Thursday, September 29, 2016

Be Afraid, Be Very Afraid

If it bleeds, it leads, the saying goes. And clearly the Peninsula Daily News believes in the "crime time is the right time" philosophy. When they upgraded (which is to say downgraded) their website, they even added a special, stand alone section for CRIME. But, if things keep on going like they are, with apologies to Jaws, they may need a bigger section. Crime is busting out all over in today's paper.

Clallam County deputies investigate after girl in Port Angeles says man told her to get in his truck

Family members interrupt alleged burglary in Port Angeles

Port Angeles man charged after foot pursuit

You've been busy, Port Angeles! (And I'm sure that there are plenty of stories that don't make the paper - but you can check the jail roster online if you're interested.) The first two of those headlines sound the scariest, and paint the clearest pictures of crime intruding into lives unexpectedly. And, admittedly, both of those stories have notable details. (Memo to crooks: Fleeing through blackberry bushes is rough going, and hiding in a honeybucket is just going to get you teased in jail.)

Come out with your hands - and your pants - up!

But it's the last of these three stories that actually contains what I think is the most frightening detail. Here you've got a guy, Joshua Michael Wilson-Wedding, with a dozen aliases, with multiple prior felony convictions, wanted on multiple warrants, who's a sex offender who has failed to register...And he's not only running around downtown Port Angeles with a gun in his backpack, but also...

Police said they were tipped that Wilson-Wedding was in an apartment at the Lee Plaza trying to sell a gun. Sgt. Jason Viada, who was on downtown foot patrol, went to the apartments at 112 W. First St. and spotted a man running north across First St...

Wilson-Wedding ignored Viada's commands to stop, and "manipulated" his backpack, according to the arrest narrative. "I was concerned that he was going to pull the gun out of his pack and shoot me," Viada wrote. "I drew my sidearm as I continued to pursue."

Well, that's one way to get some foot traffic to downtown Port Angeles. But I think most of you would agree that it's not exactly the most desirable kind of foot traffic to have.

But let's remember...The same remoteness, the same lack of oversightness that makes Port Angeles such an attractive place for ambitious scumbags to hide out (think Karen Rogers and her icky ilk), also makes it an attractive place for less polished, more violent people on the run to hang out. Or, putting it another way, the lawlessness at the top of the heap in Clallam County only enables and encourages lawlessness further down the food chain.

24 comments:

  1. Okay, let's review. Viada knew the guy was in the hotel attempting to sell a gun. He goes in single handed and attempts an arrest. The man runs through the downtown possibly attempting to pull a gun out of his back pack while the officer already has his gun out.
    Man, that ought to bring the tourists in droves. For future reference, next time there is a known fugitive, an armed fugitive, bring more officers so you can effect a take-down without the danger of injuring innocent bystanders. It does not seem like this arrest had to be made in public and downtown. Maybe follow the guy to an uninhabited place and make a stop. This is too scary way to run an operation like this.

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    1. Excellent points. I want to know who at the Lee Plaza was wanting to buy a gun, and why they'd want to buy it from such an obvious criminal type. Attention, Lee Plaza management! This is trouble calling...

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  2. I can't help but wonder what the Chamber of Commerce, business boosters folks think of the PDN's hard focus on crime. It sure isn't tourist-friendly. Step back for a minute, and this place sounds like the wild (meth-fueled) west.

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    1. Sounds like? I'd say that's just calling it like it is.

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    2. +1, do local "business leaders" really think this is OK? I'm not saying don't report the news, but aren't there a selection of other topics to report?
      Focusing on crime will only make it worse - after all, criminals read the PDN, ya know!

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    3. If it bleeds it leads! Violence sells papers and puts eyeballs on ads! F$ck everybody else Black Press needs it money to bribe Canadian officials!

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  3. With the vigilantes going on "hunting parties", and the police attempting single handed arrests of armed suspects in down town Port Angeles, people get a pretty clear picture of how out of control the town is.

    Deputy Mayor and town uber booster Cherie Kidd fears for her safety at City Council meetings, and abruptly shuts them down. This same maxi-pad promoter of all things Port Angeles also tells the media she gets depressed by Port Angeles, when she returns from visits away.

    Pedestrians in marked crosswalks are the victims of hit-and-run, nothing is done to drivers.

    Lawless? Out of control? Too stupid to function normally? Leadership that engages in corruption?

    And people wonder why this town stagnates, year after year.

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  4. Lets not let our local (lack) of judicial common sense be forgotten. The "catch and release" program (designed to garner more $$$ for the court) and trapping people on the peninsula with the "pay or appear" bullshit is not helping.
    Our courts are broken. Our judges are morons. Their policies are not well thought out and have long, and lasting consequences.
    I will BET our crime has a spike near the due date of the "PAY" part of pay or appear.

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  5. Prediction: At the next city council meeting, we'll get to hear Cherie Kidd, and possibly others, chatter on and on about Viada's bravery, courage, etc., while completely missing that what he did was reckless, dangerous, and probably violated department policy. He was a hotdog, and yes sir, our city council sure does like hotdogs.

    Bad press? Bad precedent? Needlessly risky? Naw. "Good job, officer Viada. We're so proud of you!"

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  6. Gottlieb bought a truck?

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  7. FYI...Several people have landed here in the last 24 hours by searching for "Nathan west port angeles" and "Nathan west city of port angeles." Maybe Nathan West of the City of Port Angeles is shopping his resume around? Or maybe people are searching for info on him after seeing him on the Cherie Kidd show?

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    1. On the one hand, I'm thinking, "Yeah, go on, get out of here, Nathan!" I wouldn't be sorry to see him go.

      On the other hand, I absolutely don't trust the current council and/or city manager to pick a suitable, experienced replacement. The town couldn't really attract anyone with many qualifications, frankly.

      Maybe the best solution would be for Nathan to stay put, and to grow a spine. But that, of course, seems unlikely. He sold his soul (and spine) year sago.

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    2. ..."year sago." Did you mean "years ago"? Or...

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  8. Viada's wife was fired as a probation officer from the court. Why? Too much prejudice even in Porter's court. Pay or appear law seems counter productive.Stan Meyers is paid by contract to be a buffoon to the system. And the beat goes on.

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    1. Any timeframe for when she was fired? More details? This is a very interesting subplot...And yes, pay or appear is a totally counterproductive and ethically very shaky "legal" philosophy.

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  9. The PDN should have another "Crimewatch" special section, one that highlights the scams that are being pitched in the area, with the names of the perps. We have the Crabfest coming up, with the well established scamster still making sure he is getting paid for doing next to nothing, while the "volunteers" do all the work.

    We have the CRTC. They're just finishing up on the latest phase of the notorious "CSO" scam that paid well. Wait for the next phase.

    And, we had the Landfill scam, with all the do-overs, multiple studies and assorted craziness. Don't we just love the acres of artificial grass they put over that? Of course, it can't be mowed, so when all the weeds drift in, take root and grow, they'll be using herbicides to kill it all. "Sustainable", you know. Guarantees ongoing work, and scamsters love building that in.

    Scam Watch Port Angeles.

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    1. Special Red and Blue Flashing Lights Edition.

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  10. So, I got a suggestion to check Tom Harper's lonely remaining "national" blog...

    Oh my.

    It's focus is "national" but it's contents are irrational. It's sad and obsessive, to say the least, and he's obviously still smarting over having shut down his Port Angeles blog. (Which was over a year ago, Tom...moveon.org, dude.)And he's still on the kick that you all are imaginary, that no one - literally NO ONE - really reads this or posts here.

    Which, for those of you reading and posting, will come as something of a shock. On the other hand, Tom's bizarre rants are not so shocking. It's just par for the course, eh?

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    1. Oops! It's early, and I used the wrong "it's"...Sorry!

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    2. Duly noted that Tom replies to every comment (even those he clearly posted himself) to try and make it look like he has more comments/activity than he does. Very obvious, and very sad.

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  11. Well, it is obvious from the content why Tom's blog goes nowhere. Topics that little to do with the area, and comments from a few that are little more than high school level retorts.

    It is interesting, though. He shut down the Port Angeles focused one because he wouldn't control the trolls, so now he censors out comments he doesn't like in the current blog.

    Neither approach works.

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  12. All these people want and need is a big ol' hug!

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