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Jan 2, 2014 - The Associated Press

Flu on the rise statewide

CHEYENNE -- Influenza is on the rise across Wyoming, with 460 cases reported so far this season, state officials and clinicians said.

The actual number is higher because most influenza patients don't seek medical attention and don't show up in the statistics, said Kim Deti, a spokeswoman for the Wyoming Department of Health.

She also said reporting isn't consistent across the state's counties.

"We know it's not an accurate reflection," Deti said.

Campbell County led the state with 167 cases. Laramie County, which includes Cheyenne, has reported 72 cases.

The number of flu cases spiked the week ending Dec. 21, when 192 cases were reported, state figures show. The previous week, 78 were logged. But that's still far below the same week in 2012, when 502 cases were reported.

Counterfeit bills seen in Wyoming

ROCK SPRINGS -- The Rock Springs Police Department and the U.S. Secret Service are looking for the person who passed nearly $1,000 in counterfeit bills at a local electronics store.

$950 in counterfeit money turned up in a bank deposit bag from the store. There were eight counterfeit $100 bills and three counterfeit $50 bills.

Rock Springs Police Sgt. Curt Christensen says the counterfeit money was discovered by Wells Fargo Bank on Saturday after the electronics store made a deposit. Christensen says it's not clear when the counterfeit currency was used because the deposit covered receipts from several days.

Christensen says the counterfeit bills were of poor quality. He says no other local business have reported receiving counterfeit money.

Drunk driver hit patrol car

ROCK SPRINGS -- The Wyoming Highway Patrol says a hit-and-run driver slammed into a trooper's patrol car as it was parked on the shoulder of Interstate 80 west of Rock Springs on Sunday morning.

The patrol says the trooper was parked by the side of the interstate shortly after 1 a.m. Sunday.

The trooper was working a previous crash with his emergency lights activated when he saw a vehicle approaching from behind. The trooper was able to move his car slightly before the other driver clipped it from behind.

The driver of the other vehicle kept going, and the trooper caught up to him and stopped him. The patrol says a Rock Springs man was arrested and charged with DUI, leaving the scene of a crash, and other offenses.

Another avalanche death reported

BOZEMAN, Mont. -- One snowmobiler died and two others suffered minor injuries in an avalanche in southwestern Montana, marking the fourth death in the region in a week.

Gallatin County Sheriff Brian Gootkin says 46-year-old Burton Kenneth Gibson of Bozeman and two 19-year-old men were snowmobiling in Onion Basin southeast of Big Sky Wednesday afternoon when they were caught in the slide.

Gibson was buried. The two other riders were able to locate him using avalanche transceivers, but CPR efforts failed. Searchers planned to return to the area Thursday to recover Gibson's body.

Three other people have died in avalanches in Wyoming and Colorado over the past week.

Skier Mike Kazanjy of Santa Ana, Calif., and snowmobiler Rex Anderson of Arco, Idaho, died in separate avalanches Dec. 26 near Jackson. Another person died Tuesday in a slide north of Granby, Colo.

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