Archive for October, 2016

Winlock medical clinic will be rebuilt following fire

Monday, October 31st, 2016

Updated

By Sharyn L. Decker
Lewis County Sirens news reporter

CHEHALIS – The executive director of Valley View Health Center said this morning it appears a malfunction in the HVAC system ignited the fire that destroyed its Winlock clinic over the weekend.

Steven Clark said the fire investigator is reasonably certain of the cause.

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Courtesy image / Zachary Wichert

“The heating and air conditioning system basically burned it down,” Clark said.

The system had recently been worked on, he said.

Four fire departments responded to the nighttime blaze on the the 600 block of Cemetery Road in Winlock. A passerby called 911 about 2 a.m. on Saturday to report the fire.

Lewis County Fire District 15 described the single-story building as a total loss, with its roof already collapsing as they arrived.

Clark said he’s positive they will rebuild.

Valley View Health Center, based in Chehalis, has numerous clinics in Lewis County and the surrounding area.

They will soon begin looking for temporary quarters for the Winlock location, Clark said.

In the meantime, the one provider and four support staff will move down to the Toledo clinic and see their patients there, he said.

Patients who have already scheduled appointments in Winlock should just keep their same appointment, but do it at the Toledo clinic, Clark said.

It’s located at 117 Ramsey Way in Toledo. Patients can call 360-864-4400 with questions, Clark said.

Update: On the morning of Wednesday Nov. 2, Toledo Police Department Chief John Brockmueller said their part of the investigation is finished and confirmed the fire appeared to have begun in the heat pump outside the building. The insurance company will take over, he indicated.
•••

For background, read “News brief: Overnight fire claims Winlock doctors’ office” from Saturday October 29, 2016, here

Sirens: Daily police and fire roundup

Monday, October 31st, 2016
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•••

Updated at 2:45 p.m.

DRESSING ROOM PEEPING WITH CAMERA

• Chehalis police are investigating an incident that occurred at the fitting room in Wal-Mart in which it appears someone may have been taking pictures by sneaking a phone through a gap. The victim called police just before 10 p.m. on Friday and told them she saw the phone on the floor and then realized it suddenly disappeared, according to the Chehalis Police Department. She then saw a male kneeling by a wall, picking up a phone off the ground and confronted him, but he denied it, Deputy Chief Randy Kaut said. The female contacted an employee for help, but the male was gone before an officer arrived, Kaut said. The male was described as blond, with a medium to heavy build and thin wire glasses, according to police. He was wearing a gray hoodie, Kaut said.

KNIFE SCARE

• The Lewis County Sheriff’s Office was called just before 10 a.m. yesterday when a woman said she was pulling over on Highway 603 near the Rails to Trails area when a man there brandished a knife. The Napavine woman was contacted at a nearby gas station and when the area was searched, a deputy made contact with a 30-year-old man described as transient, according to the sheriff’ office. He said he had just been threatened by a vehicle full of people and thought the same people were returning so he removed his knife to protect himself if needed, Chief Deputy Dusty Breen said. The case is being forwarded to prosecutors for a possible charge of unlawful display of a weapon, Breen said.

BREAK ROOM INTRUDER

• Centralia police were called about 6:25 p.m. yesterday to the 100 block of West High Street to take a report that a credit card was stolen from the employe break area of one store an used at another store to purchase merchandise. The case is under investigation, according to the Centralia Police Department.

FIRE DEPARTMENT BURGLED

• Someone kicked in a door at a Mossyrock area fire station and stole a ladder, a broom and tools, according to the Lewis County Sheriff’s Office. A deputy called about 11:45 a.m. on Friday responded to the 700 block of Green Mountain Road and learned that among the property missing was a claw hammer, a wooden handled sling blade, a 6-foot fiberglass step ladder and a metal handled push broom, according to the sheriff’s office. It occurred sometime since Oct. 18, Chief Deputy Dusty Breen said.

MORE THEFT

• An individual reported about 10:10 p.m. yesterday his laptop computer was stolen sometime during the day from the 1300 block of Belmont Avenue in Centralia.

• Centralia police were called about 11:30 a.m. yesterday to the 800 block of Marsh Avenue where someone had stolen a bicycle from a fenced yard.

• Centralia police were called on Friday to the 800 block of West Plum Street where sometime during the night, someone stole a pair of work boots from a front porch.

• An individual at the 1000 block of J Street in Centralia reported on Friday that sometime during the previous week, someone stole a license plate from their recreational vehicle. It reads 7781XX, according to the Centralia Police Department.

CAR PROWL

• Police were called at 8:30 a.m. yesterday to the 1100 block of Alder Street in Centralia regarding a vehicle prowl. A tablet computer and personal game console were missing, according to the Centralia Police Department.

• Police were called about 7:40 p.m. on Friday to the 800 block of Harrison Avenue in Centralia where in the previous few minutes, someone broke in to a vehicle, stealing rain gear and backpacks, according to the Centralia Police Department.

• An officer was called about 10:25 a.m. on Friday to the 300 block of East Pine Street in Centralia where gasoline had been stolen from a vehicle and damage reported.

VANDALISM

• Centralia police were called about 4:45 p.m. yesterday to the 300 block of East Pine Street where someone had busted a window from an individual’s van.

• Police were called to the 1500 block of South Gold Street in Centralia just after 11 a.m. yesterday where someone had broken the glass doors to a building.

• An officer was called to the 2000 block of Borst Avenue in Centralia at about 9:20 a.m. on Saturday following the discovery someone had kicked open the door to a concession stand. Nothing was missing from the building, according to the Centralia Police Department.

FAKE MONEY

• Chehalis police were called yesterday morning to a business on West Main Street where a counterfeit $100 bill turned up on a bathroom floor.

• An officer was called to Jack-in-the-Box on Southwest Interstate Avenue in Chehalis yesterday regarding a counterfeit $50 bill. It’s not clear if the person with it was aware it was fake, according to the Chehalis Police Department.

LOST AND FOUND

• A found bicycle was turned in to the Centralia Police Department about 12:35 a.m. today. The owner is unknown, according to the Centralia Police Department.

• A citizen found a Washington State J.R.A. badge and turned it into the Centralia Police Department on Saturday evening. The owner has not been located.

ON THE ROAD, OFF THE ROAD

• A 47-year-old Morton man was arrested early Saturday morning for driving under the influence after he was seen doing “cookies” in a parking lot at the 400 block of Second Street in Morton. A deputy responding about 1:15 a.m. noted slurred speech, bloodshot eyes and “odor” but since John Blake refused field sobriety and breath tests, got a blood draw to check, according to the Lewis County Sheriff’s Office. Blake had two passengers in his vehicle so was also booked into the Lewis County Jail for two counts of reckless endangerment, according to Chief Deputy Dusty Breen.

AND MORE

• And, as usual, other incidents such as arrests for warrants, shoplifting, trespassing, breach of public peace, driving under the influence, driving with suspended license; responses for alarm, dispute, civil issue, hit and run, third-degree theft, suspicious circumstances, noisy neighbor, collision on city street … and more among 440 calls for local law enforcement and / or fire-emergency medical services in the 72-hour period ending about 7 a.m. today.

Read about Yakima County homicide suspect arrested near Randle …

Saturday, October 29th, 2016

By Sharyn L. Decker
Lewis County Sirens news reporter

CHEHALIS – KIMAtv.com reports a Tacoma man confessed to park rangers near Randle yesterday he’d killed his wife near Clear Creek Falls east of White Pass after she admitted to having an affair.

News reporter Sarah Worthington writes that deputies with the Yakima County Sheriff’s Office said the woman’s body was found around 12:45 p.m. with severe upper body trauma and the 38-year-old suspect was booked into Yakima County Jail.

The Yakima Herald-Republic writes the Clear Creek Falls Overlook, a scenic viewpoint off Highway 12, is about two and a half miles east of the summit of White Pass.

Read more about it here

News brief: Overnight fire claims Winlock doctors’ office

Saturday, October 29th, 2016
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Flames rise from Valley View Health Center in Winlock / Courtesy image from Zachary Wichert

By Sharyn  L. Decker
Lewis County Sirens news reporter

CHEHALIS – A fire investigator is expected this morning to start looking through the remains of a Winlock medical clinic to find what sparked an overnight fire.

It was called in by a passerby about 2 a.m. today, according to Lewis County Fire District 15.

A crew arriving four minutes later to the 600 block of Cemetery Road found the the single-story building well-involved with flames, Firefighter Patrick Jacobson said.

“We just began extinguishing the fire, a defensive position, because of the amount of fire and the roof was collapsing” Jacobson said.

They were joined by personnel from fire departments in Napavine, Toledo and Vader, he said, and got it under control within about 40 minutes.

Valley View Health Center won’t be re-opening anytime soon.

“It’s definitely a total loss,” Jacobson said. “We were able to save like the waiting room area and reception area, but it’s not going to be salvageable.”

Jacobson said nobody was injured.

News brief: Two men arrested in Capitol Forest homicide

Friday, October 28th, 2016

By Sharyn  L. Decker
Lewis County Sirens news reporter

CHEHALIS – The Thurston County Sheriff’s Office announced yesterday that tips from the public led to the identification of two primary suspects in the death of the teenager whose body was found last week northwest of Littlerock in Capitol Forest.

Department spokesperson Sgt. Carla Carter indicates they are Vince Garlock, 29, and Jonathan Bartosek, 31.

Dakota Tyree Walker, 18, was found dead of multiple gunshot wounds in the brush off Waddell Creek Road Southwest near the entrance to Margaret McKenny Campground, on Oct. 20.

The two men are being held in the Thurston County Jail without bail on charges of first-degree aggravated murder. They were arrested on Wednesday.

The investigation revealed the suspects and the victim arrived in Thurston County in August where they engaged in criminal activity, according to the sheriff’s office.

Bartosek was in a domestic relationship with the victim, according to Carter. The culmination of the criminal activity and the domestic relationship ultimately led to Dakota’s murder, Carter wrote in a news release.

The Thurston County coroner indicated earlier this week Walker is from Los Angeles, but Carter said he is from Ohio.

Carter said the suspects are from Pennsylvania. Bartosek has various aliases including Jonathan Ackerman, David Capron and is known locally as Joey Caprone, she wrote. The jail roster shows Capron is also being by the U.S. Marshal Service for escape.

The investigation is ongoing and anyone with further information is asked to contact the Thurston County Sheriff’s Office.
•••

For background, read “News brief: Body found in Capitol Forest is California teenager” from Wednesday October 26, 2016, here

Sirens: Daily police and fire roundup

Friday, October 28th, 2016
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•••

AUTO THEFT

• Centralia police were called just before 10 p.m. yesterday about the theft of a tan-colored 1999 Toyota Corolla from the 700 block of Harrison Avenue. The car later was recovered at the Lucky Eagle Casino, according to the Centralia Police Department. The case is under investigation, according to police.

POTENTIAL BURGLARY

• A deputy responded about 3 o’clock yesterday morning to a convenience store at the 9000 block of of U.S. Highway 12 in Glenoma where a metal security door had been pulled from a concrete wall and an interior entry door smashed in. Nothing appeared to be missing; it happened between 2:15 a.m. and 2:35 a.m., according to the Lewis County Sheriff’s Office. A vehicle seen on security video was subsequently located abandoned on state Route 7 and impounded, according to the sheriff’s office. It was stolen out of Yakima and had “switched” plates, Chief Deputy Dusty Breen said. Breen said it appeared the individual got through the doors and it wasn’t clear if perhaps they got scared off for some reason.

• An officer was called about 11:35 a.m. yesterday to the 1100 block of G Street following the discovery of an attempted burglary. Nothing was taken, according to the Centralia Police Department.

OTHER THEFT

• Police were called about 8:30 a.m. yesterday after an individual witnessed the theft of their mail at the 500 block of South Cedar Street in Centralia. The suspect was not located, according to the Centralia Police Department.

FORGERY

• Centralia police were called about 8:30 p.m. yesterday to the 1100 block of Harrison Avenue about an individual trying to pass a forged prescription at the pharmacy. The case is under investigation.

DRUGS

• A 25-year-old,d Centralia resident picked up for an outstanding warrant just before noon yesterday at First Street and Washington Avenue in Centralia was also arrested for possession of methamphetamine. Christopher J. King was booked into the Lewis County Jail, according to the Centralia Police Department.

VANDALISM

• An officer called just before 6 p.m. yesterday yesterday to the 2800 block of Russell Road in Centralia arrested a 41-year-old homeless man for allegedly breaking the windshield of his ex-girlfriend’s car. Jayme R. Smith was booked into the Lewis County Jail for third-degree malicious mischief, according to the Centralia Police Department.

HOMELESS PERSON EVICTED

• Chehalis police were called about 9:30 a.m. yesterday to Franklin Avenue and Division Street where the city is tearing down an old, unused bus shelter to help persuade someone who had taken up residence there to leave. Initially he was a little reluctant to go, but he did, said Chehalis Police Department Deputy Chief Randy Kaut said.

AND MORE

• And, as usual, other incidents such as arrests for warrants, shoplifting, driving under the influence; responses for alarm, dispute, civil issue, parking complaint, suspicious circumstances, second-hand report of male urinating in a parking lot, someone unconscious in a public restroom needing medical attention … and more among 127 calls for local law enforcement and / or fire-emergency medical services in the 24-hour period ending about 7 a.m. today.

News brief: Fire burns into Cinebar residence

Friday, October 28th, 2016

By Sharyn  L. Decker
Lewis County Sirens news reporter

CHEHALIS – A Cinebar family is displaced after a fire raced through a carport, a garage and into their home yesterday while they were away.

The first firefighter responding to the approximately 2:25 p.m. call to the 200 block of Calvin Road found the carport containing a camper trailer “pretty much fully involved” in flames, according to Lewis County Fire District 8. That firefighter lives just down the road, according to  Chief Duran McDaniel.

McDaniel said by the time he arrived on the engine, the blaze had swept through a double garage and was beginning to burn the west wall of the modular home.

“We concentrated on saving the home,” he said. “I would say the house is a loss, we probably saved two-thirds of the contents.”

Nobody was hurt, he said.

A fire investigator and the sheriff’s office are looking into the cause.

Although the blaze was knocked down within about 15 minutes, a crew was on the scene until after 6 p.m. doing overhaul, McDaniel said.

“A big thanks to District 1 and District 3 for their backup,” he said. “It was a full central county response.”

McDaniel said he was grateful for a quick response from PUD as well. He needed the power shut off, but the meter bases were in the middle of the fire, he said.

McDaniel said the fire damage in the home was the worst in its laundry room and kitchen.

News brief: Stolen firearms and drugs

Thursday, October 27th, 2016
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Lewis County Sheriff’s Office deputies recovered some guns in a building off Steam Boat Island Road NW / Courtesy photo Lewis County Sheriff’s Office

By Sharyn  L. Decker
Lewis County Sirens news reporter

CHEHALIS – One of three suspects in a June residential burglary in rural Chehalis is now locked up in the Lewis County Jail.

Eleven guns and some sports memorabilia were among the valuables stolen from the 400 block of Coal Creek Road back on June 15.

Thirty-one-year-old Chase L. Flores, from Shelton, was arrested on Monday. He is charged in Lewis County Superior Court with residential burglary, theft of a firearm and second-degree unlawful possession of a firearm. His arraignment was scheduled for today.

According to charging documents in the case, one of the other two suspects last year lived with his then girlfriend and her family at the Coal Creek Road home. When interviewed at the Thurston County Jail, that suspect said he and some buddies got high in Olympia and then drove to the Chehalis home on June 15.

He said he used bath salts for the first time that day, which he thought was meth, according to the documents.

The victim got a tip from a sports card shop in Tumwater that purchased one of the stolen cards, after posting his stolen property on Facebook, according to court documents.

Lewis County sheriff’s deputies recovered several of the stolen guns and other items when they served a search warrant on June 22 off Steam Boat Island Road NW northwest of Olympia.

Court documents relate detectives were told a .38 revolver was sold, a shotgun was spray painted black and traded for heroin and meth and a 22 caliber revolver was buried in the ground near Mudd Bay.

Theft charge: Local postal carrier wrongfully obtained medical benefits for ‘spouse’

Thursday, October 27th, 2016

By Sharyn  L. Decker
Lewis County Sirens news reporter

CHEHALIS – A 37-year-old Vader woman has been charged with enrolling the father of her children as her “husband” under her employer’s health insurance plan without actually being married to him.

The postal carrier allegedly signed him up when she was hired in August 2004 by the U.S. Postal Service and a tip 10 years later led to an investigation.

Juelene L. Perez Owens was charged with first-degree theft in Lewis County Superior Court and summonsed to appear before a judge yesterday.

Records show medical and prescription claims in excess of $350,000 have been paid out for the “husband”, according to court documents.

Owens was accompanied yesterday afternoon by her attorney Dana Williams. She told the judge her proper name is Juelene L. Perez-Lopez.

She pleaded not guilty.

Her conditions of release pending trial included a $5,000 signature bond.

Charging documents in the case indicate Perez-Lopez when questioned by a human resources employee in 2014 said they were not married but planned to be soon.

When interviewed by a U.S. Postal Service Inspector’s special agent, she told him she and her “spouse” met in high school in 1997, he was the father of their four children and she thought they were “common law,” according to the court documents.

The investigation was taken over by the Washington State Insurance Commissioner’s Office and a detective there found she had filed a bankruptcy petition in November 2004, claiming to be single with three children, the documents relate.

Perez-Lopez is scheduled to return to Lewis County Superior Court on Nov. 3 so a trial date can be set.

Sirens: Daily police and fire roundup

Thursday, October 27th, 2016
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•••

Updated at 10:26 a.m.

DOMESTIC ISSUE PROMPTS SEARCH

• Centralia Middle and High schools were put on precautionary lockdowns yesterday while law enforcement searched for a man who allegedly punched out a bedroom window in anger, at the 800 block of Cowlitz Road in Centralia. Deputies called about noon learned that Mark S. Chesler Jr. had fled the area and also that his presence at the home was in violation of a no contact order, according to the Lewis County Sheriff’s Office. The area was searched, including with a police dog and Chesler was taken into custody after a 911 call about a person seen trying to enter a camp trailer at the 3100 block of Laurel Lane, according to the sheriff’s office. Chesler, 36, also had four outstanding misdemeanor warrants, Chief Deputy Dusty Breen said. He was arrested for third-degree malicious mischief, the order violation, the warrants and then booked in to the Lewis County Jai, according to Breen.

PROWLING

• Chehalis police were called about 7:10 a.m. today to the 700 block of Northwest Maryland Avenue where someone had entered a locked, fenced area and broken into three vehicles.

• A 38-year-old Centralia resident seen by an officer trying to get inside a vehicle that did not belong to him at the 1000 block of Harrison Avenue was subsequently arrested for attempted vehicle prowl yesterday. It happened around 4:15 p.m., according to the Centralia Police Department. The subject tried to flee, the officer detained him, according to police. Ranier P. Wagner was booked into the Lewis County Jail also for obstructing and resisting arrest, according to police.

• An officer was called just after 9 a.m. yesterday to take a report of a vehicle prowl at the 1100 block of South Tower Avenue in Centralia. Paperwork was stolen, according to the Centralia Police Department.

ABUSE INVESTIGATION

• Chehalis police were called to a school on the 200 block of Southwest Market Boulevard at 9:45 a.m. yesterday to take a report of possible child abuse. The case is under investigation, according to the Chehalis Police Department.

DRUGS

• A deputy responded to the Lewis County Jail about 9:15 p.m. yesterday to take a report about an person being booked who allegedly was in possession of methamphetamine. Troy L. Fadness, 52, of Centralia, was interviewed and a field test was conducted that came out positive for meth, according to the Lewis County Sheriff’s Office.

VANDALISM

• Centralia police were called to the 300 block of Wilding Drive in Centralia just after 8 o’clock yesterday morning where sometime during the night, someone had slashed the tire on a car.

SMOKE CHASES INHABITANTS FROM HOME

• Firefighters called around noon yesterday about a possible fire in a mobile home on the 500 block of state Route 508 found light smoke showing and the residents outside, according to Lewis County Fire District 5. They found that wiring on a furnace had burned, Firefighter Sam Heldreth said. The damage was limited to the wiring, she said.

AND MORE

• And, as usual, other incidents such as arrests for warrants, probation violation, misdemeanor domestic assault, driving with suspended license; responses for alarm, dispute, hit and run, littering, trespassing, suspicious circumstances, collision on city street, person who keeps sleeping in an alley … and more among 128 calls for local law enforcement and / or fire-emergency medical services in the 24-hour period ending about 7 a.m. today.

Centralia: Nighttime intruder gets 10 years in prison

Wednesday, October 26th, 2016
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Michael A. Hedges, right, is represented by defense attorney David Arcuri in Lewis County Superior Court.

By Sharyn L. Decker
Lewis County Sirens news reporter

CHEHALIS – A Chehalis man who was arrested after a 66-year-old Centralia woman woke up to find him standing over her bed, unzipping his pants this past spring was sentenced today to at least 10 years in prison.

Michael A. Hedges, 43, was charged with multiple felonies in Lewis County Superior Court on April 4, the day after his arrest.

The woman told police Hedges grabbed her hand and placed it on his private parts and she told him he had to leave then escorted him out of her house on Nick Road, according to charging documents.

Police subsequently found him hiding in a nearby trailer park.

Lewis County Senior Deputy Prosecutor Will Halstead and defense attorney David Arcuri struck a plea agreement to get Hedges an exceptionally long sentence even though both seemed to agree it was a case in which he thought he was in a different residence.

“It was clear he didn’t know where he was,” Halstead said. “As soon as he realized he was in a house he didn’t know, he immediately left.”

Arcuri told the judge his client was in the wrong place because of drugs.

“This is another example of the incredibly insidious nature of controlled substances,” Arcuri said. “They warp your mind.”

Hedges previous to this morning pleaded guilty to second-degree assault with sexual motivation, residential burglary and third-degree assault. Police said he tried to spit on a doctor when they took him in to have an injury on his head – from his arrest – checked out.

The victim didn’t come to the hearing in Lewis County Superior Court.

Hedges told Judge James Lawler he knows what he did was out of line, and admitted his drug habit.

“I get it, that kind of, that kind of stuff is inappropriate,” he said.

Halstead and Arcuri recommended Hedges be sentenced a minimum of 120 months and up to life.

Halstead said that means after his release, if he has any violations, he could be potentially be pulled back into prison for the rest of his life. He will have to register as a sex offender.

The judge went along with the suggested sentence.

“I’m sorry the victim wasn’t here, so you could hear directly what this did to her,” Lawler said.

Hedges had supporters in the benches behind him. One of them said he knew if Hedges could change what happened, he would.

“Everything Michael did is 100 percent out of context for him,” his Pastor Keith Heldreth said.
•••

“Centralia resident finds stranger in her bedroom, unzipping pants” from Monday April 4, 2016, here

News brief: Sheriff Snaza hires new jail chief

Wednesday, October 26th, 2016

By Sharyn  L. Decker
Lewis County Sirens news reporter

CHEHALIS – The Lewis County Sheriff’s Office introduced their newly hired jail chief to the agency’s Facebook friends yesterday.

Chief Corrections Deputy Chris Sweet was previously a lieutenant with the Washington State Patrol where he worked for 25 years, according to the sheriff’s office. He began his career as a trooper in East Lewis County, according to Chief Deputy Dusty Breen.

Sweet replaces former chief Kevin Hanson who left after 25 years at the end of August, to take a job as head of the jail in Mason County.

Sheriff’s Lt. Chris Tawes was promoted to acting captain and oversaw the facility in the interim. He has been promoted to captain, according to a Facebook post.

Sweet started his new job at he beginning of last week, Breen indicated.

Sirens: Daily police and fire roundup

Wednesday, October 26th, 2016
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•••

Updated at 5:38 p.m.

BLOODY HEAD AND SPIT

• A 25-year-old man who got upset when he was asked to leave a downtown Centralia business yesterday morning ended up getting arrested for two felonies. Police called about 9:50 a.m. to the 100 block of North Tower Avenue told the man the restaurant didn’t want him there and he just needed to go, according to the Centralia Police Department. An officer decided to arrest him for trespassing and once in the back of a patrol car, he reportedly got out of control, banging his head, police said. Sgt. Dave Clary said he bled all over inside the police car so he was arrested for second-degree malicious mischief. He allegedly spit blood at an officer so he was arrested for third-degree assault, according to Clary. Andrew A. Zech, 25, of Wilton, Connecticut, was taken to the hospital to be checked out and subsequently booked into the Lewis County Jail, Clary said.

RV THEFT

• The Lewis County Sheriff’s Office reports this morning a 16-foot travel trailer went missing from property at the 200 block of Jarvis Road in Mossyrock. A deputy who responded to the report on Monday learned it had been parked there about a week and vanished sometime between 7 p.m. on Sunday and 8 a.m. on Monday, according to the sheriff’s office.

BAD BILL

• Someone tried to pass a counterfeit $20 bill at a business on the 600 block of South Tower Avenue in Centralia, according to a report made to police about 2:30 p.m. yesterday.

CAR PROWL

• Centralia police were called to the 1700 block of Providence Lane just before 8:30 a.m. yesterday for a vehicle prowl. Miscellaneous tools were stolen during the night, according to the Centralia Police Department.

• Someone stole a garage door remote opener from a vehicle parked at the 1700 block of Providence Lane in Centralia, according to a report made to police about 8:10 a.m. yesterday.

DRUGS

• A 40-year-old Rochester man was arrested yesterday after a search of a residence in which drug detectives found a Tupperware container with approximately one-quarter ounce of meth, a digital scale, plastic baggies and $190 cash. Dallas L. Hale-Pogue allegedly had twice sold meth to a confidential informant  sometime since Sept. 1, according to court documents. Hale-Pogue was booked into the Lewis County Jail and charged today in Lewis County Superior Court with two counts of delivery of methamphetamine and one count of possession of methamphetamine with intent to deliver. Charging documents state the search by members of the Joint Narcotics Enforcement Team took place at Hale-Pogue’s home in Lewis County, although temporary defense attorney Joely O’Rourke told a judge this afternoon he resides in Rochester. His bail was set at $25,000.

• A 51-year-old Mossyrock man pulled over by a trooper yesterday and subsequently found to have outstanding misdemeanor warrants was arrested for possession of methamphetamine. When the trooper searched Jeffrey A. Lowe’s sweatshirt, he found a glass smoking device with residue that field tested positive for meth, according to court documents. Lowe was booked into the Lewis County Jail.

• The Lewis County Sheriff’s Office reported this morning a 16-year-old student was caught with marijuana at Winlock High School on Monday. A deputy called to the school about 5 p.m. that day learned from the athletic director the boy was asked about it and handed it over, according to the sheriff’s office. The case is being referred to juvenile prosecutors, Chief Deputy Dusty Breen said.

PRUNO FOUND INSIDE JAIL

• A 23-year-old inmate at the Lewis County Jail seen disposing of three bottles of “Pruno” yesterday was arrested for possession by prisoner, according to the Lewis County Sheriff’s Office. A deputy responding about 9:20 p.m. used a portable breath test to see that each of the bottles showed an alcohol concentration, according to the sheriff’s office. Calvin E. Holder, from Olympia, was being held in the jail on an unrelated matter, Chief Deputy Dusty Breen said. The material was sent to the state crime lab for testing, according to Been. Pruno is a nickname for a homemade alcoholic drink.

BEER ON THE STREET

• Chehalis police ended up arresting a 54-year-old Vader resident yesterday after calls about a drunken individual laying by a bus stop and yelling at people. Officers responding the second time to the area at the 1100 block of South Market Boulevard arrested Ronald W. Carpenter for having an open container in public and for second-degree trespassing, according to the Chehalis Police Department. He was taken to Providence Centralia Hospital for unrelated issues, according to police.

BURNING IMPALA DOUSED

• Firefighters were called about 1:40 a.m. today when the driver of a car filling with smoke pulled over the near the 600 block of Main Street in Chehalis. The occupants grabbed their stuff and jumped out, but the 2003 Chevrolet Impala was fully involved in flames when the crew arrived, according to the Chehalis Fire Department. They put the fire out, Capt. Casey Beck said.

AND MORE

• And, as usual, other incidents such as arrests for warrants, misdemeanor domestic assault; responses for alarm, dispute, suspicious circumstances, collision on city street … and more among 148 calls for local law enforcement and / or fire-emergency medical services in the 24-hour period ending about 7 a.m. today.

News brief: Body found in Capitol Forest is California teenager

Wednesday, October 26th, 2016

By Sharyn  L. Decker
Lewis County Sirens news reporter

CHEHALIS – The young man found shot to death in the brush in Capitol Forest northwest of Littlerock last week has been identified as an 18-year-old from Los Angeles.

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Dakota T. Walker

The body of Dakota Tyree Walker was discovered on Thursday by a dog walker off Waddell Creek Road Southwest near the entrance to Margaret McKenny Campground, according to authorities.

Thurston County Coroner Gary Warnock indicated yesterday Walker died from multiple gun shot wounds. The Thurston County Sheriff’s Office previously said it seemed to be a recent death.

“His body appeared to have been placed there by an unknown person or persons,” Warnock said in a news release.

The coroner asks anyone with any information to please contact detective Jamie Gallagher at (360) 480-1650 or detective Ben Elkins at (360) 701-0000.

•••

For background, read “Detectives asking for help to identify body found near Littlerock” from Saturday October 22, 2016, here

News brief: Illicit Centralia area marijuana nursery shut down

Wednesday, October 26th, 2016

By Sharyn  L. Decker
Lewis County Sirens news reporter

CHEHALIS – A Seattle resident was arrested yesterday after PUD summoned deputies to an apparent electricity diversion and turned up an unlawful marijuana growing operation in rural Centralia.

Employees of Lewis County PUD were disconnecting the power at a home on the 700 block of Lincoln Creek Road yesterday, according to the Lewis County Sheriff’s Office. Deputies called out about 1:45 p.m. arrived and detected an “overwhelming odor of marijuana,’ Chief Deputy Dusty Breen said this morning.

Drug detectives obtained a search warrant and confiscated 89 potted plants plus 220 plants which had been hanging to dry, Breen said.

The search of the residence, greenhouses and shop building also led to to the seizure of cash, a vehicle and a handgun, Breen said.

Biniam Y. Gebremariem, 31, from Seattle was arrested and booked into the Lewis County Jail for unlawful manufacturing of marijuana, unlawful possession of marijuana and unlawful use of a building for drug purposes, according to the sheriff’s office.

News brief: Bicycle, semi collide in industrial park

Wednesday, October 26th, 2016

By Sharyn  L. Decker
Lewis County Sirens news reporter

CHEHALIS – A 22-year-old bicyclist was airlifted to a Seattle hospital after he collided with the trailer of a semi truck in the Chehalis Industrial Park yesterday

Firefighters and deputies were called about 12:10 p.m. to the scene at Sears and Sturdivant roads south of Chehalis.

The driver of the Kenworth tractor-trailer initially didn’t know it had occurred, according to the Lewis County Sheriff’s Office. The driver, a 53-year-old Chehalis man, returned to the scene, according to the sheriff’s office.

The bicyclist, a Chehalis man, was not wearing a helmet and was thrown to the ground, according to the sheriff’s office.

Lewis County Fire District 6 Chief Tim Kinder said the patient suffered possible head injuries and was transported to Providence Centralia Hospital so he could be flown to Harborview Medical Center.

Sheriff’s Chief Deputy Dusty Breen said security footage from a nearby business showed the bicyclist failed to yield at a stop sign and ran into the front portion of the trailer. His name was not released.

Vigil: Driver from Centralia fatal crash being honored tonight

Tuesday, October 25th, 2016
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Austin Courtright with his daughter. / Courtesy photo

By Sharyn L. Decker
Lewis County Sirens news reporter

CHEHALIS – Family and friends of Austin Courtright are gathering this evening at Logan Park to share memories of the 19-year-old and then carry candles in a walk along the route of the final ride that took his life.

Courtright was born and raised in Centralia.

He died early yesterday morning after his he lost control of his car at the 300 block of West Sixth Street at the north end of town.

A Centralia police officer on patrol noticed the car in an alley near the intersection of Oxford Avenue and Marion Street, which then pulled away, turning without signaling , according to police.

Courtright sped away and less than a dozen blocks to the west, he lost control of his Acura, which slid along the side of a house, according to police.

He was ejected and died at the scene. His two passengers, both 25-year-old women from Chehalis, were airlifted to Harborview Medical Center in Seattle with serious injuries, according to authorities.

Centralia Police Department Officer John Panco said he doesn’t know why the 19-year-old sped away. He did have an outstanding warrant, Panco said.

“We don’t have a chance to ask him, so we don’t know for sure,” Panco said.

Courtright has nine brothers and sisters. His father Scott Courtright lives in Centralia. His mother Deanna Johnson lives in Montana.

He’d recently begun working construction in Seattle, and the car was new, his mother said.

“He’d just bought that, with his own money,” she said.

Last year, Courtright accidentally shot his girlfriend in the thigh, with a pistol in his pocket while she was sitting on his lap, and he pleaded guilty as charged and was given a prison term of a year and a day. His lawyer at the time said he wasn’t suggesting Courtright plead to the charge, but he did anyhow.

Taking responsibility for that was something he felt he had to do, Johnson said.

“Austin was a terror, believe me, he was a handful,” she said. “But when it came down to it, he always told the truth and wanted to do the right thing.”

Johnson said he was getting the paperwork in order so he could move to Montana, while still under supervision with the state Department of Corrections.

“We were on our way here anyhow, to pick him up,” she said this afternoon.

Panco said he didn’t have an update on the how the passengers were doing.

The Washington State Patrol is conducting the investigation into the wreck.

The vigil is scheduled for 7 p.m. at the park in the Logan District.
•••

For background, read “One dead, two injured after Centralia police pursuit ends with wreck” from Monday October 24, 2016, here

Sirens: Daily police and fire roundup

Tuesday, October 25th, 2016
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•••

Updated at 12:21 p.m.

LEWIS COUNTY WOMAN COERCED INTO GIVING ACCOUNT DATA

• Morton police reported yesterday a resident was victimized by a telephone scammer. “The caller demanded she give them all her banking information and computer logon and threatened her if she did not do so she would be sued,” Morton police stated in a summary of the incident. The woman who resides on the 200 block of Second Street contacted an officer last Tuesday afternoon, according to the Morton Police Department. She lost $129 and took the required measures to cancel her accounts, according to police.

SAFE MISSING AFTER BURGLARY

• A deputy responded just after 8 p.m. yesterday to a report of a residential burglary at the 100 block of Kruger Road in Onalaska. The 76-year-old victim said he’d been away since about 1 p.m. and when he returned, found a light on and some of his property seemed out of place, according to the Lewis County Sheriff’s Office. Scrape marks were found on the floor where his safe had been, Chief Deputy Dusty Breen said. Among the approximately $4,000 worth of items missing are a coin collection, silver jewelry, medication and important documents, according to Breen.

POSSIBLE BURGLARY

• A deputy was called yesterday to a possible burglary to a barn at the 200 block of Lucas Creek Road east of Chehalis. Forced entry had been made to the locked building and items had been moved around inside, according to the Lewis County Sheriff’s Office. It happened sometime between 5 p.m. last Tuesday and 3:15 p.m. yesterday, according to the sherif’s office.

GARAGE BURGLARY

• Centralia police were called just before 5 p.m. yesterday to the 1000 block of Eckerson Road where an individual reported property had been stolen from their garage and yard over the previous week. The victim is compiling a list of stolen items, according to the Centralia Police Department.

POSSIBLE COUNTERFEIT MONEY

• Chehalis police were called about 6:30 p.m. yesterday to take a report from a store on the 1100 block of South Market Avenue that a customer attempted to use a $100 bill that “didn’t look right.” The customer said they’d gotten it in connection with items sold on a web site and the clerk declined the bill, according to the Chehalis Police Department.

CAR PROWL

• Police were called at 2:40 p.m. yesterday about a vehicle prowl at the 2000 block of Borst Avenue in Centralia. A window had been broken and a briefcase taken sometime during the previous hour, according to the Centralia Police Department.

• Centralia police were called just after 2 p.m. yesterday by an individual who said someone broke into his vehicle and tried to steal the stereo while it was parked at the 500 block of East Maple Street, according to the Centralia Police Department.

• Morton police reported yesterday they are investigating a possible car prowl at the 200 block of Knittles Way, reported to them about 8:50 p.m. on Saturday.

MISSING TEEN FOUND

• A 16-year-old runaway out of Thurston County was recovered by police in Centralia about 9:30 p.m. yesterday and returned home, according to the Centralia Police Department.

VANDALISM

• Curtis J. Abraham, 33, of Rochester was arrested for allegedly spray-painting graffiti on a skateboard ramp and some concrete yesterday morning at the 700 block of Harrison Avenue. He was then released pending a court date, according to the Centralia Police Department.

AND MORE FROM MORTON

• A week ago, somebody in Morton told police they saw somebody else in Morton throw trash from their vehicle, confronted them and watched them return to the area and pick up their garbage, according to the Morton Police Department.

ON THE ROAD, OFF THE ROAD

• Morton police were called just after 2 p.m. on Thursday to the 700 block of Division Avenue for a hit and run that left significant damage to a fence, according to the Morton Police Department.

AND MORE

• And, as usual, other incidents such as arrests for warrants, third-degree theft; responses for alarm, dispute, civil issue, shoplifting, disorderly person, suspicious circumstances, parking lot fender bender, possible shed squatter … and more among 130 calls for local law enforcement and / or fire-emergency medical services in the 24-hour period ending about 7 a.m. today.

Sirens: Daily police and fire roundup

Monday, October 24th, 2016
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•••

Updated

CHEHALIS MAN LOSES $1,500 TO PHONE SCAM

• Chehalis police were contacted by an 86-year-old resident on Saturday who wanted to report being tricked into wiring $1,500 to someone, purportedly to get his grandson out of jail in Peru. The victim got suspicious when he got a second phone call, asking for more money supposedly for attorney fees, according to the Chehalis Police Department. He called the mother of his grandson and was told the young man was home in bed, according to police. He reported it in hopes that no one else falls for it, department spokesperson Linda Bailey said.

UNPLANNED OVERNIGHT IN FOREST

• A search and rescue team was being prepared to look for a missing mushroom hunter in the woods southeast of Packwood yesterday morning, when the target of the operation exited the woods, following an unplanned overnight stay outdoors. The Lewis County Sheriff’s Office was advised just before 9 p.m. on Saturday that the 48-year-old Tacoma man hadn’t been seen since 3:30 p.m. that day, according to the Lewis County Sheriff’s Office. Deputies used their PA system, lights and sirens in the area of the Forest Service Road 4610 in an attempt to contact him, but finally decided to return in the morning with more help, according to the sheriff’s office. It was about 10 a.m. when the man walked out, Chief Deputy Dusty Breen said. The man said he’d become trapped by darkness and although he heard the sirens, didn’t want to take a chance on hiking in the dark, Breen said.

URBAN CAMPFIRE

• A 29-year-old Centralia resident was arrested about 8 p.m. yesterday after police discovered trash from an outdoor can piled up by the door to the Centralia Police Department and lit on fire. It did not damage the building, on the 100 block of West Maple Street, according to police. Kayleigh S McDaniel was booked into the Lewis County Jail for second-degree reckless burning.

BURGLARY SALKUM

• Someone broke into a storage container at the 2100 block of Spencer Road in Salkum and stole a generator, a tent, a canopy and LED light, the Lewis County Sheriff’s Office reported this morning. A deputy investigating just before 8 p.m. on Saturday was told by a neighbor of tire tracks and a broken lock, according to the sheriff’s office. Chief Deputy Dusty Breen said it happened during the daytime on Thursday.

THEFT AND FRAUD

• Chehalis police were notified about 11:30 a.m. yesterday by the victim that a stolen credit card was used to purchase a $200 gift card at Wal-Mart.

• Chehalis police were called about 1:15 p.m. on Saturday by an individual who said their debit card has been used by someone else at a location on Northwest Louisiana Avenue. The case is under investigation, according to the Chehalis Police Department.

• Police were called about 6:25 p.m. on Friday after an individual lost a wallet outside a store on the 1700 block of North National Avenue in Chehalis and someone else claimed it. An employee found it next to a truck and pair of individuals nearby said it was theirs, took it and left, according to the Chehalis Police Department.

FUNNY MONEY

• Police were called about 10:35 a.m. yesterday to a store on the 1200 block of Harrison Avenue in Centralia where two counterfeit $20 bills had been accepted.

CAR PROWL

• A 36-year-old Centralia man was arrested after police were called to the 1300 block of Northwest Louisiana Avenue just after 10 p.m. yesterday and told he had stolen a $25 can of paint from behind a business and been seen trying the doors on vehicles there. A security person confronted the suspect in front of the business, according to the Chehalis Police Department. Joel A. Towne was booked into the Lewis County Jail for second-degree trespassing, third-degree theft and vehicle prowl, according to police.

• Police were called about 12:45 p.m. yesterday about a vehicle prowl at the 1000 block of North Scheuber Road in Centralia. Paperwork was missing, according to the Centralia Police Department.

• Chehalis police were called about 11:30 p.m. on Friday to the 300 block of James Street where someone removed a Sony carbon fiber CD stereo from a car. A witness had seen a suspect, described as a person wearing a cowboy hat and a long black trench coat, according to the Chehalis Police Department.

WARRANT PLUS OBSTRUCTING

• A 37-year-old Winlock man was arrested for obstruction and making a false statement for allegedly giving a deputy a name other than his own when contacted about 11:30 a.m. on Friday about a possible burglary at the 400 block of Hawkins Road. Wayne M. Hedgers was found to have an outstanding warrant and was booked into the Lewis County Jail, according to the Lewis County Sheriff’s Office.

DRUGS

• A deputy checking on a trespassing complaint at the 900 block of state Route 507 outside Centralia early this morning contacted a 31-year-old Centralia resident who turned out to have a warrant and subsequently found suspected drugs in his pocket. Two baggies containing a crystal substance field tested positive for amphetamine at about 3:30 a.m. and Bradley G. Rader was booked into the Lewis County Jail for a violation of the Uniform Controlled Substances Act and the Department of Corrections warrant, according to the Lewis County Sheriff’s Office.

UNDERAGE DRINKING

• Chehalis police were called by school officials at W.F. West High School about 10:45 p.m. on Saturday about six students who had either been drinking or were in possession of alcohol. A whiskey bottle was found, according to the Chehalis Police Department. Cases are being referred to juvenile prosecutors for the three boys and three girls ages 14 and 15, according to police.

ON THE ROAD, OFF THE ROAD

• A 25-year-old Winlock resident was arrested after his Ford F350 allegedly destroyed several hundred feet of fence and a mailbox at the 200 block of Jones Road in Winlock yesterday. A deputy called about 6:10 p.m. spoke to a witness who described the truck and found remnants of the vehicle at the scene, according to the Lewis County Sheriff’s Office. The deputy was led to Joshua L. Hazlett, 25, who allegedly had been in physical control of a vehicle while intoxicated, according to the sheriff’ office. He was booked into the Lewis County Jail also for hit and run, Chief Deputy Dusty Breen said.

AND MORE

• And, as usual, other incidents such as arrests for warrants, hit and run, third-degree theft, misdemeanor domestic assault, driving with suspended license; responses for alarm, dispute, civil issue, shoplifting, disorderly person, suspicious circumstances … and more among 135 calls for local law enforcement and / or fire-emergency medical services in the 24-hour period ending about 7 a.m. today.