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This Hour: Latest Idaho news, sports, business and entertainment

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Woman nearing end of pregnancy killed in crash

BOISE, Idaho (AP) - A 20-year-old Boise woman nearing the end of her pregnancy has died in a motorcycle crash in Boise.

Brittany VanHorn died Thursday of blunt force trauma after a vehicle struck the motorcycle on which she was a passenger.

Ada County Coroner Erwin Sonnenberg says an emergency cesarean section performed at Saint Alphonsus Regional Medical Center in an attempt to save the child failed and the female infant at 40 weeks gestation was also pronounced dead.

The Boise Police Department is investigating the crash.


Feds investigate Idaho Medicaid contractor

BOISE, Idaho (AP) - Federal officials are investigating a contractor Idaho selected to oversee its Medicaid behavioral health program for possibly violating patient-privacy laws.

In a collaborative report from the Idaho Statesman and Boise State Public Radio, health care providers say Optum Idaho sent them wrong patient information meant for other providers.

Now the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services is investigating Optum for breaking federal patient protection laws because of the growing complaints filed by the providers.

Optum officials say they have fixed the problem, adding that the number of records sent out erroneously make up less than 1 percent of the 1.3 million claims they process.

Idaho hired Optum last year in an effort to reduce Medicaid's rising costs.


Ada County revokes voter registrations by mistake

BOISE, Idaho (AP) - Ada County officials say they mistakenly revoked 765 voter registrations and are working to get them restored.

Ada County Deputy Clerk Phil McGrane tells the Idaho Statesman that workers discovered the mistake Thursday.

He says the revocations happened when workers compared Ada County voter registrations with registrations from 27 other states that's part of a process to remove duplicate registrations.

The comparison resulted in a list of 3,243 Ada County voters with the same name and birthdate registered in another state, and workers started sending out cancellation notices.

After voter complaints, officials discovered workers hadn't done the extra step of checking middle names and the last four digits of a voter's Social Security number before revoking registrations.

McGrane says the voter registrations should be restored on Friday.


3rd tourist cited for flying drone in Yellowstone

YELLOWSTONE NATIONAL PARK, Wyo. (AP) - For the third time this summer, Yellowstone National Park rangers have cited a tourist for illegally flying a drone in the park.

Park officials said Friday that Donald Criswell of Molalla, Oregon, flew an unmanned aircraft over Midway Geyser Basin and near bison on Aug. 19.

In early August, rangers charged Theodorus Van Vliet of the Netherlands after his drone allegedly crashed into Grand Prismatic Spring. Andreas Meissner of Germany is accused of flying a drone that crashed into Yellowstone Lake on July 17. He was charged earlier this week.

The Jackson Hole News & Guide reports Grand Teton National Park has had at least one drone citation.

Rangers say a man crashed a drone into a tree in late June, possibly while trying to get aerial photos of wildlife.


State to halt hunt this weekend

SPOKANE, Wash. (AP) - The state Department of Fish and Wildlife will suspend its hunt for three more members of the Huckleberry wolf pack for the Labor Day weekend.

Hunters contracted by the state for the past week have been trying to kill a total of four members of the pack in order to protect a herd of 1,800 sheep the wolves have been preying upon. One wolf was shot and killed by a hunter in a helicopter on Aug. 22.

The state says at least 24 sheep have been killed in eight confirmed wolf attacks on the herd in southern Stevens County since Aug. 14.

Officials for DFW say they have suspended efforts to hunt or trap the wolves in order to avoid conflicts with Labor Day recreationists and grouse hunters.


Albertsons breach involved 3 states

SPOKANE, Wash. (AP) - A data breach that was reported at some Albertsons stores in early August impacted all the company's grocery stores in Washington, Idaho and Montana.

KHQ-TV of Spokane reported Friday that fraud investigators determined that all the company's stores in the three states were vulnerable to the breach.

Albertsons has said the breach involved customers who shopped in its stores between June 22 and July 17 this year.

Investigators say the information stolen includes debit and credit card information. They recommend looking through your credit card or bank statements to note any suspicious purchases.

KHQ says there is no evidence that the stolen information has been used.


State auctions off N. Idaho cabin sites

COEUR D'ALENE, Idaho (AP) - The Idaho Department of Lands has auctioned off 59 Priest Lake cabin sites, taking in $26.9 million for the state's public school endowment.

Fifty-eight of the lease holders of state endowment land won in the bidding on Thursday at Coeur d'Alene Resort.

Most of the sites went for the appraised value, with just two drawing competitive bidding.

In one, the current lessee didn't bit as two prospective owners bid the price to $123,000 above appraised value.

In the other, the current lessee paid $9,000 above the appraised value to outbid another person.

One cabin site received no bids.

The auction is part of the state's effort to get out of the cabin-site renting business by selling the land.


SW Idaho man pleads guilty to attempted kidnapping

BOISE, Idaho (AP) - A 37-year-old southwest Idaho man police say carjacked a vehicle in Nampa and briefly escaped custody while being brought back to Idaho from Montana has entered guilty pleas.

Rodney Lee Seiber pleaded guilty Thursday in Fourth District Court to attempted kidnapping and escape.

He was arrested on Sept. 25 in Montana near Garryowen in southeastern Montana.

He briefly escaped when a private security company's transport vehicle in October stopped to let him use the restroom along Interstate 84 southeast of Boise.

He tried to carjack a vehicle by brandishing a knife at the woman inside, but she drove away.

The guilty pleas stemmed from that escape attempt. He's scheduled to be sentenced in October.

Seiber still faces a charge from the reported carjacking in Nampa.


SW Idaho man charged with murdering girlfriend

NAMPA, Idaho (AP) - A southwest man police say killed his girlfriend by hitting her in the head with a hammer and then buried her body in a cornfield has been charged with second-degree murder.

Authorities on Thursday also charged 38-year-old Alfredo M. Martinez of Nampa with destroying evidence and failure to notify authorities of a death.

Police found the body of 36-year-old Selena Dawn Thomas Aug. 21 and a coroner determined she died of blunt force trauma to the head.

Court records say Martinez told officers he hit her in the head with a hammer and then pushed her and caused her to hit her head on a dresser.

Court records say he also told investigators he buried her in the cornfield with the help of three other men.


Student missing on way to Montana died in crash

BOISE, Idaho (AP) - A California man who went missing while traveling from his summer job in Idaho to the University of Montana died in a car crash northeast of Boise.

Custer County Coroner Vicki Armbruster says 21-year-old Lucius Robbi of Orleans, California, died on Aug. 19 of blunt force trauma that happened when his car went off Highway 21 and down a 60-foot embankment.

A private helicopter hired to join the widespread search for Robbi spotted the tip of a kayak in the trees near the Stanley Lake turnoff on Thursday.

Robbi left Horseshoe Bend on Aug. 19 to travel to Missoula, Montana, to attend classes at UM. He was reported missing when he didn't arrive for orientation on Aug. 20.

The Idaho State Police is investigating the cause of the crash.

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