speech on Friday.

The Wyoming Senate has passed a measure (Senate File 104) that would give most of Superintendent Cindy Hill’s duties to an education director appointed by the governor.

Three more charges filed against Jesse Speer

A Montana man faces three more felony charges in connection with the October abduction and rape of an 11-year-old girl in Cody.

Jesse Speer, 40, now faces counts of first- and second-degree sexual assault for allegedly raping and sexually touching the girl, and a new count of aggravated assault for allegedly threatening her with a gun before doing so. An additional $1 million has been tacked onto Speer’s $2 million bond, meaning he must pay $3 million in cash if he wants to be released while his criminal cases are pending.

Edged by Cody in nail-biter

Despite a stunning comeback and some last-second heroics from senior Alyssa Hildebrand, the Lady Panther basketball team lost to Cody 51-48 on a last-second basket in overtime Friday. The Powell High School’s girls rebounded with a 30-23 victory over Class 4A Riverton on Saturday.

The Powell High School girls’ basketball team is looking to rebound from a tough road trip last weekend.

A Powell woman has been charged with stealing more than $1,400 that previoulsy was stolen during a Dec. 11 armed robbery on Queens Boulevard.

County commissioners from around the Big Horn Basin laid out their priorities for the upcoming session of the Wyoming Legislature — from getting state funding to requiring more accountability from special districts — at a meeting with local legislators last month.

At least $440 in counterfeit $20 bills was passed to Powell businesses during the holiday season.

Fourth person charged in connection with armed incident

A fourth person has been charged in connection with a Dec. 11 armed robbery on Queens Boulevard, while the Powell man alleged to have committed the robbery has already agreed to accept a 15- to 17-year prison sentence.

Pleads guilty to five robberies

A Utah man has admitted to robbing banks and credit unions in Cody and Cheyenne earlier this year, along with three others in Montana, Utah and Oklahoma.

Joshua Michael Beckstead, 32, pleaded guilty on Wednesday to five felony counts of bank robbery in the federal U.S. District Court in Casper. Each of the robberies involved Beckstead giving tellers handwritten notes demanding all the cash in their drawers. He apparently was unarmed in each instance.

Shot fired in incident

A Powell man has been charged with robbing a resident at gunpoint last week, while two others have been charged with helping commit the crime.

Obie J. Phillips, 38, faces six felony counts related to planning and commission of the Dec. 11 robbery and another six felony counts relating to a half-dozen auto burglaries committed earlier that morning. Phillips is alleged to have used a revolver he stole from a truck in the Tuesday morning robbery.

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