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Fri., May 8, 2009, 8:17 p.m.

Jay Olsen’s case closed?

Good morning, Netizens...

Yesterday, in Spokesman reporter Thomas Clouse's story about Chief Ann Kirkpatrick's decision not to file additional charges against former policeman Jay Olsen, which is here: I was continually struck by the same odd other-worldly sensations that I felt during Olsen's trial. To be emphatic about it, I do not know what actually took place that fateful night overlooking Peaceful Valley. I do not have a credible piece of factual evidence, whether admissible in court or not, that Shonto Pete was actually trying to steal Olsen's truck and that will bother me for the rest of my days. All I have to go on are my suspicions, not based upon fact, and thus no better nor worse than anyone else's opinions of the matter.

Short of that conclusive proof, I do understand that Chief Kirkpatrick more or less did what I would have done in her place, right up to the point she fired Olsen because he lied to the Infernal Affairs officers of the SPD. Her decision not to file additional charges against Olsen also smack of that same level-headed administrative acumen that she has exhibited since she first took office, but I also feel that is a personal decision she will have to live with, and perhaps not nearly as comfortably as it might seem.

I've heard lots of comments about how much money Olsen got from his back pay, some thirty-some thousand dollars, but I also remember Olsen is paying the bill for his own legal representation. Since neither he nor his attorney are publicly discussing his legal costs, I have to take it on my limited experience with trial lawyers that perhaps as much as half to three-quarters of that money has already been spent on legal costs and perhaps the rest might barely cover his personal expenses. In short. I believe Olsen is probably financially on the ropes after this tawdry affair. However, that isn't news, that's just conjecture.

At least for the moment, barring any appeals, Olsen's legal issues seem to be at an end and thus the case is closed on this ugly piece of police work in Spokane. My opinions, of course, are that rather than Justice being served, Lady Justice somehow found herself lost in the dark of Peaceful Valley.

Is Jay Olsen's case closed for you?


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Spokesman-Review readers blog about news and issues in Spokane written by Dave Laird.