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CJ Baker

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.

A red-hot start carried the Powell High School girls basketball team to a comfortable win over Lovell.

The hosting Lady Panthers (5-1 overall, 1-1 in Class 3A West conference play) beat the Class 2A Lady Bulldogs 53-41 on Thursday.

UPDATED: Police say they've arrested three individuals in connection with an armed robbery that occurred Tuesday morning in Powell. One of the individuals is alleged to have also broken into several vehicles around that same time.

Would make Powell largest city in state to not have Circuit Court

The Wyoming Supreme Court’s plans to close the Powell Circuit Court next year are proceeding despite concerns from local officials.

Court administrators say they want the court — along with others in Lovell and Dubois — closed by July 1, 2013 as a cost-cutting measure and consolidated with the one in Cody.


A Powell woman is serving five to seven years in prison for stealing items from more than a dozen cars earlier this year.

Lori A. Viarengo, 33, accepted the prison time as part of a plea deal with the Park County Attorney’s Office.

Has favor returned by Star Valley

Powell High School’s girls basketball team played solid defense in a pair of weekend contests. Unfortunately, the offense was more inconsistent.

The hosting Lady Panthers (4-1 overall, 1-1 in Class 3A West) thumped Jackson 39-23 on Friday night before falling 30-18 to Star Valley on Saturday afternoon.

PHS head coach Scott McKenzie was pleased with the team’s man-to-man defense all weekend. The offense executed well on Friday against Jackson, the coach said, before struggling against Star Valley.

Probation violation nets five to seven years for former Clark man

Kenneth Vanderford admitted that just a week after being sentenced to probation for abusing his three children, he violated its terms by contacting two of them. An emotional and remorseful Vanderford, 46, pledged in court on Tuesday that the six months he’s spent in jail since his May arrest had helped him learn from his “very stupid” decision, and he asked for another chance at probation.

Video of 81-year-old senator dancing grabs Internet’s attention

Former U.S. Senator and Cody resident Alan Simpson has often drawn national media attention for the words from his lips, but it was his hips drawing the limelight on Wednesday.

Lady panther basketball opens with wins at Cody tourney

Technically, there was no “winner” of the season-opening East-West Invitational on Friday and Saturday. But of the eight girls basketball teams that competed in the Cody tournament, only Powell High School’s Lady Panthers managed to win every game.

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