Ready to Rumble

Bend Fighter Makes His Professional Boxing Debut

Chris Johnson got a late start to his boxing career, making his first Golden Gloves appearance as a 22-year-old, but late last year, the 25-year-old Bend fighter became a father for the first time, and he decided that is was now or never, if he was ever going to take his shot at becoming a professional boxer.

Central Oregon Daily’s Eric Lindstrom followed Chris “The Truth” Johnson, all the way from the opening days of training camp in Bend to the final bell of his first professional fight in Medford.

How to Assess School Threats

Deschutes County District Attorney Talks About Challenges of Preventing Crimes Before they Happen

It’s been a tumultuois year for students across Bend. La-Pine schools, with multiple threats investigated during the last six months. Currently, there are no specific state laws classified as felonies that address those that make actual threats before they carry them out.

Bend La-Pine School Superintendent Shay Mikalson issued a call to action after the threats made in February. Mikalson, as well as Deschutes County District Attorney John Hummel, also backed a proposal from state senator Tim Knopp which would’ve made threats of violence a felony.

That proposal was shot down due to concerned over concerns that it infringed on freedom of speech.

Right now, prosecutors in Oregon can only consider menacing, disorderly conduct and harassment charges in order to prosecute individuals who make threats and that only allows misdemeanor charges. Next year in Salem, the hope is to finally create a law that addresses those that make threats before they carry them out.

Central Oregon Daily’s Lisa Carton sat down with Hummel to talk about the challenges he and law enforcement face to try to assess those threats.

Threat Prompts Precautions at St. Charles

Officials Increase Security After Threat From ER Patient

There was an increase of security patrols at St. Charles Medical Center in Bend on Thursday due to a threat made about a month ago by a patient in the ER. St. Charles safety department and police interviewed the man who made the threat for March 8th. They did not believe the person posed any risks, but he does have a 60-day no trespass order.

However, with security and hospital staff on high alert, a staff member did report a suspicious package at a bus stop outside of the hospital. The box was checked out by security staff and turned out to be a thermometer for concrete that was being poured as part of an ongoing construction project.

There was also a small dumpster fire reported at the hospital on Thursday, but according to St. Charles staff, that was put out within about ten minutes. Bend Fire happened to be at the hospital for unrelated reasons, which allowed to respond within minutes.

Gun Control Debate

Redmond Gun Store Owner Weighs In on Future of Firearms Industry in Wake of Florida High School Shooting

The debate over gun sales and gun control has been re-ignited ever since the deadly high school shooting in Parkland.

Central Oregon Daily’s Lisa Carton talks to the owner of Colfax Tactical, RBR in Redmond about this renewed debate, and the challenges he faces as a gun owner, maker and seller.

There have been more than one hundred federal gun control bills introduced in Congress since the 2012 Sandy Hook massacre, and all have failed. There are still signs that this time could be different as the high school survivors of the Parkland, Florida shooting are keeping up the pressure on Congress and planning mass protests around the country to end gun violence.

Playoff Update

Bend Girls Advance to Semifinals in 5A Playoffs

The 6th-seeded Bend Lava Bears upset #3 seed Central 26-23 in a low-scoring affair in Corvallis on Tuesday night to advance to the Semifinals of the Oregon School Activities Association 5A Girls Playoffs.
Bend will face 2nd-seeded La Salle Prep on Thursday at 3:15pm at Gill Coliseum.
Tomorrow, two Central Oregon boys teams will play in the Quarterfinals of their tournaments.
First, the #8 seed Sisters Outlaws will take on the top-seeded Banks Braves in the 4A Playoffs at Forest Grove High School at 1:30pm on Wednesday.
Then, back in Corvallis, 6th-seeded Mountain View High School will face the #3 seed, Thurston, at 6:30pm on Wednesday in the 5A Quarterfinals.

From Iraq to Hollywood

Former Soldier Turned Screenwriter and Filmmaker

Redmond resident Nicolas Mezzanatto has had many roles in his life – husband, father, son, soldier, and now filmmaker, including as the screenwriter of a new Bruce Willis movie.
You can follow him on Facebook at Nicolas Mezzanatto and you can find his new movie ‘Acts of Violence’ anywhere movies are sold or downloaded.

Tree Well Warnings After Deaths on Mt Bachelor

How to Avoid Dangerous Situations on the Mountain

Mt. Bachelor officials say they are putting a priority on warning skiers and snowboarders about the dangers of tree wells after the deaths of two people in separate incidents on the mountain last Friday. 
Central Oregon Daily’s Anyssa Bohanan takes a closer look at the accidents that claimed the lives of two young Oregonians.

Mt. Bachelor officials, as well as those who have experienced being trapped in a tree well, say that one of the safest things that you can do to avoid dangerous situations on the mountain is to have someone skiing or snowboarding with you, especially is you are making a run near the trees.

Origin Story: Starting from Scratch

Justin Nelson of Fernweh Woodworking built his business from the ground up. Despite growing up more interested in cars than crafts, Nelson began making tobacco pipes while in the military and discovered a new passion for woodworking. After leaving the Marine Corps Nelson began learning the tricks of his new found trade and built it into what is now a three-year-old business.

Hear his story in the latest installment of Central Oregon Daily’s newest feature, Origin Story. Every week Allison Roecker introduces us to a passionate person who is making their dreams come true.

Bend Locals on HGTV

“Mom and Me” Producers Looking for Bend Homeowners Who Want Renovations

#inBend mother-son renovation duo, Karrie and Tristan Trowbridge got the green light from HGTV for a full season of their new “Mom and Me” show, but when the “flipping” part of the format turned out to more difficult than expected, they decided to flip the script.

Central Oregon Daily’s Anyssa Bohanan looks at the new format of the show, and how your home could become part of the show.

If you want more information about “Mom and Me”, head to, and if you’re interested in having the Trowbridge family do renovations on your home, you can e-mail questions to
Homeowners do cover a large portion of the renovation costs, but there are perks that come with doing it through the show, and the producers can explain that in more detail when you contact them.

OSU-Cascades Gets Green Light for Expansion

State Legislature Approves Funding for OSU-Cascades on Final Day of Short Session

in the closing minutes of the 2018 short legislative session on Saturday, the Oregon House and Senate approved a budget which included $39 million in bonds for OSU-Cascades.
The bonds will be instrumental in moving forward with a second academic building on the Bend campus.
Retiring Representative Gene Whisnant from Sunriver officially presented the measure in the House as his last act in the legislature.
Governor Kate Brown says she will sign it into law.

Here is a statement released by OSU-Cascades officials on Sunday afternoon:

“Oregon State University’s campus in Bend is a step closer to meeting the needs of its growing student enrollment following the Oregon Legislature on Saturday approving $39 million in state-backed bonds for OSU-Cascades’ second academic building.

The facility will serve STEAM disciplines of science, technology, engineering, arts and mathematics.

“We are very grateful for the support of Governor Brown, Speaker Kotek, Senator Knopp, Representative Rayfield and many legislators for the continued expansion of higher education programming in Central Oregon,” said OSU President Ed Ray. “We are also grateful to the many generous donors whose gifts of over $9 million helped match this state funding.”

“Funding for this academic building will allow us to serve our mission in Oregon, and especially in Central Oregon, where there are no other four-year university options closer than three hours,” said Ray.

The legislature approved $9.5 million in state bonding in the 2017 session in part to support site preparation of undeveloped campus property where the new academic building will be constructed.

At the time, OSU officials pledged to seek additional state funding for the building in the 2018 legislative session. Over the past months, Central Oregon community, business and economic leaders, advocates with the Beaver Caucus, and undergraduate students traveled to Salem to support funding for increasing campus capacity in what is the fastest growing region in Oregon.

“We anticipate construction to begin in summer 2019, following remediation of portions of the pumice mine and landfill that adjoin our campus,” said OSU-Cascades Vice President Becky Johnson. “This new academic building will house classrooms and laboratories and be ready for students in fall 2021.””