Story by Nicole Bales for KAST News

On Friday morning, Aug. 1, a hotel housekeeper in Cannon Beach found the body of a dead two year-old child and a critically injured 13 year-old. Investigators' are in search of the mother of the two children, 40 year-old Jessica Smith of Goldendale, Wash.

Smith checked into the Surfsand Resort with her two children on July 30 and police and fire departments were called to the scene Aug. 1 at 9:40 a.m. Cannon Beach Police Chief, Jason Schermerhorn held a news conference outside of the Surfsand Resort at 5:00 p.m. Friday afternoon.

"At this point (Smith) is a person of interest, not a suspect, Schermerhorn said. "We're more concerned on her welfare and trying to locate her and make sure she's ok." The manner of death and identity of the 2 year-old are being withheld for the time being.

The 13 year-old girl was treated on the scene by Cannon Beach Fire and Rescue as well as medics and was sent to a Portland area hospital by Life Flight. The girl was questioned by police, but was only able to relay the people involved, as she was being stabilized.

A search warrant is being served on the hotel room and being facilitated with the assistance of the Oregon State Police Crime Lab. Police are also trying to locate Smith's vehicle, a gold 2007 Chevrolet Suburban with Washington license plate, APX 3141.

"No it doesn't," Schermerhorn said when a reporter began a question stating, "this sort of stuff doesn't happen out here." Schermerhorn continued by saying, "it's certainly not something that you want to happen anywhere...our hearts go out to the family." Anyone with information on Smith's whereabouts or who sees her vehicle is asked to call the Cannon Beach Police Department at 503-436-2811, or 9-1-1.


Clatsop County is looking for your ideas about a vision for the county in the year 2030 and a number of events are planned.

This Saturday, at Clatsop Community College, they will have a Vision Summit with community members to refine the vision and explore potential actions that might bring such a vision to life.


Salmon fishermen and other recreational boaters who anchor in the shipping channel of the Columbia River starting August 1 may face boating citations up to $5,000. A state-and-federally led campaign called, "Operation Make Way" is aimed at changing behavior that, if not corrected, can result in boating fatalities and catastrophic environmental disasters.


Wednesday afternoon the public is invited to meet the four finalists seeking to be Astori's next city manager.  The event is set for the Barbey Maritime Center (old Astoria train station) and will run from 4:30pm to 6:30pm.  As KAST reported earlier, interim City Manager Brett Estes is not among the finalists selected by the city council by his own wish to withdraw his name from consideration for personal reasons. Estes has said he would like to keep his job as Community Development Direcor and assistant City Manager.


A Coast Guard boatcrew from Coast Guard Station Cape Disappointment, in Ilwaco, Washington, rescued a man after his boat ran aground and began taking on water in the Columbia River, Monday.

A member of the boatcrew, acting as a surface rescue swimmer, was able to reach the man and get him safely aboard a 29-foot Response Boat–Small and transfer him in good condition to emergency medical services.


Oregon State Police (OSP) is continuing the investigation into Saturday afternoon's non-injury crash along Highway 101 north of Gearhart involving artist Royal Nebeker after his vehicle struck a power pole that led to a fire eventually extinguished by responding firefighters. The cause of the crash is driver fatigue and enforcement decision is pending.


One of the goals of this year's Astoria Warrenton Chamber of Commerce Board of Directors was to grow the Chamber's membership to 600. In mid-July the Chamber accepted their 601st member, the highest ever for the Chamber.


Greg Engebretson has been chosen as the new Clatsop County Juvenile Director.  Engebretson has served as a juvenile counselor with Clatsop County since 1988. He replaces Janet Evans, who departed the position earlier this year after six years with the county.


Oregon State Police (OSP) is continuing the investigation into Friday morning's two-vehicle fatal traffic crash that resulted in the death of one person and injuries to two other people along Highway 30 about three miles east of Astoria.   Preliminary information indicates on July 25, 2014 at approximately 6:49 a.m., a report was received of a serious injury crash involving two vehicles on Highway 30 just east of Tongue Point near milepost 94. A passenger vehicle driven by an adult female was westbound when it crossed the double solid centerline and sideswiped an eastbound vehicle with two occupants.


Bring your beach towel and sunscreen -- but leave your smokes at home. Oregon is taking steps to ban smoking on all 362 miles of beaches along the Pacific coast. The state Parks and Recreation Department has all ready snuffed out smoking at most other state parks. The agency is taking comments on the proposed beach ban through next month. Lighting up on the beach could cost offenders 110 bucks, but officials say the fine would only be imposed on repeat offenders. Supporters say a beach smoking ban would reduce litter and make rules consistent throughout the parks.


Michael Summers has been selected as the new Public Works Director for Clatsop County.  Summers joined Clatsop County in June 2013 as County Engineer. He replaces Ed Wegner, who retired earlier this year after 10 years with the county. Summers worked as a civil engineer for a private firm from 2006 to 2013, and as an engineering designer from 2004 to 2006. He graduated from Oregon State University. Public Works handles the maintenance and repair of 250 miles of county roads, 68 bridges and associated infrastructure, as well as oversees the Engineer and Surveyor functions and administers the Parks Department and Building and Grounds office.



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