Samantha Wright

News Reporter/On-air Host

Samantha Wright is a news reporter and the local host for Boise State Public Radio's All Things Considered on weekday afternoons.

Her spot reporting, special projects, and audio production have been featured on Voice of America, National Public Radio News, This American Life, National Native News, the Northwest Radio Network and on The New York Times website. Samantha earned a Regional Edward R. Murrow Award for Use of Sound for her feature “Co-op Cooks.”  She also earned a first place award for Use of Sound for her feature “Canning Makes a Comeback” from PRNDI - Public Radio News Directors Incorporated. Samantha was a co-producer of the Idaho StoryCorps Project. The project was recognized by the Society of Professional Journalists.

AP

The panel that disciplines judges in Idaho has exonerated a southern Idaho judge who sentenced a teen to probation for assaulting a football teammate in a controversial case earlier this year.

The Idaho Judicial Council announced Monday that an investigation into Fifth District Judge Randy Stoker found no misconduct.

Ken Cole / Western Watersheds Project

An environmental group and the U.S. Forest Service have agreed to a deal to help fish in the Salmon River.

Amanda Romney / American Red Cross

Across the country, the American Red Cross received 61,000 fewer blood donations than usual over the last two months. That means the agency had to use some of its blood supply reserves and says the situation now is critical.

The region that covers Idaho suffered from the shortage as well. Idaho is part of an area that includes 120 hospitals here and in Utah, Nevada, and Montana. That region fell short by 2,200 donations over the past two months.

KBSW is operating at reduced power, and there may be intermittent outages today from 11 am until 1 pm as work is being done on the electrical system at the site.

We apologize for any inconvenience.

Major Chris Borders / Idaho National Guard

The Idaho National Guard will hold a memorial for the four people who died in a cabin fire last Friday.

Adjutant General Major General Gary L. Sayler says the Guard will hold the memorial for Lt. Col. James E. Harper III and his son JJ, and 1st Sgt. Erin R. Smith and daughter Autumn. 

“It is with great sadness that I extend our deepest sympathies to the families and loved ones of those suffering from this recent and tragic loss,” Sayler said.

Julio Cortez / AP Photo

After controversy over legal vs illegal fireworks in Idaho in the run up to the July Fourth holiday, the Boise Fire Department reports they did respond to fires over the long weekend caused by fireworks.

BFD reports 13 fires on July 4 and July 5. Four were started by fireworks, and five are still under investigation. That is a drop from last year when ten fires were started by fireworks.

gray wolf, wolves
U.S. Fish & Wildlife

Idaho Fish and Game is thinking about changing the rules for some kinds of hunting in the Gem State.

In what's known as a "negotiated rule making process," Fish and Game is giving the public a chance to weigh in on the six proposed changes.

One change would allow hunters to use bait when hunting wolves. If the rule is implemented, specific times and uses of bait would be outlined.

Wild Lens

Local filmmakers, who are making a movie about the plight of a critically endangered sea mammal, say there are now likely less than 25 of the animals left in the Gulf of California.

Boise filmmaker Matthew Podolsky started documenting the story of the small, dolphin-like vaquita over two years ago. Since he learned the animals were dying in gill nets he’s been telling their story in short films. He’s watched the number of remaining vaquita continue to drop each year.

Boise Parks and Recreation Department

It’s been a year since last June’s Table Rock Fire in the Boise Foothills destroyed 2,500 acres of wildlife habitat. Sparked by illegal fireworks, the blaze burned and blackened the sagebrush-covered landscape. Over the last 12 months, a group of people and agencies have worked to restore the area.

Martha Brabec says she’s seeing progress when she travels through the burn area. As Boise Parks and Recreation’s Foothills Restoration Specialist, she’s on the front lines of the fire recovery effort.

Gary O. Grimm / Flickr Creative Commons

The gymnasium at Park School in Weiser is full of third, fourth and fifth-grade students. Standing next to the stage, Principal Angela Halvorson introduces Assistant Professor Brian Jackson from Boise State University.

“And he is going to talk to us all about this cool thing that’s coming, the total solar eclipse. Can you please give him a round of applause . . . "

Jackson is traveling around Idaho this summer to talk to kids and adults about the eclipse.

Darin Oswald / Idaho Statesman

In the latest twist over legal fireworks, an opinion from the Idaho Attorney General's office says aerial fireworks can only be sold to someone with a permit for a public display or event. The controversy over sales of bottle rockets and Roman candles heated up after last year’s Table Rock Fire in the Boise Foothills.

 

Samantha Wright / Boise State Public Radio

Before the Hells Canyon National Recreation Area became a backcountry paradise for outdoor adventures, families up and down the Snake River called it home.

Plucky families, including Lem and Doris Wilson, made a go of sheep ranching in a very primitive environment that had no electricity, no refrigerators and no modern conveniences. In 1951 the family of four moved onto a 4,000 acre ranch in the canyon, several miles away from Grangeville, with 1,200 sheep for company.

The Exploratorium / NASA

Most hotels and campgrounds in Idaho along the path of the total solar eclipse this August have been sold out for months if not years. But one group still has campsites available near Stanley. They plan to stream the eclipse to those who can’t make it into the backcountry.

Jim Urquhart / AP Photo

Protections that have been in place for more than 40 years for grizzly bears in the Yellowstone National Park area will be lifted this summer after U.S. government officials ruled Thursday that the population is no longer threatened.

Boise Police Department

An Ada County Grand Jury has handed down an indictment in the case of a Boise State University student who was raped, kidnapped and murdered last year.

Sierra Bush disappeared last September. Her body was found a month later, south of Idaho City. Police narrowed down their search for a suspect to a man who had rented a home from Bush’s father before her death.

In November, Bruce Marchant was found in a Veterans Affairs hospital in Manhattan. He told reporters then that he wasn’t guilty of rape or murder.

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