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In brief: Officer released after posting bail

Wed., April 18, 2007

The Spokane police officer charged with shooting a man in the head was released from jail Monday night after he posted bail.

James Jay Olsen, 43, posted $25,000 and was released about 9 p.m. Monday. Earlier that day, a judge lowered his bond from $100,000 after his lawyer argued that Olsen was not a flight risk.

Olsen was charged Friday with one count of first-degree assault and two counts of reckless endangerment in the Feb. 26 shooting that left Shonto Pete with a bullet lodged in his skull.

Olsen told police Pete was trying to steal his truck, so he pursued the man and fired at him near Peaceful Valley.

Pete was charged with second-degree vehicle theft Friday. He remains in custody at the Geiger Corrections Center. At the time of the shooting, he was serving a 90-day sentence under home monitoring for an unrelated conviction of driving under the influence.

– Christopher Rodkey

Airway Heights

Guard allegedly pulled gun on supervisors

An Airway Heights corrections officer is under investigation for pulling his gun on two co-workers last month, officials said Tuesday.

Jim Aguilar, 59, has been on paid administrative leave since the March 6 incident at Airway Heights Corrections Center, said prison spokeswoman Risa Klemme.

Aguilar was on duty at one of the prison’s armed posts when he was approached by two supervisors doing routine checks, Klemme said. Aguilar, “for whatever reason, took umbrage with that,” and pulled out his 9 mm pistol.

Aguilar pointed the gun at the ground in front of the two supervisors, “which is what we call the ready position,” Klemme said. “He didn’t point the gun at them,”

The corrections officer, who has worked at the facility for 12 years, was immediately put on leave, Klemme said.

The Airway Heights Police Department is investigating the incident. Klemme expects officials to finish the investigation late this week or early next week.

– Jody Lawrence-Turner

Stevens County

Judge to hear request for DeLeon trial delay

A Stevens County judge will hear a motion today asking to delay the trial of a former foster mother charged with homicide by abuse.

The trial of Carole DeLeon, 52, already includes 102 witnesses, including psychologists, psychiatrists, pediatric endocrinologists and other medical experts, defense attorney Carl Oreskovich wrote in an April 16 court declaration.

“We have been diligently preparing this case for trial, but it is unrealistic to believe we can be ready within the time frame necessary to begin on May 14, 2007,” Oreskovich argued.

DeLeon is charged in the death of 7-year-old Tyler DeLeon, who died on Jan. 13, 2005. DeLeon is also charged with felony mistreatment of a second foster boy, who did not die.

Stevens County Prosecutor Tim Rasmussen said the delay is unnecessary.

– Benjamin Shors

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