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Plus, some notable absences at Wheeler's reelection announcement and Broussard eyes City Council seat

FILE PHOTO - Oregon corrections director Michael Francke in Salem.A multipart iHeartRadio podcast about the 1989 murder of Oregon corrections department director Michael Francke will debut Oct. 24.

"Murder in Oregon: Who killed Michael Francke?" focuses on the ongoing efforts of Francke's brother, Kevin, and then-Oregonian columnist Phil Stanford to solve the murder, which they believe was an assassination arranged by corrupt department officials.

Petty Salem criminal Frank Gable was convicted of the killing outside the corrections department headquarters during a botched car prowl in 1991 and sentenced to life in prison without parole. But earlier this year, a federal judge ruled he probably was innocent and did not receive a fair trial. Gable was freed while the state appeals the ruling that he either be retried or permanently released.

The podcast will be available on the iHeartRadio app, Amazon Podcast, and other podcast outlets. A preview currently is online.

Missing in action

Although Mayor Ted Wheeler announced for reelection with an impressive gathering of supporters, there were a few conspicuous absentees.

The heads of just about every city employee union in Portland attended the news conference except Portland Police Association President Daryl Turner, who has criticized Wheeler's handling of the homeless crisis and the dueling downtown political protests. And although Metro President Lynn Peterson showed up to lend her support, Multnomah County Chair Deborah Kafoury was absent.

Additionally, the business community was represented by staff and board members from the Portland Business Alliance and Marcelino Alvarez, founder and CEO of the Uncorked Studios product design firm where the event was held. But the leadership of the progressive Business for a Better Portland was absent.

Broussard eyes City Council seat

Repeat local candidate Bruce Broussard is preparing to run for the city council to make using the never-opened Wapato Jail for the homeless a campaign issue.

Broussard, an African American former U.S. Marine who has unsuccessfully run for several local offices, attended the Oct. 10 news conference at the former Multnomah County facility where developer Jordan Schnitzer, the current owner, said he would begin demolishing it soon if funds are not committed to open it as a homeless services center. Volunteers of America of Oregon President Kay Toran presented a proposal to convert it, but has not been able to raise the tens of millions of dollars needed for the renovation and operating costs.

Broussard did not say which of the three seats he will file for. Mayor Ted Wheeler and Commissioner Chloe Eudaly are up for reelection, and Commissioner Amanda Fritz chose not to run again.

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