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Sirens: Daily police and fire roundup

Thursday, May 28, 2015 at 12:36 pm
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•••

CAT BURGLAR STRIKES AT MICKEY D’S

• Centralia police responded to McDonald’s about 4:30 this morning when arriving employees discovered a break-in. Someone had gotten inside the fast food business on the 1200 block of Lum Road by cutting a hole in the roof, according to the Centralia Police Department. Cash was stolen and they sprayed water all over inside, police said.

DOG TRACKS SUSPECT

• A police dog responded after a suspected shoplifter fled the Lewis County Mall about 11:30 a.m. yesterday. About an hour later, a 21-year-old Tumwater was located hiding under some trees and police found suspected stolen clothing in her purse, according to the Chehalis Police Department. Also discovered in the handbag was a syringe with clear liquid, according to police. Kara A. McKinney was arrested for possession of methamphetamine and booked into the Lewis County Jail, according to police.

FUNNY $50

• Police were called to the 100 block of Harrison Avenue about 3:45 p.m. yesterday because someone passed a counterfeit $50 bill, according to the Centralia Police Department.

CAR PROWL WITH EXTRA STEPS

• The sheriff’s office is looking for a person who stole a van and drove it about a quarter of a mile away, prowling it for its tools including a floor jack early yesterday morning. Deputies were called about 5:25 a.m. by a woman who heard her vehicle start up at the 100 block of Borovec Road in Chehalis and looked into her driveway to see her Chrysler Voyager van leaving, driven by a person wearing a hoody, according to the Lewis County Sheriff’s Office. Chief Deputy Stacy Brown said the van was found by deputies at a business parking lot at the 1800 block of Bishop Road where video images show some of what happened. The sheriff’s office believes the thief had his own car waiting there, and he unloaded the tools into his red car and then drove away. Brown said the car may be a 1990s Toyota Tercel, with a tinted rear window. The missing items are valued at more than $2,000, according to Brown. Among them are Craftsman tire pump and toolboxes. The stolen van was left in the parking lot.

AND MORE

• And as usual, other incidents such as arrests for warrants, shoplifting, driving with suspended license; responses for dispute, stolen purse, vandalism, suspicious circumstances, collision on city street … and more.

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Image of prowling suspect captured on video at the 1800 block of Bishop Road. / Courtesy photo from Lewis County Sheriff’s Office

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Image of prowl suspect’s car. / Courtesy photo from Lewis County Sheriff’s Office

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Centralia rejects excessive force claim against officers

Wednesday, May 27, 2015 at 5:51 pm

By Sharyn L. Decker
Lewis County Sirens news reporter

A Centralia man has made a claim of excessive force against three Centralia police officers, from an incident in which he says they unnecessarily forced him to the ground, pinned him there and then kneed and hit him several times while contending he was resisting.

Steven Radick, 58 at the time, was hospitalized and suffered injuries to his face and chest as well as a knee sprain and back strain, according to his attorney.

Radick filed a claim for damages with the city of Centralia earlier this month in the amount of $25,000, asking to be compensated for the injuries and medical expenses.

The city’s insurer denied the tort claim within days, stating the officers’ actions were appropriate, given Radick’s behavior as police tried to secure him.

The events took place a year and a half ago, when police were called to an apartment complex on South Silver Street regarding a dispute between neighbors.

Chehalis lawyer Jacob Clark wrote in the claim his description of what happened, based on police reports and phone interviews with two of the officers.

Clark relates that police showed up on Nov. 12, 2013 but didn’t arrest anyone after his client got into an argument with a neighbor, who struck him in the eye. Thirty minutes later, police returned because the neighbor claimed his electricity had been shut off, according to Clark.

The Centralia Police Department at the time said Radick was intoxicated.

Sgt. Carl Buster stated that as he was questioning Radick, Radick hit him with the back of his hand on the chest plate, and he stepped back, and Clark writes that the sergeant yelled, “Hey, you can’t touch me,” and grabbed Radick’s arm.

Officers William Phipps and Phillip Weismiller ran over, and Phipps told Clark he grabbed by Radick the neck, forcing him onto the ground, and then put his right knee on Radick’s back and his left knee on Radick’s neck, with Weismiller securing his legs, according to Clark.

They could not get Radick’s hands out from under his chest, so Phipps said he threw several punches to his left shoulder, Clark wrote.

Phipps was telling him, you’re under arrest, stop resisting, Clark states.

“Strikes were landed on Mr. Radick by multiple officers, which led to Mr. Radick being handcuffed,” he wrote.

Clark states his client did not resist, that he had put his hands down to cushion his fall so they were underneath his body, and he could not remove them because he was pinned.

Radick was arrested for third-degree assault and subsequently pleaded guilty to fourth-degree assault.

Outgoing Centralia Police Chief Bob Berg offered statistics on his department’s use of force in his March newsletter to the community.

According to Berg, last year force was used by officers on 96 occasions, with 15 of those resulting in some form of injury, 12 of those being relatively minor. More than half the time it was “physical force” with display of a firearm the next most used, according to Berg’s chart.

The claim was received by the city of Centralia on May 12.

Clark lists hospital diagnoses of open cheek wound, facial contusion, chest wall contusion, lumbar strain and right knee strain.

On May 15, the city’s representative – Washington Cities Insurance Authority – denied the claim, stating Radick resisted attempts to take him into custody and officers used reasonable force.

Senior Adjuster Gordy Van, of WCIA, wrote that Radick was so intoxicated that at the hospital he had to be watched for alcohol withdrawal.

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Sirens: Daily police and fire roundup

Wednesday, May 27, 2015 at 12:13 pm
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•••

Updated at 6:57 p.m.

POLICE: ‘SPUN UP OUT OF HIS MIND’

• Centralia police fought with a 27-year-old man yesterday inside Subway after a series of events along the 1200 block of Alder Street in which he left staff members hiding from him at a motel, allegedly stole phones from two different people he encountered and hid in the bathroom at the sandwich shop. Mitchell Davis was subdued with a Taser, but during a struggle, struck one officer in the face, according to the Centralia Police Department. A glass pipe with meth residue was located on Davis’s person, according to police. Officers were called about 11:15 a.m. to the Peppermill Inn having been told he grabbed an employee, pushed her to the floor and took her phone, according to police. As officers were arriving and told employees thought he had left, 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 nearby, according to a police account. When the bathroom door was opened, Davis allegedly bolted, went through another door and knocked an employee there to the ground. Sgt. Kurt Reichert described Davis’s demeanor as “spun up out of his mind.” Davis, a Toledo resident, was booked into the Lewis County Jail for two counts of robbery, one count of burglary, third-degree assault and possession of methamphetamine, according to police.

SHERIFF’S OFFICE: TEXT THREATS TO KILL

• A 59-year-old man was arrested yesterday after his wife reported receiving text and voice mail messages over the previous three or four days from him in which he allegedly threatened to kill her. Deputies contacted Daniel J. Barnes at the 1900 block of Pe Ell-McDonald Road west of Chehalis and arrested him for felony harassment, according to the Lewis County Sheriff’s Office. The woman has an order for protection, and deputies are referring the case also for 17 counts of violation of a protection order, according to the sheriff’s office. Barnes was booked into the Lewis County Jail, Chief Deputy Stacy Brown said.

ALCOHOL TAKEN IN BURGLARY

• Police responded to a 9 a.m. call yesterday to a restaurant on the 1400 block of South Gold Street where someone broke in the back door and stole liquor and other unspecified items.

CONSTRUCTION TOOLS STOLEN

• Centralia police were called about 7:10 a.m. yesterday regarding the theft of equipment from a construction trailer on the 1200 block of Belmont Avenue.

ROCKS, ROCKS, ROCKS

• Police responded yesterday to an approximately 7:40 a.m. call from the 700 block of Harrison Avenue where someone had thrown a rock through the window of a building.

• Someone threw a rock breaking the window of a building on the 2400 block of Borst Avenue in Centralia, according to a report to police yesterday morning.

• Chehalis police were called about 8:25 a.m. yesterday regarding a rock thrown through the window of a building on the 2600 block of Kresky Avenue.

FROM THE COURTHOUSE

• A 33-year-old Morton man was arrested after a complaint was filed with police he was engaging in an intimate relationship with a 15-year-old girl. Jason C. Thompson was booked into jail on Monday and then charged yesterday in Lewis County Superior Court with two counts of third-degree child rape, an offense that has a maximum penalty of five years in prison. Morton police learned of the alleged situation after the mother of the girl’s friend saw messages between the two in the cache of the friend’s computer, according to charging documents. The documents state Thompson met the girl in November when she came to visit his housemate, and allege that in April they began having sex. He has no felony criminal history and resides and works in Morton, his temporary defense attorney told the judge yesterday afternoon as bail was being contemplated. Judge James Lawler set bail at $5,000 and ordered Thompson to have no contact with minors, including his own two children. His arraignment is scheduled for tomorrow.

KITCHEN FIRE

• Firefighters were called at 9:30 p.m. yesterday to a fire in a home southeast of Centralia that ignited from a pan of cooking oil left unattended on the stove, which caught fire. The crew arrived to the 100 block of Kodiak Lane to find an occupant had put it out and everyone was outside, according to Riverside Fire Authority. The loss is estimated at $8,000 with damage to the stove, the cabinets above, the fan-vent-light as well as smoke damage to the kitchen, according to Capt. Tim Adolphsen. Riverside offers advice from the National Fire Protection Association, which says cooking fires are the number one cause of home fires and home injuries. Safety considerations when cooking with oil include: Always stay in the kitchen when frying on the stovetop and keep an eye on what you fry.

OAKVILLE MAN ACCUSED OF LEAVING INJURED PASSENGER AFTER WRECK

• A 23-year-old Oakville man was airlifted to Harborview Medical Center in Seattle after a single-vehicle rollover wreck involving a tree this morning. Deputies called at 6:30 a.m. to the 200 block of Elma Gate Road West, west of Oakville, were told by the 911 caller they saw a man in his 20s walking away – with blood on him – and checked inside the car to find one occupant, conscious, but not talking, according to the Grays Harbor County Sheriff’s Office. A police dog from Thurston County was called to assist in finding the driver, who was located about two hours later in a brushy area about 50 yards north of the scene, according to Chief Criminal Deputy Steve Shumate. He, a 21-year-old Oakville resident, had some injuries which didn’t appear to be life-threatening and was expected to be transported to Providence Centralia Hospital and then booked into the Grays Harbor County Jail, Shumate indicated in a message to the news media. The vehicle, described by Shumate as a 2002 Buick Centra, is registered to the 21-year-old, according to Shumate. A trooper was called to assess the driver, as it appeared alcohol or drugs could be involved, he indicated. The sheriff’s office this morning was considering charges of vehicular assault as well as hit and run.

AND MORE

• And as usual, other incidents such as arrests for warrants, shoplifting, obstructing, disorderliness, malicious mischief, driving under the influence, driving with suspended license; responses for alarm, dispute, stolen purse, stolen wallet, dine and dash, other possible theft, misdemeanor assault, suspicious circumstances, car wheels found in shrubbery, child playing with phone calling 911, collision off city street, girls fighting at school, boys fighting at school … and more.

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Sirens: Daily police and fire roundup

Tuesday, May 26, 2015 at 1:33 pm
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•••

Updated at 8:33 p.m.

PROWLING INTO COMMERCIAL STORAGE BUSINESS

• Someone broke into two commercial storage units over the weekend at the 1900 block of U.S. Highway 12 in Ethel, taking Samsonite luggage, a 35 mm camera, and Nikken brand gold jewelry consisting of a necklace, a bracelet and a medallion. The Lewis County Sheriff’s Office reports it happened between 7 p.m. on Friday and 9 a.m. on Sunday when someone cut through a chain link fence at the back of the property and got into one unit by removing screws from metal. They got into the adjoining unit by kicking down plywood, according to the sheriff’s office.

DRESS DUMMY LIFTED FROM SHOP

• Chehalis police were contacted about 6:30 a.m. on Saturday following the discovery someone used a brick to break out the large window of a retail store on the 1900 block of North National Avenue and stole a mannequin of an adult female. It’s not clear yet what else might be missing, according to the Chehalis Police Department.

GUN STOLEN

• Chehalis police took a report on Saturday of a firearm missing from the 400 block of Northeast Washington Avenue. It had been recovered in Centralia in an alley, according to the Chehalis Police Department.

SHEDS AND SHOPS BURGLED

• A deputy took a report over the weekend of a break-in to a detached shop at the 100 block of Bunker Creek Road in Adna in which binoculars, a five-gallon gas can, an air compressor and Stihl brand chainsaw, weed eaters and leaf blower were stolen. It happened sometime after 10 p.m. on Friday and before 5:30 a.m. on Saturday, according to the Lewis County Sheriff’s Office.

• Deputies took reports over the weekend of two shed burglaries at the 2500 block of Spencer Road near Salkum. Security footage will be reviewed on one of them that took place on May 14 between about 7 p.m. and 10 p.m. and among the items missing are two fishing rods, a security camera and an extension cord as well as a wooden bear, according to the Lewis County Sheriff’s Office. Stolen from the other property sometime since April 26 were five gallons of gas, a weed eater and a Stihl pole saw extension, according to the sheriff’s office.

FRAUD

• Chehalis police were called on Friday from a resident who discovered from a credit check that someone had been using her social security number, a person who was arrested in Virginia and Arizona. She was advised to contact the Social Security Administration as well as the Washington State Patrol,  who hopefully could help her out, according to the Chehalis Police Department.

AUTO THEFT

• A 2003 Hyundai Elantra was found wrecked early Sunday morning at the 200 block of Haight Road outside Napavine and it’s owner reported the last he’d seen it was parked a few blocks away on Carrolls Road at his grandmother’s home with the keys on the center console, according to the Lewis County Sheriff’s Office. The car sustained major front end damage and struck a power pole, according to the sheriff’s office.

ASSAULT

• Police were called to Green Hill School in Chehalis on Saturday night to take a report of a third-degree assault in which a staff member was reportedly shoved from behind by one of the student-inmates while trying to break up a fight.

• A nude and intoxicated man was arrested at the river next the trail off the 100 block of Highway 603 on Sunday for an alleged assault upon his wife the night before, according to the Lewis County Sheriff’s Office. A deputy responded about 4:30 p.m. to  call about a little girl crying and screaming hysterically as she ran down the trail, according to the sheriff’s office. The 6-year-old child said she was at the river with her dad and he got completely undressed which scared her, so she and her dog ran, according to the sheriff’s office. When the mother arrived with a bruised face, a deputy was told that the night before, Frank G. Fulmer, of Chehalis, had punched and choked her while she was on the ground. Fulmer was arrested for second-degree assault and a case for reckless endangerment is being recommended also, as when contacted by law enforcement, Fulmer said he wasn’t aware his daughter was with him at the river, or where she was, Chief Deputy Stacy Brown said.

CANINES ON THE LOOSE

• A pair of unaccompanied hound dogs who showed up at the Southwest Washington Fairgrounds during a dog show and racing event on Sunday were removed and taken to the animal shelter, according to the Chehalis Police Department.

COLLISION AT MORTON

• Two pickups were totaled and two people injured after a 65-year-old motorist reportedly pulled onto U.S. Highway 12 at Morton without yielding yesterday afternoon. Troopers called at 3 p.m. concluded Brian B. Coleman, 65, from Randle, was southbound on state Route 7 in a Ford F350 pickup and was struck by a westbound Ford F150 pickup pulling a 2014 retro travel trailer. Everyone was wearing seat belts, but Coleman, as well as the 48-year-old passenger in the other vehicle were transported to Morton General Hospital, according to the Washington State Patrol. The other driver, Patrick D. Thompson, 51, of Olympia, was reportedly unhurt. Coleman was to be arrested for driving under the influence and also second-degree driving with a suspended license, according to the state patrol. He was booked into the Lewis County Jail and charged today with vehicular assault, a felony with a maximum penalty of 10 years in prison. Lewis County prosecutors allege Coleman smelled of intoxicants at the hospital, a trooper found a half gallon of Monarch Vodka on his passenger seat and a preliminary breath test showed an alcohol level of .154. Coleman has an ongoing DUI case from November, as well as a prior conviction for DUI that was deferred and then was revoked last month, according to charging documents. His bail was set at $250,000. Charging documents don’t describe his injuries but state that Lisa Thompson’s hand was broken.

AND MORE

• And as usual, other incidents such as arrests for warrants, shoplifting, malicious mischief, no contact order violation, driving under the influence, driving with suspended license; responses for alarm, runaway juvenile, misdemeanor theft … and more.

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Another town meeting: Got a question for the sheriff, the prosecutor?

Monday, May 25, 2015 at 7:25 pm

By Sharyn  L. Decker
Lewis County Sirens news reporter

CHEHALIS – The sheriff and the prosecutor have set aside an evening to talk with citizens, answer their questions and listen to their concerns.

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Sheriff Rob Snaza

It takes place next month in Toledo, as part of their series of town meetings around Lewis County.

Lewis County Sheriff Rob Snaza and Prosecutor Jonathan Meyer conducted their first such gathering in March in Salkum.

Meyer called the first meeting successful and indicated he enjoyed it.

“Transparency in the prosecutor’s office is important and I am happy to share our successes and challenges with the public we serve,” he stated in a news release.

Snaza called it a great opportunity to have a conversation with citizens.

“Partnering together to address community issues is paramount to keeping Lewis County a safe place to live,” Snaza stated.

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Prosecutor Jonathan Meyer

The two elected officials plan to continue with similar meetings in various other communities around the county throughout the year.

Snaza, who is just beginning a four-year term, is introducing himself and his office to the people in other ways as well.

Earlier this month, he hosted what he called “A day in the life of the sheriff’s office” by inviting 10 people to spend a Saturday touring his facilities, and engaging in hands-on activities such as lifting fingerprints and participating in a shoot-don’t shoot simulation.

What: Town Meeting with Lewis County Sheriff Rob Snaza and Lewis County Prosecutor Jonathan Meyer
Where: Cowlitz Prairie Grange, 5184 Jackson Highway, Toledo.
When: Wednesday June 24, 2015
Time: 7:30 p.m.
•••

For background, read “Sheriff, prosecutor talk about changes in crime fighting efforts” from Sunday March 29, 2015, here

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Sirens: Daily police and fire roundup

Monday, May 25, 2015 at 1:33 pm
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•••

Updated

GLENOMA WOMAN LOSES HOME TO KEROSENE FIRE

• Firefighters called to a burning travel trailer in Glenoma on Saturday night extinguished the blaze but it was a total loss, according to Lewis County Fire District 18. Fire Chief Ed Lowe said they responded around 8 p.m. to the property along U.S. Highway 12 near Bowen Road and found the resident had burns to her hand or hands. She said she was lighting a kerosene lamp and it just took off, Lowe said. The trailer, in which she lived, had no electricity, according to Lowe. He called the Red Cross to help her out, he said.

THEFT

• Police were called to a burglary at a home on the 1200 block of H Street on Saturday afternoon. Missing is jewelry, according to the Centralia Police Department.

• Centralia police took a report of the theft of pain medication from the 2600 block of Eureka Avenue on Friday.

WRECK

• Two cars were totaled and one person hospitalized after a collision on U.S. Highway 12 near Harms Road in Ethel on Saturday. Troopers called just before 11 a.m. determined that a Honda Accord was stopped waiting to make a left turn into a driveway when it was rear-ended by a four-door Buick. Ruth E. Smoots, 62, of Mossyrock, was transported to Morton General Hospital, according to the Washington State Patrol. Her Buick was impounded, according to the state patrol. The other driver, Thomasena Seifert, 38, from Onalaska, was reportedly injured, but not seriously enough to be taken to the hospital.

AND MORE

• And as usual, other incidents such as arrests for warrants, assault, shoplifting, driving with under the influence, driving with suspended license; responses for stolen wallet, misdemeanor theft, parking lot fender bender … and more.

•••

CORRECTION: This has been updated to reflect that both women involved in the collision on U.S. Highway 12 were injured.

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News brief: Phone service still down in Centralia

Friday, May 22, 2015 at 3:24 pm

By Sharyn L. Decker
Lewis County Sirens news reporter

The large telephone service outage in Centralia that began on Tuesday continues with no estimate of when repairs will be finished.

A construction crew cut through CenturyLink’s communications cables affecting 1,172 customers.

Splicing of the repair cables continues around the clock, according to a spokesperson for CenturyLink. Spokesperson Brian Dalessi indicated he doesn’t know when it will be fixed.

The incident shutdown landline phone service and Internet service, but not cell phones, according to CenturyLink.

The area affected has been described in general terms only, as mostly west of Interstate 5.

Dispatchers at the Lewis County 911 center indicated on Wednesday afternoon the outage could last for 72 hours.
•••

For background, read “No phones, Internet for 1,172 Centralia customers” from Wednesday May 20 2015, here

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Sirens: Daily police and fire roundup

Friday, May 22, 2015 at 2:47 pm
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•••

ARGUMENT OVER PET ESCALATES

• A 48-year-old man was arrested overnight following an argument about his dog running around in an RV park in Toledo that ended with words to the effect of, “Go ahead, call 911 and I’ll cut your throat,” according to the Lewis County Sheriff’s Office. A deputy called to the 400 block of state Route 506 about 2:30 a.m. learned that a 68-year-old man got involved in a dispute with Ray S. Hoover about Hoover’s dog, and Hoover used profanity and threatened the man. The sheriff’s office reports Hoover got into his vehicle driving around and at the other man, tearing up a driveway. Hoover was booked into the Lewis County Jail for felony harassment, Chief Deputy Stacy Brown said.

ANGRY BOYFRIEND

• Deputies called about 8:30 p.m. yesterday to the 100 block of Battle Ridge Road outside Centralia ended up arresting a 50-year-old Centralia man for allegedly repeatedly kicking the doors of his girlfriend’s 2014 Chevrolet Camaro and also leaving her with a small bump on her forehead. Clay A. Core was arrested for second-degree malicious mischief because of an estimated $1,500 damage and booked him into the Lewis County Jail, according to the Lewis County Sheriff’s Office. The case is also being referred to prosecutors for a charge of fourth-degree assault. Core was released with no charges filed pending further investigation.

FAMILY JEWELRY THEFT

• A Chehalis area woman who said she discovered her $5,000 wedding ring had been sold by her teenage daughter for $120 called 911 last night to report the loss. She got the ring back but now deputies are looking for the 18-year-old to arrest her for first-degree theft, according to the Lewis County Sheriff’s Office.

JEEP PROWLED

• Chehalis police responded to an approximately 6:30 p.m. call yesterday regarding a vehicle prowl in the parking lot at Wal-Mart. The Jeeps’ windows were not closed and stolen were identification cards for the victim and other family members, according to the Chehalis Police Department.

TRESPASSING

• Centralia police arrested two individuals for charging their cell phone behind a closed business last night. Adam T. Kay, 32, and Hannah G. Kay, 34, both of Centralia, were issued citations for second-degree criminal trespass after contact with an officer about 1:20 a.m. at the 600 block of West Main Street, according to the Centralia Police Department. They were then released, according to police.

VANDALISM

• Centralia police yesterday morning got a report of a window broken on the 1000 block of West Main Street.

AND MORE

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

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News brief: S’more safety

Friday, May 22, 2015 at 10:13 am

By Sharyn L. Decker
Lewis County Sirens news reporter

CHEHALIS – There’s almost nothing better than sitting around a campfire, but officials are worried that forests on both sides of the state are more more vulnerable than usual to catastrophe this weekend.

2015.0522.smorecampfireIn Western Washington, the snowpack is a fraction of normal, and much of Eastern Washington has endured years of persistent drought, according to the state Department of Natural Resources.

DNR urges everyone to be careful and please help prevent wildland fires over the upcoming Memorial Day weekend and throughout the summer.

Simple steps to do your part include: before leaving home, check to find out what the campfire restrictions are for the area you plan to visit.

And then, authorities advise:

If campfires are allowed; extinguish them properly before leaving:
• Never leave a campfire unattended at any time.
• Drown fire thoroughly with water.
• Stir until cold.
• Drown fire again and stir.
• Never leave a campfire until it is completely out and cool to the touch.

Already this year, the state agency has responded to 124 wildland fires.

Stay connected during the wildfire season through DNR’s Twitter at http://twitter.com/waDNR_fire

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Prison awaits Vader heroin dealer, girlfriend’s case dropped

Thursday, May 21, 2015 at 4:03 pm

By Sharyn L. Decker
Lewis County Sirens news reporter

CHEHALIS – The Vader man arrested following an investigation into what police called a large supplier of heroin in Lewis and Cowlitz counties was sentenced yesterday to 20 months in prison.

Francisco “Poncho” Guerrero, 36, was charged in March in Lewis County Superior Court in connection with a search of his home on Alpine Court in which police seized several thousands of dollars in cash, about nine ounces of pure heroin and approximately 20 grams of cocaine.

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Francisco Guerrero

Guerrero pleaded guilty yesterday to delivery of heroin, as well as possession with intent to deliver heroin.

Lewis County Deputy Prosecutor Paul Masiello said as part of a plea deal, he dropped a charge of possession with intent to deliver of cocaine because it wouldn’t change the amount of time the defendant faced. Masiello said he also dropped a charge of unlawful possession of a firearm, because he didn’t have evidence Guerrero actually possessed the weapon.

The investigation was conducted by the Centralia Police Department’s special Anti-Crime Team, Chehalis police detectives and the federal Drug Enforcement Administration.

The search of the residence took place back in December, and for unspecified reasons police did not make any arrest until March 3. Arrested at the same time was Guerrero’s 33-year-old girlfriend Jennifer M. Hayes who also lived in the home.

Her lawyer in mid-March filed a demand for so-called discovery materials, and by the end of March, prosecutors dropped the case against her.

Masiello asked for and was granted a dismissal of the charges, noting a lack of evidence against Hayes. They were dismissed without prejudice, leaving open the possibility they could be filed again in the future, he said.

Masiello said today the girlfriend was present, but in order to be an accomplice, one has to do more than just be present.
•••

For background, read “Accused Vader drug dealers plead not guilty” from Friday March 13, 2015, here

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Sirens: Daily police and fire roundup

Thursday, May 21, 2015 at 2:55 pm
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•••

BOOZE, BOOZE, BOOZE

• Centralia police were called to Safeway about 8:30 a.m. yesterday about a 17-year-old boy who allegedly stole a bottle of hard liquor. The case is being referred to prosecutors for a charge of third-degree theft, according to the Centralia Police Department. An officer was called back to the same grocery on the 1100 block of Harrison Avenue about 7:30 p.m. after two females were reportedly seen stuffing bottles of hard liquor into bags, according to police. They were gone when officers arrived, police said.

• Twice police and firefighters were called yesterday in Chehalis regarding juveniles who had drank too much alcohol. It wasn’t clear yet if the incidents would result in citations, according to the Chehalis Police Department.

ATTEMPTED THEFT

• Chehalis police were called about 6 p.m. yesterday to the 1800 block of Southwest Snively Avenue following the discovery that someone had broken a door handle to a church’s shed.

VANDALISM

• Police were called about 11 p.m. yesterday regarding a rock thrown through the window of a business at the 100 block of North Rock Street in Centralia.

• Centralia police yesterday evening got a report of a window broken on a business at the 800 block of West Main Street.

• Graffiti on a fence at the 700 block of West Main Street in Centralia was reported to police just before 9 p.m. yesterday.

AMBER ALERTS WORK

• A trooper and a Castle Rock police officer caught up to a vehicle identified in an Amber ALERT on northbound Interstate 5 near Vader yesterday afternoon, following an approximately  2:45 p.m. call to 911 from a motorist who heard the alert and spotted the vehicle, according to the Washington State Patrol. A father wanted for custodial interference out of Idaho was taken into custody and a pair of children ages 2 and 3 recovered safely, according to authorities. The state patrol reports it had responded to a 2 p.m. request from the Nampa Police Department to extend the alert to Washington and Oregon and the motorist heard the alert broadcast on a Portland radio station.

AND MORE

• And as usual, other incidents such as arrests for warrants, misdemeanor domestic assault, driving under the influence, reckless endangerment; responses for alarm, dispute, found credit card, suspicious circumstances, report of a child sexual assault from several years ago, an inmate at the jail who said he needed a shower so he “popped” the fire sprinkler head in a cell … and more.

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Sirens: Daily police and fire roundup

Wednesday, May 20, 2015 at 3:14 pm
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•••

Updated

ONLOOKER CAPTURES MAN RUNNING FROM POLICE

• Police were called about 6:20 p.m. yesterday about an individual stealing a jacket from a store on the 100 block of West High Street in Centralia. An arriving officer saw a suspect flee on foot and then a citizen near Burger King on Harrison Avenue tackled the man, and held him for the officer, according to the Centralia Police Department. Thirty-four-year-old Lupe Ramos said he and his son were in the play area at the fast food establishment when he looked out the window and saw a guy running, carrying an orange jacket, and then saw a patrol car cut off the runner at the driveway. “He doubled back, I just saw an opportunity,” he said. Ramos, who said he stands 6-feet 5-inches tall and is as big as a doorway, said he ducked outside, took two steps, and jumped into him. “It was mostly his momentum,” he said. “We were on top of him, the officer turned him over, and then the officer high-fived me, and said, ‘that was awesome dude, thanks’,” Ramos said. The suspect, Anthony R. Madison, 26 of Aberdeen, was booked into the Lewis County Jail for third-degree theft, according to police. Ramos, who lives in Rochester and works at W.F. West High School, said he played football when he was a teenager. “It’s been years since I’ve done that,” he said. “But it all comes back to you.”

BURNED OUT OF HOME

• Centralia police were contacted last night by a homeless man in his 30s who said someone burned his tent. Officers found a burn pile near the 1400 block of West Main Street with what appeared to be a tent pole, according to the Centralia Police Department. Its owner had been away away at the time, police said.

GARAGE BURGLED

• Centralia police were called about 6 o’clock yesterday evening regarding a welder stolen from a a garage on the 600 block of South Diamond Street.

DOMESTIC ASSAULT

•  A 45-year-old Toledo man who allegedly assaulted his wife on Monday night turned himself in yesterday morning. Ronald J. Mitchell went to the Lewis County Sheriff’s Office and was booked into the Lewis County Jail for second-degree assault, according to the sheriff’s office.

TEEN ARRESTED WITH STOLEN HONDA

• An 18-year-old Chehalis resident was arrested for possession of a stolen vehicle and possession of methamphetamine yesterday morning on the 500 block of Coal Creek Road outside Chehalis. A deputy was responding about 7:15 a.m. to a report of a suspicious vehicle and found two vehicles parked off the road with a man and a woman standing nearby, according to the Lewis County Sheriff’s Office. When the deputy checked, it was discovered the green 1999 Honda Civic had been reported stolen from Chehalis a few hours earlier, according to the sheriff’s office. Uriah W.C. Osborne was booked into the Lewis County Jail, detective Sgt. Steve Aust said.

AND MORE

• And as usual, other incidents such as arrests for warrants, shoplifting, harassment, trespassing, resisting arrest, misdemeanor assault, driving with suspended license; responses for alarm, dispute, vandalism, protection order violation, collision on city street … and more.

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Prisoner accused of beating to death fellow inmate, a local man

Wednesday, May 20, 2015 at 12:29 pm

Updated

By Sharyn L. Decker
Lewis County Sirens news reporter

CHEHALIS – A Lewis County man sent to prison last fall has died after sustaining serious injuries during an assault there.

Gordon C. Powell Jr., 45, was arrested in early October for breaking the glass front door at a distillery on North Tower Avenue and stealing four bottles of liquor and then hours later tussling with a police officer who tried to remove an extremely intoxicated beggar from an area store, according to court documents.

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Gordon “Casey” Powell Jr.

Powell was serving a five year sentence, for second-degree burglary and third-degree assault, at the Monroe Correctional Complex.

“I’m very disappointed,” his lawyer David Arcuri said upon hearing the news. “Gordon was not a violent person.”

Arcuri represented Powell in Lewis County Superior Court at least once, and likely other times over the years.

“He was a young man, and though he may have had issues that caused him to be taken out of society, it’s pretty sad he goes to DOC and ends up getting killed,” Arcuri said.

Court documents show Powell as transient, police reported he lived in Chehalis when he was arrested.

Prison officials say Powell was transported to the hospital on May 9 and passed away Monday morning.

He was being held at the Special Offender Unit at Monroe, according to the state Department of Corrections.

A 35-year-old fellow inmate doing time for first-degree manslaughter was being held in segregation and prison officials are working closely with local law enforcement who are investigating the incident, according to DOC.

The assault occurred in a common area, prison officials said.

The other inmate, Benjamin Price entered the prison system in August 2010 for the conviction out of Skagit County and was serving a sentence of just over 12 years. Price also had a prior conviction for second-degree assault with a firearm, according to the news release.

The (Everett) Herald reports Price has a history of mental illness and is alleged to have waited for Powell while inmates were returning from the dining room, and kicked and stomped him during an attack that lasted nine seconds; Powell never regained consciousness.

Powell’s older sister said the Centralia native who went by the nickname Casey was a victim of the system.

“They knew he was mentally ill,” Stephanie Leisure said. “He should never have been put in prison, he should have been sent to Western State.”

At least twice before he’d been to the psychiatric hospital and found not competent to assist with his defense, according to Leisure.

He lived with her family in Centralia, she said.

“He was basically an outgoing, sweet guy,” she said. “Always smiling, always happy; he loved everybody.”

Her brother started showing signs of mental illness in his 20s, she said. He was being seen at a local clinic regularly before his arrest, she said.

“The police are always arresting him,” she said. “He does things he’s not supposed to do, but he’s still a really good kid; he couldn’t help it.”

Monroe’s Special Offender Unit was opened in 1981 to provide a facility to treat and house the many seriously mentally ill offenders, according to DOC spokesperson Andrew Garber.

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No phones, Internet for 1,172 Centralia customers

Wednesday, May 20, 2015 at 10:36 am

Updated at 3:36 p.m.

By Sharyn L. Decker
Lewis County Sirens news reporter

A road construction crew working near the freeway exit ramp by the Outlet Mall cut CenturyLink’s communications cables, causing a loss of service to more than 1,000 customers in Centralia.

The issue came to light yesterday morning and there is no estimated time of repair yet.

The outage is affecting landline phone service and Internet service, but not cell phones, according to company spokesperson Brian Dalessi.

Dalessi said technicians are working on the problem, but it’s a very involved and complex fix.

“Unfortunately, it’s pretty large copper trunks and two fiberoptic cables,” he said this morning.

Lewis County 911 Manager Craig Larsen said their system based in Chehalis is not affected, except that any person in Centralia without phone service can’t call them, unless they use a cell phone.

One large customer, the Centralia School District, is working to create alternate ways for parents and others to contact the schools if they need to.

District spokesperson Ed Petersen indicated he learned of it about 10 a.m. yesterday, and the best estimate he’s heard so far is it could continue at least until Sunday.

People trying to call them get just a busy signal, Petersen said.

Dalessi said he notified the news media yesterday evening to try to get the word out, to reassure the public technicians are working to isolate the problem and restore services as quickly as possible.

He said he understood the damage was related to the Interstate 5 construction project, and the outage is mostly west of the freeway.

Eleven hundred and seventy two residential and business customers are affected, he said.

Dispatchers at the Lewis County 911 center suggest anyone who is unable to contact them to report an emergency ought to use a cell phone to dial 911 or contact their local fire or police department.

They ask also that members of the public take a moment to check on neighbors, friends or relatives who could be affected by the outage to make sure they are safe and secure.

And further, they ask anyone who sees, hears, or becomes aware of any alarm or emergency or other need for police, fire or medical aid, to please call 911 immediately if they can.

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Sirens: Daily police and fire roundup

Tuesday, May 19, 2015 at 2:00 pm
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•••

MISSING HONDA RECOVERED, ONE IN CUSTODY

• Chehalis police were called about 3:30 a.m. today regarding a Honda Civic stolen from Southwest William Avenue. At about 7:30 a.m., police got word the sheriff’s office found the vehicle on Coal Creek Road, and someone was taken into custody, according to the Chehalis Police Department.

BUSINESS BURGLARY

• Centralia police were called about 6:45 a.m. today to a break-in at a business on the 500 block of West Main Street. Money and other items were stolen from the glass replacement shop, according to the Centralia Police Department.

• Centralia police were called about 7 p.m. yesterday to the 200 block of Northup Street where an alarm sounded when an unknown person broke a window at a business. No arrest was made, according to the Centralia Police Department.

DOG TRACK

• A Chehalis police dog tracked down a 48-year-old man overnight who allegedly violated a protection order at the 500 block of East Main Street in Centralia. Officers called about 1 a.m. were told he left the scene but the K-9 located him a short distance away, according to the Centralia Police Department. Darren L. Fullerton, of Centralia, was booked into the Lewis County Jail, according to police.

ALCOHOL THEFT

• A 32-year-old Ashford man released from jail yesterday – from a shoplifting incident the night before in Centralia – was arrested yesterday evening in connection with another  shoplifting incident in Centralia. Officers called about 7:30 p.m. to the Chevron station at the 1000 block of Harrison Avenue were told Bryan R. Morford took a beer without paying, according to the Centralia Police Department. Because he struggled as the officer was trying to handcuff him, Morford was arrested for obstructing a public servant as well as third-degree theft, according to police. He was booked again into the Lewis County Jail.

DOMESTIC ASSAULT

• Police are looking for a 45-year-old Toledo man who allegedly assaulted his wife overnight, grabbing her, hitting her in the face and choking her with both hands until she thought she was going to black out. Deputies called about 2:10 a.m. to the 500 block of Toledo-Vader Road learned he left, and may have headed to the Longview or Kelso area, according to the Lewis County Sheriff’s Office.

SEXUAL ASSAULT

• A 57-year-old Onalaska man turned himself in yesterday after allegations he crawled into bed with a teenage friend of his daughter’s the night before, an incident that sparked a physical dispute between he and his daughter’s friends. Deputies were called about 3 a.m. on Sunday to an address in Onalaska where they learned the 19-year-old girl said she rolled over in bed to discover her friend’s dad beside her, that he began touching her sexually and wouldn’t stop, according to the Lewis County Sheriff’s Office. She said she got away from him and left, according to the sheriff’s office. Chief Deputy Stacy Brown said the daughter confronted her father with at least one other of her friends and some pushing and punching ensued that means the dad is also facing possible charges of fourth-degree assault. Deputies contacted 57-year-old Jeffrey W. Paxton yesterday morning, arrested him for third-degree rape and booked him into the Lewis County Jail, according to Brown.

BEE WRANGLERS TO THE RESCUE

•  Chehalis police were called about 4 p.m. yesterday regarding a big swarm of bees at the 2100 block of North National Avenue, congregating on the larger than life mascot at the entrance to the Yard Birds Mall. Bee wranglers found the honey bees clustered along the beak of the small bird which peeks out from under the wing of the large bird, scooped them up last night and relocated them to Rochester, according to Rob Jenkins, of Bee Wrangler Honey and Bee Rescue.

AND MORE

• And as usual, other incidents such as arrests for warrants, drugs, misdemeanor theft, driving with suspended license; responses for alarm, dispute, vandalism, misdemeanor theft, noisy neighbor music … and more.

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Baby Yard Bird with a beard of bees. / Courtesy photo by Rob Jenkins

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News brief: Lightning strike damages Napavine residence

Tuesday, May 19, 2015 at 9:36 am

By Sharyn L. Decker
Lewis County Sirens news reporter

CHEHALIS – Firefighters called for smoke inside a Napavine home yesterday evening discovered lightning had struck an approximately 40-foot tall tree, run down the tree, jumped to the corner of the roof and ruined a portion of the family’s electrical system.

It actually ended up damaging two homes, Firefighter Brad Bozarth said.

The Newaukum Valley Fire and Rescue crew called about 6 p.m. to the 200 block of Meadow Lane in Napavine found a mother and two youngsters outside, he said. Nobody was hurt.

“They didn’t know what happened, they just saw a big flash and noticed smoke,” Bozarth said.

He described the damage to the roof as involving little pieces of wood everywhere.

Debris was also found on the neighbor’s roof and there, all the electronics inside were ruined, according to Bozarth.