Posts tagged: crime
A wanted man was jailed earlier this month after he swore at and gave the finger to a plain-clothes sheriff's detective, then struck the detective and ran, according to court documents.
David E. Lee, 22, is in custody at the Geiger Corrections Facility. He faces charges of assaulting a police officer, obstruction and resisting arrest after a series of events around 8 p.m. on July 9 near Mount Spokane High School.
Lee was a passenger in a Chevy sedan that came upon two trucks, one pulled off to the side of North Lowe Road so the driver could take a photo of the sunset, she told investigators. The driver of the sedan sped past the two trucks, at which time Lee yelled profanity and “flipping the finger,” witnesses said. The driver of the second truck, Spokane County Sheriff's detective Shannon McCrillis, pulled the sedan over for a traffic stop.
A woman inside the car told police Lee asked whether McCrillis was a “real cop” because he had warrants out for his arrest. McCrillis said Lee was not compliant with his commands to keep his hands where he could see them during the stop, and when he tried to take Lee into custody on his warrants, the 22-year-old struck the detective with his elbow and ran to the woods nearby.
Police dog Laslo was eventually called in to take Lee into custody. Drug paraphernalia was found in a bag belonging to Lee inside the car, according to police reports.
A 60-year-old Spokane man was arrested on suspicions of arson after investigators found empty cans of Mike's Hard Lemonade at the scene of a scorching van and in the man's vehicle.
Steven Klemz was booked into Spokane County Jail early Thursday morning facing charges of arson and malicious mischief. Police were initially called to a home in the 6900 block of North G Street on Wednesday night around 10 p.m., according to court documents, after a home owner and Stemz got into an argument about yard work. An officer asked Stemz to leave, and he complied.
About two hours later, the home owner called police to say a van outside her home had been set ablaze and the tires of her nearby Chevy sedan slashed. The hoses in the yard had also been cut to prevent her from dousing the flames and the area was soaked in gasoline, she told investigators.
A neighbor reported hearing a bang shortly before midnight, shortly before the fire was reported. The neighbor also reported seeing Klemz in the yard. Found in a van nearby, Klemz denied involvement in the fire, but police found an empty Mike's Hard Lemonade can matching those found near the scene of the cut hoses and an empty gas can near the site of the fires.
Klemz's criminal history in Spokane County includes a burglary conviction in the 1970s, according to court records.
A 24-year-old man used a credit card he swiped from a Spokane Valley shopper in a strong-arm April robbery to buy a Mother's Day present online, according to investigators.
Spokane Valley authorities searched several residences last week looking for Damian Plumley and evidence of the April 24 incident. A woman said she was walking from her car following a shopping trip when a man matching Plumley's description bumped her from behind, knocking her to the ground. The man took her purse, which contained several credit cards.
Detectives learned those credit cards were used to buy items at a local convenience store and at several department stores' websites. While searching Plumley's residence in the 11000 block of East Fourth Avenue, police found an electric tea kettle they confirmed was bought using the robbery victim's credit card.
Plumley's mother told police her son had bought it for her as a Mother's Day gift.
Plumley is in custody of the Spokane County Jail facing charges of robbery, identity theft, leaving the scene of an injury accident and possession of stolen property.
Spokane police arrested 55-year-old Ernie Hern this week, the second of a pair accused of selling heroin out of a residence in the East Central neighborhood through March of last year.
Hern faces multiple possession and sale of drug charges after police used a confidential informant to buy heroin from him in January 2013, according to court documents. The informant allegedly twice bought heroin at home in the 200 block of Fiske Street, once from Hern and a second time a month later from Timothy Price, 36.
When authorities raided the house in March 2013, Price was there, but Hern wasn't. Price was arrested and scheduled to be arraigned, but never showed up, according to court records. He was taken back into custody last month and has pleaded not guilty to a drug trafficking charge.
Both Hern and Price have criminal histories that include past drug charges. Prosecutors are asking Hern be held on $1,000 bond in the new charge.
Editor's Note: An earlier version of this story incorrectly named the man who pleaded guilty Monday. The story has been updated to correct the error.
A Spokane man caught by the Secret Service engaging in online trading of child pornography faces a five-year prison sentence after pleading guilty to a federal felony charge Monday.
Ryan Raymond Joseph Comerford will have to register as a sex offender in compliance with a plea deal reached in U.S. District Court. Comerford was indicted in September on multiple child pornography counts after a Secret Service sting revealed evidence he was using a peer-to-peer network to receive explicit images and videos featuring children.
Comerford pleaded not guilty to the charges and was released pending trial, which was scheduled for next week. He admitted using marijuana in violation of his release conditions, and was arrested again in January.
Defense attorneys were provided with the digital evidence in the case last month.
As part of the agreement, Comerford will remain on probation for 20 years after his release and be barred from contact with minors. A judge is expected to rule on the agreement in July.
A man suspected of drunken driving had his keys confiscated by an off-duty Spokane County Sheriff's Deputy who witnessed the man trying to drive over some boulders near Liberty Park, according to court documents.
Wayne Pederson crashed his Toyota pickup near a trailhead at the park just south of Interstate 90 in Central Spokane earlier this week. A sheriff's deputy who was home at the time of the crash left his home to find Pederson trying to drive over a boulder that was blocking the trail, he told investigating officers.
Pederson then fell out of his truck, according to court documents. The deputy took Pederson's keys and called law enforcement, who arrived and conducted a sobriety test. The investigating officer listed Pederson's level of impairment as “obvious.”
Pederson refused a breathalyzer and blood draw at the scene, according to court documents.
A man accused of stealing a $13 bottle of vodka from a Spokane grocery store was arrested on suspicion of first-degree robbery after he allegedly punched a clerk and heaved the liquor bottle into the road.
Chad Burk, 40, was arrested late Friday after witnesses said he left a Safeway store on North Market Street without paying for his alcohol. A clerk watched Burk grab a bottle of vodka and a can of beer, walk to the frozen foods section and place the can of beer inside. Burk placed the vodka in his jacket and walked out without paying, according to the store clerk.
The clerk chased Burk out of the store, where Burk allegedly punched him twice and pushed him up against a wall. The employee wrestled Burk to the ground when police arrived.
At some point during the altercation, Burk threw the vodka into the street, according to court records.
Burk was released from custody without bond this weekend. He is expected to make a first-appearance on the charge against him Monday afternoon.
A man arrested after crashing his vehicle and refusing a breathalyzer test earlier this week blamed the accident on his mother, who was nowhere near the scene of the accident.
Larry Coleman was found by Liberty Lake firefighters sitting behind the steering wheel of his car, which was resting in a snowy ditch along Interstate 90 around 6 p.m. Monday, according to court documents. Coleman was not injured and was the only person in the car when law enforcement arrived.
When a Washington State Patrol office arrived, Coleman had moved to the passenger's seat, according to court documents. He told the patrolman his mother had been driving at the time of the one-vehicle accident and that she'd started walking along the highway toward Liberty Lake following the crash.
Liberty Lake police officers and firefighters found no woman on the highway, according to court records.
Coleman admitted to drinking a couple beers and refused a breathalyzer test after speaking with an attorney. A court order was signed to test his blood for intoxicants and he was arrested, according to court documents.
According to Spokesman-Review reporting, local law enforcement investigated 23 deaths as homicides in and near Spokane County in 2013. Public safety reporters Kip Hill, Kaitlin Gillespie and others kept track of each of the cases, and we're making our records available to you below.
Blue icon: Case has been resolved, either through legal procedures or the death of a suspect.
Yellow icon: A suspect (or suspect) is (are) in custody, and the case is moving through the legal process.
Red icon: No suspects have been apprehended to date.
Click on the icon to learn more about the case, and visit the Google spreadsheet for specific case details and customize the map to your preferences. As a companion to this piece, the Spokesman-Review is also publishing a list and map of the homicides involving law enforcement officers in 2013.
A Worley man who donned a cartoon character mask to rob an espresso stand in Coeur d’Alene last year will spend at least four years behind bars.
Kyle Ernest Campbell, 25, wore a SpongeBob SquarePants mask when he robbed Lean Bean Espresso at 1207 E. Sherman Ave. on Jan. 30, 2013.
Campbell, who pleaded guilty to armed robbery on Oct. 3, entered the stand armed with a handgun and demanded money from employees, who complied. He then fled on foot.
He was sentenced Monday by 1st District Judge Lansing Haynes to a prison term of four years fixed and another nine years indeterminate, with credit for time served.
Campbell has a lengthy arrest history, primarily on tribal charges, but only two convictions – for misdemeanor careless driving and minor in possession of alcohol, the Kootenai County Prosecuting Attorney’s Office said.
He acknowledged he has a substance abuse problem, the prosecutor’s office added.
A 23-year-old man who pleaded guilty earlier this year to robbing a woman at gunpoint in a Spokane Valley nail salon will likely face a longer prison sentence after police say he threatened to shoot his 80-year-old grandmother.
Kyle Henriksen was booked into Spokane County Jail last week after police said he violated conditions of his release. Henriksen was scheduled for sentencing in an armed robbery that occurred at the Super Nails salon at 1525 N. Pines Road on Dec. 28. Witnesses said a man walked into the salon, clad in a black hooded sweatshirt and wearing sunglasses, and pointed a gun at a woman getting a pedicure, demanding her purse.
The thief fled the scene on foot, and the woman identified Henriksen as the likely suspect. After trying to pin the robbery on an acquaintance, Henriksen eventually admitted to carrying out the robbery.
A few days after the robbery, police pulled Henriksen over for a broken tail light. They found drug paraphernalia and a blue powder that Henriksen said was “probably Oxycontin,” but said it didn't belong to him. Henriksen was also arrested later in July for leading police on a chase that ended at the apartment he was sharing with his grandmother.
Court records show Henriksen pleaded guilty to the December 2012 robbery in September. Sentencing in the case was scheduled for Nov. 18, in which prosecutors anticipated seeking the lower end of the sentencing range for first-degree robbery: 87 months, or a little over seven years.
But on Oct. 23, police were called to Henriksen's apartment on accusations he'd threatened to shoot his grandmother. When they arrived, the grandmother told police that Henriksen was pawning all of her possessions and had attempted to unplug her big-screen television so he could sell it. When she resisted, he yelled “I'll shoot you,” she told police.
Henriksen said his grandmother misunderstood what he said. He also told police he had a drug problem and said they would find drug paraphernalia under the cushions of a sofa in the home where he'd been sleeping. Police later arrested him for driving with a suspended license.
Police arrested Henriksen in 2009 when, as a 19-year-old, he assaulted two men who said they were attempting to return a purse belonging to Henriksen's girlfriend. Armed with a handgun, Henriksen struck one of the men in the face, causing the gun to fire and strike his jaw, according to previous news reports. Henriksen pleaded guilty to two counts of assault in the incident in December 2010, according to court records.
Court records show sentencing has not yet occurred in the December 2012 robbery case. Henriksen is being held in the Spokane County Jail.
A man wanted on an outstanding Department of Corrections warrant faces new charges after he spat on two Spokane police officers.
Lance C. Anderson, 35, was arrested Monday and taken to Deaconess Hospital for medical clearance before being booked at Spokane County Jail, according to an affidavit. Anderson was disorderly and spat at two of the police officers arresting him.
Anderson now faces two felony charges of third-degree assault for the spitting.
The alleged theft of a $2 bottle of ibuprofen could lead to weeks of legal headaches for a Spokane man.
Michael Ewing was arrested Saturday after an undercover officer at an East Central grocery store said he saw the 52-year-old sneak a bottle of off-brand painkillers into his pants pocket. The officer approached Ewing when he went to pay for other purchases, and several witnesses said when the officer informed Ewing he would be placed under arrest, he began swinging his fists wildly, striking the officer in the eye. Store employees and the officer eventually subdued Ewing by placing him in handcuffs, according to court documents.
Prosecutors initially sought a charge of first-degree robbery for Ewing, who has two prior felony convictions back in the late 1970s. But at a first appearance in Spokane County Superior Court on Monday, Judge James Triplet ruled prosecutors had only proven probable cause for lesser charges of assault and theft.
Ewing was released from custody without bail. He is due in court to address the charges later this month.
A Spokane jury will likely decide this week whether a 56-year-old man with a criminal history of indecent acts with minors will spend the rest of his life in prison.
The trial of Richard Payne, accused of inappropriately touching and exposing himself to a five-year-old girl at a NorthTown Mall arcade in June 2012, began today with jury selection in Spokane County Superior Court Judge Kathleen O'Connor's courtroom. The proceedings, expected to last a week or less, have been delayed multiple times by defense motions seeking to suppress comments Payne made to investigators and keep some details of his criminal history from jurors.
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Spokane developer Greg Jeffreys, who is jailed on federal charges alleging that he defrauded investors of millions of dollars, has asked a judge for a change of venue for his trial, arguing that local media “has saturated the Spokane area with prejudicial and inflammatory remarks.”
Citing primarily Spokesman-Review coverage, Jeffreys argued that half of the county’s potential jury pool had been tainted with information unrelated to the trial. The motion also cited the case against former Spokane Police Officer Karl Thompson, in which Thompson’s trial was moved to Yakima in 2011 after five years of “intense media coverage.” Thompson was found guilty of excessive use of force for his role in the death of Otto Zehm in 2006.
In a response to Jeffreys’ request, the government, through U.S. Attorney Michael Ormsby, said claims of a prejudiced jury pool were “wholly overstated” and asked the judge to reject the request.
U.S. District Judge Rosanna Peterson will hear the request on Sept. 10 at 10 a.m.
The judge will also hear a motion from Jeffreys to suppress evidence, including oral statements from Jeffreys, because they were a “direct result of an illegal search and seizure” of Jeffreys’ 10,000-square-foot home by 24 law enforcement agents on July 19, 2012, as well of Jeffreys’ person when he was arrested at the airport on Jan. 30.
Jeffreys is known for his central role in a development plan of the Ridpath Hotel. He faces 73 felony charges ranging from bank fraud to theft, though none relate to the shuttered downtown high-rise.
After violating previous orders by a judge and threatening a business associate and FBI special agent, Judge Peterson ruled that Jeffreys must remain in jail until his January trial.
Crime Stoppers of the Inland Northwest are looking for ten fugitives, three of whom are active, repeat offenders.
Repeat offender suspects are those criminals considered by law enforcement to be the most active offenders in the community, according to Crime Stoppers. There is a double reward for repeat offenders.
Crime Stoppers fugitives are wanted criminal suspects avoiding police capture. Do not approach them. They should only be contacted by law enforcement.
Anyone with information about these fugitive's whereabouts is asked to call the Crime Stoppers Tip Line at 1-800-222-TIPS. Tipsters don't have to give their name to collect the fugitive reward.
Coeur d'Alene police released security camera video of a man who robbed an espresso stand in Coeur d'Alene on Tuesday and Crime Stoppers is offering a cash reward for information leading to his arrest.
At about 5:30 p.m., a man pointed a gun and demanded money from a clerk working at the Lean Bean at 1820 Northwest Blvd., according to a news release.
The suspect fled on foot toward the 1000 block of Emma Avenue, the release said. He was last seen wearing blue jeans, a gray hooded sweatshirt and shoes with red laces.
Anyone with information is asked to call the Coeur d’Alene Police Department at 208-769-2320 or Crime Stoppers at 208-667-2111 or 1-800-222-TIPS.
The Spokane County Sheriff’s Office needs help identifying a potential suspect in a residential burglary.
On Sunday, the sheriff’s office received a report of a residential burglary on West Rockwell Avenue, according to a press release. The victim reported credit cards and other items were stolen.
A potential suspect used one of the credit cards at the Walmart on 5025 E. Sprague Ave. in Spokane Valley to purchase a flat screen television on Tuesday, according the release.
Photos were taken from parking loc surveillance footage. Anyone with information about the incident or who can help identify the suspect is asked to call Deputy Scott Streltzoff at 509-241-5485.
A reportedly intoxicated man assaulted a Spokane Valley Fire paramedic on Monday evening while crews treated a woman for a seizure.
While the Station 1 paramedic in full uniform and his partner treated the patient, 51-year-old William J. Nachtwey became hostile toward the paramedic and grabbed him by the shirt collar demanding they leave the trailer in the 9500 block of east 4th Avenue.
Spokane County Sheriff’s Office say the paramedic pushed Nachtwey over a coffee table. When he got up, he confronted them with a boxing stance.
The paramedic and his partner left the trailer while Spokane County sheriff’s deputies were called to the scene. According to a news release, before Nachtwey was arrested for 3rd degree assault, he tripped over a garbage can outside the trailer.
The firefighter was not injured during the confrontation. The woman was taken to Providence Sacred Heart Medical Center for further treatment.
Nachtwey was not injured when he fell over the coffee table or garbage can.
Were detectives just doing their job or did they go too far?
A Spokane attorney has accused detectives of misrepresenting facts surrounding a homicide investigation in order to obtain permission to search the belongings of the victim's daughter.
Recently unsealed court documents show Spokane police detectives seeking search warrants told a judge the daughter, Billie McKinney, 25, was an uncooperative witness who hindered the investigation into the May stabbing death of her mother, Sharlotte McGill.
She has since been cleared of any involvement.
Jeffry Finer, who is representing McKinney, released a statement Wednesday stating he would seek an explanation of the alleged misstatements from authorities, but did not specify what those misstatements were.
Authorities were looking into a possible connection between McKinney and 20-year-old Steven Lewis, who matches the physical description given by McGill just before she died. Lewis was dating the mother of troubled teenager Avondre Graham, 17, who now faces charges for McGill's murder and two separate assaults.
Police spokeswoman Officer Jennifer DeRuwe said detectives have a duty to look at anyone close to the investigation.
The story surrounding the recently released documents is sparking a lively discussion in the comment section.
Read more here.