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Sirens: Daily police and fire roundup

Saturday, June 20, 2015 at 8:11 pm
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•••

WRECKS

• A 55-year-old man riding a motorcycle was injured this morning east of Packwood when he traveled off the roadway and hit several rocks in a ditch. Gregory P. Kessel, of Olympia, was headed east when he wrecked near milepost 139 of U.S. Highway 12, according to the Washington State Patrol. Troopers responding at 8:30 a.m. found his 2012 Yamaha XVS was totaled, according to the state patrol. Kessel was transported to Morton General Hospital, the investigating trooper reports.

• The Washington State Patrol reported yesterday a Centralia man has died following a June 11 two-vehicle collision on Interstate 5 near the Nisqually Bridge. Louis G. Moore, 81, was transported to Tacoma General Hospital after the early morning wreck in which his car rear-ended a GMC Terrain, according to the state patrol.

FRAUD

• Centralia police were called yesterday afternoon to the 800 block of Sunrise Lane about an identity theft. The case is under investigation, according to the Centralia Police Department.

SHOPLIFTING

• Centralia police were called at 2:07 p.m. yesterday after a female pushed a cart full of groceries through the self checkout line and out the door at Safeway without paying. She was seen loading them into a turquoise colored Saturn – driven by a male with a beard – which fled the area of the 1100 block of Harrison Avenue, according to the Centralia Police Department.

CAR PROWL

• Police were called yesterday afternoon by an individual who said their vehicle was prowled on the 100 block of South Tower Avenue in Centralia a week earlier.

AND MORE

• And as usual, other incidents such as arrests for warrants, obstructing, misdemeanor assault, protection order violation, driving under the influence, protection order violation, driving with suspended license; responses for collision on city street … and more.

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Chehalis police mourn loss of veteran officer

Friday, June 19, 2015 at 8:06 pm
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Chehalis Police Officer Rick Silva

By Sharyn L. Decker
Lewis County Sirens news reporter

CHEHALIS – Chehalis Police Officer Rick Silva died last night, after complications from surgery for an on-the-job injury.

“Officer Silva’s passing leaves us all without his infectious smile, his playful sense of humor, his passion for justice, and his generosity, as he was always willing to lend a helping hand to anyone in need,” the department announced today. “Our lives have been enriched just through the joy of knowing him.”

The veteran officer died at Providence Centralia Hospital one day shy of his 13th anniversary with the department, according to department public information Officer Linda Bailey.

Silva sustained a hip injury on duty and this past February the injury was exacerbated when he made contact with a retail theft suspect who resisted arrest, according to Bailey.

Bailey stated Silva was beloved not just by his family, fellow officers and co-workers, but also by the many, many people in the community whose lives he touched.

His law enforcement career began in 1988 at the Lewis County Sheriff’s Office and in 2002, he went to work for Chehalis.

At the Chehalis Police Department, he served in multiple capacities over the years, including field training officer, emergency vehicle operations course instructor and detective.

His body was escorted at 3 o’clock this morning from the hospital to a local funeral home by a motorcade that included officers from Chehalis and other local law enforcement agencies as well as fire department and aid crew personnel, according to Bailey.

Details regarding a traditional, public line of-duty death funeral service to honor Officer Silva will be released next week as soon as they are available.

The Chehalis Police Department thanks those who have reached out.

“We are so grateful for the support already shown to us by nearby first responders and the Chehalis community at large,” Bailey wrote. “We will miss our brother in blue. 117.”

The department notes that United Way has set aside a Fallen Hero’s Memorial Fund at Security State Bank for those wishing to make contributions in honor of Officer Silva.

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Sirens: Daily police and fire roundup

Friday, June 19, 2015 at 12:38 pm
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•••

Updated at 4:15 p.m.

BOOM

• The state fire marshal advises that sales of consumer fireworks from state-licensed stands begins June 28 at noon and ends on July 5 at 9 pm.  Also reminding the public that  purchasing fireworks over the internet is illegal. As usual, the office suggests that attending a public display is a safe and fun way to enjoy fireworks. To learn about a community fireworks display in your area, visit their website.

EUUUUW

• A Chehalis officer was called over to Green Hill School yesterday afternoon after a 16-year-old student-inmate allegedly threw a milk carton of urine at two staff members. The case will be referred to prosecutors for two charges of custodial assault, according to the Chehalis Police Department.

AND MORE

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

 

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News brief: Free safety inspections for boaters coming soon

Friday, June 19, 2015 at 12:27 pm

By Sharyn L. Decker
Lewis County Sirens news reporter

CHEHALIS – Free boating safety inspections can be had at the Mayfield Lake Park on the last Saturday of this month.

The Lewis County Sheriff’s Office will be partnering with Tacoma City Power on June 27 for an event with a goal in part of raising awareness of the dangers of boating under the influence and removing impaired operators from the waterways, according to the sheriff’s office.

“Lewis County is a beautiful place, with great waterways,” Snaza stated. “We encourage locals and visitors to have fun on the water, however; we expect people to follow the laws and do so safely.”

Between the hours of 11 a.m. and 1 p.m. at the park, safety displays will be set up with handouts and activity books for children.

It’s part of something called Operation Dry Water, a national outreach and enforcement campaign.

Sheriff’s deputies will be on water patrol that day as well as throughout the summer, looking for impaired boaters, according to Snaza.

The sheriff’s office also reminds adults to keep a close eye on children around water and utilize approved life jackets to avoid preventable drownings.

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News brief: Dry conditions lead to burn ban

Thursday, June 18, 2015 at 8:09 pm

By Sharyn L. Decker
Lewis County Sirens news reporter

CHEHALIS – Outdoor burning restrictions go into place tomorrow for all of unincorporated Lewis County because of substantial fire danger, given the weather conditions and extended forecast.

The only outdoor fires allowed will be campfires in designated campgrounds or in fire pits on private property that meet specific criteria, according to Lewis County Community Development Director Lee Napier, acting as fire marshal.

The ban begins at 12:01 a.m. tomorrow.

Anyone with a current winter open burning permit that was to expire on June 30 needs to take note of the change.

The restrictions will remain in effect until lifted by the county Board of Commissioners.

The board has authority over areas in Lewis County that are outside any city limits and not part of any state or federal lands.

For specifications on acceptable fire pits, check the Lewis County Community Development Department’s web page.

For further information concerning outdoor burning, Napier can be reached at 360-740-1146. The fire marshal’s office is in the Lewis County Public Services building, located at 2025 NE Kresky Avenue in Chehalis.

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Sirens: Daily police and fire roundup

Thursday, June 18, 2015 at 12:28 pm
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Honda CRX rests off the roadway along Salzer Valley Road. / Courtesy photo by Aaron Towman

Updated at 6:54 p.m.

MOTORIST CRITICAL AFTER CENTRALIA WRECK

• A 25-year-old driver was seriously injured when he was thrown from his car last night east of Centralia. Firefighters and deputies responding about 7:40 p.m. to the 1900 block of Salzer Valley Road found the 1991 Honda CRX was destroyed in the single-vehicle wreck, according to Riverside Fire Authority. A passenger had been seat belted in and suffered only minor cuts and bruises, according to the Lewis County Sheriff’s Office. But Blake S. Cohoon, 25, from Arizona, wasn’t using his seat belt and suffered life-threatening injuries, according to responders. He was airlifted to Harborview Medical Center in Seattle. A spokesperson from the hospital said he was in surgery at noontime, and listed in critical condition. The sheriff’s office suspects Cohoon had been drinking and that speed contributed to the crash. The case will be referred to prosecutors for a charge of first-degree negligent driving, Cmdr. Dusty Breen said.

DRUGS

• A 37-year-old Centralia man was arrested for possession of methamphetamine yesterday afternoon following a traffic stop at the 1200 block of Alder Avenue in Centralia. Dennis A Johnston was found to be driving with a suspected license and suspected meth was found during the contact, according to the Centralia Police Department. He was booked into the Lewis County Jail, according to police.

LOST AND FOUND

• Centralia police were called to 1300 block of Kayu Lane in Centralia yesterday morning about  10-speed bike someone had taken from the carport area of a home. The bicycle was subsequently found in some bushes off Reynolds Road and returned to its owner, according to the Centralia Police Department.

FIRE ALONG TRACKS FOLLOWS BACKFIRING LOCOMOTIVE

• Rail traffic was stopped this afternoon after an older locomotive backfired and presumably was what ignited a pile of old and rotting railroad ties next to the track near Reynolds and Blair roads in Centralia. Employees of Puget Sound and Pacific Rail who called 911 about 3:10 p.m. said they saw a four-foot flame come from the top of the engine, according to Riverside Fire Authority. They tried to put it out with fire extinguishers and arriving firefighters finished the job without complication, according to a summary of the incident. It was a roughly 10 foot by 30 foot pile of ties, and flames had spread slowly into light vegetation, according to the fire department.

DEPUTY MISSES ELK, RUNS INTO TREE

• The Lewis County Sheriff’s Office revealed today that one of its deputies on routine patrol swerved to miss an elk on the roadway and struck a tree, totaling a 2013 Ford Explorer Interceptor SUV. The deputy was transported by ambulance to St. Joseph Hospital in Tacoma to be treated for minor injuries and has been released, according to the sheriff’s office. It happened about 11 p.m. last Sunday night on state Route 706 near Ashford, according to Chief Deputy Stacy Brown. The accident is being investigated by the Washington State Patrol, Brown indicated.

AND MORE

• And as usual, other incidents such as arrests for warrants, disorderly conduct, driving under the influence, driving with suspended license; responses for dispute, misdemeanor assault, suspicious circumstances … and more.

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Memorial: ‘Our boy Kenny’

Wednesday, June 17, 2015 at 8:00 pm
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Kenneth Hamilton

By Sharyn L. Decker
Lewis County Sirens news reporter

CENTRALIA – More than 100 people gathered together at a Centralia park to remember the 9-year-old boy who died unexpectedly last week.

Kenneth Hamilton was described as an always happy, always smiling child.

“He was just a joy to be around, all the children felt it,” his second-grade teacher Jane King said.

King, and one of Kenneth’s other teachers at Jefferson Lincoln Elementary School, Wendy Gates, were among those who paid tribute to the son of Piper Young and Tom Hamilton at Schaeffer Park late yesterday afternoon.

“What do we know about our boy Kenny?” the minister asked after offering words of comfort and prayers.

He didn’t like naps when he was little, would have played in his neighbor’s pool indefinitely if allowed and was honest to a fault, family members and neighbors shared.

What caused his death is unknown.

Firefighters and police responded to an approximately 10:20 a.m. 911 call last Wednesday to a home on the 300 block of North Diamond Street regarding the child who was found unresponsive in bed by his mother. He was transported to Providence Centralia Hospital where he was pronounced dead.

Centralia Police Department Detective Patti Finch noted he’d undergone a recent medical procedure. Nothing was obviously suspicious at the scene, but anytime a child dies unexpectedly, police will get involved and investigate the circumstances, according to Finch.

He wasn’t sick, his mother said, but still home recovering from having his tonsils taken out six days earlier.

“He was up and about, the swelling was pretty much gone, and his voice was starting to come back,” she said.

Kenneth leaves behind five siblings.

Jefferson Lincoln Elementary School Principal David Eacker was among those present to honor the 9-year-old’s memory at the north Centralia park.

Informing Kenny’s classmates was difficult, Eacker said. There are just almost no words to explain it, he said.

Former neighbor Heather Bodin addressed the group, on behalf of her 8-year-old granddaughter, a third-grader at the same school.

“She can’t understand how someone her age could have to go to heaven,” she said.

Lewis County Coroner Warren McLeod said yesterday it will be weeks before he knows the cause of Kenneth’s death, because he is waiting for the results of various tests from the autopsy.
•••

For background, read “News brief: Police investigating death of little boy in Centralia” from Wednesday June 10, 2015, here

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Sirens: Daily police and fire roundup

Wednesday, June 17, 2015 at 10:34 am
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•••

MEDICAL OXYGEN CATCHES FIRE AT CENTRALIA HOME

• A resident smoking near medical oxygen ignited a fire overnight at the 1300 block of Oxford Avenue in Centralia. Crews dispatched at 2:40 a.m. saw light smoke coming out the doors and windows of the home, according to Riverside Fire Authority. Once inside, they extinguished a bedroom fire before it extended into the structure, according to a brief summary of the incident. All occupants were evacuated and no injuries were noted, according to Riverside. The damage is estimated at $1,000.

DOWNTOWN CENTRALIA RESTAURANT KITCHEN FIRE HALTED

• Firefighters from Centralia and Chehalis responded about 9:30 p.m. yesterday to a reported fire in a restaurant on the 300 block of North Tower Avenue in Centralia. Once inside, they found that the fire suppression hood had been activated due to a fire from a cooking appliance, according to Riverside Fire Authority. The damage at the downtown building was described as light. The business is Great Cuisine of India.

FIRE EXTINGUISHED AT STORAGE UNIT BUSINESS

• Firefighters called about 8:15 p.m. yesterday to a commercial storage business on the 2900 block of Jackson Highway south of Chehalis found a small fire in a wall, according to Newaukum Valley Fire and Rescue, formerly known as Lewis County Fire District 5. The cause is under investigation, Chief Gregg Peterson said.

DRYER FIRE

• Firefighters called about 7:10 p.m. yesterday to a dryer fire at the 1000 block of North Pearl Street in Centralia extinguished it and took the dryer outside, according to Riverside Fire Authority.

SUSPICIOUS FIRE ON LOGGING ROAD

• A deputy was called early yesterday to the woods outside of Morton after the discovery of a truck that that had burned. The branches around it were still warm but there was nobody around, according to the Lewis County Sheriff’s Office. Chief Deputy Stacy Brown said it was 1990s model four-door Toyota 4Runner, but the license plate was melted so they’re not sure what state it was from. The 12:05 a.m. call was to the area of Mosswood Road and Forest Service Road 73 but the scene was actually 10 to 15 miles up a logging road, Brown said. They turned it over to the Forest Service to investigate, Brown said.

VEHICLE PROWL

• Police were called about 12:30 a.m. today about a car prowl at the 1300 block of Windsor Avenue in Centralia. A window was broken and a stereo speaker was taken, according to the Centralia Police Department.

UNRULY PERSON

• A case of a patient at Providence Centralia Hospital who reportedly got angry and broke off a IV holder from a bed is being referred to prosecutors for a possible charge of third-degree malicious mischief, according to the Centralia Police Department. Officers called at about 1:40 p.m. yesterday to the 900 block of South Schueber Road restrained the disorderly male subject, according to police.

DRUGS

• Police arrested a 20-year-old Chehalis woman yesterday for possession of heroin after they responded to the Yard Birds Mall about someone attempting to spend a counterfeit $50 bill. An officer called at 5 p.m. yesterday to the 2100 block of North National Avenue was told one of the vendors was the victim and when Kristina S. Bailey was searched, the suspected drug was found, according to the Chehalis Police Department. Bailey was booked into the Lewis County Jail, according to police.

LOST AND FOUND

• A citizen contacted police yesterday morning and turned over a baggie of bills that were found at a bus stop on the 1400 block of Johnson Road in Centralia.

AND MORE

• And as usual, other incidents such as arrests for warrants, shoplifting, driving under the influence, driving with suspended license; responses for alarm, trespassing, misdemeanor assault, suspicious circumstances, collision on city street; request for help removing a bat from inside a house … and more.

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News brief: Poultry-warming lamp ignited Onalaska house fire

Tuesday, June 16, 2015 at 3:21 pm

By Sharyn L. Decker
Lewis County Sirens news reporter

The fire that consumed an Onalaska family’s home is being blamed on a heat lamp that was keeping baby chicks warm.

Fire Investigator Ted McCarty said it wasn’t necessarily that it got knocked over.

“It had been on for a month and probably dried out the sawdust, which got hot and ignited,” McCarty said.

One of the residents was cooking breakfast when she smelled smoke, looked all around the house and couldn’t find anything, according to McCarty. Until she opened the back door and saw the shed burning, he said.

Firefighters responding about 8 a.m. on Sunday to the 600 block of Middle Fork Road found the manufactured home fully engulfed in flames.

She grabbed their dogs and got outside and two of their kittens were found alive, but others plus the chicks perished.

Lewis County Fire District 1 Assistant Chief Rhonda Volk said the couple lived there with their niece who is in her 20s.

They didn’t have any insurance, McCarty said.

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Sirens: Daily police and fire roundup

Tuesday, June 16, 2015 at 2:35 pm
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•••

PEDESTRIAN SCARES MOTORIST

• Centralia police took a report yesterday about 6:30 p.m. that a man aggressively approached the driver of a car at Harrison Avenue and Belmont Street, told her to get out and threatened her with a flashlight. She left the scene unharmed and no arrest had been made as of this morning, according to the Centralia Police Department.

THEFT

• Chehalis police are investigating an incident where an iPad was missing from a backpack that was being held for a 14-year-old at Wal-Mart yesterday.

DRUGS

• Officers arrested a 15-year-old for being in possession of marijuana yesterday morning at the 800 block of Eshom Road in Centralia. The teen was released to a parent, according to the Centralia Police Department.

SUSPECTED GUNSHOTS FIRED ON I-5

• Troopers are seeking witnesses to a road rage incident that occurred southbound Interstate 5 just south of Tumwater yesterday evening. It began near milepost 101 and escalated with possible shots fired before a gray Chevrolet Equinox sport utility vehicle exited the freeway at exit 95, according to the Washington State Patrol. The other vehicle is described as a single cab brown pickup truck with a canopy and Oregon license plates, according to the state patrol. Anyone who saw what happened or has any information about it is asked to contact the Washington State Patrol at 360-586-1999.

AND MORE

• And as usual, other incidents such as arrests for warrants, probation violation, misdemeanor assault, driving under the influence, failing to transfer vehicle title, failing to register as a sex offender; responses for alarm, dispute, hit and run, protection order violation, collision on city street, stolen vehicles that just turned out to have been parked where their owners weren’t looking them; complaint of male sitting on a bench begging for money in downtown Chehalis … and more.

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News brief: One hurt in weekend wrecks

Monday, June 15, 2015 at 5:04 pm

By Sharyn L. Decker
Lewis County Sirens news reporter

A motorcyclist was airlifted after he collided with a deer yesterday morning south of Rochester, according to West Thurston Regional Fire Authority.

Firefighters called about 9 a.m. to Prather Road near Lundeen Road found the man was initially unconscious but then he slowly began to come to, according to Fire Chief Robert Scott.

“He was wearing a helmet though, which is good,” Scott said. “It probably saved his life.”

A helicopter met them and the patient at Rochester High School to transport him to Harborview Medical Center in Seattle, Scott said. He said the vicim was a local person and probably in his 30s or 40s.

The deer didn’t make it, Scott said.

On Saturday morning, it was a wooden porch that took a hit when a motorist on Southwest Cascade Avenue near Main Street in Chehalis left the roadway, crossed the sidewalk and came to rest in front of a home.

There was significant damage to the porch and damage to the front end of his car, but 20-year-old Justin A. Deel of Rochester was unhurt, according to the Chehalis Police Department.

He was cited for driving with a suspended license and without insurance, according to police.

And about 1:30 a.m. today, the front end of a car was “pretty smashed up” and the concrete center barrier shoved into the oncoming lane following a single-vehicle collision on Interstate 5 in Chehalis, according to the Chehalis Fire Department.

The driver was northbound and wrecked near the Main Street interchange. Nobody was transported to the hospital, Fire Capt. Rob Gebhart said.

“It sounds like the driver fell asleep,” he said.

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Wildfire burning about two miles from Pe Ell

Monday, June 15, 2015 at 11:43 am
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A helicopter drops water off Katula Road outside Pe Ell yesterday. / Courtesy photo by DNR

By Sharyn L. Decker
Lewis County Sirens news reporter

Firefighters are working to extinguish a wildfire that broke out on a timber company’s land near Pe Ell, with roughly 80 people on the ground today.

A Doty firefighter who happened to be up on a hill spotted it and contacted the state Department of Natural Resources about 9 o’clock yesterday morning.

It was initially estimated at 40 acres but is more like 25 acres, and it’s mostly debris leftover from previous logging that is burning, according to Nick Cronquist, a DNR spokesperson..

It went a little bit into the timber, burning the salal and other vegetation on the ground, Cronquist said.

The area is roughly halfway between Pe Ell and Doty.

Cronquist said this morning the fire is 70 percent contained.

“The helicopters were working pretty hard last night, but we don’t think we’ll use them again,” he said. They have them on standby, he said.

The property belongs to Green Diamond Resource Co. and is off Katula Road.

Local firefighters have been supporting the efforts, hauling water with tenders, according to Lewis County Fire District 16 Chief Greg Feuchter.

Cronquist said they had 50 personnel working the fire yesterday and expected they will be out there for the next couple of days.

It started sometime between Saturday night and Sunday morning, he said, and its cause is under investigation.

It’s among the first sizable wildfires in Western Washington this season, following an early in the weekend fire in Clark County, according to Cronquist.

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The state Department of Natural Resources expects personnel to be working for the next couple of days to extinguish the fire. / Courtesy photo by DNR

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Sirens: Daily police and fire roundup

Monday, June 15, 2015 at 10:24 am
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•••

Updated at 4:15 p.m.

BURGLARY RANDLE

• Someone pried open a hasp to a storage shed at the 600 block of U.S. Highway 12 in Randle and stole a riding mower, a utility trailer, a generator, an air compressor, a chainsaw and a tool box, according to the Lewis County Sheriff’s Office. The victim, a 60-year-old Seattle resident who owns River Run Ranch, said it happened sometime in the seven days before Saturday, according to the sheriff’s office. The loss is estimated at about $900, Chief Deputy Stacy Brown said.

BURGLARY SILVER CREEK

• A deputy responded about 10 p.m. on Saturday to a burglary at a vacation home on the 1300 block of state Route 122 in Silver Creek where someone had cut padlocks to a gate, a barn and a shed and stole numerous items including a dozen 10 by 10 canopies and a bright blue four-foot tall air compressor, according to the Lewis County Sheriff’s Office. The victim is compiling a list, according to the sheriff’s office. A garage was ransacked as well, Chief Deputy Stacy Brown said. The break-in occurred sometime since May 26, according to Brown.

BURGLARY CENTRALIA

• Deputies responding to a residential burglary alarm at the 2000 block of Van Wormer Street in Centralia about 3 p.m. on Saturday found a ladder leaned against the house and the front door unlocked. A search inside by a police dog was conducted and nobody was there, but stolen from the couple’s home were various valuables including a kids Kindle, a Philips portable DVD player, costume jewelry and seven books of checks, according to the Lewis County Sheriff’s Office.

• An 89-year-old Centralia man reported someone burglarized his home on the 2700 block of Bennet Road sometime between Friday and Saturday, making off with 20 silver dollars, six wrist watches and a set of keys, according to the Lewis County Sheriff’s Office.

• A teenage boy was arrested after allegedly admitting to burglarizing the home of his foster mother’s grown son at the 2700 block of Lincoln Creek Road west of Centralia, according to the Lewis County Sheriff’s Office. A deputy was called on Friday and learned it happened sometime June 3 and Thursday and when confronted, the teen had returned the car keys, hunting knife, cell phone and alcohol, according to the sheriff’s office. He was arrested for residential burglary, Chief Deputy Stacy Brown said.

BURGLARY ASHFORD

• The Lewis County Sheriff’s Office reports this morning that a deputy took a report on Thursday of a burglary at a vacation home on the 300 block of Skate Creek Road near Ashford in which someone stole food, alcohol, an old BB gun and other items sometime during the previous week.

BURGLARY CHEHALIS

• Police were called just before 6 o’clock this morning when the owner of M&K Town Store on the 500 block of North Market Boulevard discovered the glass door to the business broken out. Nothing initially appeared to be missing, according to the Chehalis Police Department. It happened sometime after about 12:30 a.m., according to police.

• Chehalis police were called at noon Saturday to Stan Hedwall Park on the 1500 block of Rice Road following the discovery someone broke into the concession stand through a sliding window and stole the cash register. It had about $80 in it and was valued at $10, according to the Chehalis Police Department. An estimated $10 in food items were missing as well, police said.

THEFT CHEHALIS

• The Lewis County Sheriff’s Office reports this morning that three Husqvarna push mowers valued at $1,200 were stolen from a business on the 1600 block of Bishop Road in Chehalis last week between Wednesday and Thursday.

CAR PROWL

• A compound bow, a knife and other items were stolen from an unlocked vehicle overnight at the 100 block of Virginia Drive in Centralia, according to a  report made to police yesterday morning.

VANDALISM

• Centralia police responded yesterday evening to a report of broken windows on a building at Centralia College, at the 400 block of Centralia College Boulevard.

TOM FOOLERY

• A 31-year-old Chehalis resident was arrested when he allegedly came at an officer in a ‘fighting stance’ outside a bar on the 300 block of Northwest Chehalis Avenue on Friday night. There had been an altercation, according to the Chehalis Police Department. Aaron J. Calista allegedly wasn’t allowing officers to handcuff him, so he was booked into the Lewis County Jail for both disorderly conduct and resisting arrest.

WILDFIRE NEAR PE ELL

• Firefighters were called yesterday to a wildfire near Pe Ell of estimated to be about 40 acres. At least two helicopters were sent to assist, according to the state Department of Natural Resources.

CRASH

• An 18-year-old woman was cited for second-degree negligent driving after a head on collision just before 5 p.m. on Thursday on Jackson Highway near Logan Hill Road in Chehalis, according to the Lewis County Sheriff’s Office. Chief Deputy Stacy Brown said the 55-year-old in the other vehicle was cited for driving with a suspended license and no insurance. Two people were injured, with a broken ankle and a broken wrist, Brown said.

AND MORE

• And as usual, other incidents such as arrests for warrants, misdemeanor assault, protection order violation, driving under the influence, driving with suspended license; responses for alarm, dispute, runaway child, misdemeanor theft, receiving counterfeit money, collisions on city streets; complaints of house getting ‘egged’, neighbor dog barking for seven hours, old man begging for money downtown Chehalis, little girls throwing rocks onto freeway breaking windshield … and more.

 

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Sirens: Daily police and fire roundup

Sunday, June 14, 2015 at 4:10 pm
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The remains of Middle Fork Road home smolder this morning. / Courtesy photo by Lewis County Fire District 1

FIRE SWEEPS THROUGH ONALASKA RESIDENCE

• An Onalaska area family lost their home to a fire this morning, as well as its contents and some pets. Firefighters were called to a shed fire on the 600 block of Middle Fork Road just before 8 a.m. and by the time they arrived, the adjacent manufactured home was fully engulfed in flames, Lewis County Fire District 1 Assistant Chief Rhonda Volk said. “It spread quick,” Volk said “Basically just the foundation is left.” The couple who reside there had gotten out without injuries but they had five kittens and only two were found, she said. A young adult niece lives with them as well but wasn’t there at the time, according to Volk. They also lost chicks they were raising in the shed, she said. The Red Cross was asked to come out to help the family, she said. A fire investigator was looking into the cause.

CAT BURGLAR STRIKES AGAIN

• Rooftop break-ins continue in the Twin Cities, with Wendy’s restaurant in Centralia becoming the latest victim. Arriving workers called police at 7:30 a.m. yesterday to the fast food business on the 800 block of Harrison Avenue following the discovery. Someone had cut a hole in a wall to get into a room where they got into a strong box and stole an undisclosed amount of cash, according to the Centralia Police Department. They entered the building through a hole cut into the roof, Sgt. Kurt Reichert said. Reichert said he would guess a tool like a sawzall may have been used. On Friday morning someone struck similarly at the Twin City Town Center in Chehalis and two weeks ago someone burglarized the McDonald’s on Lum Road in Centralia the same way.

WRONG GUY

• Centralia police responded to an 8:45 p.m. call yesterday at the 200 block of West Chestnut Street where a 22-year-old Rochester man said he was attacked by another motorist. He said a driver cut him off so he rolled down his window to ask what he wanted, and the other driver pulled open his car door and punched him several times, according to police. He called him by a different name and when the Rochester man got out his license to prove he was not the named person, the suspect grabbed it from him, according to the Centralia Police Department. Nicholas L. Gonzalez, 24 of Chehalis, was subsequently located and booked into the Lewis County Jail for second-degree robbery, according to Sgt. Kurt Reichert. Gonzalez was in further trouble because he was found in a stolen car, Reichert said.

FRAUD

• A Centralia man called police late Friday afternoon after discovering someone stole some checks from him at the 200 block of West Oakview Avenue and cashed them. The case is under investigation, according to the Centralia Police Department.

HANDBAG TAKEN

• Someone stole a purse from the 800 block of Alder Street in Centralia, according to a report made to police  about 7 p.m. on Friday.

CAR PROWL

• Centralia police responded to a call about 4:20 a.m. call today from the 1800 block of North Pearl Street where a wallet was stolen from an unlocked car.

• Police took a report yesterday of several vehicles getting broken into overnight at the 700 block of Bengal Court in Centralia., Among the items missing was a GPS device, according to the Centralia Police Department.

• Centralia police took a report yesterday morning of a vehicle prowl at the 400 block of West Plum Street. Someone broke a window to get inside, according to the Centralia Police Department.

• Police were called to the 2000 block of Borst Avenue in Centralia about 7:50 p.m. on Friday to take a report of the theft of a wallet and medications from a vehicle while its owner was in the restroom.

BIKE BUMPS BUS

• Centralia police were called late Friday afternoon to take a report from Twin Transit that earlier in the day a bicyclist had run into one of its busses at the 900 block of Harrison Avenue.

AND MORE

• And as usual, other incidents such as arrests for warrants, disorderly conduct, teenager with marijuana, driving under the influence; responses for other theft, misdemeanor assault, collisions on city streets … and more.

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Buying from online stranger? Meet near the sheriff’s office

Friday, June 12, 2015 at 7:16 pm

By Sharyn L. Decker
Lewis County Sirens news reporter

CHEHALIS – Got a wad of cash in your pocket for that used car you found on Craigslist? A bit nervous about doing business with someone you only know from an Internet ad?

The Lewis County Sheriff’s Office is welcoming the public into the lobby of the Lewis County Law and Justice Center, suggesting it’s a good place for those who buy and sell items online to meet up with each other.

“Online selling and buying on Craigslist, Facebook, and other sites has become increasingly popular and with that comes risks,” Chief Deputy Stacy Brown states in a news release. “Robberies, thefts, and even deaths in some cases, have resulted from people meeting strangers to sell or buy an item advertised online.”

They’ve dubbed the front lobby on the first floor as a Neutral Exchange Zone.

“We hope this program helps to address unsafe situation(s) or deter crimes from occurring during the exchange of an item,” Sheriff Rob Snaza stated. “If someone refuses to meet in a public place or a neutral zone, that should be cause for concern with continuing a transaction.”

The sheriff’s office reminds the public that no weapons are allowed inside the building.

Exchanges can only be made there during business hours when the building is open. That’s 8 a.m. until 5 p.m. Monday through Friday.

The Lewis County Law and Justice Center is located at 345 W. Main Street in Chehalis.

Brown says no personal services may be traded there.

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News brief: Training fire to be conducted southwest of Chehalis

Friday, June 12, 2015 at 6:03 pm

By Sharyn L. Decker
Lewis County Sirens news reporter

Chehalis area residents can expect to see smoke beginning at  9 a.m. tomorrow, as firefighters burn down a house.

Lewis County Fire District 6 is using the donated structure on the 200 block of Devereese Road to get some practice in, according to Chief Tim Kinder.

They should be finished at about noon, he said.

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Sirens: Daily police and fire roundup

Friday, June 12, 2015 at 5:34 pm
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•••

NO CAT BURGLAR FOUND

• Chehalis police were called just before 1 o’clock this morning to the Twin City Town Center where a worker discovered someone tried to break in through the roof. The individual was putting away the parking lot sweeper when they looked up and saw evidence someone tried to gain entry into that portion of the building, according to the Chehalis Police Department. A police dog helped conduct a sweep of the area at the 1300 block of Northwest Louisiana Avenue but nobody was found, according to police. It was just two weeks earlier when McDonald’s on Lum Road in Centralia was burglarized by someone who cut a hole in the roof to get inside.

BUSINESS BURGLARY

• Chehalis police were called yesterday morning to a hardware store on the 700 block of South Market Boulevard where someone broke into a fenced area overnight an stole a gray fountain. The loss is listed at $692.99, according to the Chehalis Police Department. A similar break-in happened there a week earlier.

MONEY MISSING

• A Centralia resident in his mid 70s reported to police yesterday that an unauthorized person removed more than $1,000 from his bank account, according to the Centralia Police Department.

• Police were called to a nursing home on the 1500 block of Harrison Avenue in Centralia yesterday to talk with a man in his 90s regarding cash stolen from him.

BAD BILL BUYS GAS

• Chehalis police were called about 10 o’clock last night when a clerk on Northwest State Avenue discovered a customer used a counterfeit $50 to pay for fuel and a scratch ticket.

FRAUD

• Centralia police were called yesterday to the 900 block of Schueber Road regarding an individual reportedly using the name of a family member to get medical care from Providence Centralia Hospital.

CAR PROWL

• Centralia police were called just before 8 o’clock yesterday morning about someone rifling through an unlocked vehicle at the 2400 block of Leisure Lane. Nothing appeared to be missing, according to the Centralia Police Department.

ASSAULT

• Centralia police were called yesterday afternoon to take a report of a sexual assault involving juveniles said to have taken place a week earlier. Further details were not readily available.

BARK FIRE

• Chehalis firefighters were called about 6:50 p.m. yesterday to extinguish a beauty bark fire in the landscaping along the 1500 block of North National Avenue. It was most likely caused by a cigarette, according to the Chehalis Fire Department.

AND MORE

• And as usual, other incidents such as arrests for warrants, misdemeanor assault; responses for alarm, dispute, shoplifting, suspicious circumstances, misdemeanor theft, collision on city street … and more.

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Toledo veteran enters plea of not guilty by reason of insanity

Friday, June 12, 2015 at 7:36 am
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•••

By Sharyn  L. Decker
Lewis County Sirens news reporter

CHEHALIS – The Toledo man arrested after a bizarre series of events that left employees at a Centralia motel hiding and ended in a fight with police officers inside the nearby sandwich shop remains jailed as his lawyer makes plans to delve into his mental state.

Defense attorney Shane O’Rourke described the situation on Alder Street the morning of May 26 as a sort of manic scenario.

“All the witnesses indicated he thought something was happening that was not happening,” O’Rourke said.

Mitchell K. Davis, 27, was a gunner on active duty in Iraq in 2009 who had significant combat and had significant issues afterwards, O’Rourke said.

“We believe he had been brought by Toledo police to Providence Centralia Hospital who dropped him off there,” he said. “I believe he was discharged within a matter of hours before this.”

Officers were called about 11:15 a.m. that day to the Peppermill Inn having been told Davis grabbed an employee, pushed her to the floor and took her phone, according to police. As police arrived, they got a call from a man at the Shell station next door – where Davis allegedly took his phone – and were directed to the Subway shop, according to a police account.

Police said he was hiding in the bathroom, and as he dashed out, knocked a worker to the ground. Davis was subdued with a Taser, but during a struggle, reportedly struck one officer in the face.

Davis yesterday pleaded not guilty by reason of insanity.

He remains in the Lewis County Jail, and O’Rourke is preparing for an extensive evaluation of his client.

The Centralia defense attorney said he expected within the next couple of days he would seek authorization from a judge to engage an expert psychiatrist.

Davis is charged with two counts of second-degree robbery, one count of third-degree assault, two counts of fourth-degree assault, malicious mischief and possession of methamphetamine. His trial is on the Lewis County Superior Court calendar for July 20.

Getting acquitted by reason of insanity can be a long and complex process, according to O’Rourke.

It’s different, in that the defendant acknowledges the acts, but, then a judge or jury has to find one of two things are true, he said.

“A, I did not understand what I was doing because of some kind of mental defect or delusion,” O’Rourke said. “Or B, because of my mental state, I had no ability to appreciate right from wrong.”

It’s a difficult standard to meet, he said.

If it happens, the case then shifts into determining what to do next with the person, he said.

“If it’s a bad enough crime, you’re probably going to be committed the rest of your life, he said.

O’Rourke said one of the allegations is police found a residual amount of methamphetamine, so an issue he expects to come up is an allegation of intoxication.
•••

For background, read “Sirens: Daily police and fire roundup – POLICE: ‘SPUN UP OUT OF HIS MIND’ ” from Wednesday May 27, 2015, here

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Chehalis carjacking suspect denies involvement

Thursday, June 11, 2015 at 7:16 pm
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The man named in court documents as Huber Juarez-Arellano approaches the defense table for his bail hearing in Lewis County Superior Court.

By Sharyn  L. Decker
Lewis County Sirens news reporter

CHEHALIS – The individual accused of stealing a pickup truck from a Chehalis dealership during a test drive – by brandishing a toy gun – and leading law enforcement officers on a wild chase into Cowlitz County appeared before a judge this afternoon where lawyers discussed his bail.

But first, Lewis County Superior Court Judge James Lawler asked if his name was indeed Huber Juarez-Arellano.

“I don’t know who was messing with my ID,” the young man replied.

Lawler told him all he wanted to know at that point, was if that was his name.

“Yes,” he said.

A Lewis County Sheriff’s Office commander yesterday identified the arrestee as Huber (no middle initial) Juarez-Arellano, 21, from Vancouver, Washington. A different spokesperson from the office this morning said he was Huber J. Arellano. The Cowlitz County Sheriff’s Office reported he is Huber Juarez-Vasques, 22, of Kelso.

Defense attorney Joely O’Rourke told the judge her temporary client lives and works in the Salem, Oregon area.

When Lawler asked him did understood the charges, his rights and the potential penalties, long pauses followed before the heavily tattooed man responded affirmatively to each query.

“He does have some mental health issues he wants the court to consider,” O’Rourke told the judge.

Juarez-Arellano – as he is named in court documents, based on the identification left at I-5 Toyota – is charged with  first-degree robbery, attempting to elude and first-degree malicious mischief.

The sheriff’s office says when he and a sales associate took a 2011 Ford F150 pickup for a drive yesterday morning, he pulled out what looked like a pistol and ordered the 46-year-old man out of the vehicle near Hamilton and Labree roads south of Chehalis. And then took off.

An Airsoft gun he allegedly threw out a window was recovered.

Charging documents speak of deputies and troopers pursuing on a backroad at 30 to 40 mph above the speed limit, with the suspect vehicle swerving into oncoming lanes and ignoring stop signs and other traffic warnings.

The Cowlitz County Sheriff’s Office reported the truck ran through a fence near a weigh station south of Castle Rock. Charging documents describe part of the journey as cutting across the northbound lanes of Interstate 5, crossing the median and heading into the southbound lanes before driving through a barricade onto a frontage road.

“Frankly, everyone’s lucky someone did not die,” Lewis County Prosecutor Jonathan Meyer told the judge.

Meyer asked for bail of $750,000, based in part on juvenile convictions of second-degree assault and harassment. O’Rourke asked for $50,000, telling the judge Juarez-Arellano works multiple jobs and supports his wife, three young children, his mother and his brother.

She also said he receives disability payments and appeared to qualify for a court-appointed attorney.

“He is denying he is the alleged suspect in the probable cause statement,” O’Rourke said.

Bail was set at $500,000. His arraignment was scheduled for next Thursday morning with Centralia lawyer David Arcuri to represent him.
•••

For background, read “Chehalis salesman carjacked during test drive” from Wednesday June 10, 2015, here

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Sirens: Daily police and fire roundup

Thursday, June 11, 2015 at 3:39 pm
2015.0518.2013.1113.sirenslights5860.secondone

•••

SPEEDY FRAUDSTER

• A 50-year-old Chehalis man contacted police about 4:30 p.m. yesterday to report he’d accidentally left his credit card at the library and although within a couple of hours realized it was not with him, discovered it had already been used twice at local businesses and someone was attempting to use it at an ATM. The third transaction didn’t go through, according to the Chehalis Police Department.

MISSING CAR FOUND

• A car reported stolen yesterday from the 300 block of East Magnolia Street in Centralia turned up at the 300 block of Pine Street and a relative of the owner was arrested. Corey R. Aldrich, 28, was located at a nearby apartment and booked into the Lewis County Jail for taking a motor vehicle without permission,  according to the Centralia Police Department. A search of his person incident to the arrest turned up suspected methamphetamine, so the Centralia man was booked for that too, according to police. That offense is the one cited if a person is related to the owner, has been allowed to use the vehicle at least one time before and didn’t intend to permanently deprive the owner of their property,  according to police.

FUEL THEFT

• Centralia police were contacted yesterday by an individual who said someone tried to steal gasoline from their parked vehicle during the night at the 1000 block of F Street.

CAR PROWL

• Chehalis police were called about 8:20 p.m. yesterday about a vehicle prowl on the 300 block of Southwest James Street.

SUSPICIOUS FIRE

• It appeared someone set a fire in an alley next to a garage in Chehalis yesterday evening but a neighbor who was quick with a garden hose got it put out before it spread, according to the Chehalis Fire Department. Firefighters were called to the area behind the 300 block of Southwest James Street about 6:30 p.m. and found brush and grass covering an area approximately three feet by six feet had burned, Capt. Rob Gebhart said. A small scorched spot was found in front of the house as well, Gebhart said. Nobody was home at the residence, he said. Firefighters and police spoke with some kids across the street, but nobody saw anything, Gebhart said.

AND MORE

• And as usual, other incidents such as arrests for warrants, underage drinking, malicious mischief, driving under the influence; responses for alarm, dispute, hit and run, suspicious circumstances, collision on city street … and more.

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Chehalis salesman carjacked during test drive

Wednesday, June 10, 2015 at 4:19 pm

Updated

By Sharyn  L. Decker
Lewis County Sirens news reporter

CHEHALIS – A Chehalis automobile salesman was carjacked during a test drive this morning, with what turned out to be a toy gun.

A 21-year-old man is in custody, after a high-speed chase that ended in Cowlitz County.

The red 2011 Ford F150 pickup sustained some damage when the suspect drove it through a fence near a weigh station about five miles south of Castle Rock, according to the Lewis County Sheriff’s Office.

Sheriff’s Cmdr. Dusty Breen said it began at I-5 Toyota on Northwest Louisiana Avenue where the supposed customer and the sales person departed for a test drive.

They were traveling on Hamilton Road south of Chehalis when the 21-year-old ordered the man out at gunpoint, Breen said, or, with what appeared to be a handgun.

“The salesman is able to flag somebody down for help,” he said. “Deputies were dispatched.”

That was around 11:20 a.m.

The sheriff’s office and the state patrol began a pursuit that took Interstate 5 as well as some backroads at speeds of 80 and 90 mph, and ended when the driver ran through the fence and bailed out, he said. They were joined by Cowlitz deputies as well.

They got a call from a woman who said there was a man inside her house, out of breath and asking for water, and he borrowed a pair of sunglasses from a person there, put them on and hid under a porch, according to the Cowlitz County Sheriff’s Office.

That was on Pleasant Hill Road, and that’s where law enforcement officers took him into custody.

Cmdr. Breen said Huber Juarez-Arellano, 21, is from Vancouver, Washington. Cowlitz County identifies him as Huber Juarez-Vasques, 22, of Kelso.

Breen said the suspect tossed the weapon out along Barnes Road, and when it was recovered, it turned out to be a painted Airsoft gun.

Nobody got hurt in the incident, he said. The sales associate is a 46-year-old Centralia resident, according to the sheriff’s office.

The suspect was transported back to Lewis County to be booked into the jail for first-degree robbery and felony eluding, Breen said.

The Cowlitz County Sheriff’s Office reports it will be considering charges of eluding and trespass.

The suspect had left his identification at the dealership before the test drive, according to Chief Deputy Stacy Brown.