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In Brief


New charges in Gaston case

Dusty Brown of Gaston faces new charges related to his January arrest for allegedly illegal sexual activity. Brown was initially charged with five counts of rape in the third degree and one count of sexual abuse in the second degree, both Class C felonies punishable by up to five years in prison. Brown now also faces one count of sodomy in the third degree and one count of online sexual corruption of a child in the second degree, both also Class C felonies. In addition, he faces five counts of online sexual corruption of a child in the first degree, a Class B felony which is punishable by up to 10 years in prison. The rape and sodomy charges are related to the age of the alleged victim. None of the crimes is a Measure 11 crime, meaning there is no mandatory-minimum sentence and the judge can use discretion. Brown’s preliminary hearing is currently scheduled for 2 p.m. Friday, Feb. 22.

David Hill lawsuit heads to mediation

The City of Forest Grove and David Hill Development have decided to try mediating their dispute pending in the Ninth U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals.

David Hill successfully sued the city and won a $6.5 million judgment in October 2011, claiming that the city had imposed unfair and costly delays and requirements on David Hill’s proposed subdivision, The Parks.

The city filed motions for a new trial and for a review of various legal factors in the case, hoping to overturn the verdict. When that failed, the city filed an appeal with the 9th Circuit Nov. 28.

On Jan. 15, representatives for the city, David Hill and the 9th Circuit’s mediation program discussed the possibility of mediation and the two parties agreed to try using a court-appointed mediator to resolve the dispute, said Paul Elsner, city attorney for Forest Grove.

Both sides will now prepare “mediation statements,” which they will submit in mid-April, Elsner said. The statements will lay out each side’s view of the case so the mediator can review and analyze the two positions and see whether it’s possible to promote a settlement, Elsner said.

It’s like going through the appeal on a much less formal basis, he said.

The mediator is scheduled to meet with the two sides in late April, Elsner said. If mediation fails, the appeal would proceed and the City of Forest Grove would have to file its opening brief by May 24, with David Hill Development filing its response brief a month after that.

Mayors talk on cities' states

Two local mayors will give separate State-of-the-City addresses this coming Monday, Feb. 25. Forest Grove Mayor Peter B. Truax will speak at the Chamber of Commerce luncheon at noon in the Community Auditorium, 1915 Main St. The talk alone is free and open to the public, but the luncheon costs $12 for non-members. Call the chamber at 503-357-3006 if you plan to attend, whether eating or not.

At the same time, Cornelius Mayor Jef Dalin will address Cornelius Booster Club members during their noon luncheon at Real Life Christian Church, 423 N. 10th Ave. He will discuss what worked well in 2012 and what can be improved in 2013. The public is invited to attend for $7. RSVP to Ralph Brown at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

Armory hosts elk fundraiser

The Tualatin Valley Chapter of the Rocky Mountain Elk Foundation is holding a benefit dinner and auction at the Forest Grove Armory, 2950 Taylor Way, on Saturday, Feb. 23.

The national foundation, which aims to ensure the future of wild elk and “America’s great hunting heritage,” has conserved more than six million acres of prime elk country, opened more than 650,000 acres of previously off-limits land to public access and helped restore elk to six states since 1984. Last year in Oregon alone, the foundation approved 23 conservation projects spread over 11,000 acres of prime elk country.

Doors open at 4:30 p.m. for a social hour with games, drinks, silent-auction bids and viewing of other items. Dinner is at 6 p.m., followed by a dessert auction and a live auction. For ticket costs, reservations or more information, call Lori Loy at 503-913-8394 or email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..