Archive for June, 2013

Sharyn’s Sirens: Daily police and fire roundup

Saturday, June 29th, 2013


• A pair of 22-year-olds from Olympia were injured when a motorcycle ended up in a creek at the “S” curves on North Gold Street in Centralia yesterday. Police responding about 6 p.m. concluded excessive speed was a factor in the wreck. The male and female patients were transported to Providence Centralia Hospital, responders said. Both were wearing helmets.


• A 37-year-old man stopped for riding a bicycle without a headlight in Centralia overnight was found to have warrants for his arrest and when he was detained, baggies of suspected meth fell from his hand, according to the Centralia Police Department. It happened about 4:30 a.m. near Jefferson and South Pearl streets, according to police. Makia D. Adams was arrested and booked into the Lewis County Jail.


• Centralia police took a report about 2 o’clock this morning regarding an individual stealing beer from a convenience store on the 600 block of South Tower Avenue.

• Centralia police were called to the 200 block of East Van Buren Street about 4:30 p.m. yesterday about wiring being ripped from the walls of building. The case is under investigation, according to the Centralia Police Department.

News brief: Outdoor burning to be restricted

Saturday, June 29th, 2013

By Sharyn L. Decker
Lewis County Sirens news reporter

A statewide burn ban starts on Monday and runs through September on  all forestland and other property that is protected by the state Department of Natural Resources.

Exceptions include recreational use in approved fire pits in designated campgrounds, according to a news release from DNR.

“The threat of wildfires from escaped outdoor burning is highest during the hot and dry days of summer,” Commissioner of Public Lands Peter Goldmark stated. “Wildfires are serious threats to public safety, private property and wildlife habitat. We must take prudent steps to prevent wildfires and minimize the large expenditures of public resources spent to fight them.”

Already this year, 57 wildfires have started from escaped outdoor burn piles, according to the state agency.


Get more information from Department of Natural Resources

Read about Packwood resident dies in Montana National Park …

Friday, June 28th, 2013

By Sharyn L. Decker
Lewis County Sirens news reporter

The Missoulian in Montana reports a hiker who slipped on a snowfield falling about 100 feet to his death has been identified as Charles Fred Huseman, 64, of Packwood.

News reporter Vince Devlin writes a park ranger and others administered aid following the Wednesday afternoon incident in Glacier National Park but Huseman died at the scene.

Read about it here

Sharyn’s Sirens: Daily police and fire roundup

Friday, June 28th, 2013

Updated at 10:12 p.m.


• A 55-year-old motorcyclist was hospitalized last night after he struck a deer southeast of Toledo, was tossed onto the ground and slid some 50 feet along the pavement. Troopers and aid responded about 9:20 p.m. to the scene, along state Route 505 near Merchant Road. The bike was big, the deer was small and the speed limit there is 55 mph, according to Lewis County Fire District 2 Chief Grant Wiltbank. The chief said the touring-type motorcycle continued nearly another 100 feet past the rider. “He was wearing modern and fairly heavy duty riding clothes,” Wiltbank said. “If he’d have been wearing just Levi jeans or something, he’d have been pretty torn up with all that.” Thomas I. Newland, 55, from San Francisco, was headed north, and a passing physician had stopped to wait with him for the fire department, according to responders. He was transported to Providence Centralia Hospital with injuries that did not appear to be life-threatening, the chief said. The 2012 BMW sustained significant damage. The deer was killed upon impact. No citation is expected, but the Washington State Patrol blamed inattention.


• One person was injured in a rollover accident on Interstate 5 north of Centralia yesterday morning. Troopers called about 5:15 a.m. reported a 21-year-old woman from Kent was traveling northbound near the county line when her Saturn station wagon left the roadway to the right, struck a sign and rolled. The driver Lisa M. Wilkins was reportedly uninjured but her passenger, Brianna P. Chandler, 23, from Snoqualmie, was transported to Providence Centralia Hospital, according to the Washington State Patrol. The state patrol blamed driver inattention for the wreck.


• Centralia police were called just after noon yesterday to an office which had been broken in to at the 400 block of West Main Street. Taken was a camera and 25 caliber pistol, according to the Centralia Police Department.


• Police were called to a north Centralia neighborhood about 3:30 p.m. yesterday where a 13-year-old boy said as he rode his bike down Oxford Avenue past an abandoned house, a guy with a bike reached out and grabbed towards him. The youngster told police as he pedaled away, he noticed the guy behind him, although not chasing after him, according to the Centralia Police Department. The subject wasn’t located and at this point, it appears less like an attempted abduction and more like someone trying to scare a kid, Sgt. Kurt Reichert said.


• A 22-year-old Toledo man was arrested yesterday for unlawful imprisonment for an incident that occurred early last week when he was a guest in a home on the 200 block of Howe Road East near Toledo. A detective was told when it was reported the following day that Rupp W. Freece was intoxicated and dragged the 61-year-old female resident down a hallway into a bedroom, according to the Lewis County Sheriff’s Office. She screamed, he let go of her and other members of the household made him leave, Cmdr. Steve Aust said.


• And as usual, other incidents such as arrests for warrants, misdemeanor domestic assault; responses for alarms, fender benders, graffiti on a fence, bicycle theft, misbehaving dogs … and more.

Mossyrock police chief contesting protection order

Friday, June 28th, 2013

By Sharyn  L. Decker
Lewis County Sirens news reporter

Mossyrock Police Chief Jeremy Stamper is under court order to check his service firearm to his supervisor after each shift where it will be held until his following shift as part of a protection order sought by his wife.

He was also ordered to undergo domestic violence treatment and drug and alcohol treatment, according to court documents.

Stamper, the east Lewis County town’s only police officer, didn’t return calls for comment, but his supervisor says Stamper remains on the job.

“I have full confidence in him, or he wouldn’t be on patrol right now,” Mossyrock Mayor Tom Meade said yesterday.

Meade however said he isn’t aware of the requirement he hold Stamper’s gun.

The court case began when the police chief’s wife, Shannon Stamper, petitioned the court on May 20 for a year-long protection order and requested her husband be required to undergo treatment.

Court documents show that at a June 10 hearing, Lewis County Superior Court Commissioner Tracy Mitchell found “Ms. Stamper credible” and signed a protection order.

Shannon Stamper’s initial request said her husband never hit her, but he had access to weapons. An example of her concern she wrote about was an incident at the end of February in which she said Jeremy Stamper crushed his phone because he could not figure it out.

The order put in place has numerous restrictions, such as prohibiting him from coming within 200 feet of her residence. Five children are listed as protected as well.

A handwritten aside on the document states that work related contacts in the neighborhood are okay.

Meade said the court order comes during a contested divorce and makes no sense to him. He said the court didn’t analyze the situation thoroughly.

“This whole thing has me scratching my head,” Meade said. “I’ve supervised people for 40 years and I can spot an alcoholic and I can spot an abuser, and I just don’t see this.”

Meade said when the issue first arose, everyone thought the best course of action would be for the police chief to go on vacation. “Not administrative leave, just plain vacation,” he said.

Stamper has been back about a week and half, he said.

Meade pointed out his police chief works 40 hours, but is subject to call out at any time. He’s on duty 24 hours a day, Meade said.

The language on the standard protection order form states that if it is a domestic situation, then effective immediately the respondent may not possess a firearm or ammunition. A handwritten notation on the page indicates Stamper can possess his duty firearm while on shift, per “18 USC 8925.”

Stamper’s attorney Don Blair has filed a motion the order be revised contending the evidence did not show the petitioner was a victim of domestic violence.

Shannon Stamper four days after the order was filed made a written request it be terminated, writing the couple has agreed to reconcile and undergo family counseling. She wrote she may have been mistaken in interpreting her husband’s behavior.

Shannon Stamper wrote she has feared her husband in the recent past but never had issues of safety regarding herself or their children.

Her only comment today: “It’s all blown out of proportion.”

A hearing is set for Monday on the matter.

Arguments for re-sentencing teen drive-by shooter to be heard this autumn

Thursday, June 27th, 2013

Guadalupe Solis-Diaz Jr. waits in a Lewis County courtroom after attorneys pick a date for his new sentencing hearing.

By Sharyn  L. Decker
Lewis County Sirens news reporter

CHEHALIS – Former Centralia resident Guadalupe Solis-Diaz Jr. made a brief appearance in Lewis County Superior Court today as his “do-over” of a nearly 93-year prison sentence winds its way through the system.

Solis-Diaz was 16 years old when he was arrested following a drive-by shooting in downtown Centralia in the summer of 2007.

He was tried as an adult and convicted of multiple offenses, including one count of first-degree assault committed with a firearm for each bullet that was fired. Nobody was hit.

The state Court of Appeals tossed out his virtual life sentence last September and ordered the local court to conduct a new sentencing hearing, referencing various matters that should have been handled more thoroughly, given that he was a juvenile.

The former Centralia High School student’s personal restraint petition focused on a 2010 U.S. Supreme Court decision that held a sentence of life without parole is forbidden for a juvenile who did not commit homicide.

He is represented by attorney Robert Quillian.

In January when Solis-Diaz was returned to Lewis County to begin to address the issue, Quillian asked he remain housed in the Lewis County Jail for closer access as the attorney prepared for the new sentencing hearing.

Quillian and Lewis County Senior Deputy Prosecutor Sara Beigh told a judge this afternoon they expect the hearing will take half a day. It was put on the court calendar for Sept. 27.

The deputy prosecutor who handled the case in 2007 has predicted the new sentence isn’t likely to be all that much shorter, given the statutory framework in place.

Beigh this afternoon said the prosecutors office still hasn’t finalized exactly how much time they will ask for. She’s waiting to see what arguments the defense attorney raises.

“I know what I think I’m going to recommend,” Beigh said. “But I’m trying to keep an open mind and see what they present.”

For background, read: “Appeals court gives Centralia teen a “do-over” on 90-plus-year drive-by shooting sentence” from Wednesday September 19, 2012, here

Centralia jewelry shop burglary case ends with prison for two men

Thursday, June 27th, 2013

Justin D. McPherson of Federal Way asks a judge for mercy in deciding his sentence in Lewis County Superior Court.

By Sharyn  L. Decker
Lewis County Sirens news reporter

CHEHALIS – A judge yesterday disregarded a defendant’s plea for a special drug offender sentencing alternative and gave him seven years plus two months in prison for the failed Centralia jewelry store burglary in which he was shot.

Justin D. McPherson, 29, stood before Judge Nelson Hunt in Lewis County Superior Court yesterday and admitted he acted selfishly and irresponsibly, saying he didn’t want to “live this life anymore.”

“I do have a drug problem,” McPherson said, his voice breaking. “I need help. I just ask for your mercy.”

McPherson was found guilty by a jury last month for breaking into Salewsky’s Jewelry shop in the early morning hours of March 20. He was confronted by the owner’s son who awoke in an upstairs apartment and shot him before he escaped through a hole he’d cut in a wall to an adjoining office space, dropping a trail of jewelry behind him.

Hunt told the Federal Way resident he deserved hard time.

“It may be that you have a drug problem, but frankly it doesn’t matter to me,” Judge Hunt said.

“You’re also a criminal.”

Hunt outlined his reasons. Part of it had to do with the obvious planning that went into the crime, he said.

Mainly, the judge said, McPherson went into a building where he didn’t belong when someone was present. It didn’t matter that he wasn’t aware anyone would be there, he said.

Gunshots threaten everybody, Hunt said.

“This was a legitimate use of self defense, but it was caused by you,” he said.

McPherson was sentenced for one count of second-degree burglary and one count of residential burglary, as well as second-degree malicious mischief for cutting a hole in the wall inside the building.

He was represented by Chehalis attorney Ken Johnson.

Lewis County Senior Deputy Prosecutor Will Halstead told the judge the case against McPherson’s childhood friend Ryan W. Cox wasn’t quite as strong. Cox pleaded guilty in a plea deal.

Later yesterday, Cox was sentenced to seven years for his role.

Halstead said it never was learned how the two non-local men knew about the place; they broke through the back door of the vacant neighboring space and used a crowbar to break through a wall to get into the shop.

The two women who testified they waited in their cars nearby but didn’t know of the plan to steal any jewelry have pleaded guilty to rendering criminal assistance.

For background, read “Jewelry store break-in defendant’s companions testify against him” from Thursday May 30, 2013, here

Sharyn’s Sirens: Daily police and fire roundup

Thursday, June 27th, 2013

Updated at 5:59 p.m.


• Centralia police took a report about 6:25 p.m. yesterday that an Xbox was missing from a home on the 2600 block of Cooks Hill Road.


• Police were called to the 500 block of North Pearl Street yesterday when two counterfeit $1 bills were found as a customer attempted to pay their city light bill. The customer finished paying with real money and the fake cash was taken by the police department.


• Someone spray painted a couple of parked cars along the 1300 block of Windsor Avenue in Centralia, according to a report made to police about 1:15 a.m. today.

• Centralia police were called about 11:10 a.m. yesterday to the 100 block of South Tower Avenue where someone had spray painted graffiti on the roof of a building. It was fairly multi-colored and less gang like than “artsy,” according to the Centralia Police Department.


• Centralia police responded about 6:45 a.m. today to the 1000 block of E Street where someone had rummaged through a car. It wasn’t immediately clear if anything was stolen, according to the Centralia Police Department.


• The two men charged in the beating and stun gun assault of a 32-year-old Chehalis man who thought he was with them to buy drugs pleaded not guilty today to intimidating a witness, second-degree assault, second-degree robbery and harassment. Joseph M. Hanks, 30, of Rochester, and Elijah M. Garibay, 25, from Elma, remain held in the Lewis County Jail following the June 18 incident outside the Peppertree Motel on Alder Street in Centralia. They appeared before a judge this afternoon in Lewis County Superior Court. Their trial was set for the week of August 12.


• And as usual, other incidents such as arrests for warrants, drunken driving; responses for alarms, misdemeanor domestic assault, fender bender, skateboard stolen from a playground; complaints about barking dogs, panhandlers … and more.

Trial gets underway for indefinite detention of accused sexual sadist

Wednesday, June 26th, 2013

By Sharyn  L. Decker
Lewis County Sirens news reporter

CHEHALIS – A Lewis County jury heard via videotaped interview a convicted rapist talk about 10 to 12 of his victims as they sit through a trial in which they will decide if 46-year-old Mark T. Robinson will remain locked up even though he has served his prison term.

Robinson, once a truck driver, was convicted in September 2000 after raping at knifepoint a teenage girl he picked up at a Spokane truck stop, an 18-year-old who escaped his big rig at an exit on Interstate 5 near Toledo. She was hitchhiking to visit her child in Toledo.


Mark T. Robinson

The trial which began yesterday in Lewis County Superior Court is expected to run into next week, according to Senior Counsel Malcom Ross, at the Office of the Attorney General of Washington.

Ross filed the petition for Robinson’s civil commitment in May of last year. Such a petition is filed for approximately 1 percent of offenders who are released from prison in Washington, Ross said at the time.

The process comes from the Community Protection Act of 1990, the first of its kind in the country. The state Attorney General’s Office typically handles the cases, in the county where the criminal conviction occurred.

If the 12-person jury finds unanimously beyond a reasonable doubt Robinson is a sexually violent predator, he will be retained in custody for treatment until he’s deemed no longer dangerous, according to Ross.

Robinson, who according to court documents, was raised in a farming area outside Olympia, bullied in special education classes and dropped out of school, confessed he got a thrill out of raping.

His only other conviction is patronizing a prostitute in 1998, according to Ross.

The then-18-year-old rape victim won’t be among those who take the witness stand. She died years later in a homicide in another state, Ross said. He wasn’t certain of the details.

“It would be useful to hear from her, we wish we had her,” Ross said. “But the most important parts will be the experts discussing the mental disorder.”

The legal term is a mental abnormality that would cause one to reoffend in a sexual way, Ross said. The diagnosis is sadism.

For background, read “Rapist convicted in Lewis County faces indefinite lockup after prison term” from Monday May 21, 2012, here

Sharyn’s Sirens: Daily police and fire roundup

Wednesday, June 26th, 2013

Updated at 1:28 p.m.


• A 34-year-old Centralia woman was arrested for second-degree assault yesterday after she allegedly hit her boyfriend with a board. Officers responding about 1:50 p.m. to the 1400 block of Johnson Road booked Jennifer L. Leard into the Lewis County Jail, according to the Centralia Police Department. The man’s injuries were minor, according to police.


• Centralia police arrested a 25-year-old man for second-degree robbery after he allegedly threatened to hit his uncle unless he gave him money. Officers responding to the 2900 block of Mount Vista Road at about noon on Monday arrested David L. Reser-Edwards, of Centralia, and booked him into the Lewis County Jail, according to the Centralia Police Department. He was released from jail yesterday without charges pending further investigation.


• Chehalis police yesterday were still trying to sort out a commotion from the day before when a man chased a woman in a pink bathrobe into Ace Hardware on the 700 block of South Market Boulevard. An arriving officer got different versions of what had preceded the incident, according to the Chehalis Police Department. The woman said she had been inside the vehicle when the man pulled her hair but also said they had been at a bank together and she grabbed a check from his hand and ran, Deputy Chief Randy Kaut said.


• Chehalis police were called to the 100 block of Northeast Division Street yesterday evening after a woman returned home and found someone had broken into her apartment and stole a 32-inch television. The door had been pushed in, according to police. It happened sometime between 3 p.m. and 4 p.m., Sgt. Gary Wilson said.


• The Lewis County Sheriff’s Office reported yesterday that someone broke into a travel trailer on the 100 block of Salem Plant Road in Silver Creek and stole a cast iron griddle, a television and a portable fire pit. It happened sometime between the evening of June 8 and Monday, according to the sheriff’s office.


• A silver 1991 Honda Accord was reported stolen from the 1800 block of North Pearl Street in Centralia sometime between 4:30 a.m. and 6:30 a.m. on Monday, according to the Centralia Police Department. It’s license plate reads 109ZUL, according to police.


• A 39-year-old motorist was arrested for driving under the influence after he allegedly struck a car causing it major damage yesterday afternoon at the 1300 block of Bishop Road near Interstate Avenue in Chehalis. A deputy responding abut 3 p.m. noted all injuries were minor, according to the Lewis County Sheriff’s Office. Christopher E. Thayer, of Chehalis, was arrested and booked in to the Lewis County Jail. He also had a suspended license, according to the sheriff’s office.


• Chehalis police took a call from an individual yesterday on the 700 block of Northwest Ohio Avenue who said he was going to sit up with a pistol overnight in his backyard because people had been prowling around in the area in recent nights, and he just wanted officers to be aware. Detective Sgt. Gary Wilson said he didn’t yet know specifics of the police contact with the man, but he doesn’t recommend anyone sit up with a loaded firearm and wait for someone passing by. His advice is call 911 if and when something suspicious occurs, he said.


• An SUV stolen from the park and ride lot in Chehalis in early March 2003 GMC Yukon Denali turned up in an old rock quarry pond in Rochester, according to the Thurston County Sheriff’s Office. Sgt. Ray Brady said yesterday the 2003 GMC Yukon Denali was discovered over the weekend by some boys who were kayaking in the pond off 196th Avenue Southwest. A dive team and a tow company on Monday recovered the SUV, which seemed to have been ditched there intentionally, according to Brady. The sergeant said it had obviously been in the water for some time.


• And as usual, other incidents such as arrests for warrants, shoplifting, misdemeanor assault, driving with a suspended license; responses for alarms, disorderly subject, fender benders, other misdemeanor thefts, a citizen worried about a man living in his truck with his 5-month-old baby which appeared to have a skin condition, was wearing clothing that didn’t fit and was drinking only powdered milk – a Chehalis officer who responded found the child was clean, healthy and being taken care of, so no further action on the part of police was necessary, according to detective Sgt. Gary Wilson … and more.


An abandoned Yukon Denali is pulled from a pond in Rochester. / Courtesy photo by Grant’s Towing

News brief: Police looking for information on armed man who hid inside K-Mart

Wednesday, June 26th, 2013

Security video image shows man who hid inside K-Mart, later seen in ski mask and changed clothes. / Courtesy photo Chehalis Police Department

By Sharyn  L. Decker
Lewis County Sirens news reporter

CHEHALIS – Chehalis police are asking for the public’s help after a scary incident for employees at K-Mart at closing time on Friday night.

Officers were called to the store on the 1200 block of Northwest Louisiana Avenue about 9:20 p.m. as workers were searching for a shopper who hadn’t left the building, according to the Chehalis Police Department.

A review of security footage showed he had been hiding in an unused room at the back of the store, changed his clothes and donned a ski mask and gloves, according to police. He was also carrying some kind of handgun, Deputy Chief Randy Kaut said.

While employees looked around, they they heard an alarm at a rear door, when the subject fled the building, police said. Arriving officers did not locate him.

Kaut said initially it was believed he was intending to shoplift, but it seems he may have planned to rob the retailer after it was closed to the public.

In the beginning, the suspect was wearing a white baseball cap, sunglasses, a large dark blue or black “puffy” jacket with four letters of writing on the front, dark blue jeans, and dark colored shoes with white soles, according to police.

When he left, he was wearing a ski mask, a black T-shirt, blue latex gloves and the same pants and shoes, police said.

If the public has any information, they are asked to contact the Chehalis Police Department at 360-748-8605.

Police: LVL gang member caught dealing meth

Tuesday, June 25th, 2013

By Sharyn  L. Decker
Lewis County Sirens news reporter

CHEHALIS – Police arrested a 28-year-old Tenino man yesterday after he allegedly sold $50 worth of methamphetamine to an informant behind the Hub Tavern in Centralia.

Ruben Alberto Palomares was the subject on an ongoing investigation by the Chehalis Police Department, according to Deputy Chief Randy Kaut. He was picked up late in the afternoon in a vehicle traveling on Cooks Hill Road in Centralia, Kaut said.

Officers conducted what Kaut called a high-risk stop, which includes drawn weapons.

Palomares is charged in Lewis County Superior Court with three counts of delivery of a controlled substance, meth.

Lewis County Chief Criminal Deputy Prosecutor Brad Meagher in asking for bail this afternoon told a judge the defendant has only misdemeanor crimes on his record, but that prosecutors are concerned with his known gang ties.

Defense attorney Bob Schroeter who represented Palomares for the hearing said his client works in Winlock and has a solid address in Tenino where he’s lived with his mother for at least the past 10 years.

He qualified as indigent and Centralia attorney Don Blair was appointed to handle his case.

Judge Nelson Hunt ordered him held on $25,000 bail pending trial.

According to charging documents, a police informant twice last month purchased $40 worth of meth from Palomares, and then yesterday bought $50 more while police were conducting surveillance.

A search made today of the impounded vehicle turned up the pre-recorded buy money as well as “paraphernalia” confirming his association with the local LVL gang, according to charging documents.

Palomares once was one of four individuals suspected as being involved in a drive-by shooting in Chehalis that occurred in 2010. Nobody was injured, but a vehicle was shot. That case fell apart because of witness issues, according to Meagher.

Delivery of methamphetamine is a class B felony with a maximum penalty of 10 yeas in prison and a $20,000 fine.

For background, read “Last suspect from summer 2010 drive-by shooting in Chehalis now accounted for” from Wednesday October 3, 2012, here

Illness and delay plagued Winlock rape case ends with lengthy prison term

Tuesday, June 25th, 2013

Leo B. Bunker, right, consults with his attorney Michael Underwood as he is sentenced in Lewis County Superior Court to prison for rape.

By Sharyn  L. Decker
Lewis County Sirens news reporter

CHEHALIS – A 53-year-old Winlock man convicted of raping his wife was sentenced today to 38 years in prison.

Leo B. Bunker III, who denied the accusations when he took the witness stand during his trial earlier this month, filed a notice of appeal following this morning’s court hearing, but suffers from advanced throat cancer.

Bunker’s lawyer called it a virtual life sentence even without the illness; a prosecutor indicated it was well-deserved.

“He is incredibly dangerous, ” Lewis County Deputy Prosecutor Joely O’Rourke told the judge. “He will absolutely get out and either kill (the victim) or hurt someone else.”

Bunker was arrested in late 2011 after deputies were told he physically abused the woman he reunited with some 35 years after they dated in high school. The victim testified he quickly became possessive and violent, preventing her from talking on the phone or leaving the house and terrifying her with cruel and sadistic threats.

She described how she went through with their wedding, because she didn’t think she could get away from him and still make sure she and her family would be safe.

O’Rourke today read a statement from the victim in which she wrote when “Buddy” came back into her life, it reminded her of better times, but she quickly came to fear him and would do just about anything to avoid his rage.

Bunker was convicted by on June 6, as charged, of two counts of second-degree rape, one count of harassment and two counts of violating a protection order. The jury found “aggravating circumstances” which allowed for additional time on his sentence.

On the advice of her doctor, the victim stayed away from today’s proceedings, according to O’Rourke. She sufferers from a coronary condition so serious her doctors told her could kill her if she testified.

Bunker’s older sister however was in the courtroom in support of her sibling.

“It’s one thing to go to prison for things you did, but it’s wrong when you didn’t,” Debra Tsugawa said.

Tsugawa said she doesn’t know if her brother will live long enough to see through his appeal.

She said her brother was diagnosed in August of last year with an aggressive cancer while he was locked up awaiting trial, but his treatment was delayed until January and by then it had spread to his lymph glands and thyroid.

Because he is in the custody of the jail, Lewis County has been responsible for paying for his medical care. As of two weeks ago, the bills had added up to more than $250,000, according to Lewis County Jail Chief Kevin Hanson.

The sentencing was initially scheduled for next month, while waiting for a pre-sentencing report from the state Department of Corrections.

Hanson reported to the Lewis County Board of Commissioners two weeks ago, that he asked Prosecutor Jonathan Meyer to ask DOC to expedite the report because Bunker needed further significant medical procedures before then.

Judge James Lawler today ordered Bunker to pay more than $2,000 in fines, fees and reimbursements such as for his defense attorney and his time in jail. Lawler said he is also ordering the medical costs to be repaid if prosecutors can provide evidence that’s allowable.

Bunker may have no contact with the victim for life and will be on community supervision after his release for the rest of his life.


For background, read “Lewis County rape case plagued with delays hits another hurdle” from  Friday May 31, 2013, here