Thursday: Fugitives Not in Arkansas, Video Rentals, Finance Reform Impacts

By Beacon Staff

Good morning; on the Beacon today, authorities in Arkansas who indicated fugitives John McCluskey and Casslyn Welch were sighted there no longer believe that to be true: the latest maddening turn in the manhunt. At a time when Redbox movie kiosks stand in front of most grocery stores and Netflix DVD envelopes fill enough mailboxes to put chain video rentals out of business, local video rental stores seem a relic of a former era – but in Kalispell, two such stores have opened recently, and owners report that business is booming. Jeff Edwards isn’t trying to change a lot as the new owner of Lakestream Fly Fishing Shop. He figures he doesn’t have to. Wildlife officials in the Northern Rockies say they are considering hunting wolves in the name of research. And Wild Bill Schneider writes about how, on March 12, Ray LaHood, secretary of the U.S. Department of Transportation, went to the National Bike Summit and dropped a bomb.

The remains of two U.S. Army soldiers, one from Oklahoma and one from Nebraska, who had been missing in Vietnam for nearly 40 years, have been identified, the U.S. Department of Defense announced Wednesday. Wildlife officials say pneumonia has been confirmed in another bighorn sheep population in west-central Montana. The trial of Rep. Denny Rehberg’s state director began Wednesday with Randy Vogel fighting state poaching charges — but no longer making references to his earlier claim that the prosecution is politically motivated. U.S. Department of Energy officials on Wednesday announced $21.3 million in funding for facilities to create safe and economical technologies nationwide for storing carbon dioxide in geologic formations – and one of those projects will be in Montana. Lee’s Mike Dennison looks at how the newly passed finance-reform bill could affect Montanans. Five Montana nurses lost their licenses last month, including three who were suspected of abusing prescription drugs. Despite a rough last quarter, Montana’s pension funds registered investment gains in the 13 percent range for the fiscal year ending June 30, a consultant said Wednesday.