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News brief: A time to say thank you to police

Tuesday, May 12, 2015 at 12:50 pm
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Red roses for remembrance share the pedestal with The Guardian statue in Chehalis.

By Sharyn L. Decker
Lewis County Sirens news reporter

CHEHALIS – A medal of valor and other commendations will be awarded tonight as Centralia police recognize courage, service and sacrifice among their ranks.

The annual ceremony will take place at Centralia City Hall during the city council meeting, according to Chief Bob Berg.

It’s National Police Week. Friday is National Peace Officers’ Memorial Day, time set aside and established by Congress to pay tribute to those officers who have paid the ultimate sacrifice in service to their communities, according to Berg.

The retiring police chief notes that 117 law enforcement officers were killed in the line of duty across the country last year, an increase of 10 from the year before.

Lewis County Sheriff Rob Snaza took the opportunity yesterday to issue a news release noting the week is a solemn reminder of how dangerous their jobs can be.

“My hat is off to all of the men and women in law enforcement who choose this honorable profession, are true guardians, and are willing to lay down their lives to protect their neighbors,” Snaza stated.

The Lewis County Law Enforcement Memorial, a bronze statue installed outside the Lewis County Law and Justice Center in Chehalis last year, will be decorated with red roses each day this week, as a tribute to fallen local officers.

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News brief: Tired driver flips van on dark highway

Tuesday, May 12, 2015 at 8:46 am

Updated at 8:58 a.m.

By Sharyn L. Decker
Lewis County Sirens news reporter

CHEHALIS – A 44-year-old motorist was injured last night when he fell asleep and his Volkswagen van drifted to the shoulder, hit the ditch and flipped several times along state Route 6 west of Chehalis.

Troopers called about 11:30 p.m. to the scene near Chandler Road at Dryad report the vehicle was totaled and came to rest in the eastbound lane.

Donald R. Silver was transported to Providence Centralia Hospital, according to the Washington State Patrol.

Lewis County Fire District 16 Chief Greg Feuchter said he had a few cuts, but avoided life-threatening injuries.

Silver, from McMinnville, Oregon, was cited for second-degree negligent driving, the state patrol reports.

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Sirens: Daily police and fire roundup

Monday, May 11, 2015 at 5:07 pm

Updated at 5:24 p.m.

DEATH FOLLOWS FIGHT

• Deputies and aid were called to the 1700 block of Ferrier Road outside Winlock on Saturday morning after one of two men involved in a fight over a toolbox lost consciousness, and subsequently died, according to the Lewis County Sheriff’s Office. The sheriff’s office indicates the subject appeared to be in medical duress – not from wounds sustained during the altercation – but authorities will know more after an autopsy. The two are both from Winlock and in their mid to late 40s, according to the sheriff’s office.

OUT-OF-CONTROL

• Deputies were called to Randle just before 8 p.m. on Saturday about a shirtless man running through yards and into the street near the highway screaming he was going to shoot everyone. The subject found in the middle of Miller Road was arrested for harassment, according to the Lewis County Sheriff’s Office. William J. Coe, 35, of Chehalis, was booked into the Lewis County Jail, according to the sheriff’s office. The case was also referred for a possible charge of disorderly conduct, according to the sheriff’s office. No mention was made by a sheriff’s office spokesperson if he actually had a gun, but he reportedly swung a gallon-sized jug full of something at traffic causing one vehicle to swerve.

• Chehalis police were called over to Green Hill School on Friday about a staff member getting urine thrown on him four days earlier. Police are looking into it, according to the Chehalis Police Department.

AUTO THEFT

• Chehalis police called about 4 a.m. on Saturday about a car stolen from Northeast Washington Avenue found it later in the day abandoned at the other end of town, on Southeast Evergreen Drive.

THEFT

• The Lewis County Sheriff’s Office reported this morning that someone got into a travel trailer at the 100 block of Faunrae Lane outside Chehalis and stole a pink quilt with red roses as well as a 24-inch Sony television and a portable 10-inch Sylvania TV with a DVD player sometime between Thursday and Friday,

• Centralia police were called about noon on Friday to the 1400 block of South Gold Street regarding money stolen from a business. Further details were not readily available.

• A 34-year-old homeless person arrested for a warrant on Friday night at West Third Street and North Tower Avenue in Centralia was also booked for second-degree possession of stolen property based on a credit card found on her person. Sara M. Culp was booked into the Lewis County Jail, but has been released with no charges filed pending further investigation.

• Centralia police yesterday took a report from the 1400 block of Jensen Street about a license plate stolen during the night. The missing plate reads B91960K, according to the Centralia Police Department.

VANDALISM

• Someone broke out the driver’s side window of a Honda car parked on South Market Boulevard in Chehalis, according to a report made to police on Saturday morning.

WRECKS

• A 36-year-old Onalaska man was arrested after his car collided with a vehicle parked on the 900 block of Alder Street in Centralia about 2 o’clock yesterday morning. Responding firefighters noted heavy damage to his car and light damage to sport utility vehicle. The driver had no signs of injury and declined aid, according to Riverside Fire Authority. Kevin W Harris was booked into the Lewis County Jail for driving under the influence, according to police.

• A 52-year-old Centralia man was reportedly unhurt when his car struck the back end of a poorly-lit motorcycle on U.S. Highway 12 about one miles east of Montesano early on Saturday morning. Troopers called about 2:10 a.m. report both vehicles were westbound in foggy conditions and the rear tire of the Kawasaki KZ650 became embedded beneath the front end of the car. Timothy A. Reed, 56, from Hoquiam, was tossed from his motorcycle onto the road and transported by aid with unspecified injuries to the hospital, according to the Washington State Patrol. Paul R. Creel’s 2014 Mitsubishi Mirage was towed, according to the state patrol.

AND MORE

• And as usual, other incidents such as arrests for warrants, shoplifting, probation violation, misdemeanor domestic assault, driving under the influence, driving with suspended license, driving with no license, allowing unauthorized person to drive; responses for alarm, dispute, shoplifting, suspicious circumstances, misdemeanor theft, collisions on city streets, a noisy bachelorette party, someone attempting to break into a food bank … and more.

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Teen escapee from Green Hill found at mall in Cowlitz County

Monday, May 11, 2015 at 10:20 am

By Sharyn L. Decker
Lewis County Sirens news reporter

CHEHALIS – A week after his escape, Green Hill student-inmate Dominic Adams was found yesterday evening at the Three Rivers Mall in Kelso.

Officers were investigating an assault in the south end of town from earlier in the day and contacted two individuals with similar descriptions of the two suspects at the mall around 6 p.m., according to the Kelso Police Department.

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Dominic Adams

One was arrested for a warrant, and the other for obstruction, Kelso Capt. Darr Kirk said.

“Then we discovered he was wanted for escaping Green Hill,” Kirk said this morning.

Kelso police say Adams gave a false name and tried to flee the officers but was taken into custody following a short struggle. He reportedly had a wooden billy club with him.

Adams was booked into the Cowlitz County Jail for obstruction, warrants and faces possible other charges related to the interaction with Kelso police, according to Kirk.

Kirk said he didn’t know when Adams would be sent back to Green Hill School in Chehalis.

The Kelso police captain didn’t have information on the second individual, but thought it might be a juvenile. The Kelso assault remains under investigation, he said.

It was about 9 p.m. a week earlier when Chehalis police were called to the state run juvenile detention facility at the south end of Chehalis.

They were told Adams ran off during a maintenance detail and staff members subsequently found a hole cut in the fence. Authorities believed someone in a car seen near the compound, who was flashing their lights and honking their horn, picked Adams up.

Adams was serving the remainder of his juvenile sentence and was to be transferred to adult prison next March to serve 105 months for an assault that occurred in 2013.

•••

“Green Hill escapee: On the run from adult prison term” from Thursday May 7, 2015, here

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Lawsuit regarding Ronda Reynolds’ inquest moves to Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals

Friday, May 8, 2015 at 6:13 pm

By Sharyn L. Decker
Lewis County Sirens news reporter

CHEHALIS –  Former Toledo elementary school principal Ron Reynolds lost his federal lawsuit against the Lewis County coroner and has filed an appeal.

Reynolds contended Coroner Warren McLeod had no legal basis for conducting an inquest into the 1998 death of his then-wife, Ronda Reynolds.

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Ron Reynolds

His lawyer called the 2011 proceedings scandalous, leading to severe harm to his client’s reputation and employability.

The initial claim listed $5 million in damages and the case was filed in Lewis County Superior Court, and then moved to U.S. District Court in late 2013.

U.S. District Court Judge Benjamin Settle granted a summary judgement early last month in favor of McLeod, and Lewis County, which is also named.

At issue was the October 2011 coroner’s inquest convened by McLeod, who made a campaign promise the year before to deal with the long controversial death of former state trooper Ronda Reynolds.

Ronda Reynolds, 33, was found with a bullet in her head and covered by a turned-on electric blanket on the floor of a closet in the Toledo home she shared with her husband of less than a year and his three sons.

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Warren McLeod

Reynolds’ and his son Jonathan Reynolds were named by the inquest jury as responsible for the death, which the panel concluded was homicide.

The inquest and the days that followed it were heavily covered by the local and regional news media, as well as providing the framework for a one-hour documentary produced by CBS television’s 48 Hours Mystery.

Jonathan Reynolds was also party to suit with his father, but had dismissed his claim, according to attorney John Justice, who represents McLeod and the county.

Justice said he felt like the summary judgement represented the court’s belief the inquest was fair and impartial, the conclusions of the inquest jury were based on the instructions given and that state law mandated the issuance of arrest warrants after that.

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Ronda Reynolds

The two men were arrested and immediately released by a Lewis County Superior Court judge because the prosecutor was not filing criminal charges following the inquest.

“I think it boiled down to the court found Coroner McLeod had the authority to conduct the inquest,” Justice said today.

Ron Reynolds, though his attorney, filed the appeal within the 30 days to the United States Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit, he said.

McLeod declined to comment on the case, and Ron Reynolds’ attorney has not returned phone calls seeking comment.

Ron Reynolds and his lawyer have until August 10 to file their brief, Justice said, and then he has 30 days to file his response on behalf of the county and the coroner.
•••

For background, read “Lawsuit filed against Lewis County coroner over inquest” from Tuesday December 17, 2013, here

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Sirens: Daily police and fire roundup

Friday, May 8, 2015 at 12:53 pm

Updated at 5:06 p.m.

MINIATURE TREE MISSING

• Someone stole a 40-year-old Bonsai tree in a gray clay pot from the 300 block of North Rock Street in Centralia. An officer taking a report yesterday was told the tiny tree and a utility cart went missing a month ago, according to the Centralia Police Department.

GARAGES BURGLED

• Police took a report yesterday from the 400 block of West Maple Street yesterday regarding someone breaking into a garage and stealing fishing tackle.

• Centralia police tok a report yesterday from the 1300 block of Rose Street about a bicycle taken from a garage there two weeks earlier. The green Schwinn had a U-shaped lock attached to it, according to the Centralia Police Department.

VANDALISM

• Three windows were discovered broken out at a business on the 500 block of North Tower Avenue in Centralia yesterday morning. It appears to be the work of BBs, according to the Centralia Police Department.

HOT HEAVY EQUIPMENT

• Detectives are looking for information about a stolen excavator sold to someone in the Chehalis area for $6,500 sometime since Nov. 25. The John Deere D25 is worth more than $20,000 and went missing from Auburn, according to Crime Stoppers of Lewis County. Anyone who has information on who purchased the machine or knows where it is, is reminded they can offer an anonymous tip by calling 1-800-748-6422.

TWO HURT WHEN MOTORHOME WRECKS

• A Chehalis couple was injured when they totaled their motorhome this morning on U.S. Highway 101 about nine miles north of Long Beach, according to the Washington State Patrol. They were traveling northbound in a 1993 Allegro and the passenger side wheels went off the pavement at a curve to the right, according to the state patrol. It happened just before 11 a.m. The driver was unsuccessful in his attempt to get back on the road and the motorhome continued on, striking a tree, the investigating trooper reports. Harry W. Snow, 74, and Beverly A. Snow, 65, were transported by aid to Ocean Beach Hospital, according to the state patrol.

AND MORE

• And as usual, other incidents such as arrests for warrants,  probation violation, driving with suspended license; responses for alarm, dispute, shoplifting, hit and run, collisions on city streets … and more.

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Vader toddler: Few answers about death, after second guilty plea

Thursday, May 7, 2015 at 8:04 pm
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Brenda Wing and her lawyer prepare to enter a guilty plea to first-degree manslaughter in Lewis County Superior Court.

By Sharyn L. Decker
Lewis County Sirens news reporter

CHEHALIS – Twenty-seven-year-old Brenda A. Wing pleaded guilty today to her role in last fall’s death of a 3-year-old toddler who was living with her, her husband and their three children in Vader.

Despite a hearing that lasted more than 45 minutes, no light was shed upon what happened to the little boy during his last days on earth.

Jasper Henderling-Warner was pronounced dead at Providence Centralia Hospital after medics and deputies responded to an evening call for an unconscious child on Oct. 5.

Brenda Wing had said she’d put the limp child into the bathtub to revive him after he’d been sleeping much of the day on their couch. But she also told detectives they’d just picked Jasper up from his mother in Woodland the night before.

She and her husband Danny A. Wing were both arrested and charged.

Detectives concluded the Wings had taken Jasper in much earlier, after his 21-year-old mother gave them temporary custody while she was homeless and looked for work out of state.

The sheriff called it severe abuse and neglect, the coroner labeled the cause of death as chronic battered child syndrome.

Brenda Wing this afternoon pleaded guilty to first-degree manslaughter, to third-degree child assault and other offenses.

Lewis County Superior Court Judge James Lawler read aloud her written statement of what she admitted to, and asked her if that was indeed her statement.

She admitted to, as an accomplice, recklessly causing the death of another person, and negligently causing bodily harm that caused substantial pain that extended for a period of time sufficient to cause considerable suffering to a child.

Danny A. Wing, 27, last month pleaded guilty also to first-degree manslaughter and third-degree child assault. He agreed to cooperate with prosecutors and remains jailed awaiting sentencing.

Both Wings avoided a much more serious charge of homicide by abuse by taking plea deals.

Lewis County Senior Deputy Prosecutor Will Halstead and defense attorney John Crowley told the judge they’d like wait three weeks before they return to court to pick a date to sentence Brenda Wing.

Neither lawyer gave a reason for the delay.

“There’s other things going on with the case,” Halstead said after the hearing ended. “It doesn’t end just because they pled.”

The autopsy found numerous bruises, healing fractures and injuries such as trauma to Jasper’s face, and two lower front teeth missing. Prosecutors had multiple doctors lined up who were expected to testify at trial as to what caused the death.

Lewis County Coroner Warren McLeod found also that the little boy was suffering from skin infections that were secondary to his cause of death.

Lewis County Prosecutor Jonathan Meyer has said prosecutors will recommend Danny Wing be sent to prison for 16 years and four months. Halstead today declined to share what he will recommend for Brenda Wing.

He said she faces a standard sentencing range of 12 to 16 years.

Brenda Wing also pleaded guilty today to two counts of witness tampering and two counts of possession of heroin, with all the offenses taking place between July 31 and Oct. 5 of last year.

Separately, the court today scheduled Danny Wing’s sentencing for Aug. 14, so far into the future in part because of his attorney’s availability, according to Halstead.

The sentencings will take place in front of Judge Nelson Hunt.
•••

For background, read “Second plea deal in the works in Vader toddler’s death” from Thursday April 30, 2015, here

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Sirens: Daily police and fire roundup

Thursday, May 7, 2015 at 2:44 pm

Updated

MASS MONEY MISSING

• A 55-year-old Centralia man visited the police department yesterday afternoon, following a months-long stay at the jail, to report a large sum of money stolen from him. He had people on the outside who were supposed to helping take care of some of his business and it appears someone was spending his disability checks while he was locked up, according to the Centralia Police Department. The case is under investigation.

MOTORHOMES BURGLED

• Chehalis police were called yesterday morning to a vehicle repair shop on the 900 block of Northwest Maryland Avenue following the discovery someone had gained entry into the fenced lot and prowled through four motorhomes parked there. Windows were pried open and broken but it’s not clear yet what was taken, according to the Chehalis Police Department. Police won’t know until they hear from the owners what is missing, a department spokesperson said.

VEHICLE THEFT

• Someone removed a section of fence to get into a tow company’s impound yard and stole an ATV, according to a report made to the Chehalis Police Department yesterday afternoon. Missing from the 300 block of Southwest Riverside Drive is a red 1996 Honda TRX 300EX, according to police.

• A Honda Civic stolen from South Tower Avenue earlier this week turned up abandoned in the area of Salzer Valley and Ramsaur roads yesterday, according to the Centralia Police Department. It was missing its stereo, according to police.

OTHER THEFT

• Police yesterday took a report of the theft of mail from the 1300 block of Harrison Avenue in Centralia.

DRUGS

• A 35-year-old Winlock resident contacted about 8:45 p.m. yesterday behind a residence where he was not supposed to be on the 200 block of Tennessee Road was arrested for possession of methamphetamine. A baggie containing a crystal substance was found and Steven R. Luurs Jr. was booked into the Lewis County Jail, according to the Lewis County Sheriff’s Office.

FROM THE COURTHOUSE

• A Chehalis woman charged last autumn with taking thousands of dollars from a concrete business where she worked as a bookkeeper has pleaded guilty but will get a chance for a lower sentence if she can come up with some money before her sentencing date. Lewis County Deputy Prosecutor Paul Masiello said 39-year-old Angela D. Sawyer has no criminal history, and if she can make a down payment of $3,000, he will recommend she be treated as a first time offender and get 30 days in jail. Otherwise, she faces a lot more time, he said. Sawyer pleaded guilty to first-degree theft and first-degree identity theft in Lewis County Superior Court on Tuesday. The allegations she took more than $50,000 from owner of Apex Mobile Mix, which reportedly came up after their relationship ended, came to light last summer after the owner signed up to receive Internet bank statements and saw transactions he did not make or authorize, including some for cash, according to court documents. Masiello said the two sides agreed she stole at least $12,000.

AND MORE

• And as usual, other incidents such as arrests for warrants,  driving with suspended license responses for alarm, dispute, collisions on city streets, theft of fuel from a vehicle during the night … and more.

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Green Hill escapee: On the run from adult prison term

Thursday, May 7, 2015 at 1:16 pm

By Sharyn L. Decker
Lewis County Sirens news reporter

CHEHALIS – Police are still looking for the Green Hill School inmate who apparently slipped away through a hole in the fence on Sunday night.

Dominic Adams began his time at the state run juvenile detention facility at age 15 for burglary, theft and assault convictions in Benton County, according to authorities.

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Dominic Adams

Chehalis police said they suspect somebody in an older red car cut a hole in the fence and picked him up.

Chehalis Deputy Chief Randy Kaut said among the first steps were to learn where Adams had friends and family, and police subsequently found Adams’ previous home was in Kennewick, but he also had some addresses in California.

Now 19, Adams was finishing serving his juvenile sentence at Green Hill and next March was to be shipped off to adult prison for events that occurred in 2013.

He has an adult sentence of almost nine years waiting for him, according to Chris Wright, a spokesperson for the state Department of Social and Health Services.

Green Hill School in Chehalis is a secure facility for older juvenile boys incarcerated for felonies and operated by the Juvenile Rehabilitation Administration, under DSHS. It currently houses 173 inmate-students, according to Wright.

Almost two years ago during Adams’ stay at a minimum security community reentry program in Ellensburg, he and another kid beat up a staff member pretty bad, Wright said.

Adams was charged and convicted as an adult for the incident, according to Wright. The (Ellensburg) Daily Record reported in September 2013 that the two 17-year-olds were accused of jumping a staff member, tying him up, taking his keys and escaping.

Chehalis police today said detectives are continuing to check addresses and follow up in their attempt to find Adams.

He is described as 5-feet 9-inches tall and weighing 160 pounds with brown eyes and black hair.

A razor-wire topped fence surrounds the compound at the Southeast Intersection of Interstate 5 and 13th Street.

Both of the last two escapes have been through, not over, the fence.

Chehalis police were called at 9:01 p.m. on Sunday and told Adams ran off from a maintenance detail; and that staff subsequently located the breach in the fence. A staff member had seen an older red car in the area, honking its horn and flashing its lights, according to police.

Green Hill Superintendent Marybeth Queral had a department spokesperson return her calls to respond to inquiries about the incident. Spokesperson Wright also issued a news release that indicated the escape occurred at about 8:30 p.m.

Wright stated that Green Hill staff immediately notified the Chehalis Police Department.

Kaut said he was trying to find out if indeed, and then why, there may have been a delay in contacting police.
•••

“Green Hill inmate at large after fleeing through hole in fence” from Monday May 4, 2015, here

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Short prison term handed down for Onalaska rifle rampage

Wednesday, May 6, 2015 at 5:29 pm

By Sharyn  L. Decker
Lewis County Sirens news reporter

CHEHALIS – A 44-year-old man accused of firing a rifle towards his girlfriend as she ran away from him outside her trailer home in Onalaska was sentenced today to one year and one day in prison.

Todd H. Bergfalk made a so-called Alford plea, regarding two counts of second-degree assault.

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Todd H. Bergfalk

His lawyer said because of inebriation, his client couldn’t recall enough to admit to specific events.

Bergfalk was arrested March 21, after deputies were called to the 700 block of state Route 508, and told he fired approximately 10 rounds from a 22 rifle, and also pointed the weapon at his girlfriend’s grown son. Deputies reported he was intoxicated and emotional, rambling about abused animals and told them they should just take him to jail.

Defense attorney David Arcuri said the original charges each included an “enhancement” that the offenses were committed with a firearm, but prosecutors dropped those as part of a plea dea. Each one of those would have meant an additional three years of incarceration, which are required to be served consecutive to the sentence, Arcuri said.

The standard sentencing range for second-degree assault is 12 to 14 months, and the two sides agreed to the low end, as did the judge today in Lewis County Superior Court. Bergfalk had no previous felonies, Arcuri said.

Neither charging documents nor the sheriff’s office indicated why he may have been upset, and Arcuri said outside the courtroom he wasn’t going to talk about that.

The sheriff’s office said Bergfalk lives in Tacoma. He gave his home address as Onalaska in court documents.

He will be under the supervision of the state Department of Corrections for three years after his release, Arcuri said.
•••

For background, read, “May trial set for boyfriend’s rampage with 22 rifle in Onalaska” from Friday March 27, 2015, here

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Sirens: Daily police and fire roundup

Wednesday, May 6, 2015 at 4:30 pm

WOMAN CARRIED TO SAFETY FROM SMOKE-FILLED RESIDENCE

• A 73-year-old woman was rescued from her smoke-filled apartment in Chehalis last night, and was unharmed, according to the Chehalis Fire Department. Police and firefighters were called at 8:05 p.m. to the Vintage Apartments on the 1500 block of North National Avenue where a smoke alarm was going off and neighbors were banging on a door trying to get the resident to come out, according to Capt. Rob Gebhart. Gebhart said he forced open the door, and found the woman sitting inside was disoriented, so he picked her up and carried her into the hallway. There was burned food on the stove which they moved, and then the crew removed the smoke from the unit, according to Gebhart. The woman was taken care of by medics for a medical episode unrelated to the smoke, he said, and then able to reoccupy her apartment.

BURGLARY CENTRALIA

• Centralia police were called about 8:40 a.m. yesterday to investigate an overnight break-in at a church on the 200 block of North Washington Avenue.

• Centralia police responded to an approximately 12:15 p.m. call yesterday regarding a laptop computer and a briefcase stolen during a break-in to a business on the 1100 block of Kresky Avenue.

• Someone broke into a business on the 700 block of West Main Street in Centralia and ransacked the place, according to a report made to police about 9:20 a.m. yesterday. Nothing appeared to be missing, according to the Centralia Police Department.

• Centralia police were called at noon yesterday to an apartment on the 200 block of South Diamond Street regarding someone breaking in and rifling through things. Nothing was immediately noted as stolen, according to the Centralia Police Department.

AUTO THEFT

• Centralia police took a report about 7 o’clock this morning of a red 1994 Honda Civic stolen from the 900 block of South Tower Avenue. The car, with red rims, multiple stickers and a loud exhaust, has a license plate of ATN7100, according to the Centralia Police Department.

• A 1996 Acura discovered missing yesterday morning from Southwest 11th Street in Chehalis was located in Thurston County, burned out and minus its wheels and tires, according to the Chehalis Police Department.

AND MORE

• And as usual, other incidents such as arrests for warrants, shoplifting, drugs; responses for alarm, dispute, disorderly person, protection order violation, collisions on city streets; complaint about someone approaching motorists and asking for money … and more.

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News brief: Elk blamed for wrecking patrol car

Wednesday, May 6, 2015 at 4:27 pm

By Sharyn L. Decker
Lewis County Sirens news reporter

While the investigating trooper reported a Long Beach Police Department officer from Curtis was injured when he struck an elk on the highway early Monday, his chief says he was unhurt.

“He’s fine, nobody was hurt,” Long Beach Police Department Flint Wright said.

Officer Michael T. Parker, 38, was crawling about 15 mph on northbound U.S. Highway 101 about three miles east of Long Beach because he came upon a herd of elk, and two of the animals came off the side of the road and T-boned his patrol car, according to Wright.

Parker was transporting a prisoner to the jail and they went to the hospital as a precautionary measure, Wright said.

The damage to the 2005 Ford Crown Victoria was described as “reportable”, but Wright said the estimated $6,000 to $7,000 to repair it meant it probably won’t get fixed.
•••

For background, read “News brief: Police officer from Curtis hospitalized after colliding with elk” from Monday May 4, 2015, here

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Sirens: Daily police and fire roundup

Tuesday, May 5, 2015 at 3:58 pm

OUT OF CONTROL

• A 28-year-old woman who reportedly bit a man on the arm because he had her purse was arrested early yesterday morning, for fourth-degree assault domestic violence, and then for possession of methamphetamine because of what was found inside her handbag, according to the Lewis County Sheriff’s Office. Deputies called about midnight regarding the incident west of Centralia booked Jennifer E. Cecil, of Winlock, into the Lewis County Jail, according to the sheriff’s office.

• Police were called about 2:35 p.m. yesterday to Providence Centralia Hospital to take a report an individual there spit on two nurses. Police will be referring the case with the 43-year-old suspect to prosecutors for evaluation of of charges of third-degree assault, according to the Centralia Police Department.

VEHICLE THEFT

• A white 1996 Acura vanished overnight from where it had been parked outside an apartment building on Southwest 11th Street in Chehalis. The car, with black rims, tinted windows and a spoiler, was last seen about 10:45 p.m. yesterday, according to the Chehalis Police Department.

• A K-Mart employee who went in at 10 a.m. and came back outside at noon yesterday discovered her white 1994 Honda Accord was gone from the parking lot on the 1200 block of Louisiana Avenue in Chehalis. It had been locked and she had the key, according to the Chehalis Police Department.

• Someone stole a 2006 Dodge Stratus from the 3000 block of Southgate Drive in Centralia sometime after 10 p.m. on Saturday, according to the Lewis County Sheriff’s Office. The car was found out of gas about three and half hours later along northbound Interstate 5 in Centralia, according to the sheriff’s office.

• The Lewis County Sheriff’s Office reported yesterday that someone stole a white mid-1980s Honda motorcycle from an outbuilding on the 500 block of Mineral Creek Road in Mineral. It happened sometime between April 26 and Saturday, according to the sheriff’s office. The motorbike has a blue seat and orange fenders, Chief Deputy Stacy Brown said.

OFFICE BURGLARY CENTRALIA

• Someone broke into a a Centralia office and ransacked it, according to a report made to police about 8:40 a.m. yesterday., It happened at the 200 block of North Washington Avenue, according to the Centralia Police Department.

HOME BURGLARY SALKUM

• Someone ransacked a vacation home on Wilcox Road in Salkum and stole various items, according to a report made to the Lewis County Sheriff’s Office. A boat in the garage was loaded with tools and other property bundled up as though the person planned to return, according to the sheriff’s office. The break-in occurred sometime since April 7 and Friday, Chief Deputy Stacy Brown said. Evidence was left the scene, she said.

GARAGE BURGLARY CENTRALIA

• The Lewis County Sheriff’s Office reported yesterday someone pried open a door to a garage outside Centralia and stole two full five-gallon cans of gas sometime between last Monday and Thursday. The loss to the resident at the 1800 block of Little Hanaford Road is $40, according to the sheriff’s office.

VANDALISM

• Centralia police took a report last night from the 100 block of Jefferson Street of a rock thrown through a window.

FIRE BURNS SMALL BUILDING

• The cause of a fire in a small storage building early yesterday morning near Littlerock is under investigation. Firefighters called just before 3 a.m. to the 13900 block of Vue Street consider it a total loss, according to West Thurston Regional Fire Authority.

WRECK

• The Lewis County Sheriff’s Office reported yesterday a 38-year-old Onalaska man ended up with a scratch on his hand and a trip to jail after he rolled his pickup truck on the 2200 block of Jackson Highway south of Chehalis over the weekend. A deputy called just before 3 a.m. on Saturday found the 1987 Toyota totaled and learned that Jeffrey M. Thurston fell asleep at the wheel, according to the sheriff’s office. He was booked into the Lewis County Jail for driving under the influence, Chief Deputy Stacy Brown said.

AND MORE

• And as usual, other incidents such as arrests for warrants, malicious mischief, driving under the influence, driving with suspended license; responses for alarm, suspicious circumstances, misdemeanor theft, collisions on city streets … and more.

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Sirens: Daily police and fire roundup

Monday, May 4, 2015 at 11:05 pm

YO HO HO

• Centralia police arrested a 26-year-old homeless man for second-degree robbery yesterday after he allegedly stuffed a bottle of rum down his pants and then struggled with a grocery store security officer who tried to detain him. Officers called about 1 p.m. to the market on the 500 block of South Tower Avenue found Michael E. Bylsma laying on the ground with the security person on top of him, according to court documents. Police were told Bylsma shoved him and tried to get away but the security officer grabbed him and they struggled for approximately 20 to 30 feet, before a bystander stepped in to help, court documents relate. Bylsma was also booked for possession of methamphetamine, based on the contents of a plastic container found in his front pocket, according to prosecutors. He was charged as arrested today in Lewis County Superior Court and his bail was set at $25,000.

UNRULY GUY

• Ryan M. Kelly, 23 of Centralia, was arrested for malicious mischief and resisting arrest after allegedly damaged a car during a dispute on Saturday, according to the Centralia Police Department. He was booked into the Lewis County Jail, according to police.

MONEY MISSING

• Centralia police were called about 6:40 p.m. on Saturday regarding the theft of an unspecified amount of money at the 200 block of North Tower Avenue.

MISSING MEDS

• Chehalis police were called on Friday about the suspected theft of Oxycodone out of a vehicle. The case is under investigation, according to the Chehalis Police Department.

CAR PROWL

• Someone got into a vehicle at the 1100 block of Belmont Avenue in Centralia and took two bank cards and cash, according to a report made to police about 10:40 p.m. on Saturday.

KNOCK, KNOCK

• Chehalis police were called by a resident on Southeast Washington Avenue at 11 p.m. on Saturday who said he woke up to someone pounding on his door so he grabbed his gun, went outside and saw two teenage boys running off. “He caught them and got them to return to his house with them,” Chehalis Police Department Deputy Chief Randy Kaut said. The boys, ages 17 and 18, apparently said they were doing it all over the neighborhood, as a prank, Kaut said.

ANOTHER AMBULANCE HIT

• A 25-year-old Rochester resident was arrested for reportedly backing into an ambulance when leaving a downtown Centralia bar early yesterday morning and then speeding away. Officers were at The Hub on the 100 block of South Tower Avenue, saw it happen and tried to get him to stop, according to the Centralia Police Department. David T. Alexander was pulled over on Harrison Avenue near Interstate 5 after the approximately 2:15 .m. incident and booked into the Lewis County Jail for driving under the influence and driving with suspended license as well as for hit and run, according to police.

ANOTHER HIT AND RUN, DUI

• A 51-year-old man was arrested following a collision at the intersection of U.S. Highway 12 and Williams Street in Mossyrock on Friday night. Morton police were called about 7:35 p.m. and report the driver took off but was later found. The victim vehicle was able to be driven from the scene, according to the Morton Police Department. Mikal E. Cheney was booked into the Lewis County Jail for  driving under the influence and driving with suspended license as well as for hit and run, according to police.

BRUSH HOG BURNS

• Nobody was hurt but a piece of equipment cutting brush in Chehalis was ruined by fire this morning. Firefighters called about 8:40 a.m. to the area off the 200 block of Kennicot Road extinguished the fire, according to Lewis County Fire District 6. It was a Bobcat with a brush hog attachment on it to clear under the power lines, Firefighter Kyle Eiswald said. None of the surrounding vegetation burned, he said.

AND MORE

• And as usual, other incidents such as arrests for warrants, trespass, shoplifting, driving under the influence, driving with suspended license, misdemeanor assault; responses for alarms, disputes, suspicious circumstances, misdemeanor theft, collisions on city streets … and more.

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News brief: Police officer from Curtis hospitalized after colliding with elk

Monday, May 4, 2015 at 11:45 am

By Sharyn L. Decker
Lewis County Sirens news reporter

A Long Beach Police Department officer who lives in Lewis County was injured overnight when his patrol car struck an elk on the roadway.

Michael T. Parker, 38, of Curtis, was transporting a prisoner to jail when he came upon a herd of elk on northbound U.S. Highway 101 about three miles east of Long Beach, according to the Washington State Patrol.

Troopers called to the scene about 1:20 a.m. report Parker was taken by ambulance to Ocean Beach Hospital. Information about his condition was not readily available.

His 60-year-old passenger, who was reportedly not seat belted in, was transported by aid to the hospital as well, as a precaution, according to the state patrol.

The damage to the 2005 Ford Crown Victoria was described only as “reportable.”

The speed limit there is 55 mph, and the car was slowing, according to patrol spokesperson Trooper Russ Winger.

The animal that was hit ran off and was not located last night, Winger indicated.

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Green Hill inmate at large after fleeing through hole in fence

Monday, May 4, 2015 at 9:58 am

Updated at 10:27 a.m.

By Sharyn L. Decker
Lewis County Sirens news reporter

CHEHALIS –  An inmate at Green Hill School in Chehalis escaped last night apparently through a hole cut in the fence.

Officers called about 9 p.m. to the state-run juvenile incarceration facility at the south end of town were told the teen was on a maintenance detail, then ran off, according to the Chehalis Police Department.

A hole was found cut in the fence and another staff member reported seeing an older red car in the area, honking its horn and flashing its lights, Chehalis Deputy Chief Randy Kaut said this morning.

“We think whoever was there to pick him up probably made the hole,” Kaut said.

Kaut said 19-year-old Dominic A. Adams was doing time at Green Hill for escape. He said he didn’t know the underlying offense, or what part of the state he is from.

Officers last night requested a K-9 to conduct a track, but there were no police dogs available Kaut said.

He expected detectives this morning would be conducting inquires into where Adams might have friends or family.

Green Hill School is a secure facility for older juvenile boys incarcerated for felonies and operated by the Juvenile Rehabilitation Administration, under the state Department of Social and Health Services. It sits between Interstate 5 and Southwest Pacific Avenue north of Southwest Parkland Street.

It was November of 2010 when a 16-year-old inmate-student climbed out his window during the night, took wire cutters from an unlocked building on the campus to cut a hole in the fence, and was discovered missing the following morning. He was picked up in Yelm three weeks later.

Chehalis police are asking anyone with information on last night’s incident to contact Lewis County dispatch at 360-740-1105.

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Chilly waters and sunshine prompt safety message, life jacket discount

Saturday, May 2, 2015 at 8:17 pm

By Sharyn L. Decker
Lewis County Sirens news reporter

CHEHALIS –  Public safety personnel are cautioning residents that with the warmer days of spring, rivers and lakes are still very cold and pose dangers, such as hypothermia.

Lewis County Fire District 5 Lt. Laura Hanson says life jackets and other personal flotation devices are recommended and reminds parents that children should be closely supervised by an adult at all times while swimming and near water.

Coupons for 25 percent off life jackets are available now through Big 5 Sporting Goods, in partnership with Washington State Drowning Prevention Network, Safe Kids Washington, and the Spokane Regional Health District.

Hanson, on behalf of area public safety agencies, reminds the public that new underwater hazards such as limbs and logs can be expected to have been created over the winter.

Personal flotation devices are required for all children under the age of 12 on boats 19 feet or shorter, according to Hanson.

In Washington state, an average of 25 children and teens drown every year, according to the Washington State Drowning Prevention Network. Most of them are swimming, boating or just playing in or near water.

“Safe recreation and accident prevention is a concern for your local responders and is the responsibility of everyone,” Hanson states in a news release.

She offered a safety checklist, from the Centers from Disease Control:

Tips to help you stay safe in the water:

Supervise When in or Around Water. Designate a responsible adult to watch young children while in the bath and all children swimming or playing in or around water. Supervisors of preschool children should provide “touch supervision”, be close enough to reach the child at all times. Because drowning occurs quickly and quietly, adults should not be involved in any other distracting activity (such as reading, playing cards, talking on the phone, or mowing the lawn) while supervising children, even if lifeguards are present.

Use the Buddy System. Always swim with a buddy. Select swimming sites that have lifeguards when possible.

Seizure Disorder Safety. If you or a family member has a seizure disorder, provide one-on-one supervision around water, including swimming pools. Consider taking showers rather than using a bath tub for bathing. Wear life jackets when boating.

Learn to Swim. Formal swimming lessons can protect young children from drowning. However, even when children have had formal swimming lessons, constant, careful supervision when children are in the water, and barriers, such as pool fencing to prevent unsupervised access, are still important.

Learn Cardiopulmonary Resuscitation (CPR). In the time it takes for paramedics to arrive, your CPR skills could save someone’s life.

Air-Filled or Foam Toys are not safety devices. Don’t use air-filled or foam toys, such as “water wings”, “noodles”, or inner-tubes, instead of life jackets. These toys are not life jackets and are not designed to keep swimmers safe.

Avoid Alcohol. Avoid drinking alcohol before or during swimming, boating, or water skiing. Do not drink alcohol while supervising children.

Don’t let swimmers hyperventilate before swimming underwater or try to hold their breath for long periods of time. This can cause them to pass out (sometimes called “shallow water blackout”) and drown.

Know how to prevent recreational water illnesses. For more information about illnesses from recreational water, see the More Information section.

Know the local weather conditions and forecast before swimming or boating. Strong winds and thunderstorms with lightning strikes are dangerous.

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Sirens: Daily police and fire roundup

Saturday, May 2, 2015 at 7:02 pm

MAYHEM IN PARKING LOT SPARKED BY JEEP DRIVER’S MEDICAL INCIDENT

• Six vehicles were damaged some worse than others when a motorist backing out of a parking spot suffered an unspecified medical event and rotated backwards through the Wal-Mart parking lot in Chehalis yesterday. The 2010 Jeep Wrangler also hit a shopping cart and a sign, but no pedestrians, according to responders. Troopers and firefighters were called about 10:45 a.m. to the scene at the 1600 block of Louisiana Avenue. The driver was conscious and talking but transported by aid to Providence Centralia Hospital, according to the Chehalis Fire Department. No charges or citations are expected for the driver, Stephen J. Nikander, 49, of Chehalis, according to the Washington State Patrol. Among the casualties was a 2015 Mercedes Benz Class Two which was pushed into the cart return, which then hit a 2015 Hyundai Elantra, according to the state patrol. All the cars were parked and unoccupied, except for a Nissan Versa which contained two toddlers, according to the  investigating trooper. They were unhurt. Two of the vehicles were towed, the others driven from the scene.

MISSING APPLIANCES

• Centralia police were called about 8:20 a.m. yesterday to the 200 block of Floral Street regarding the theft of appliances. The case is under investigation.

DRUGS

• A 46-year-old homeless person was arrested for possession of methamphetamine overnight after contact with an officer at the 600 block of West Main Street in Centralia. Terry R. Strong was booked into the Lewis County Jail, according to the Centralia Police Department.

AND MORE

• And as usual, other incidents such as arrests for warrants, misdemeanor assault … and more.

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Sirens: Daily police and fire roundup

Friday, May 1, 2015 at 12:34 pm

UNLAWFUL IMPRISONMENT IN WINLOCK

• A 46-year-old Winlock man was arrested yesterday for unlawful imprisonment and other offenses for an alleged week’s worth of preventing a woman from leaving his home. The Lewis County Sheriff’s Office said the two had dated and lived together, but she contacted law enforcement yesterday morning and described how she had been walking down the road to the store last week and he grabbed her by the hair and pulled her into his vehicle. The sheriff’s office said the woman tried to leave multiple times, but Bruce W. Finney threatened to kill her if she did. The first night when she attempted to escape, he allegedly punched her repeatedly in the head and bit her, Chief Deputy Stacy Brown said. On Wednesday night he reportedly told her to leave but as she did, he allegedly got upset and choked her until she couldn’t breathe. Finney was located and booked into the Lewis County Jail for unlawful imprisonment, second-degree assault and harassment, Brown said.

WARRANTS AND DRUGS

• Four individuals were arrested when police went to apartments above a business on the 600 block of West Main Street in Centralia about 2:30 p.m. yesterday. Derek S. Shaughnessy 31 of Chehalis, was arrested for possession of heroin, for warrants and for violation of a protection order, according to the Centralia Police Department. Michelle J. Kilmer, 32, of Chehalis, was arrested for warrants and for violation of a protection order, according to police. Two others were arrested for outstanding warrants; they are Chato R. Ayres, 41, of Centralia and  Jonathan M. Mathews, 31, of Chehalis, according to police. All were booked into the Lewis County Jail. Prosecutors declined to file charges on Shaughnessy.

HIT AND RUN TO AMBULANCE

• Police are looking for a light blue mini van that rear-ended an ambulance yesterday morning in Centralia and then drove away. Police were called about 10:40 a.m. to the 600 block of South Tower Avenue learned the occupants of the Riverside Fire Authority ambulance spoke to the driver of the van to see if they were okay, and suggested they pull off the road, according to the Centralia Police Department. But then the van left, with significant front end damage, according to police. The damage to the ambulance was very, very minor, Officer Mike Lowrey said.

LOG TRUCK HITS BRIDGE

• A log truck driver was ticketed yesterday for an over-height violation after an incident on westbound Mellen Street beneath Interstate 5. Police were called about 3 p.m., by the driver who reported striking the underpass, according to the Centralia Police Department. An officer observed minimal damage, but asked the state Department of Transportation to take a look, according to police.

MORE WARRANT ARRESTS

• Thirty-one people were arrested yesterday for outstanding warrants when law enforcement officers in Lewis County spent the day tracking wanted people down. Twenty-two of them involved misdemeanor warrants and nine of them felony warrants, according to a news release from the Lewis County Sheriff’s Office. Participating were the sheriff’s office, police departments in Centralia, Napavine, Toledo and Winlock, as well as officers with the state Department of Corrections. Sheriff Rob Snaza took the opportunity in the news release to praise the partnerships between the various agencies, stating it makes the county a safer place to live. They worked at it for 16 hours and called it Operation Clean Sweep.

AND MORE

• And as usual, other incidents such as arrests for warrants, drugs, shoplifting, misdemeanor assault, protection order violation, driving under the influence, driving with suspended license; responses for alarm, dispute, misdemeanor theft … and more.

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Second plea deal in the works in Vader toddler’s death

Thursday, April 30, 2015 at 7:00 pm

By Sharyn L. Decker
Lewis County Sirens news reporter

CHEHALIS –  With less than three weeks to go before trial, a Vader mother of three has the weekend to contemplate a plea offer in last autumn’s death of a 3-year-old boy who was part of her household.

Brenda A. Wing and her husband, both now 27, were arrested after the child died, of what has been described vaguely as ongoing abuse.

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Brenda A. Wing

Danny A. Wing pleaded guilty in March to first-degree manslaughter and also to assault in a deal that is expected to send him to prison for just over 16 years, if a judge agrees.

Lawyers and Brenda Wing went before a judge today in Lewis County Superior Court, for a scheduled omnibus hearing. That’s a standard proceeding between arraignment and trial in which both sides put down on paper the agreed particulars for trial.

Lewis County Prosecutor Senior Deputy Prosecutor Will Halstead and defense attorney John Crowley told the judge they’d like to postpone the omnibus until Monday afternoon.

Both attorneys said outside the courtroom that’s to give the defendant time to consider the state’s proposal for a “resolution” to the case.

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Jasper Henderling-Warner

Jasper Henderling-Warner was pronounced dead at Providence Centralia Hospital last Oct. 5 after medics were called to the home because he was unconscious.

The autopsy found abrasions, bruises and healing fractures and labeled the cause of death as chronic battered child syndrome. Jasper was suffering from skin infections that were found to be secondary to his cause of death. His 21-year-old mother had asked the couple that summer to take him for a year, while she was homeless and looking for work out of state, according to authorities.

The Wings were initially charged with homicide by abuse or, in the alternative, first-degree manslaughter, two crimes with widely different penalties. Each of the two were charged as either the principal or accomplice.

Their three children were taken into protective custody by the state.

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Danny A. Wing

While in talks this week about a possible plea deal, the attorneys today continued with steps as though the trial beginning May 18 will still take place.

Halstead told the judge he amended the information to change the date of the offense from Oct. 5, to the time period between July 31 and Oct. 5.

Crowley objected, saying the drastic alteration in the charges would prejudice his client so close to trial. Judge James Lawler allowed the substitute charges.

Brenda Wing pleaded not guilty to the amended information, in her only words spoken aloud on the record.

In March, after her husband pleaded guilty, prosecutors said they expected him to cooperate, leading to more information about what happened to Jasper.

The court hearing was less than 10 minutes long.

When it was over, Crowley left the courthouse to go visit with Brenda Wing in the jail.
•••

For background, read “Prosecutor expects plea deal will help reveal answers about Vader toddler’s demise” from Wednesday March 25, 2015, here

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Sirens: Daily police and fire roundup

Thursday, April 30, 2015 at 10:38 am

FROZEN GOODS PILFERED

• Centralia police were called about 8:15 p.m. yesterday to a burglary at the 700 block of G Street in which a jar of change, food from the freezer and four cell phones were taken from a residence.

ATTEMPTED MAIL THEFT

Centralia police were called yesterday afternoon to the 1200 block of Lum Road where it appeared someone had tried to pry open a set of mailboxes.

ON THE ROAD AGAIN

• A logging truck clipped overhead lines at the 3000 block of Galvin Road in Centralia just before noon yesterday, breaking a power pole. The roadway was closed for approximately an hour during the cleanup, according to the Centralia Police Department.

• A 60-year-old Chehalis woman was arrested yesterday morning for driving under the influence after an individual saw a vehicle strike another car in a parking lot at Safeway in Centralia and then drive away. The witness followed the vehicle up Harrison Avenue to the other side of the freeway, according to the Centralia Police Department. Denise J. Quinonez was then booked into the Lewis County Jail for DUI as well as hit and run, according to police.

FROM THE COURTHOUSE

• Prosecutors added a second charge of second-degree theft and a charge of second-degree burglary to the case of the man who is accused of posing as a driver’s license examiner and taking an applicant for a ride last week to the Lucky Eagle Casino. Daniel L. Norby, 47, from Chehalis, was brought before a judge again this afternoon in Lewis County Superior Court. Lewis County Deputy Prosecutor Melissa Bohm charged him Wednesday with first-degree criminal impersonation and also second-degree theft. Prosecutors say he climbed into the vehicle of a man preparing to take his driver’s test at the licensing office on Kresky Avenue, and said he was going to evaluate his driving. For unknown reasons, the two traded coats and when the victim got his coat back, it was missing as much as $1,200 from an inside pocket. Norby was arrested Tuesday at a Centralia motel. Bohm this afternoon told a judge police had booked Norby this morning or yesterday on the additional charges. She declined to say specifically what the new allegations were, saying only that new information was discovered. Norby is being held on $25,000 bail. He pleaded not guilty this afternoon to all four charges. He is represented by court appointed attorney David Arcuri.

AND MORE

• And as usual, other incidents such as arrests for warrants, misdemeanor assault, protection order violation, driving with suspended license; responses for alarm, shoplifting, misdemeanor theft … and more.

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Police: Impostor arrested after driving test includes stop at Lucky Eagle

Wednesday, April 29, 2015 at 6:46 pm
2015.0429.daniel.norby.7448

Daniel L. Norby waits at the defense table as court documents are signed setting his bail for criminal impersonation and theft charges.

Updated

By Sharyn  L. Decker
Lewis County Sirens news reporter

CHEHALIS – What would you do if you’re taking the driver’s test to get your license and the examiner in the passenger seat directed you to a casino?

If he suggested you come inside to with him meet a girl that he knew? And then asked to borrow $20?

Like one recent applicant, you might start to get suspicious.

Centralia police say that’s exactly what happened to an individual who went to the Washington Department of Licensing on Kresky Avenue.

After checking in with a woman at the counter, and being told to wait outside where the examiner would be right out, a man who said his name was Dave got into the vehicle, and what followed weren’t the usual requests for showing one knows the rules of the road.

Authorities say “Dave” was really a 47-year-old Chehalis man posing as an employee from the state agency. He happened to be in line behind the applicant last Thursday.

Daniel L. Norby was arrested yesterday for first-degree criminal impersonation and charged with the same in Lewis County Superior Court.

Police and prosecutors offer no explanation for why he, allegedly, pretended he was giving a driving test.

Defense attorney Joely O’Rourke this afternoon told a judge her temporary client has been a law abiding citizen for the past five years, resides with his girlfriend on Brown Road outside Chehalis and also has three children, as she made her case for how low his bail should be.

Judge R.W. Buzzard wasn’t persuaded, noting that during two of those last five years Norby was incarcerated. Buzzard set bail at $25,000.

According to charging documents, the odd set of circumstances began when Edward Jerns went in to take his driving test.

Jerns described to a police officer what happened and how after a period of time at the Lucky Eagle Casino, he became skeptical and called the Department of Licensing to tell them, they were still at the casino.

He was told to notify security, and he did, the documents relate.

Jerns told Officer Doug Lowrey that also “Dave” had traded coats with him while at the Rochester establishment, and when he got his coat back, some $1,000 to $1,200 was missing from the inside pocket. He had just cashed his social security check, he said.

An employee at the Kresky Avenue licensing office told Lowrey she spoke to the man who walked in right behind Jerns, and that he was asking about how to get his license, according to court documents. She said she watched him walk out and get into Jerns’ vehicle.

Yesterday, the DOL employee and Jerns picked Norby out of a police photo montage, according to the court documents.

Lowrey said when Norby was contacted at a Centralia motel, he declined to be interviewed by arresting officers, but said the alleged deed last week that got him a lift to the casino seemed to be just an impromptu event.

Norby was also charged with second-degree theft.

He qualified for a court-appointed lawyer and is scheduled for arraignment a week from tomorrow.

Presumably the driver’s license applicant gets a do-over on the test.