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Otto Zehm

Otto Zehm, a Spokane man with schizophrenia who worked as a janitor, died after a confrontation with police at a North Side Zip Trip store in March 2006.

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Sue Lani Madsen. (Jesse Tinsley / The Spokesman-Review)

Sue Lani Madsen: Time to discard outdated stereotypes about mental health

While the struggle with post-traumatic stress disorder is real, the stereotype of mental illness as the cause of violence is not. It’s a cringe-inducing link for those who know and love someone who lives with a mental health diagnosis. On Veterans Day, we honor all those who served and came back. Time to honor our veterans further by laying to rest a destructive stereotype, the myth of the veteran as a “ticking time bomb.”

Karl Thompson released from prison

Former Spokane police officer Karl Thompson has been released from federal prison after being convicted of using excessive force against developmentally disabled janitor Otto Zehm, who died two days after a confrontation with Thompson.
Breean Beggs, center, then-director of the Center for Justice, talks with supporters Tuesday, Jan. 20, 2009 at a reception in the lobby of the Community Building in Spokane, Wash. Beggs was appointed to the Spokane City Council on Monday, Feb. 8, 2016. (Jesse Tinsley / The Spokesman-Review)

Breean Beggs picked to fill vacancy on Spokane City Council

Breean Beggs, a civil rights attorney, will fill the vacancy on the Spokane City Council. The council picked Beggs to take the seat that was left open when Councilman Jon Snyder resigned last month to take a job in state government. The seat represents south Spokane.

Police use-of-force cases shielded by strict Washington law

Killings by police in the line of duty have surged in Washington over the past decade, according to a Seattle Times analysis. During that period, only one police officer has been criminally charged in state courts with the illegal use of deadly force on the job.

Blog Posts

Thompson appeals Zehm verdict to U.S. Supreme Court

Former Spokane Police officer and current federal prison inmate Karl Thompson earlier this month filed an appeal to the U.S. Supreme Court of his excessive force conviction in the March 2006 death of Otto Zehm. The appeal, filed with the nation's highest court Oct. 22,...

Spokane looking for Police Ombudsman Commission volunteers

Spokane is looking for volunteers to serve on the new Police Ombudsman Commission. Applicants must undergo a background check and interviews. Application deadline is June 6 and city leaders want to have the five-member commission empaneled by mid-July. Application materials are available at spokanecity.org. The...

Jailed Ridpath developer wants trial moved

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.”...

Report: SPD lacks certified instructors

None of the Spokane Police Department's defensive tactics instructors are certified by the state and may have relied on a flawed legal interpretation while teaching officers when it's OK to use deadly force, the city's Use of Force Commission has found. "In fact, no officers...
Karl Thompson Jr. arrives at the Thomas S. Foley U.S. Courthouse for his sentencing in the Otto Zehm case on Thursday in Spokane. (Colin Mulvany)

Thompson being held at Phoenix security facility

Authorities have transferred 65-year-old Karl F. Thompson from the Federal Detention Center Sea-Tac in Seattle to a medium security facility in Arizona, according to the Federal Bureau of Prisons website. Though he's listed as being located at the Federal Correctional Institution in Phoenix, Thompson's release...
From left, Karl Thompson, Carl Oreskovich and Spokane police Officer John Gately on Nov. 2. (Christopher Anderson / The Spokesman-Review)

Thompson appeals Zehm conviction

Just as he promised last week after the sentencing, the attorney for convicted Spokane Police Officer Karl F. Thompson Jr. filed notice today that he intends to appeal several aspects of the case. U.S. District Court Judge Fred Van Sickle sentenced Thompson last week to...

Clark: Otto Zehm Finally Gets Justice

It’s a good day, Spokane. There’s no snow in the potholes, the river’s still running and Karl Thompson Jr. is already ensconced in a federal lockup on the other side of the state. Sorry, but you won’t find me joining the gripers and grousers who...

Thompson Gets 4 Years, 3 Months

Originally posted 5:08 p.m. Thursday Updated: After being handed a sentence Thursday of more than four years in federal prison – the culmination of six years of investigations, legal action and community soul-searching – former Spokane police Officer Karl F. Thompson Jr. walked away passively...

Is this the closure we have been promised?

Good morning, Netizens... Paraphrasing one of those woefully-hackneyed movies you often encounter on various Western TV channels once said, “Yesterday was a good day for a hanging.” That's because Karl Thompson, AKA Karl the Klubber, was sentenced yesterday for the beating death of Otto Zehm...

Federal prosecutor says Spokane has good police force

U.S. Attorney Mike Ormsby, whose office handled the excessive force prosecution of former Spokane police officer Karl Thompson, took deliberate steps Thursday to praise the trustworthiness of the local police force overall. "That's not an indictment of our entire police department," Ormsby said just moments...
Jeff Harvey of the Spokane Police Department (Spokane Police Department)

Police guild “circled the wagons” after Zehm

In addition to revelations that Spokane Police detectives were feeding information about the Zehm investigation to Officer Karl F. Thompson, Jr., the grand jury testimony of Detective Jeff Harvey had several other insights into how the Spokane Police handled the case. Harvey was a vice...
Spokane police officer Karl Thompson waits to cross the street after leaving the William O. Douglas Federal Courthouse in Yakima, Wash., Wednesday, Nov. 2, 2011.  Thompson was found guilty on two counts in the death of Otto Zehm. (Christopher Anderson / Spokesman-Review)

Thompson supporters invited to potluck

UPDATE: Potluck for Thompson canceled. Officer John Gately just called Friday afternoon to say that the Nov. 3 event "An Evening with Karl" F. Thompson Jr. has been canceled. "It was never intended to offend anyone," Gately said. "It's canceled." HERE'S THE ORIGINAL POST: Most...
From left, Karl Thompson, Carl Oreskovich and Spokane police Officer John Gately on Nov. 2. (Christopher Anderson / The Spokesman-Review)

Oreskovich gets another week to file

The defense attorneys of former Spokane Police Officer Karl F. Thompson Jr. have blamed a faulty email program for missing the deadline last Friday to file any objections to the pre-sentence report that could become the last major legal battle prior to sentencing. Thompson was...

Now on to the penalty phase …

For nearly a year, former Spokane Police Officer Karl F. Thompson Jr. has avoided sentencing on his federal convictions for using excessive force in the beating of Otto Zehm and then lying to investigators about it. But with yesterday's refusal by U.S. District Judge Fred...

Judge Denies New Trial For Thompson

A federal judge has denied the motion for a new trial for convicted former Spokane Police officer Karl F. Thompson Jr. (pictured). Thompson’s lawyer Carl Oreskovich argued on Aug. 31 that Thompson should receive a new trial because federal prosecutors hid information from the defense...

Encounter with jurors sparks debate

Buried in the transcripts unsealed last week of the secret jury hearings held by a federal judge in the Karl F. Thompson Jr. case, was an apparent chance encounter between the jury forewoman and the alternate juror. Jury Forewoman Diane Riley said she was having...

Alternate juror blasts case against Thompson

New documents released Thursday show that the only person who raised issues about juror misconduct in the trial that convicted former Spokane Police Officer Karl F. Thompson Jr. was an alternate juror who was not privy to the final deliberations. U.S. District Court Judge Fred...

Juror: Thompson lawyers twisted words

The forewoman of the jury that convicted former Spokane Police officer Karl F. Thompson Jr. of excessive force said in a letter to a federal judge that defense attorneys have twisted her words in their effort to force a new trial for the decorated officer....

Feds oppose Thompson prison delay

Federal prosecutors appear to be growing frustrated with the ongoing delays that have kept convicted Spokane police Officer Karl F. Thompson Jr. out of prison. Eight months have passed since a jury convicted Thompson of using excessive force and lying to investigators in the 2006...

It’s about time!

Good morning, Netizens... I've been waiting patiently as all the various members of the news media have danced a fandango over the proposed settlement between the City of Spokane and the Otto Zehm family, but I still have not seen anyone with either the honesty...

Zehm lawsuit settled for $1.67 million

A $1.67 million out-of-court settlement has been reached in the civil suit against Spokane police filed by relatives of Otto Zehm, the mentally ill janitor who died following a violent confrontation with officers after being mistakenly implicated in a possible theft. The deal also includes...

Mediation set in Zehm police lawsuit

A federal judge has set a two-day mediation session to settle the $14.5 million civil suit filed against nine Spokane Police officers by the mother and estate of Otto Zehm. U.S. District Court Judge Lonny Suko issued an order directing the Zehm family attorneys, City...

Thompson sentencing delayed again

U.S. District Judge Fred Van Sickle agreed to another delay Friday in the sentencing of former Spokane police Officer Karl F. Thompson Jr. Van Sickle agreed to a request by attorney Dutch Wetzel who is representing video forensic expert Grant Fredericks, who caused the delay...

Are we finally accountable?

Good morning, Netizens... Interim Spokane Police Chief Scott Stevens publicly acknowledged yesterday that the Spokane Police Department made troubling mistakes while investigating the 2006 confrontation that resulted in the death of Otto Zehm. Stephens went on to state that he disagrees with Assistant U.S. Attorney...

Feds dispute Zehm trial defense claims

The forensic videographer whose allegations of prosecutorial misconduct have indefinitely stalled the sentencing of former Spokane Police Officer Karl F. Thompson Jr. is depicted in new court documents as an attention-seeking police apologist who lied to federal investigators. Assistant U.S. Attorney Aine Ahmed filed scores...

DC: Justice For Otto Zehm At Hand

Four or five other customers were ahead of me when I sauntered into the convenience store on Sunday’s sunny afternoon. No worries. Despite the Zip Trip name on the signage, I hadn’t come here on a speed run. After scanning the aisles a moment, I...

Use of force panel holds 1st meeting

The interim Spokane police chief and a Gonzaga University Law School professor were among the presenters Wednesday at the first meeting of Spokane's commission on police use of force. Jason Gillmer, civil liberties expert, described the need for officers to be held to an "objective...

Judge grants Thompson interview request

A federal judge Friday granted a request by the attorney for former Spokane Police Officer Karl F. Thompson Jr. to interview a government expert witness who claims that federal prosecutors mischaracterized his expected testimony. The move further delays the sentencing of Thompson, who was convicted...

A look at Spokane police use of force

To understand why the Spokane Police Department’s use-of-force training is under a microscope, consider this disconnect: Although the state’s top police trainer concluded that the fatal 2006 confrontation with unarmed janitor Otto Zehm was indefensible, the department’s own instructors and the city’s legal advisers have...

Jury convicts man of threatening officer

A jury has convicted a Spokane man of felony harassment for threatening to kill a Spokane police officer. Rudy Ray Cordova, 38, was acquitted of fourth-degree domestic assault, which is the suspected crime that brought him in contact with Officer Chris McMurtrey. Cordova's lawyer, Doug...

Cop questioned over Thompson support

A Spokane police officer who says he feared for his life after being threatened by a felon was asked in court Wednesday about supportive comments he posted on a Facebook page in support of another convicted felon – former Officer Karl Thompson. Defense lawyer Doug...

DC: Thompson’s Hail Mary Defense

And now for the latest in legalized leg pulling. Ex-Spokane police Officer Karl Thompson Jr. has “accepted responsibility” for pounding Otto Zehm to pulp in 2006 and lying to investigators afterward to cover his slimy hide. Or so the Thompson shysters claim. Gee, Karl. Too...

Is this a harmless coincidence?

Good morning, Netizens... Is this a coincidence or not? I've never met Tom Clouse, a reporter for the Spokesman-Review, although if I did manage to meet him, I'd thank him for the good job he did covering the Otto Zehm trial in far-off Yakima, maybe...

Ex-justice to serve on Zehm committee

Gerry Alexander, who retired last year as the chief justice of the Washington State Supreme Court, will serve on the city's Use of Force Commission. The commission was created last year by former Mayor Mary Verner to review the city's handling of the police confrontation...

Thompson seeks sentence reduction

A federal prosecutor is objecting to a request by convicted former Spokane police Officer Karl F. Thompson Jr. to reduce his potential prison sentence because he claims to have taken responsibility for using excessive force on Otto Zehm and lying to cover it up. Assistant...

Retired chief justice will serve on Zehm overview committee

Gerry Alexander, who retired last year as the chief justice of the Washington State Supreme Court, will serve on the city's Use of Force Commission. The commission was created last year by former Mayor Mary Verner to review the city's handling of the police confrontation...

Thompson Seeks Sentence Reduction

A federal prosecutor is objecting to a request by convicted former Spokane Police officer Karl F. Thompson Jr. to reduce his potential prison sentence because he claims to have taken responsibility for using excessive force on Otto Zehm and lying to cover it up. Assistant...

Judge: Steve Tucker recall won’t proceed

A recall petition against Spokane County Prosecuting Attorney Steve Tucker was dismissed this afternoon by a visiting Superior Court judge. Judge Craig Matheson of Benton and Franklin counties said that four recall charges drafted by Shannon Sullivan were insufficient and that one of the four...

Thompson’s motion to acquit denied

A federal judge Monday again ruled that government prosecutors provided enough evidence to allow a jury to convict former Spokane Police Officer Karl F. Thompson Jr. of using excessive force on Otto Zehm. As he did during the four-week trial in Yakima, U.S. District Court...

Tucker disputes recall effort’s claims

Prosecutor Steve Tucker said Tuesday that he sees nothing in a petition to recall him except “rumors and hearsay, and ‘facts’ that are not true.” The petition for a recall election was organized by Shannon Sullivan, who led the successful recall drive against Spokane Mayor...

Judge denies request to talk to jurors

A judge has denied a request by former Spokane police Officer Karl Thompson’s attorney’s to interview the jurors who convicted him last month of two felonies in connection with the 2006 death of Otto Zehm. U.S. District Judge Fred Van Sickle said in a 10-page...

City Council rebukes Thompson salute

Police officers who saluted Officer Karl F. Thompson in a federal courtroom earlier this month have received more official criticism. The Spokane City Council on Monday voted unanimously to denounce the “courtroom behavior” of the nearly 50 officers who honored Thompson as he was led...

Why Verner lost: Part 3: Otto Zehm

It’s hard to imagine how Mayor Mary Verner could have lost so much ground between the primary and the November election without concerns about the Otto Zehm case eating at her base. With some members of the Peace and Justice Action League of Spokane expressing...

Thompson’s lawyers cite jury interview

Karl Thompson's lawyers say jury forewoman Diane Riley's statements to media this week are further evidence of the need to examine whether outside information was considered in deliberations. Riley told The Spokesman-Review no jurors considered information not presented at trial when the convicted Thompson of...

Tim Moses resigns as police spokesman

Spokane police Officer Tim Moses has resigned as a public information officer at the advice of his lawyer. Moses, who told jurors at Karl Thompson's trial that the FBI intimidated him into giving false incriminating testimony to a grand jury, has been "under a lot...

Thompson juror alleges ‘police coverup’

The forewoman of the jury that convicted Spokane Police Officer Karl F. Thompson Jr. said none of the jurors brought information to deliberations that they picked up from media reports, as alleged by defense attorneys seeking a new trial. Diane Riley, 57, of Ellensburg, contacted...
From left, Karl Thompson, Carl Oreskovich and Spokane police Officer John Gately on Nov. 2. (Christopher Anderson / The Spokesman-Review)

Chief: ‘Silent majority needs to stand up’

Spokane police Officer Karl Thompson outside the federal courthouse in Yakima on Nov. 2 with (from left) his lawyer, Carl Oreskvocih, and Spokane Police Guild Vice President John Gately. (SRPhoto/Chris Anderson) Spokane police Chief Anne Kirkpatrick suggested Monday that no cultural changes will occur within...

Steve Tucker mum on Otto Zehm case

Ten days after a jury convicted Officer Karl F. Thompson Jr. in federal court, Spokane County Prosecutor Steve Tucker has given no indication that he will move forward in state court with an investigation into Thompson or other officers involved in the 2006 confrontation with...

Vestal: A New View Of Karl Thompson

Karl Thompson looked like a whole new man. When he walked into the federal courtroom Monday, he wore yellow jailhouse garb – the blousy top a shade darker than the loose pants. Big black letters on the back read: BONNER COUNTY. On his bare feet...

Thompson Free Until Sentencing

A judge ruled late Monday to release convicted Spokane police Officer Karl F. Thompson Jr. and could rule as early as this morning whether to bring in jurors for questioning after a defense attorney raised allegations of juror misconduct. U.S. District Court Judge Fred Van...

What did Thompson jurors see on TV?

An investigator with the U.S. Attorney's Office contacted Northwest Cable News last week to find out what five jurors could have seen if they were exposed to coverage of the Karl Thompson-Otto Zehm trial during breakfast at their Yakima hotel. The news channel says the...

Judge in Zehm warns against outbursts

On the heels of a Spokane police officer yelling "PRESENT ARMS" as law enforcement Karl Thompson left court with U.S. Marshals Friday, a federal judge warned that such outbursts won't be tolerated. "At best, such conduct will cause exclusion from the courtroom, not to return....
Snickers candy bars, flowers and 2 liter bottles of Pepsi Cola are left curb-side, Nov. 4, 2011 in front of the Zip Trip, on Division at Augusta, where Otto Zehm was beaten unconscious by Spokane police officers, in March 2006, who thought Zehm was a robbery suspect.  Zehm died 2 days later. (Dan Pelle / The Spokesman-Review)

Zehm Verdict Shocks Alternate Juror?

Snickers candy bars, flowers and 2 liter bottles of Pepsi Cola are left curb-side Friday in front of the Zip Trip, on Division at Augusta, where Otto Zehm was beaten unconscious by Spokane police officers, in March 2006, who thought Zehm was a robbery suspect....

Alternate juror shocked by Zehm verdict?

This afternoon, Karl Thompson's lawyer, Carl Oreskovich, filed an emergency motion to get Thompson out of jail. He also filed a motion asking that he be allowed to contact jurors because of what he said was "an unsolicited email received by defense counsel from one...
Snickers candy bars, flowers and 2 liter bottles of Pepsi Cola are left curb-side, Nov. 4, 2011 in front of the Zip Trip, on Division at Augusta, where Otto Zehm was beaten unconscious by Spokane police officers, in March 2006, who thought Zehm was a robbery suspect. Zehm died 2 days later.  (Dan Pelle / The Spokesman-Review)

Thompson supporters express outrage

Snickers candy bars, flowers and 2-liter bottles of Pepsi were left curbside today in front of the Zip Trip on Division at Augusta, where Otto Zehm lost consciousness during a March 2006 confrontation wth Spokane police officers, He died two days later. (SRPhoto/Dan Pelle) The...

Spokane Cops Salute Karl Thompson

Some four dozen Spokane Police officers and other supporters stood when someone yelled “Present Arms” and saluted Thompson as he was led away by U.S. Marshals without being handcuffed. As the crowd saluted in unison, attorney Jeffry Finer turned and apologized to the family of...

Karl Thompson Taken Into Custody

A federal judge in Yakima ordered Spokane Police Officer Karl F. Thompson Jr. taken into custody this morning following his conviction on charges of using excessive force and lying to investigators. Some three dozen Spokane Police officers and other supporters stood when someone yeled “Present...

Feds hint at broader problems with SPD

Could a broader federal probe of the Spokane Police Department be under way? Although U.S. Attorney Mike Ormsby joined other community leaders Wednesday in cautioning against drawing too many conclusions from the excessive force conviction of Spokane police Officer Karl F. Thompson Jr., indications are...

AM: Karl Thompson Found Guilty 2X

Spokane police officer Karl Thompson, right, waits to cross the street after leaving the William O. Douglas Federal Courthouse in Yakima, Wash. Wednesday. A federal court jury on Wednesday convicted Thompson of using excessive force on a mentally ill man who died in 2006 after...

Clark: Jury Nailed Thompson Verdict

It takes a lot to get to a guy like me. Many journalists hide behind a shield of cynicism, and I’ve had 37 years of practice. But I’ll admit it. I choked up Wednesday afternoon when my Mom called to relay the bombshell she’d just...
Spokane police officer Karl Thompson waits to cross the street after leaving the William O. Douglas Federal Courthouse in Yakima, Wash., Wednesday, Nov. 2, 2011.  Thompson was found guilty on two counts in the death of Otto Zehm. (Christopher Anderson / Spokesman-Review)

Zehm’s family ‘relieved’ by guilty verdict

Spokane police Officer Karl Thompson leaves the William O. Douglas Federal Courthouse in Yakima today after a jury convicted him of two felonies related to the death of Otto Zehm. (SRPhoto/Christopher Anderson) Breean Beggs, attorney for Otto Zehm's family, said Zehm's mother, Ann, is relieved...
After a press conference in the Thomas S. Foley U.S. Courthouse in Spokane, Wash., Otto Zehm family members Dale Zehm, center, with his wife Sandy, thank U.S. Attorney Mike Ormsby, far left, for helping get a guilty verdict in the Karl Thompson trial, Wednesday, Nov. 2, 2011. (Colin Mulvany / The Spokesman-Review)

Bugbee: Moses didn’t cover anything up

After a press conference in the U.S. Courthouse in Spokane, Otto Zehm's family members, Dale Zehm, center, with his wife, Sandy, thank U.S. Attorney Mike Ormsby, far left, following the jury's conviction of Spokane police Officer Karl Thompson. (SRPhoto/Colin Mulvany) Attorney Chris Bugbee, who represents...

Thompson Guilty On Both Counts

A jury has convicted Spokane Police Officer Karl F. Thompson Jr. of needlessly beating Otto Zehm and then lying about it to cover up his actions. The verdict comes five years and seven months since Zehm’s life ended and growing questions of police accountability began....

What will happen to Karl Thompson?

Federal prosecutors are expected to ask U.S. District Court Judge Fred Van Sickle to immediately detain Spokane Police Officer Karl F. Thompson Jr. if the jury convicts him of using unreasonable force. The detention request is mandatory for all violent crimes. However, defense attorney Carl...

Honorable man or SPD whitewash?

Before closing arguments today in the excessive force trial of Spokane police Officer Karl Thompson, lawyers debated the addition of two crucial jury instructions: one regarding Otto Zehm's right to defend himself against unlawful force and the other regarding the need for Thompson to be...

Zehm: No video allowed in jury room

Jurors are hearing instructions before closing arguments begin. Get minute-by-minute updates from the courtroom here. When jurors began deliberations in the excessive force trial of Officer Karl Thompson, they won't be able to review the surveillance video of his fatal confrontation with Otto Zehm without...

Zehm closing arguments set for Monday

The case against Spokane Police Officer Karl F. Thompson Jr. should be in the jury's hands by Monday afternoon, which would have been Otto Zehm's 42nd birthday. Thompson, the first officer to confront Zehm following a mistaken report of a possible theft in 2006, is...

Karl Thompson’s testimony resumes today

Karl Thompson is back on the stand right now as prosecutors finish cross examination. Get minute-by-minute updates here. Thompson's testimony began Thursday: YAKIMA – After more than five years of videotape review and federal allegations of a police coverup, Spokane police Officer Karl F. Thompson...

Terry Ferguson testifes in Zehm case

Get minute-by-minute updates from the coutroom here. A retired Spokane police detective who found no evidence that Officer Karl Thompson used excessive force when confronting Otto Zehm testified as a witness for the defense Thursday, but her most memorable testimony came on cross examination. Defense...

Jury wants more information on Zehm

Get minute-by-minute updates from the courtroom here. Jurors in the excessive force trial of Spokane Police Officer Karl F. Thompson Jr. apparently are bothered by the lack of information about Otto Zehm being allowed in the trial. U.S. District Judge Fred Van Sickle disclosed today...

Karl Thompson is testifying right now

Spokane police Officer Karl Thompson is testifying now as the last witness in his excessive force trial in U.S. District Court in Yakima. This is the first time Thompson has spoken publicly about the fatal confontation with Otto Zehm on March 18, 2006. Retired Spokane...
Karl F. Thompson Jr., center, a Spokane police officer facing charges of lying to investigators and using excessive force in the Otto Zehm case, arrives with his legal team at the William O. Douglas Federal Building on Wednesday in Yakima. (Colin Mulvany)

Karl Thompson to testify tomorrow

Karl Thompson and his legal team, including Carl Oreskovich and Steve Lamberson, arrive at the William O. Douglas Federal Building in Yakima for the start of Thompson's trial. (AP file photo) Spokane police Officer Karl Thompson will testify tomorrow at his excessive force trial in...

Track the Karl Thompson-Otto Zehm trial

The defense is expected to rest on Thursday. Defense expert Michael Schott, a forensic image analyst who disputes prosecutors' description of the surveillence video, is on the stand now. Get minute-by-minute updates from the courtroom here. YAKIMA – Spokane police Officer Steven Braun Jr. on...

Justice for Otto Zehm? I question that…

Good morning, Netizens... This belated greetings comes to you after a marathon 19 hour work day, which was preceded by another killer of a day just before it. Somehow, through the miracle of the Internet, I have been closely following the various Twitter feeds from...

2nd doctor says Zehm was not hit in head

A second medical expert testified today that injuries to Otto Zehm's head were not caused by a police baton. Dr. Daniel Davis, a forensic pathologist and the medical examiner in Lane County, Ore., said Zehm's head injuries were not caused by Officer Karl Thompson hitting...

Judge blasts latest dispute in Zehm case

U.S. District Judge Fred Van Sickle apparently has grown weary of the continuing admissibility battles between the prosecution and defense in Officer Karl Thompson's excessive force trial. "I don't recall spending as much time pre-trial on any criminal case I've ever tried, and I've been...

Doctor says Zehm was not struck in head

I'll be tracking the trial again today with minute-by-minute updates on Twitter. Another defense expert, Dr. Dan Davis, is testifying now. Check it out here. Here's a summary from yesterday: YAKIMA – After nearly two weeks of critical prosecution testimony, defense attorneys for Spokane police...

Keep up with the Thompson-Zehm trial

The first witness of the day in the Karl Thompson trial is Angela Wiggins, who was working at Zip Trip the night of the encounter that led to Otto Zehm's death. Prosecutors say Wiggins, who was arrested last week on a material witness warrant, heard...

Listen to Karl Thompson’s SPD interview

Spokane police Officer Karl Thompson described his encounter with Otto Zehm in a 2006 interview with Detective Terry Ferguson, who has since retired. Jurors heard that interview in court last week. Now you can listen to it above. Thompson is pictured outside the Yakima courthouse...

McIntyre describes ‘intimidation’ by FBI

A Spokane police officer who is the target of a grand jury investigation for her role in the Otto Zehm case cried on the stand today as she alleged intimidation by federal agents. Sandy McIntyre, who has a "father-daughter relationship" with Karl Thompson, has previously...

Tim Moses: Thought I could trust FBI

Spokane police Officer Tim Moses was so rattled after meeting with federal investigators about the Otto Zehm case that he feared an agent might be secretly recording him when he met with him afterward. Moses knew an FBI agents from hostage negotiation team trainings, in...

Tim Moses’ testimony to continue today

A doctor who testified in the Rodney King police brutality case in 1992 told jurors the Karl Thompson excessive force trial Thursday that the case are comparable. "The Rodney King case had similar elements to the case at hand," said Dr. Harry Lincoln Smith. He...
This screenshot of Zip Trip surveillance video shows Otto Zehm inside the store on March 18, 2006. One of the young girls pictured, Britni Brashers, testified at the trial of Officer Karl Thompson. (Zip Trip surveillence video)

Zip Trip manager: Zehm was a regular

This screenshot of Zip Trip surveillance video shows Otto Zehm inside the store on March 18, 2006. One of the young girls pictured, Britni Brashers, testified at Karl Thompson's trial last week. A Spokane convenience store who knew Otto Zehm as a regular customer since...

Feds: Moses may contradict own testimony

Spokane police Officer Tim Moses may contradict testimony he gave to a grand jury in 2009 if he testifies as a prosecution witness in the federal trial of Officer Karl Thompson, according to court documents filed this week. U.S. District Judge Fred Van Sickle issued...

EMT: Moses told me of Zehm head strikes

Another EMT who responded to the Zip Trip the night of Otto Zehm's fatal confrontation with Officer Karl Thompson told jurors this morning that Officer Tim Moses said Zehm had been struck in the head, neck and upper chest with a police baton. Aaron Jaramillo,...

SPD: Hostile witnesses, immunity letter

A paramedic who wrote a report describing baton blows to Otto Zehm's head by police testified today that he heard about the head strikes from Spokane police Officer Tim Moses. It was through Michael Stussi's report, prosecutors said in opening statements last week, that the...

Couple describe Zehm-Thompson fight

A Spokane couple who was in the Zip Trip parking lot the night of the fatal confrontation between Otto Zehm and Spokane police Officer Karl Thompson testified today that Zehm never lunged or attacked Thompson with a pop bottle. Russell Balow said Thompson stopped "very...

Jim Nicks testifies at Thompson trial

Assistant Spokane Police Chief Jim Nicks told jurors in Officer Karl Thompson's excessive force trial this morning that Thompson approached him a year ago and told him he'd tried to take back his initial statement about Otto Zehm lunging at him. At the request of...

Retired SPD cpl. testifies in Zehm case

A retired Spokane police corporal who was on scene after Karl Thompson confronted Otto Zehm was declared an adverse witness Tuesday as prosecutors described his friendship with Thompson. That designation allowed prosecutors to ask retired Cpl. Ty R. Johnson leading questions during his testimony Tuesday...

Behavior expert testifies in Zehm case

An expert on human behavior and reaction time testified today that Otto Zehm had no opportunity to see Spokane police Officer Karl Thompson until he was about 10 to 12 feet away. By then, Thompson had already pulled his baton, said Dr. Richard Gill. "His...

Jurors told to disregard ‘robbery’ reference

Jurors in the federal trial of Spokane police Officer Karl Thompson were instructed this morning to disregard any reference to Otto Zehm as a "robbery suspect." The move by U.S. District Court Judge Fred Van Sickle came after prosecutors argued the door had opened for...

Expert: Thompson used excessive force

YAKIMA - Had the fatal confrontation with Otto Zehm been a mock scenario used in training, Spokane Police Officer Karl F. Thompson Jr. would have flunked, a use-of-force expert testified on Monday. Robert Bragg, who directs use-of-force training for all police recruits at Washington’s police...

Police use ‘505’ to support Thompson

As the excessive force trial of Officer Karl Thompson enters its second week, many Spokane police officers have made his badge number their personal Facebook profile pictures as a show of support. Thompson is a mentor to many in the department and was drafted to...

Teen describes Zehm/Thompson encounter

Spokane resident Britni Brashers was 13 in March 2006 when she and her younger sister went to a Spokane convenience stores to buy a few things. She ended up being a witness to one of most controversial police encounters in city history. "He walked in...

Jurors hear Thompson’s interview w/ SPD

After the encounter that led to Otto Zehm's death, Spokane police Officer Karl Thompson told an investigator he didn't feel deadly force was needed against the suspect. In a recorded interview with now-retired Spokane police Detective Terry Ferguson that was played for jurors today, Thompson...

Officer may plead 5th in Thompson trial

Spokane police Officer Tim Moses may invoke his Fifth Amendment right against self-incrimination if he's subpoened to testify in the excessive force trial of Officer Karl Thompson, who is charged in connection with the death of Otto Zehm. Federal prosecutor Victor Boutros told U.S. District...

Openings in Thompson trial today at 9 a.m.

Opening statements in the trial of Spokane police Officer Karl Thompson, charged in connection with the death of Otto Zehm, are to begin at 9 a.m. today in Yakima. Reporter Tom Clouse will be providing daily coverage from the courthouse in The Spokesman-Review and at...

Clark: Venue Change Slaps Spokane

The verdict is in. Anyone desiring to watch the upcoming federal trial of Karl Thompson Jr. – the Spokane cop whose deadly encounter with Otto Zehm earned him an excessive force charge – must fill up the tank and travel 200 miles to Yakima. Apparently...

Feds ask to keep Zehm trial in Spokane

A federal prosecutor has asked a judge to reconsider his Tuesday decision to move the upcoming criminal trial of Spokane police Officer Karl F. Thompson Jr. to Yakima. But defense attorneys support the move. Assistant U.S. Attorney Timothy Durkin filed a motion outlining the difficulties...

Karl Thompson trial moved to Yakima

A federal judge Tuesday moved the upcoming criminal trial of Spokane police Officer Karl F. Thompson Jr. to Yakima after defense attorneys raised concerns about the extent of local media coverage of the controversy surrounding the fatal confrontation with Otto Zehm. U.S. District Court Judge...

Longtime Dem backs Condon, blasts Verner over Zehm

Former Democratic County Chairman and one-time congressional candidate Tom Keefe said today he is reaching outside his normal partisan boundaries to endorse David Condon in the mayor's race. Officially, municipal races in Spokane are non-partisan. But sometimes the county organization or prominent party members endorse...

Verner doesn’t blame Hession

Spokane Mayor Mary Verner said last week that a campaign statement on the Otto Zehm matter wasn't meant to pin blame on others. Responding to a news release criticizing her response to the Otto Zehm cases from her election opponent, David Condon, Verner released her...

2nd officer in Zehm probe identified

With the excessive force trial of a Spokane police officer less than a month away, the identity of a second officer under active federal investigation in connection with the fatal confrontation with Otto Zehm has been confirmed. Senior Spokane Police Officer Sandra McIntyre (pictured) already...

Lawyer wants Thompson trial moved

The attorney representing Spokane police Officer Karl F. Thompson Jr. filed a motion today asking a federal judge to move the upcoming Oct. 11 trial because of “intense” media coverage and because it has become a political issue in the upcoming mayoral election. Carl Oreskovich...

Nicks to retire as Kirkpatrick steps down

The Spokane Police Department’s top two officers are on their way out, leaving city officials to find new leadership as they struggle with the continuing legal fallout surrounding the death of Otto Zehm. Assistant Chief Jim Nicks announced Tuesday his upcoming retirement will coincide with...

The truth about Otto Zehm begins to emerge…

Good evening Netizens... We have been bystanders for over five years as the Otto Zehm homicide has inexorably ground its way through the news, and until recently we were none the better-informed for it. All we knew for a certainty was that an innocent man...

Have the wheels fallen off the cart?

Good morning, Netizens... In case you haven't been following recent news surrounding the Otto Zehm murder investigation, yesterday events got even more harried, hectic and somewhat misleading than they have been in recent times, especially from the perspective of Mayor Queen Mary Verner and various...

Mayor responds to Condon’s criticism of Verner’s handling of Zehm case

Below is Mayor Mary Verner's full response to the statement released earlier in the day by her opponent in the November election, David Condon, followed by Condon's statement. Condon offered harsh criticism of Verner's handling of the Otto Zehm matter. Verner's response was delivered by...

Feds sought meetings w/ city re: Zehm

U.S. Department of Justice officials two years ago had significant enough “ethical concerns” with the city of Spokane’s legal department that they asked to meet with Mayor Mary Verner, police Chief Anne Kirkpatrick and City Council President Joe Shogan. But none of the three ever...

Pop the lid on the box and see what falls out…

Good afternoon, Netizens... Like a vaunted knight of old, I have been futilely railing at Queen Mary Verner, Joe Shogun, Rocky Treppiedi, Police Chief Anne Kirkpatrick and a host of other high-ranking city officials for what may seem like a lifetime to some, and until...

When will the guilty be held accountable?

Good evening, Netizens... At some considerable risk of having this message zotted by my handlers, I am going to post this message from former Sheriff Tony Bamonte to Tim Durkin, Assistant United States Attorney for the Eastern District of Washington. I am posting it verbatim,...

Mayor pushes to resolve Zehm suit

Spokane Mayor Mary Verner announced Tuesday that she is seeking “all courses of action” to resolve the civil case surrounding the city’s handling of the fatal 2006 confrontation between Spokane police and mentally ill janitor Otto Zehm. Verner said media attention over the past week...

Expert says officers caused Zehm’s death

A medical expert hired by the Spokane police officer facing criminal charges over the fatal Otto Zehm confrontation is blaming other officers at the scene for causing the unarmed janitor’s death. Court documents filed Friday in U.S. District Court indicate Dr. Daniel Davis is prepared...
Otto Zehm from news archive

Expert says Zehm’s death caused by officers

A medical expert hired by the Spokane police officer facing criminal charges over the fatal Otto Zehm confrontation is blaming other officers at the scene for causing the unarmed janitor’s death. Court documents filed Friday in U.S. District Court indicate Dr. Daniel Davis is prepared...

Nicks changes story on Zehm’s death

Spokane Mayor Mary Verner Tuesday acknowledged that the city is re-evaluating its legal position in the Otto Zehm controversy after new court documents indicate officers violated use-of-force and other departmental policies in the fatal 2006 confrontation. According to court records filed last week in the...

The truth about Otto Zehm emerges…finally.

Good morning, Netizens... To quote the Spokesman-Review's Shawn Vestal, in speaking of Jim Nicks' erratic and misleading trip to the truth regarding the death of Otto Zehm, “It took just five years, 20 weeks and a day.” That, folks, is just too damned long for...

Court: Zehm’s innocence not admissible

A jury likely will not learn that Otto Zehm was innocent of a crime when he was confronted by a Spokane police officer in a fatal encounter five years ago, federal appeals court judges ruled Thursday. The 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals supported a...

9th Circuit hears arguments in Zehm case

SEATTLE — A jury should be told Otto Zehm hadn’t committed any crime before he was beaten by a Spokane police officer who claims Zehm was aggressive and defiant when confronted in a North Side convenience store, a federal appeals court panel was told Monday....

Officer’s trial over Zehm death delayed

The criminal trial of Spokane police Officer Karl F. Thompson Jr. has been delayed again. U.S. District Judge Fred Van Sickle agreed to a request by defense attorney Carl Oreskovich to change the date of the trial despite objections from a federal prosecutor. The trial,...

Officer’s lawyer asks for Zehm trial delay

An attorney representing Spokane police Officer Karl F. Thompson Jr. is asking a federal judge to postpone the March 7 trial while an appeals court considers questions over the admissibility of certain information about the fatal encounter with Otto Zehm . Carl Oreskovich (right) wrote...

Delay expected in Otto Zehm trial

The criminal case against Spokane police Officer Karl F. Thompson Jr. now has a slim chance of proceeding in March after the 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals on Friday agreed to speed up its review of the appeal that stopped the case cold in...

Appeal to 9th Circuit delays Otto Zehm trial

With a jury pool waiting in another room, a federal judge Monday postponed the criminal trial against Karl F. Thompson Jr. after prosecutors announced their intention to appeal his ruling that barred evidence showing Otto Zehm had not committed a crime before Thompson confronted him....

Otto Zehm Cop Trial Delayed 2 Months

The federal trial of Spokane Police Officer Karl F. Thompson Jr. (a former Kootenai County sheriff's captain) in the Otto Zehm case will be postponed at least two months as as prosecutors appeal a judge’s ruling to the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals. U.S. District...

‘Excited delirium’ axed from Zehm defense

After years of Spokane Police officials claiming that Otto Zehm suffered from “excited delirium,” a defense attorney said Thursday that he will avoid offering any evidence or expert testimony about the disputed medical condition often cited by police agencies to explain controversial in-custody deaths. Defense...

Oreskovich defends city’s legal strategy

The attorney defending Spokane police Officer Karl F. Thompson Jr. spent a good portion of a hearing Monday defending the city of Spokane’s legal strategy. The attorney, Carl Oreskovich, told a federal judge that no conflict exists between his roles defending Thompson on criminal charges...

Hearing in Otto Zehm case set for Monday

By Thomas ClouseA hearing is set for Monday on the conflict of interest claim brought by prosecutors in the Karl Thompson case. Earlier this week, the 9th Circuit Court of Appeals appointed U.S. District Court Judge Philip Pro of Las Vegas to decide the issue....

2nd officer faces charges in Zehm case

A second Spokane police officer has received a letter indicating that federal prosecutors intend to seek further charges in connection with the Otto Zehm investigation.Spokane attorney Rob Cossey said he represents three or four officers as a federal grand jury continues to gather information in...
A court filing says Officer Karl F. Thompson Jr. lives rent- free in this Hayden house. As part of a September 2009 divorce filing, Thompson gave his wife all interest in the log home, which for a time was for sale for $675,000. (Kathy Plonka)

Did Thompson use divorce to hide assets?

Spokane police Officer Karl F. Thompson Jr. divorced his wife to shield his assets and force taxpayers to foot the bill for his criminal defense, the federal prosecutor in the Otto Zehm case alleged in court documents filed last week. Assistant U.S. Attorney Tim Durkin...
Assistant city attorney Rocky Treppiedi, left, arrives on the scene of an officer-involved shooting Friday, July 10, 2009, in Spokane. JESSE TINSLEY jesset@spokesman.com (Jesse Tinsley / The Spokesman-Review)

City attorneys out of Thompson defense

Attorneys employed by the city of Spokane no longer will represent Spokane Police Officer Karl F. Thompson in the legal battles stemming from the 2006 death of Otto Zehm, according to a recent court filing. Assistant U.S. Attorney Timothy Durkin, in arguments filed last month,...

Oreskovich: ‘I’m not Internet proficient’

By Thomas ClouseU.S. District Court Judge Fred Van Sickle didn’t have the kindest of responses Tuesday when a defense attorney representing Spokane police Office Karl F. Thompson, Jr. asked the judge to compel federal prosecutors to turn over the names, phone numbers and addresses of...
Otto Zehm from news archive

Otto Zehm vindicated at last?

Good morning, Netizens... First, before I revisit the sordid tale of how Otto Zehm was killed by the Spokane Police Department, I'm going to point you in a direction which I feel everyone needs to read. First, browse to http://www.spokesman.com/stories/2010/apr/15/feds-testimony-altered/?documents and realizing that it is...

From the Headlines re Otto Zhem

As I brought in the paper this morning, the first thing I see is the headline: "Zehm grand jury to hear evidence police changed testimony" (by Thomas Clouse). http://www.spokesman.com/stories/2010/apr/15/feds-testimony-altered/When I first read about this incident, my initial thought was that something was fishy in the...

Zags basketball led Thompson to Zehm call

Newly filed documents reveal new details about the encounter with Spokane police Officer Karl Thompson (left) and other officers that led to Otto Zehm's death. Tom Clouse wrote an article explaining that allegations of a cover up by Spokane police officers over their handling of...

Possible witnesses named in Zehm case

Four Spokane Police Department employees have been named as possible witnesses in the federal trial of an officer charged in the death of Otto Zehm (right). Senior Police Officer Robert Boothe, Patrol Offier Jason Uberuaga, Detective Scott Lesser and Assistant Police Chief Jim Nicks are...

Zehm’s records released, not admissible yet

By Thomas ClouseA federal judge ruled Thursday in favor of the city of Spokane and granted a motion brought by the attorneys for Officer Karl F. Thompson Jr. to obtain Otto Zehm’s mental health records from a 2000 stay at Eastern State Hospital.However, U.S. District...

Defense wants Zehm’s medical records

Thursday was the fourth anniversary of the confrontation with Spokane police that led to unarmed shopper Otto Zehm's death. A gathering sponsored by the Peace & Justice Action League of Spokane took place at the Zip Trip, 1712 N. Division St., where Officer Karl Thompson...
Dr. John Olsen

Remembering poor Otto Zehm…

Good morning, Netizens... Photo Credit: Dr. John Olsen Of the forty to sixty people present yesterday at the Zip Trip where Spokane Police Department killed Otto Zehm, less than a handful of those present actually knew the former janitor in life. In the four years...

A commemoration of the death of Otto Zehm…

Good morning, Netizens... Lest anyone forget today is the fourth anniversary of the Otto Zehm murder at the hand of the Spokane Police Department, a date that not even the Spokesman-Review's own Doug Clark could not willfully overlook here: http://www.spokesman.com/stories/2010/mar/18/four-years-later-lets-not-forget-otto-zehm/ PJALS has sent out the...

Double Zeroes gone, not forgotten

Local politics for the double 0’s, or whatever we call the last decade, started with a promise of a new millenium and a broken campaign promise. It ended of lots of zeroes behind red-hued numbers -- the difference between what our governments expect to take...

Word.

What’s in a word? When the word is “lunge”, it could be quite a bit.That’s lunge the verb, as in the Spokane Police Department’s repeated insistence that Otto Zehm “lunged” at Officer Karl Thompson the night of March 18, 2006, in an altercation that led...

Courthouse watch: 9.23.09

The ailing mother of a man who died after being struck, Tasered and hogtied by Spokane police officers should have a chance to have her statement preserved for a civil lawsuit even though a criminal trial is pending, a federal judge ruled today. U.S. District...
Photo Credit: The Spokesman-Review (The Spokesman-Review)

New evidence surfacing in Otto Zehm case…

Good afternoon, Netizens... I'm only going to say this once because I loathe making predictions when I do not know beyond a reasonable question of a doubt whether or not what I am saying is factual and honest. However, having read the Spokesman-Review this morning,...
Assistant city attorney Rocky Treppiedi, left, arrives on the scene of an officer-involved shooting Friday, July 10, 2009, in Spokane. JESSE TINSLEY jesset@spokesman.com (Jesse Tinsley / The Spokesman-Review)

Feds in Zehm case critical of Treppiedi

Federal prosecutors have grown increasingly critical of what they describe as questionable behavior by the Spokane Police Department’s chief legal adviser, who reportedly used his position to provide “traditionally confidential” information to the officer under FBI investigation following the fatal confrontation with Otto Zehm. In...

Thompson supporters rally on Facebook

The evolution of Facebook over the years, particularly the last six months or so, has been astonishing. When I learned of the social networking web site in 2004, it was reserved for students at specific universities. An email address ending an .edu was required, and...
Spokane Police officer Karl Thompson (with silver hair) talks friends and supporters outside the Federal Courthouse in Spokane where he appeared Thursday, July 9, 2009 to answer charges in the Otto Zehm case.    JESSE TINSLEY jesset@spokesman.com (Jesse Tinsley / The Spokesman-Review)

Public To Pay Zehm Cop Defense

Spokane Police officer Karl Thompson (with silver hair) talks friends and supporters outside the Federal Courthouse in Spokane where he appeared today to answer charges in the Otto Zehm case. (Jesse Tinsley/SR)But during the short arraignment, Assistant U.S. Attorney Tim Durkin objected to the defense...

Public to Pay for Thompson’s Defense

Officer ruled indigent despite $675,000 homeIt’s official. We, the people, will pay through the nose for the SPD’s blundering.http://www.spokesman.com/stories/2009/jul/09/officer-arraigned-federal-charges-zehm-death/I make a third of what Thompson makes and my $50,000 home is paid for. However, maybe I should go out and buy a home worth two-thirds...
Photo Credit: Spokesman-Review (The Spokesman-Review)

The rush to judgment…

Good morning, Netizens... I was impressed with the lengthy story in the Spokesman-Review about Karl F. Thompson, Jr.'s career in law enforcement. Several prior glowing statements notwithstanding by Chief Ann Kirkpatrick regarding his 37 years of service to law enforcement, there are few people who...
Photo Credit to the Center For Justice, Spokane (The Spokesman-Review)

Is Thompson taking one for the Gipper too?

Good morning, Netizens...Everyone in the Spokane News Media yesterday were separately and yet together beating their spoons against the bars that, until then, had kept the news media from truly knowing what was going on in the Otto Zehm murder investigation. For nearly two years...

Officer Indicted In Otto Zehm Death

Item: SPD officer indicted in Otto Zehm death/Thomas Clouse, SRMore Info: A federal grand jury has indicted the first officer who responded to a confrontation with mentally ill janitor Otto Zehm, which resulted in Zehm’s death and sparked a cry for citizen police oversight. U.S....

Officer Karl Thompson indicted in Otto Zehm case

Good afternoon, Netizens...BREAKING NEWSOffice Karl Thompson has been indicted for various charges, including making false statements in the Otto Zehm case it was announced at 3:00 PM today by US Attorney Jim McDevitt. Details to follow.Dave

City wants Zehm case kicked; CFJ calls it ‘blame the victim’

Creates a legal pleading Otto Zehm is responsible for the events that led up to his death while in police custody, the City of Spokane said Friday as it asked a federal court Friday to dismiss a lawsuit filed by Zehm’s mother. A 56-page response...
 (The Spokesman-Review)

Otto Zehm Died for our sins…

Good afternoon Netizens... By now most of you reading this already have heard the City of Spokane asked a federal court Friday to dismiss a lawsuit filed by the family of Otto Zehm over his death in police custody in March 2006, saying the developmentally...

Man in coma after Seattle Police tackle…

Good morning, Netizens... In a Seattle police case gone tragically wrong on May 10, Christopher Harris, a 29 year-old restaurant worker still is in a coma in Seattle after police mistakenly pushed him head-first into a wall outside a theater. The entire event was caught...

The Zehm lawsuit

Good afternoon Netizens...It has taken me awhile to figure out how to upload this PDF copy of the Zehm lawsuit, then to make it accessible, but it does appear I was successful.http://www.spokesman.com/documents/2009/mar/14/zehm-lawsuit/ This represents justice for Otto, the first justice he has had since he...
Photo from Center For Justice (The Spokesman-Review)

Otto Zehm case draws to a close?

Good morning, Netizens... Otto Zehm died for our sins. At least the cherubic-faced janitor died for something, of that we can be certain. But did he die unlawfully, due to excessive use of force at the hands of the Spokane City Police Department? After nearly...

Audio


  • Redacted Zehm 911 call

    A redacted copy of the 911 call in the Otto Zehm incident released by Spokane police to the news media in July 2006.


  • Mary Verner: Otto Zehm

    Spokane Mayor Mary Verner reacts to the federal grand jury indictment of Spokane Police Officer Karl F. Thompson Jr., the first of several officers to confront Otto Zehm, a 36-year-old Spokane man who died after that interaction with police.


  • Bob Apple on Zehm case indictments

    Spokane City Councilman Bob Apple talks Monday, June 22, 2009, about police Officer Karl Thompson’s indictment in the injuries to Otto Zehm while in police custody in 2006.


  • Officer Karl F. Thompson indictment 01

    U.S. Attorney James McDevitt prefaces and reads the first count of the grand jury indictment against Spokane police Officer Karl Thompson in Otto Zehm’s injury while in police custody in 2006. Zehm later died from his injuries.


  • Officer Karl F. Thompson indictment 02

    U.S. Attorney James McDevitt reads the second count of the grand jury indictment against Spokane police Officer Karl Thompson in Otto Zehm’s injury while in police custody in 2006. Zehm later died from his injuries.

Documents

Timelines