Prineville Man Sentenced to Federal Prison for Brokering Machine Gun Sale

A Prineville man was sentenced Tuesday to 18 months in federal prison and three years suspended release for brokering the sale of a machine gun.

According to a release from the U.S. Attorney’s Office in Eugene, between May and June 2018, Michael James Friesen, 33, agreed to broker the sale of a Guide Lamp, Model M3A1, .45 ACP caliber machine gun for co-defendant John Widener Jordan, 38, also of Prineville.

Between May 30 and June 5, Friesen discussed the sale price of the firearm with an undercover agent from the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (ATF) posing as a potential purchaser. Friesen confirmed for the agent that he had seen the firearm function as a machine gun.

On June 6, Friesen met the undercover agent in a motel room in Prineville. Shortly thereafter, Jordan brought the firearm to the motel room and completed the transaction in exchange for $3,000 in cash. Jordan in turn paid Friesen for arranging the sale.

On April 24, 2019, Friesen pleaded guilty to one count each of conspiracy to transfer and unlawful possession of a machine gun.

Jordan is awaiting a jury trial scheduled to begin on October 16, 2019.

This case was investigated by the ATF and is being prosecuted by Nathan J. Lichvarcik, Assistant U.S. Attorney for the District of Oregon.

Wayne L. Morse Federal Courthouse photo courtesy M.O. Stevens

Prineville Hopes for a New Park through Moda Assist

The Portland Trailblazers are teaming up with Moda Health for their annual Moda Assist Program, which gives one city in Oregon the chase to update a local park and create an all abilities playground. One city vying for this opportunity is right here in Central Oregon.

Central Oregon Daily’s Dalton Roth went down to Prineville to see how they’re hoping to make their case for a new park.

Prineville School Becomes Affordable Housing

The City of Prineville found a creative way to save a historic building and provide much needed housing for low-income residents. Ochoco Elementary School, built in 1947, has been retrofitted into affordable apartments.
Central Oregon Daily’s Allison Roecker has more on the story.

Writing the West: Meet Author Rick Steber

Initially inspired by western writers like Zane Grey and others when he was a young man, a Prineville, Oregon writer has now become an iconic western writer in his own right, telling stories with deep western roots here in Central Oregon. Central Oregon Daily’s Brian Jennings has more on the life and writings of Rick Steber.

Supper Club: City Club Regional Forum

For this week’s Supper Club, Donna Britt attended the City Club regional forum at Eagle Crest in Redmond, titled: Growth’s Impact on our Communities. The speakers included local city managers and a mayor from Bend, Redmond, La Pine, Prineville, Sisters and Madras.

Moderator Scott Aycock with the Central Oregon Intergovernmental Council set the stage with some impressive statistics. Since 1990, Central Oregon has grown 122 percent. By 2025, there will be another 37,000 people here. By 2040, another 113,000 and the population is expected to double with another 250,000 people by 2065.

How are the diverse communities in our region planning for this growth and what are some of the challenges they are facing? This was the conversation at the City Club forum and some highlights of that conversation make up this week’s Supper Club.

Thanks to City Club for inviting us to their regional forum and thanks to all of the city managers for their input. 

A special thanks to our Supper Club sponsors, Selco Community Credit Union, for giving us the time and resources to talk about the issues that impact our region every Tuesday night on Central Oregon Daily.

End of An Era

Former Prineville Headquarters of Les Schwab Being Demolished

Since the Les Schwab Tire Centers headquarters moved from Prineville to Bend in 2008, the former home of the company has sat empty along the Madras-Prineville Highway. 
Now, the company has decided to demolish the buildings to prepare for a possible sale of the property, signaling the end of an era. Central Oregon Daily’s Curtis Vogel looks at the history and importance of Les Schwab and his company to the community of Prineville.

The original store that Les Schwab opened in Downtown Prineville in 1952 has been gone for years, but, for now, the company’s training bays and retread plants will remain in their current location on the Madras-Prineville Highway.

Prineville PD’s Random Acts of Kindness

Prineville residents who were stopped by their local police this week were in for a surprise. Instead of citations, residents were handed gift cards to places like the Prineville Coffee Company and Starbucks.

Prineville Police handed out gift cards instead of tickets for minor traffic violation but also handed out gift cards to residents who were just out walking their dogs, shoveling snow or doing errands.

It was part of the department’s Random Acts of Kindness program, which is meant to help build a positive relationship between the department and the community.

“Just generally the perception that we’re not just out there to give them a ticket or to take them to jail, but we’re normal people and we’re out there just to share some kindness and spread of holiday cheer,” said Prineville Sgt. James Peterson.

While the gift card giveaways are over for the year, Prineville police hope that spirit of community and paying it forward sticks around all year.

Central Oregon Daily’s Warren Shultz has more.

Supper Club: Future of Prineville

Prineville is now one of the fastest-growing regions in the country, so for this week’s Supper Club, we asked community leaders to join us to talk about how the city recovered from the great recession and how they’re dealing with the rapid growth now happening in their region.

Thanks to our Supper Club sponsor, Selco Community Credit Union for giving us the time and resources to talk about the issues that impact our region every Tuesday night on Central Oregon Daily.

Teaching Little Dogies New Tricks

The Crooked River Roundup is this weekend at the Crook County Fairgrounds in Prineville, and organizers are taking steps to make sure the events are crowd-pleasers.

Central Oregon Daily’s Anyssa Bohanan was shown how the cowboys have altered the chutes to give the steers a chance to get off to a faster start and go farther out into the arena during the roping events.

Meet the 2017 Crooked River Roundup Grand Marshal: Jody Stahancyk

Jody Stahancyk’s grandparents Joseph and Anna settled in Crook County in 1924 in a place on Lamonta Road. Jody was born in Prineville in 1948 at the old hospital on West 1st Street. She graduated from Crook County High School in 1966 and during her college and law school years she ran the Prineville Pool and taught many of the local children to swim. For the past 35 years, Jody has supported the Roundup with her annual party, BBQ and Queen Luncheon at the family ranch on Lamonta road. Jody is the Grand Marshal for this year’s Crooked River Roundup in Prineville. The rodeo runs from June 23-25 and the CCR races are July 12-15.