Posts Tagged ‘news reporter’

News brief: Wedding rings whisked out door by “customer”

Friday, November 21st, 2014
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Security images of suspect from jewelry theft

By Sharyn  L. Decker
Lewis County Sirens news reporter

The owners of a Chehalis business are hoping for the public’s help, after their store in Lacey was hit by a jewelry thief earlier this week.

Tom Taylor and his wife Chris would like someday to retire and become RVer’s, but a chunk of their profits walking out the door of Tony’s Master Jewelers in Lacey on Wednesday could delay that dream.

A supposed customer was looking at a $10,000 wedding ring set a little after 2 p.m. that day, Taylor said.

“As soon as he got the merchandise in his hand, he ran to the door,” Taylor said.

Taylor said a getaway car, with a driver, was ready and waiting, and off they went.

The Taylors have had the store on Sleater-Kinny Road Southeast for several years.

He operates their Goin Postal business in the Fairway Shopping Center on South Gold Street. His wife has worked at the jewelry store since she was 16 years old, and is shook up, he said.

The Lacey Police Department dusted for fingerprints and took witness statements. Taylor thinks maybe someone may recognize the security images of the man who stole their items.

“We’re just trying to find every avenue we can find right now,” he said.

Employees estimate the thief is about 5-feet 6-inches tall. They only could say his partner, the driver of the late 1990s model blue Oldsmobile, was a white male, he said.

Taylor asks that anyone who has information to please contact the Lacey Police Department, or Tony’s Master Jewelers.

Sharyn’s Sirens: Daily police and fire roundup

Friday, November 21st, 2014

Updated at 5:55 p.m.

FIVE STUDENTS HOSPITALIZED FOLLOWING DRUG SHARING AT SCHOOL

• Several students were hospitalized today from Onalaska High School, apparently in connection with prescription drugs. The Lewis County Sheriff’s Office reports they suspect a 16-year-old girl brought the meds to school and passed them out to four of her girl friends and took some herself. There was also  possibly alcohol involved, according to Chief Civil Deputy Stacy Brown. The issue began to come to light when one student went to the office, dizzy and not feeling right, according to Lewis County Fire District 1 Chief Mark Conner. The participants’ parents have been notified, according to Brown. All five girls were taken to Providence Centralia Hospital for observation just after 12:30 p.m. today, according to Brown. An investigation is underway for possible charges of delivery of a controlled substance. Brown indicated what the particular pills were has not yet been confirmed.

FRAUD AT BANK

• A 28-year-old Seattle woman was arrested yesterday at the Bank of American in Centralia when she attempted to deposit what reportedly was a faked payroll check for more than $2,200, according to the Centralia Police Department. Officers were called just before 4 p.m. to the 100 block of South Pearl Street learned the account was previously flagged by the bank as suspicious, according to police. Randesha R. Brown was pretending to be the account holder, but wasn’t Sgt. Kurt Reichert said.  Brown was booked into the Lewis County Jail for forgery, according to police.

CAR PROWL

• Centralia police were called to the 500 block of South Rock Street about 10:20 p.m. yesterday regarding someone damaging a vehicle trying to break into it.

BIKE SPIRITED OFF BACK PORCH

• Chehalis police were called just before 4 p.m. yesterday after a female discovered a bicycle had been stolen from the back porch area of her apartment on the 600 block of Southeast Dobson Court. It is a blue girls Schwinn bike, according to the Chehalis Police Department.

DRUGS

• Chehalis police were called just before 1 p.m. yesterday after a passerby stopped a moving car in the area area of Northeast Kresky Avenue and Hampe Way with an unconscious driver behind the wheel. The individual put the car in park; it came to rest on the east side of Kresky against a bank, according to the Chehalis Police Department. The 28-year-old Centralia man was transported to Providence Centralia Hospital, department spokesperson Linda Bailey said. The officer found drug paraphernalia in the car and is forwarding the case to prosecutors with a referral for an arrest for possession of heroin, Bailey said.

REYNOLDS ROAD ACCIDENT

• A 51-year-old Centralia woman was arrested for obstructing after refusing to give her information to a police officer after allegedly going around a road block at an accident scene about 8 o’clock yesterday morning at Lum Road and Reynolds Avenue in Centralia. Judy A. Creel was issued her citation and then released, according to the Centralia Police Department.

• A witness traveling behind the teenager who wrecked on  Reynolds Avenue in Centralia in yesterday morning told deputies the boy lost control of his pickup as he attempted to pass another driver. When the truck moved into the oncoming lane and began to speed up, the tires spun on the wet pavement and the back end began to sway back and forth, a deputy was told. The 1983 Dodge pickup hit the ditch on the south side of the road and rolled at least two times, leaving the 17-year-old hanging out the driver’s window, according to the Lewis County Sheriff’s Office. “The boy had head injuries and stated he could not feel his legs,” Chief Civil Deputy Stacy Brown said this morning. Aid responded to the approximately 7:20 a.m. incident and the Centralia resident was airlifted to Harborview Medical Center in Seattle.

AND MORE

• And as usual, other incidents such as arrests for warrants, misdemeanor theft, protection order violation, driving under the influence, driving with suspended license; responses for alarms, dispute, suspicious circumstances, collision on city street, collision on county road … and more.

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Single-vehicle wreck on Reynolds Avenue, Centralia on Thursday morning. / Courtesy photo by Riverside Fire Authority

Train strikes vehicle stuck on tracks in Napavine

Friday, November 21st, 2014

Updated at 12:56 p.m.

By Sharyn  L. Decker
Lewis County Sirens news reporter

A pickup truck pulling a trailer that stalled on the railroad tracks in Napavine last night met up with the lead locomotive of a freight train.

Nobody was hurt, and the husband, wife and their dogs were out the vehicle before the train arrived, according to Napavine Police Chief Chris Salyers.

Responders said the truck was knocked to one side of the tracks and trailer loaded with a small tractor was thrown upside down into  ditch on the other side. It happened on Washington Avenue near the fire station.

Firefighters responded around 5:30 p.m., when they saw what was happening, according to Lewis County Fire District 5.

“We heard the vehicle spinning their wheels, we ran toward that, we could hear the train coming,” fire department spokesperson Lt. Laura Hanson said.

Hanson said there was a handful of people trying to get the rig unstuck, and firefighters got them to move back out of the way. She could already see the headlights of the train coming down the tracks, Hanson said. They asked dispatch to notify personnel on the train to try to stop, she said.

“It all happened rather quickly,” Hanson said.

BNSF spokesperson Gus Melonas indicated there was some damage to the locomotive. Salyers said he is continuing his investigation this morning.

What caused the Napavine area couple to be stopped on the tracks he did not know yet, Salyers said.

The tracks and road were closed for awhile, Salyers said. Firefighters remained on the scene helping clear debris until nearly 10:30 p.m., according to Hanson.

Firefighters were relieved nobody got hurt, Hanson said.

It’s something she hopes doesn’t happen again, but offers this advice for anyone whose vehicle gets stuck on train tracks:

The first call should be to 911, Hanson said.

“The quicker that call goes out, the quicker the railroad is called,” she said. “And they can attempt to get the train stopped.”

Former Yard Birds manager gets year in jail, says he’s sorry for stealing

Thursday, November 20th, 2014
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David Briscoe, right, and his lawyer David Brown listen to the judge during Briscoe’s sentencing hearing in Lewis County Superior Court.

By Sharyn  L. Decker
Lewis County Sirens news reporter

CHEHALIS – The now-former manager at Yard Birds who admitted to police he pocketed thousands of dollars on the job saying he’d gone bankrupt and was behind in his medical bills offered his regret in open court yesterday for stealing.

“I know I made a big mistake, I’d like to apologize to Darris and his family,” David E. Briscoe told the judge. “I know there’s nothing I can do to take it back.”

Darris McDaniel, owner of the expansive Chehalis business on North National Avenue that holds a grocery store, a swap meet area and numerous vendors, wasn’t present. But McDaniel outlined in a letter to the judge the effects the ongoing theft had on employees and himself.

“Mr. McDaniel in his letter talks about the people having to forego the possibility of bonuses,” Lewis County Superior Court Judge Richard Brosey said. “He had to put money of his own into Yardbirds to keep it going.”

Briscoe was arrested this past spring and charged with first-degree theft. He’s been for the past six months or so saving up money to begin to repay the debt, according to his lawyer. He pleaded guilty as charged in August, in a deal that gave him time to come up with cash.

Lewis County Deputy Prosecutor Mark McClain told the court yesterday the amount stolen is nearly $42,000.

Briscoe’s lawyer David Brown said his client had $10,000 to hand over before his sentence was decided. Brown has indicated Briscoe and his father either sold or were working on selling property.

The Centralia man worked at Yard Birds-Shop ‘n Kart for several years, and was responsible for managing the swap meet area, vendors, storage units and recreational vehicle spaces, according to police.

He admitted to the court previously that he  collected rent payments and kept them, and that it went on for three years.

McClain told the court that a check for $5,000 now and another for $5,000 next week wasn’t all that persuasive.

“My recommendation throughout is Mr. Briscoe should serve a year and a day (in prison),” McClain said.

Defense attorney David Brown told the judge his client still has other property for sale, and has been working in a trailer park in exchange for free rent and a couple hundred dollars each month.

“The people were very good to him, and he betrayed that trust,” Brown said. “He really wants and hopes the court will issue a standard sentence.”

The standard range under the law for Briscoe would be zero to 90 days in jail. The crime, with the major economic offense enhancement, carries a maximum penalty of 10 years in prison and a $20,000 fine.

Judge Brosey said the crime didn’t call for a sentence within the standard range.

When someone violates a position of trust within a small business, it often results in irreparable harm, the judge said.

“Frankly, this goes on way too much,” Brosey said.

Brosey ordered Briscoe to serve 12 months, in the county jail. He didn’t say explicitly, but alluded to the fact he couldn’t earn as much good time there toward a possible early release as he might in state prison.

Brosey ordered Briscoe to deliver a $5,000 check by noon, and the second $5,000 before he checks into the jail on Tuesday.

He said if he qualified for work release, he could do that. He declined to impose jail costs, saying any money Briscoe has should go to restitution.

The judge also ordered ongoing restitution payments of no less than $100 each month.
•••

For background, read “Former Yard Bird manager pleads guilty as charged in theft from business” from Wednesday Aug. 27, 2014, here

Sharyn’s Sirens: Daily police and fire roundup

Thursday, November 20th, 2014

SHORT POLICE PURSUIT IN CHEHALIS

• A 26-year-old Centralia woman was arrested yesterday after an officer spotted her driving a stolen car in Chehalis at about 1:15 p.m. The officer contacted the woman at a stop sign and told the occupants to get out, but she took off, according to the Chehalis Police Department. For whatever reason, she pulled over after about a block, detective Sgt. Gary Wilson said. It happened in the area of Southwest McFadden Avenue and Fourth Street, according to police. The passenger was let go, but Jessica A. Schroeder was arrested for eluding, possession of stolen property and other offenses, Wilson said. The 1995 Nissan Sentra had been reported missing about noon, apparently taken during the night from where it was parked on the 400 block of West Magnolia Street in Centralia, according to police. Schroeder was booked into the Lewis County Jail.

BREAK-IN PACKWOOD

• A door was found kicked in yesterday at a house on the 100 block of Crescent Beach Drive in Packwood, but nothing seemed to be missing, according to the Lewis County Sheriff’s Office. It happened sometime during the previous nine days while the owner was gone, according to the sheriff’s office.

ATTEMPTED VEHICLE THEFT

• Centralia police were called about 2:15 p.m. yesterday to an apartment complex on the 300 block of West Pine Street where someone had attempted to steal a van. Someone had broken the steering column, according to the Centralia Police Department.

OTHER THEFT

• Centralia police took a report yesterday morning of the theft of a wallet from the 1800 block of Cooks Hill Road.

CAR PROWL

• Police took a report about 1:30 p.m. yesterday of a break-in to a vehicle at the 200 block of North Rock Street in Centralia. Keys and other unspecified property were taken.

VANDALISM

• A number of fences and garages were found to be tagged with gang graffiti yesterday morning in the area of the 500 block of South Rock Street in Centralia.

DRUGS

• A wrong-way driver on Kresky Avenue in Centralia yesterday evening was arrested for having a suspended license and also for possession of methamphetamine. It happened about 7:15 p.m. near Summa Street and an officer found suspected meth residue in a pen tube in the driver’s pocket, according to the Centralia Police Department. Daniel T. Roundy, 26 of Killdeer, North Dakota, was booked into the Lewis County Jail, according to police.

COLLISION CENTRALIA

• A teenage driver was injured this morning when his truck wrecked at the 600 block of Reynolds Avenue in Centralia. Responders called about 7:20 a.m. found the vehicle on its side suspended over the ditch, with the sole occupant outside the vehicle. The male patient was transported to Providence Centralia Hospital, to meet airlift so he could be flown to Harborview Medical Center in Seattle because of his injuries, according to Riverside Fire Authority.

AND MORE

• And as usual, other incidents such as arrests for warrant, misdemeanor assault, shoplifting, driving under the influence, driving with suspended license; responses for suspicious circumstances, protection order violation … and more.

Authorities: ‘Dumb’ bomb threat brings class B felony charge

Wednesday, November 19th, 2014

By Sharyn L. Decker
Lewis County Sirens news reporter

CHEHALIS – Twenty-four-year-old Marcus T. Dantinne got to go home from jail yesterday evening, but he still faces a felony charge for allegedly threatening to blow up a Morton lumber mill.

Alta Forest Products was evacuated on Monday morning after an anonymous phone call that warned a bomb there would go off in 10 minutes. Within hours, police traced the call to Dantinne who reportedly took the phone apart so he wouldn’t be discovered.

Lewis County Chief Criminal Deputy Prosecutor Brad Meagher didn’t request very high bail for Dantinne, suggesting he’s not a terrorist, just somebody doing dumb and stupid stuff.

“It looks like he was helping somebody skip work,” Meagher said after a short bail hearing yesterday afternoon.

Lewis County Superior Court Judge Richard Brosey allowed Dantinne to be released from jail, on an unsecured $10,000 bond, co-signed by his mother, pending trial.

Dantinne lives with his mother in Morton.

According to charging documents, Dantinne told Police Chief Dan Mortensen at first that he’d lost the phone the previous night at the gym. But then he allegedly confessed: He wanted to get his friend Jordan Gillispie out of work, so they could hang out together.

The two had talked very early that morning, according to Dantinne’s mother who told the chief she overheard the call, charging documents state.

Some 60 workers were cleared out of the mill into its parking lot, following the approximately 7:45 a.m. call on Monday.

A bomb squad with the Washington State Patrol checked the property and found no explosive. Authorities evacuated Alta’s Shelton mill as well.

Employees were sent home for the day, although the swing shift was scheduled to start as usual, since a suspect was located by about noon.

Dantinne was charged with threat to bomb property, an offense with a maximum penalty of 10 years in prison, and/or a $20,000 fine.

Defense attorney Joely O’Rourke was in favor of the bail arrangement.

“He’s young, he’s 24 and has absolutely no criminal history,” O’Rourke said.

Dantinne has a stable residence, with his mother, and has been receiving supplemental social security income since he was young, she said. She understood from him it was related to mental health issues, she said.

“He’s clearly very inexperienced with the system,” O’Rourke said,.

Dantinne was appointed a lawyer, Shane O’Rourke, and is expected to return to court for his arraignment next Wednesday.
•••

For background, read “Police: Morton man tried to get friends out of work with bomb threat” from Tuesday November 18, 2014, here

Sharyn’s Sirens: Daily police and fire roundup

Wednesday, November 19th, 2014

THEFT, THEFT, ATTEMPTED THEFT

• A 33-year-old Centralia man was arrested last night after allegedly heading out the back emergency exit at Rite Aid with merchandise including two notebook computers and then selling one of them to a neighbor. Police called at 7:30 p.m. to the business on the 1200 block of Harrison Avenue recognized the suspect on surveillance images and headed to the nearby trailer park where he lives, according to the Centralia Police Department. Sgt. Kurt Reichert said they found Darren G. Waggoner and then located his girlfriend Jamie R. Wiscarson with some of the goods in another trailer home. Waggoner was booked into the Lewis County Jail for theft, trafficking in stolen property and also burglary, as he he had previously been trespassed from Rite Aid, according to police. Waggoner, 35, also from Centralia, was booked as well and facing possible charges as an accomplice, according to police. Also shoplifted were “food stuffs” such as candy, chips and ice, police said.

• A deputy took a report yesterday of a break in at the 1600 block of state Route 506 in Vader in which nearly $1,200 worth of property was stolen. Sometime since last Wednesday someone got inside a shop building and took a Craftsman standup toolbox, a battery charger, assorted tools and a motion light, according to the Lewis County Sheriff’s Office.

• Chehalis police were called by a resident yesterday who said she got a phone call from something like a collection agency and a threat a warrant would be issued for her arrest if she didn’t pay up. The call was believed to be from someone trying to scam money, according to the Chehalis Police Department.

AND MORE

• And as usual, other incidents such as arrests for warrant, misdemeanor assault, shoplifting of pet apparel; responses for disputes, misdemeanor theft, suspicious circumstances, report of possible child molestation, collision on city street; complaint of “panhandlers” littering at freeway exits … and more.

Sharyn’s Sirens: Daily police and fire roundup

Tuesday, November 18th, 2014

Updated at 7:25 p.m.

ZOOM, ZOOM

• A 16-year-old driver was arrested last night after he passed an unmarked police car on Interstate 5 in Centralia traveling more than 100 mph. Detective Sgt. Pat Fitzgerald was southbound at about 70 mph when a Honda car flew by him just after 8:30 p.m., according to the Centralia Police Department. Fitzgerald got his Chevrolet Impala beyond 110 mph and still couldn’t catch up to the Honda, Sgt. Kurt Reichert said. The Honda had to slow for traffic as it approached the Harrison Avenue exit and pulled over after the officer turned on his lights and sirens, Reichert said. The teenage boy, from Centralia, was arrested for reckless driving and then released pending a court date, according to police.

BREAK-IN CENTRALIA

• Centralia police took a report about 6:20 p.m. yesterday of a burglary at the 500 block of West Pear Street. Someone got in through an unlocked door at the house and left with a bottle of oxycodone pills, according to the Centralia Police Department.

BREAK-IN CHEHALIS

• Chehalis police took a report yesterday that someone forced their way through the backdoor of a vacant rental house on the 400 block of Pennsylvania Avenue. The only item missing was a piece of carpet, according to the Chehalis Police Department.

THEFT THROUGH DEBIT CARD

• A Chehalis resident reported yesterday she discovered someone else used her bank card to make a purchase at an area business.  Police will be reviewing surveillance video to see what they can find; the case remains under investigation, according to the Chehalis Police Department.

VANDALISM

• Centralia police took a report about 9:45 a.m. yesterday of several businesses spray painted with graffiti on the 400 block of North Tower Avenue. it happened during the night, according to the Centralia Police Department.

FIRE BUSINESS PARK

• Firefighters responding about 1:55 p.m. yesterday to a fire in the Chehalis Industrial Park found workers had already activated their fire hose system. The fire at Conrad Industries on the 100 block of Melhart Road was confined to a bin containing shredded rubber tires and a conveyor system in an open-air building, according to Lewis County Fire District 6. Fire Chief Tim Kinder indicated employees were removed for their safety and crews finished extinguishing the fire. Damage appeared to be minimal, Firefighter Matt Foley said. Kinder credited the employees for their quick response in attacking the fire as well as the quickly activating the 911 system. The cause remains under investigation, according to the chief.

FIRE HAY SHED

• A family that lost their barn to a fire about a year ago yesterday lost their their large shed they built to cover up their hay. Firefighters called about 5 p.m. to the 800 block of Gore Road in Salkum found the roughly 20 foot by 30 foot structure and its contents burning, according to Lewis County Fire District 8. They were on the scene until nearly 8 p.m., Fire Chief Duran McDaniel said.

FIRE CHIMNEY

• Firefighters were called to a house on the 100 block of Woodard Road in Napavine  about 2 p.m. yesterday when two women there noticed the pipe to the wood stove getting hot. Flames escaped the failed chimney pipe into the home, but the arriving crew was able to put it out with a fire extinguisher, according to Lewis County Fire District 5. Damage was minimal, Firefighter Brad Bozarth said.

BRUSH FIRE ALONG FREEWAY

• It’s unknown what sparked three grass fires along Interstate 5 yesterday afternoon near Napavine. Firefighters responding to the southbound lanes between mileposts 71 and 72 were able to quickly extinguish the flames, according to Lewis County Fire District 5.

TRUCK FIRE ALONG FREEWAY

• Firefighters were called about 12:45 p.m. today to a report of a semi truck burning near the Interstate 5 northbound offramp to state Route 508. The cab was fully involved in flames and a portion of the refrigerated trailer as well, according to Lewis County Fire District 5. The driver was unhurt, according to Firefighter Brad Bozarth. The blaze was extinguished and the ramp closed for about 30 minutes, Bozarth said. The driver had said he noticed his truck was on fire and he pulled to the shoulder, he said. Both the truck and its empty trailer were a total loss, he said.

AND MORE

• And as usual, other incidents such as arrests for warrants, third-degree assault, driving under the influence, driving with suspended license; responses for alarms, dispute, misdemeanor theft, possible suicidal person, collisions on city streets … and more.

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Northbound Interstate 5 south of Chehalis. / Courtesy photo by Tia Smith

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Northbound Interstate 5 near exit 72 interchange. / Courtesy photo by Washington State Patrol

Police: Morton man tried to get friends out of work with bomb threat

Tuesday, November 18th, 2014

By Sharyn L. Decker
Lewis County Sirens news reporter

A 24-year-old Morton resident arrested for allegedly threatening to blow up a lumber mill yesterday may have been trying to get his buddies a day off from work, according to police.

Police were called to Alta Forest Products at the north end of town about 8 a.m. following a phone call that prompted authorities to evacuate the premises and send employees home for the day.

Alta’s mill in Shelton was also vacated because they didn’t know if the threat was site specific, Morton Police Chief Dan Mortensen said this morning.

A bomb squad with the Washington State Patrol checked the property and found no explosive, Mortensen said.

Meanwhile, the chief traced the call back to a cell phone belonging to Marcus T. Dantinne, 24, of Morton. He was contacted at his residence on Collar Avenue at about noon, Mortensen said.

Dantinne doesn’t work at the lumber mill, nor was he a dissatisfied customer, according to Mortensen.

“It appeared he might have made the call because he wanted to hang out with some of his friends, and they had to work,” Mortensen said.

Dantinne was arrested and booked into the Lewis County Jail for making a bomb threat, a felony.

Alta, located on the 300 block of state Route 7, manufactures Western Red Cedar fence boards.

•••

For background, read “News brief: Threat of bomb clears Morton lumber mill” from Monday November 17, 2014, here

Sharyn’s Sirens: Daily police and fire roundup

Monday, November 17th, 2014

Updated at 6:09 p.m.

CHIMNEY FIRES

• Time to check and clean your chimneys if you haven’t already done it, suggests Lewis County Fire District 5. Firefighters were called about 8:10 p.m. yesterday to a chimney fire on Maplewood Lane outside Chehalis. “We were able to quickly extinguish it,” District 5 Firefighter Brad Bozarth said. There was no extension into the home, he said. A resident on the 700 block of Pleasant Valley Road on Saturday was a little less fortunate. Crews responded about 12:20 p.m. when a passerby noticed a roof on fire, Bozarth said. Heat and embers from the failed chimney of a wood stove got into the attic, he said. Firefighters knocked it down quickly enough to prevent any interior damage, but an approximately 10 foot by 10 foot section of burned roof had to be cut away, he said. The woman who lives there and uses a wheelchair was home and uninjured, he said.

THEFT

• A stolen vehicle valued at $1,000 was recovered on Saturday morning on the 100 block of Wigley Road outside Centralia. It was stripped and located on a gravel right-of-way belonging to TransAlta, according to the Lewis County Sheriff’s Office. Chief Civil Deputy Stacy Brown said it wasn’t immediately known what kind of vehicle it was.

CAR PROWL

• Centralia police were called about 11:50 p.m. yesterday to the 1000 block of Eckerson Road where someone broke into an unlocked vehicle and stole CDs.

SUSPICIOUS PACKAGE

• Morton police report an officer was summoned about 9:15 a.m. on Friday to the Mossyrock Post Office after a suspicious package was found out front. The case was turned over the to postal inspectors, according to the Morton Police Department.  Further details were no readily available.

DRUGS

• A 45-year-old Chehalis man was arrested for possession of methamphetamine when he was stopped on the 700 block of North National Avenue in Chehalis yesterday afternoon. Bryant W. Byrd was wanted on a warrant from the state Department of Corrections and was driving with a suspended license, according to the Chehalis Police Department. Byrd was booked into the Lewis County Jail, according to police.

PEDESTRIAN VERSUS DOG

• Police were called just before noon yesterday by a woman who said a dog bit her sweater as she walked on the sidewalk along the 600 block of Westlake Avenue in Morton. She tried to scare the canine away by throwing her cell phone at it, according to the Morton Police Department.

NAKED PEDESTRIAN DRAWS LAW ENFORCEMENT

• Police were called just before 3 p.m. yesterday to Mossyrock regarding an intoxicated man who had taken off his clothes and was walking in traffic. When officers arrived, they were directed to an apartment in the area, however, they were not able to make contact with the suspect, according to the Morton Police Department.

COLLISIONS

• Officers responded to a roll-over vehicle accident in the area of Aldrich and Mossyrock Road West about 7 o’clock this morning.  The female driver was transported to Morton General Hospital with minor injuries, according to the Morton Police Department.  Her infant passenger did not sustain any injuries, according to police.

• A 49-year-old Centralia man was arrested yesterday for hit and run, driving under the influence and with a suspended license. Dain R. Tracy was booked into the Lewis County Jail in connection with the approximately 5:10 incident at North Pearl and Virginia streets, according to the Centralia Police Department.

• A 26-year-old Centralia man and his passenger both sustained minor injuries when his left the roadway on the 500 block of Highway 603 west of Chehalis early this morning. Brandon M. Blurton’s VW Jetta was totaled and he was booked into the Lewis County Jail for driving under the influence following the approximately 12:20 a.m. wreck, according to the Lewis County Sheriff’s Office.

• Centralia police responded about 10:20 p.m. yesterday to the 2300 block of North Pearl Street where a car drove off the roadway and into some mailboxes. Nobody was injured, according to the Centralia Police Department.

AND MORE

• And as usual, other incidents such as arrests for warrants, drugs, hit and run, reckless driving, misdemeanor assault, violation of no contact order, driving under the influence, driving with suspended license; responses for alarms, dispute, lost purse, suspicious circumstances, possible suicidal person, tailgater flipping off motorist, report of possible sexual assault of a child, collisions on city streets and county roads; complaint of loud neighbor music … and more.

News brief: Threat of bomb clears Morton lumber mill

Monday, November 17th, 2014

By Sharyn L. Decker
Lewis County Sirens news reporter

A Morton lumber mill was shut down this morning by a bomb threat.

“The caller said we had messed with the wrong person,” Alta Forest Products President and Chief Executive Officer Mike Pedersen said.

Alta is on the 300 block of state Route 7, at the north end of town.

Pedersen said the plant was evacuated and a bomb squad swept the premises.

He said he believed a suspect has been arrested, but didn’t have details.

Morton Police Department Chief Dan Mortensen said he didn’t have time to talk about the incident; he expected to be busy into this evening.

Pedersen said there would have been about 60 employees on the job, but he himself was out of town.

The phone call came at about 7:45 a.m., and the caller indicated a bomb would got off in 10 minutes, he said. They immediately evacuated everyone, he said.

He said he didn’t know the specifics.

“The big thing is, everybody is safe,” Pedersen said.

The afternoon shift is scheduled to begin as usual, he said.

The mill, formerly TMI Forest Products Inc. and before that the Tubafor Mill, manufactures Western Red Cedar fence boards.

News brief: Centralia neighborhood flooded by water main break

Monday, November 17th, 2014

Updated at 11:35 a.m.

By Sharyn L. Decker
Lewis County Sirens news reporter

A water main break last night caused a hole in the ground in a Centralia neighborhood estimated to be fifty feet long and seven feet deep.

Riverside Fire Authority Capt. Casey McCarthy said firefighters responded about 8 p.m. to the area where police had closed one block of East Main Street.

McCarthy described moderate flooding.

“I don’t know if it got into any residences, but it sure got into some yards,” McCarthy said this morning.

Workers from the city water department came out and shut off the water, McCarthy said.

The hole was estimated to be about 15 feet wide, according to McCarthy.

The Centralia Police Department blocked off the area between South Buckner and Berry streets, he said.

The one block remains closed, but the 10-inch water main has been repaired and the hole in the ground filled back in, Centralia city Water Operations Manager Tom Cleary said this morning.

A gasket on a collar on the transite water line that could be as much as 70 years old was leaking, he said.

Cleary said someone reported the leak last night and the on-duty person was out looking at it when the section of pipe blew out.

A number of people lost water pressure and those in the immediate area would have been without any incoming water at all, he said.

He said he’s not sure how soon they’ll get the street black-topped, because of the weather.

Everyone’s water service has been restored, according to Cleary.

Sharyn’s Sirens: Daily police and fire roundup

Sunday, November 16th, 2014

BIG OOPS

• A 24-year-old Centralia man is jailed after he reportedly nearly crashed head-on into a patrol vehicle and was found to be in possession of cocaine. It happened around 11 p.m. on Friday at Woodland and Alder streets in Centralia, according to police. Francisco Lopez-Sosa was arrested for the drug offense and also on suspicion of driving under the influence, according to the Centralia Police Department.

THEFT, THEFT, THEFT

• Police arrested  a 24-year-old homeless person last night for allegedly stealing an expensive cell phone and attempting to sell it.  Justin B. Bedortha was booked into the Lewis County Jail for second-degree theft in connection with the 10:45 p.m. events associated with the 400 block of Plum Street in Centralia, according to the Centralia Police Department.

• Centralia police were contacted very early yesterday morning by an individual who saw an item stolen from them posted for sale on Facebook. The case is still under investigation, according to the Centralia Police Department.

• Centralia police took a report on Friday of four storage units being burglarized at the 600 block of North Gold Street. Exactly what is missing has not been compiled, according to the Centralia Police Department.

SMOKE IN APARTMENT BUILDING NOT A FIRE

• Firefighters responding to a report of fire at the apartments above the El Amigo nightclub downtown Centralia on Friday night found that someone had thrown smoke bombs down the hallway. The approximately 11:25 p.m. incident at the 300 block of North Tower Avenue included fire crackers, filled the hallways with smoke and set off the fire alarms, according to responders. The damage was limited to scorch marks, according to Riverside Fire Authority. Police arrested a 34-year-old woman for reckless endangerment. Elizabeth K. Byrd, of Tacoma, was booked into the Lewis County Jail, according to the Centralia Police Department.

COLLISION

• One woman was hospitalized after a single-vehicle crash last night alongside Interstate 5 in Centralia. Firefighters called about 9 p.m. found the wrecked car against the fence at the Centralia Outlets near the Harrison Avenue interchange. “She was coming down the freeway offramp, I don’t know how many times she rolled,” Firefighter Karl VonBargen said. Responders stabilized her neck with a “C-collar”, put her on a backboard and she was transported to Providence Centralia Hospital, VonBargen said. Nobody else was in the vehicle, he said.

AND MORE

• And as usual, other incidents such as arrests for warrants, driving under the influence, driving with suspended license, failure to transfer vehicle title; responses for misdemeanor theft, collisions on city streets … and more.

Sharyn’s Sirens: Daily police and fire roundup

Friday, November 14th, 2014

Updated at 10:34 a.m.

OUT-OF-CONTROL CAMPFIRE BURNS TRANSIENT

• A homeless man was treated for burned hands after his campfire spread to nearby brush and trees next to the freeway at LaBree and Bishop roads south of Chehalis last night. Three fire departments responded to the approximately 11:35 p.m. call from the 52-year-old man described as transient. He said there were flames rising 25 feet high, Lewis County Fire District 6 Chief Tim Kinder said. Kinder said he believed the man’s tent burned as well, but he wasn’t’ on the call. More than 1,000 gallons of water were used to extinguish the fire near the northbound onramp to Interstate 5, according to District 6. Lewis County Sheriff’s Office detective Sgt. Dusty Breen said Larry G. Bailey, from the Chehalis area, was cited for reckless burning and that the fire potentially threatened a nearby shop building. Bailey was transported by aid for medical attention, for burns that were minor, according to Breen.

MOTOR MISSING

• Someone stole a battery charger and an outboard motor from a boat on the 2400 block of Howard Avenue in Centralia, according to a report made to police about 8 a.m. yesterday.

SHEDS BURGLED

• Centralia police were called about 8:20 p.m. yesterday about a burglary to a shed at the 800 block of South Tower Avenue.

• Centralia police were called about 9 a.m. yesterday to the 1700 block of Cooks Hill Road regarding a shed that was broken into. Two CD players were missing, according to the Centralia Police Department.

STOLEN MAIL

• Chehalis police were called just before noon yesterday about mail getting stolen from two mailboxes on the 500 block of Southwest 18th Street. The victim told police it was a reoccurring problem, but no fraudulent activity had been discovered on any of her accounts, according to the Chehalis Police Department.

COOKING FIRE

• Chehalis firefighters were called yesterday afternoon to an apartment building on Southeast Washington Avenue near Third Street where the third floor was filling up with smoke. A resident had fallen asleep while cooking rice, according to the Chehalis Fire Department. She woke up, turned off the stove and put the pan in the sink, Fire Capt. Casey Beck said. The crew helped her air out her apartment and get her smoke alarm working, Beck said.

CRIME STOPPERS

• Lewis County Crime Stoppers is looking for information about a truck stolen on September 1 from a driveway at the 1900 block of Taylor Street in Centralia that contained a handgun. It happened sometime between 1:30 a.m. and 7 a.m., according to Crime Stoppers. Missing is a 2003 Toyota Tundra and a Sterling 380 pistol. The license plates is B62022W.  The loss is reported as more than $6,400.  Crime Stoppers pays up to $1,000 for information leading to the clearance of crimes. Anonymous calls can be made to 1-800-748-6422 or information may be shared online at www.lewiscountycrimestoppers.org

AND MORE

• And as usual, other incidents such as arrests for warrants, driving under the influence, driving with suspended license; responses for alarms, dispute, hit and run, misdemeanor theft, collision on city street, request by a stranded person for help finding shelter … and more.

News brief: Vader fire investigation inconclusive

Thursday, November 13th, 2014

By Sharyn L. Decker
Lewis County Sirens news reporter

Whatever it was that ignited a Sunday morning blaze in Vader that spread from a house to one, and nearly two, adjacent buildings will remain a mystery.

The cause will be listed as undetermined,” Fire Investigator Ted McCarty said.

2014.1109.vaderfire.youthcenter.dustin.lampien.small

822 A St., Vader

“There just were not enough pieces there for me to pinpoint it,” McCarty said today.

A friend who was staying there woke up to smoke, and rousted the father and son from bed, McCarty said.

Firefighters called about 8:50 a.m. arrived to find the single story home fully involved in flames and beginning to catch the Masonic Hall next to it on fire.

The father has used a garden hose for as long as he was able, to put water through a back bedroom window, while someone else ran to a neighbor’s to call 911, McCarty said.

The father ended up with cuts to his hand and arm, from breaking out the window, he said.

The house on the 800 block of A Street, built in 1935, is a complete loss.

Also beyond saving, was the former community center building to the north, a quonset hut style structure stuffed with what its owner said was a couple of hundred thousand dollars worth of collectibles, according to McCarty. It was torn apart with an excavator to extinguish its burning contents.

Unfortunately, neither of the buildings were insured, McCarty said.

The resident did have space heaters throughout the house, but whether perhaps there were combustibles next to a heater in the unoccupied bedroom, there’s no way to know, McCarty said.
•••

For background, read “Two-plus buildings affected by Vader fire; cause unknown” from Tuesday November 11, 2014, here

News brief: If and when the snow falls, be ready

Thursday, November 13th, 2014

By Sharyn L. Decker
Lewis County Sirens news reporter

The city of Centralia wants residents to know it will make every effort to keep streets passable when the snow comes, but its first priorities are not the residential neighborhoods.

2014.1113.snowflakeCentralia, with over 82 miles of roads, has devised a priority plan for the removal of ice and snow from its streets, according to street official Kim Ashmore.

Priority is given to the viaducts, bridges, roadways leading to the hospital, major hillside roads and signaled intersections, according to Ashmore. Sanding and snow plowing in other parts of the city will be conducted as needed as conditions warrant, and depending upon the availability of manpower and equipment, Ashmore states in a news release.

He suggests residents can do their part to help when it snows by avoiding driving unless they have to and by driving slowly when they go out.

Ashmore also cautions motorists to give snow plows and sanders plenty of room to operate.

The Washington State Patrol offers the following advice for safely navigating the roadways with the onset of freezing temperatures and the possibility of snow:

• Please remember to clear off all your windows of frost or snow before you drive.

• A good set of wipers, properly inflated winter tires and patience is needed to safely operate a vehicle during hazardous winter driving conditions.

• Remember to slow down, increase your following distance and give yourself additional time to get to your destination.

• Be prepared for potential long delays if you travel mountain passes by packing in your car a scraper, shovel, jumper cables or jump pack, tow chain/rope, and traction devices. It’s also important to have proper boots and clothing for the cold conditions.

• Consider checking out the road and weather conditions at WSDOT’s website www.wsdot.wa.gov/traffic or by calling 1-800-695-ROAD before you travel.

Sharyn’s Sirens: Daily police and fire roundup

Thursday, November 13th, 2014

Updated at 2:32 p.m.

SCHOOL BUS FIRE

• As many as a half dozen elementary school children were evacuated from a bus this morning when its heater caught fire in Winlock. Nobody was injured. Firefighters and deputies responded to the 500 block of North Military Road about 7:40 a.m. and discovered the fire had essentially burned itself out, according to the Lewis County Sheriff’s Office. Chief Civil Deputy Stacy Brown said it is believed dust, dirt particles or some other debris ignited in the heater.

NEAR MISS BETWEEN SCHOOL BUS, DUMP TRUCK

• A 1975 Kenworth dump truck went sideways in the road and came to rest in a ditch when it came around a curve upon a school bus dropping off a child yesterday in the Boistfort Valley. The truck missed the bus which was carrying children just before 3 p.m., according to the Lewis County Sheriff’s Office. Chief Civil Deputy Stacy Brown said the 35-year-old Centralia man was traveling too fast along the 500 block of Boistfort Road as he approached a sign that stated, “School Bus Stop Ahead.” Nobody was injured and the driver was cited for wheels off the roadway Brown said. The truck – one of the brakes of which was found out of adjustment – was taken out of service, according to Brown.

RESIDENTIAL FIRE IN ONALASKA

• Fire broke out in a manufactured home in Onalaska yesterday at about 3:30 p.m. on the 200 block of Leonard Road. Fire Investigator Ted McCarty said the damage was limited to the electric furnace and its closet. McCarty said he’s uncertain of the cause. The resident’s power had been off the day before and they said they noticed a real odd sound when it came back on, he said. But also, it’s possible mice had chewed into wiring causing the issue, he said.

COMMERCIAL STRUCTURE FIRE IN CENTRALIA

• Firefighters were called about 3:45 a.m. today when fire broke out at a wood mill at the end of Central Boulevard in Centralia. Riverside Fire Authority Capt. Casey McCarthy said workers said they saw flames showing about four-feet high. Sawdust ignited in one of the bag houses, McCarthy said. “We ended up being able to contain it to the one hopper,” McCarthy said. Crews were on the scene for about two hours, he said.

DUMPSTER FIRE IN ALLEY

• Police and firefighters both responded about 8:15 p.m. yesterday when a passerby discovered the contents of a dumpster burning in an alley behind a Centralia tavern. Part of the fence belonging to Bub’s Pub on the 500 block of North Tower Avenue burned, according to Riverside Fire Authority. The incident is being labeled suspicious.

RECREATIONAL VEHICLE BURNS IN MOSSYROCK

• A 35- 40-foot long motorhome was destroyed by fire on Tuesday evening north of Mossyrock, likely related to the power outage, according to Lewis County Fire District 3. Fire Chief Doug Fosburg said the responded about 6:30 p.m. to the blaze on Skyview Drive off Birley Road and found the recreational vehicle fully engulfed in flames. Nobody was hurt and they managed to prevent a nearby pump house and a 100-gallon propane tank less than 10 feet away from igniting, Fosburg said. The RV was designed so when the electricity is shut off, it automatically switches over the propane to keep its refrigerator running, he said, and they suspect something went wrong during that process.

SCAMMED

• A 71-year-old Chehalis resident called police yesterday after discovering the more than $1,100 she’d wired to a missionary friend in Istanbul, Turkey actually went to an impostor. The victim of the scam told police she’d received an email from a friend, a real person that she knows, who said they needed cash, so she sent the money via Western Union, according to the Chehalis Police Department.

AUTO THEFT

• Someone stole a 1991 Dodge Dakota pickup truck from Southwest Seventh Street near Market Boulevard in Chehalis sometime between Monday and yesterday. The vehicle was primer black in color, according to the Chehalis Police Department.

VEHICLE PROWL

• Two guns were stolen from an unlocked vehicle parked at the Motel 6 in Centralia yesterday. An officer called about 9:30 p.m. to the 1300 block of Belmont Avenue learned the two men in their 20s from Centralia and Winlock had been visiting a guest and discovered the firearms were taken from their pickup truck, according to the Centralia Police Department. Missing is a Mossberg 20-gauge shotgun and a Mossberg 22 caliber rifle, according to police.

• Centralia police were called about 8 o’clock yesterday morning to the 1000 block of South Pearl Street where someone had stolen a backpack from an unlocked car.

OTHER THEFT

• Police and aid were called about 7:45 p.m. yesterday to Wal-Mart in Chehalis where a 38-year-old woman was found passed out in the restroom after reportedly huffing on an aerosol container from the store shelves. The woman faces a possible charge of misdemeanor theft, but wasn’t arrested because she was transported to Providence Centralia Hospital, according to the Chehalis Police Department.

SOLICITING PROSTITUTION

• Chehalis police followed up on a report from Monday night in which a pizza delivery person said when he brought pizza to a motel on the 200 block of Interstate Avenue, the customer offered money in exchange for sex. When an officer went to speak to the customer, he had already checked out, according to the Chehalis Police Department.

AND MORE

• And as usual, other incidents such as arrests for warrants, driving with suspended license; responses for alarms, dispute, harassment, misdemeanor theft, suspicious circumstances, collisions on city streets … and more.

Sharyn’s Sirens: Daily police and fire roundup

Wednesday, November 12th, 2014

Updated at 5:28 p.m.

POLICE: REBUFFED CELL PHONE SELLER ATTACKS WOMEN

• A meet-up in a Chehalis parking lot following an internet offer of the sale of two cell phones got violent yesterday when the buyers decided the merchandise was substandard. Police were called about 4:40 p.m. to Rite Aid on the 500 block of South Market Boulevard. Detective Sgt. Gary Wilson said the 23-year-old Chehalis woman and 28-year-old Centralia woman told the seller they changed their mind because a screen was cracked or something. Then an argument ensued about the man traveling all the way to meet them and he reportedly pulled out a collapsible baton and struck one of them, and threatened to stab them with a pocket knife, Wilson said. The women left and called police from home, according to Wilson. One of them ended up with a minor cut on her hand, he said. The suspect was picked up a few hours later by a Thurston County deputy and booked into the Lewis County Jail  for second-degree assault, according to WIlson. The suspect, Anthony A. Caldwell, 57, is from Olympia and described as transient, he said.

SHOPLIFTING INCIDENT TURNS SCAREY

• A Centralia convenience store clerk who tried to retrieve a stolen six-pack of beer from a shoplifter yesterday found herself threatened with a knife, according to police. Officers called about 6:25 p.m. to Apex on the 400 block of West Main Street learned the 50-year-old woman followed the man out of the business and confronted him several blocks away, pleading with him to give the beer back, according to the Centralia Police Department. He pulled a knife and began walking towards the clerk, and then she fled, according to police. The man left. A 26-year-old man described as transient from California was subsequently arrested for first-degree robbery, Sgt. Kurt Reichert said. Officer called around 4:30 a.m. to a disturbance at or near Dennys on the 1000 block of Harrison Avenue contacted that subject and concluded he resembled the surveillance image from Apex, Reichert said. Mathew T. Gonzalez was booked into the Lewis County Jail, according to Reichert.

UNRULY HOSPITAL VISITOR JAILED

• A 27-year-old Centralia woman was arrested for third-degree assault after allegedly trying to slap and strike security guards who were escorting her out of Providence Centralia Hospital yesterday evening. Officers called to the 900 block of South Schueber Road about 7:45 p.m. learned she was visiting a patient and asked to leave because she was being disruptive. Sherene R. Cluzel, was booked into the Lewis County Jail, according to the Centralia Police Department.

AUTO THEFT

• A 1991 Honda station wagon was stolen from Shaeffer Park north of Centralia after its owner had mechanical trouble and left it there, locked but with the keys in the ignition. A deputy called about 1 a.m. yesterday to the 800 block of state Route 507 was told the car was worth $1,000, according to the Lewis County Sheriff’s Office.

TOO MUCH SKIN

• A 37-year-old Centralia man was arrested last night for allegedly exposing himself in the parking lot of the train station in Centralia. Officers responding about 9:25 p.m. to the 200 block of North Railroad Avenue booked Charles R. Simpson into the Lewis County Jail for indecent exposure and also possession of methamphetamine, according to the Centralia Police Department.

TRUCK VERSUS DEER

• A 37-year-old Chehalis man escaped serious injury but totaled his pickup truck when he swerved to miss a deer yesterday on Centralia-Alpha Road west of Chehalis. A deputy called about 5:40 p.m. to milepost 15 found the 1992 Ford F250 in the ditch and the deer underneath it, according to the Lewis County Sheriff’s Office. The driver complained a headache, according to the sheriff’s office.

AND MORE

• And as usual, other incidents such as arrests for warrants, trespassing, misdemeanor assault, underage possession of marijuana; responses for alarm, dispute, shoplifting, collisions on city streets and county roads; complaint of smell of marijuana from neighboring apartment … and more.