News briefs — June 7, 2017

UI restores Administration Building

The University of Idaho shared its plans for the renovation of the Administration Building May 31. According to a news release, both the inside and outside of the Administration Building will be updated throughout the summer.

First on the list of renovations is the front stairwell and outer entrance of the building. Workers have begun to improve the building’s staircase posts that support the banisters. According to the news release, the posts are to wide for Idaho safety standards. To further enhance the safety of the banisters, the university will install a new handrail with glass panels around the rail, which will showcase the historical railing through the glass.

UI received a total of approximately $1.3 million to repair the posts, as well as other elements of the stairway to produce a safer space and a more historically appealing look. This aspect of the renovation is set to conclude late October 2017.

As part of this aspect of the renovations, the university also plans to remove the doors separating the building’s hallways and will restore the archways of each wing on all three floors.

The Idaho state Permanent Building Fund also awarded UI approximately $1 million to restore some of the exterior masonry and stone work.

Any safety and structural needs will be repaired first, and any historical elements will be added afterward.

UI ASB program receives award

According to a May 31 news release, the University of Idaho’s Alternative Service Break program has been named the nation’s top program for 2017.

The award was given by Break Away, a national non-profit that promotes service break programs, is one of the highest awards an ASB program can receive. According to the news release, award recipients are chosen based on a commitment to developing student leadership, building active citizenship on campus and a true dedication to quality alternative breaks.

Students can take part in service break projects through UI’s Center for Volunteerism and Social Action in the Department of Student Involvement. These service projects take place during winter, spring and summer breaks.

More information on the award is available at the Break Away website at

DeLeon Tye pleads not guilty

A Genesee man who was charged with aggravated battery with an enhancement for great bodily harm pleaded not guilty during his arraignment Monday in the in Latah County 2nd District Court.

Eliseo DeLeon Tye was originally charged with attempted first-degree murder and burglary with the intent to commit a felony April 7, after allegedly stabbing his ex-wife, Shelby Smith, 14 times in her Moscow apartment.

According to police reports, DeLeon Tye said he entered Smith’s residence to retrieve a flash drive he believed he’d lost in the divorce, and if he didn’t recover it, he was told by a man named Gemini that his sister’s life would be in jeopardy. The flash drive was said to contain “important information for the family business,” and was allegedly worth more than $1 million.

Prosecuting Attorney William Thompson Jr. said he originally asked for the amended charge because it could potentially result in a longer prison sentence.

During the arraignment, Thompson also asked for the burglary charge to be enhanced and the continuance of a no-contact order between Smith and DeLeon Tye, which Judge John Stegner approved.

Stegner also authorized Defense attorney Catherine Mabbutt request for a psychological evaluation that will be completed before Deleon Tye’s next status hearing July 10.

If convicted, DeLeon Tye faces up to 45 years in the Idaho State Penitentiary, plus the possibility of an additional five for the use of a deadly weapon as well as a fine of over $100,000.

DeLeon Tye will remain in the custody of the Latah County Jail.

Olivia Heersink and Hailey Stewart can be reached at


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