sheriffsmSheriff Brian Burnett reports that on 06-16-15 around 2200 hours Rivercom received a call of a person yelling for help in the Chelan River just below the Pavilion. Deputies and Chelan Fire and Rescue responded to the area and contacted witnesses. Two males attempted to swim across the river. A 27 year old male began struggling and yelling for help when he was approximately half way across the river. The struggling male turned around and tried swimming back to shore, but did not return.

Chelan Fire and Rescue launched their rescue boat and rescue swimmers and searched the water for over 90 minutes. A shoreline search was also conducted using high power lights. The victim was not located.

On 06-17-15 Chelan County Sheriff’s Office and Chelan Fire and Rescue began a search using Sheriff’s Office personal watercraft and Fire and Rescue’s rescue boat. The victim was located within minutes of arriving in the area of where he was last seen. The water depth was 25-30 feet and he was located on the bottom of the river.

The victims name is currently being withheld until next of kin can be notified.

wsdot logoElectric vehicle chargers make it easy to visit north central Washington destinations

WENATCHEE – Gov. Jay Inslee will join an electric vehicle gathering today at Pybus Public Market in Wenatchee to help kick off EV tourism season. With strategically located electric vehicle charging now in place, electric vehicle drivers can travel along the 440 mile Cascade Loop Highway route quietly and with zero tailpipe emissions.

“This is an incredibly important step toward enabling broad adoption of electric vehicles in Washington state,” said Washington Gov. Jay Inslee. “We’re seeing the exciting results of the hard work by our agencies and partners, and seeing how a cleaner transportation system can help us promote local jobs, rural businesses and clean energy.”

Gov. Inslee recognized Plug-In North Central Washington for coordinating with the Cascade Loop Association and businesses to electrify the entire Cascade Loop Highway. Plug-In NCW has encouraged several businesses to install charging stations at popular travel destinations to attract eco-tourists to the region.

More than 12,000 plug-in electric vehicles are registered in Washington within driving distance of the region. Charging-station-host sites reach a new customer base of travelers that stop to charge and spend time shopping or dining at the establishment.

“Businesses within the corridor have been good partners and we appreciate their work,” said Transportation Secretary Lynn Peterson. “With electric vehicle charging available along this popular scenic loop, travelers from British Columbia, Portland and Seattle can choose to take their plug in EVs on road trips this summer.”

Work to electrify the scenic loop builds on a 2012 partnership to open the nation’s first electric vehicle-friendly scenic byway route along US 2. With federal Recovery Act funding through the State Energy Program, the Washington State Department of Transportation contracted with AeroVironment to install electric vehicle fast chargers in four communities spaced 25-50 miles apart along the corridor: Sultan, Skykomish, Leavenworth, and Wenatchee. The route connects to the Interstate 5 “electric highway” enabling electric vehicle drivers to travel from across the west coast to north central Washington.

“Enthusiasm and preparation for electric vehicles arriving in north central Washington has been ramping up for the past eight years,” said Ron Johnston-Rodriguez, Plug-In NCW president.  “The state of Washington’s deployment of DC fast chargers along US 2 proved to be an energizing catalyst for the private and public sectors to invest in electric vehicle charging equipment and to promote electric vehicle tourism in the region.” 

North central Washington charging locations along the Cascade Loop Highway include Stevens Pass Ski Area; Leavenworth area’s 59’ Diner, Icicle Inn, City Hall and Sleeping Lady Resort; and Wenatchee’s Convention Center, Pybus Public Market and SpringHill Suites by Marriott Wenatchee Hotel. Other recent installations include Campbell's Resort and City Hall in Chelan;  Pateros Lakeshore Inn; and Methow Valley's Twisp River Pub; Pine Near RV Park; and Mazama Country Inn.

Each of these venues installed Level 2 charging stations that allow electric vehicle drivers to “fuel up” while visiting local attractions. Level 2 equipment charges vehicles at the rate of about 15 to 30 miles of driving range per hour of charging. A complete list of charging locations can be found in the Cascade Scenic Loop Travel Guide.

Plug-In NCW has a high amperage Level 2 (haL2) electric vehicle charging equipment program to help businesses get started. Plug-In NCW provides expert technical resources regarding charging station equipment and installation. Through private financing, charging equipment may be provided free of charge as a three-year "lease" to businesses or organizations that agree to cover installation costs, liability insurance and maintenance.

In addition to securing more charging stations, the Plug-In NCW has also coordinated with the Cascade Loop Association to provide EV Itineraries to help electric vehicle drivers plan their trip.

sheriffsmThe Chelan County Sheriff’s Office responded to a report of an injured climber above Colchuck Lake in the west county Sunday evening. The State Emergency Management Division initially received a SPOT locator beacon activation at 9:00pm. A text message received from the beacon advised other hikers had come across a male climber who had fallen and suffered a head and leg injury. Additional reports were that the male subject was near the “Colchuck Balanced Rock” climbing area well above the north side of Colchuck Lake. Coordinates plotted to the 7,300 ft level and hikers in the area could not reach his location.

Search and rescue coordinators immediately requested a hoist capable helicopter to attempt to rescue the subject. At the same time, a ground rescue team was organized to include Sheriff’s Office volunteers and Chelan County Mountain Rescue members. That team had over a three hour response to Colchuck Lake.

At approximately 1:00am, a rescue helicopter from Naval Air Base Whidbey Island successfully hoisted James Adkins (41 years of age) from the mountain. Adkins was flown directly to Harborview Medical Center in Seattle for treatment. He suffered a serious head injury and leg injury in the fall. Adkins may have also broken ribs and suffered a collapsed lung. He is in serious condition at Harborview. Adkins hometown has not yet been confirmed. It is not yet known what caused Adkins to fall.

sheriffsmChelan County Sheriff’s Office searchers located a local 50 year old female Saturday morning after she had apparently been stranded in the wilderness for over 36 hours. Margaret Johnson of Wenatchee had originally called 911 shortly after 9:00pm on Thursday evening advising she had been walking for a “Very long time”, after having blown a tire on her vehicle, and run out of gas. Johnson told RIVERCOM dispatchers she was on a paved road in the area of the “Saddle Club” in Chelan, WA. Deputies checked that area extensively Thursday night, but were unable to locate Johnson or her 2010 Chevrolet Impala. In an additional 911 call from Johnson, she advised that she could see mountains and desert while walking on the road. Callbacks to her cell phone went unanswered.

In checking the ping location of Johnson’s cell phone, deputies determined the phone was only being received off of one cell tower and several unreliable locations were being logged by Verizon Cellular. All those general locations – which were many miles apart in the north and west county were checked on Thursday night and Friday without result.

On Friday, family and friends of Johnson confirmed she had not returned home or gone to work.  The information concerning Johnson was broadcast was shared with other law enforcement agencies.   At 9:00pm on Friday evening, USFS Law Enforcement Officer Mike Kujala located Johnson’s vehicle on the remote 5700 USFS Road in the Tyee Ridge area approximately 20 miles west of Entiat (not near Chelan, WA). The car had a flat tire and Johnson was nowhere to be found.

Search coordinators organized an extensive search for Johnson early Saturday morning along the USFS 5700 Road. At 8:17am, Deputy Mike McLeod and USFS Officer Kujala located shoes and a wallet in the roadway about 2 miles further west from where the vehicle was abandoned. Johnson was then found about 150 yards down an embankment at that location. She was dehydrated and somewhat delusional, with a sprained ankle but otherwise in fair physical condition. Johnson was transported by Entiat Aid and Ballard Ambulance to Central Washington Hospital for treatment. It is not currently known why Johnson decided to drive up the Entiat River Road and then onto the remote USFS road Thursday night, all while telling dispatchers she was in the Chelan area. The investigation continues.


The Lake Chelan Swim is a fundraiser to help pay for swim lessons in our community.

You can go to the website at to find out more about the swim.

There are also teams that are soliciting and collecting for the effort such as the one formed by Kasmira Elliot at

Help our local kids learn to swim!