Monthly Archives: April 2009

Memorial’s Ribbon Cutting Set for Slain Bainbridge Counselor

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A touching tribute to a revered Bainbridge Island school counselor set to be unveiled. Jeffrey McKinstry, 53, was killed in October 2007 by his mentally ill son. And since then, many in the Ordway Elementary School community had been searching for ways to honor their fallen counselor (pictured).

At 5 p.m. May 5, the fruits of their labor will be completed at the ribbon cutting for the “Counselor’s Corner.” Plans for the memorial include a concrete “swirl” of cement forming a bench that’s decorated with yellow school buses and
Jolly Rancher candies.

Deborah Baker, a member of the committee for the memorial, said Monday that both the buses and the candies  “reflect pieces of Jeff’s legacy.”

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“He met those buses every single morning to welcome kids to school … in the rain, snow, wind, blackness…he was always there,” she said. “He will also forever be remembered for handing out Jolly Ranchers to kids to help them through a rough spot, brighten their day, celebrate their accomplishments or just because.”

McKinstry’s son, Garrett McKinstry, was found to be legally insane at the time of killing his father, and remains indefinitely at Western State Hospital.

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The New Drug Fad, Same as the Old Drug Fad

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What’s the fastest growing drug problem in America? Here are some clues to help you figure it out:

  • It’s popular with teens: about 19 percent of them have tried it.
  • In six years, from 2000 to 2006, the number of Americans using it rose 80 percent from 3.8 million abusers to 7 million (more than the number of Americans abusing cocaine, heroin, hallucinogens, and inhalants combined).
  • Scarily, it now causes more drug overdose deaths than cocaine and heroin combined.

Read on to find the answer — and a startling bust conducted by the federal DEA. Oh, and to find out more than you ever wanted to know about this drug, check out our blog’s category on the subject here.

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‘Man Hands’ Robber Tries Hand at Another Stick Up

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It appears the “Man Hands” Bank Robber knows how to take a ferry.

The FBI is connecting a hold up at a bank in Edmonds Monday to one that occurred at the Kitsap Credit Union in Poulsbo last week, according to a number of news organizations. They believe both robberies were committed by a man dressed as a woman they’re calling “The Man Hands Bandit,” in honor of a Seinfeld episode. Seriously.

Shortly before 10 a.m., a man walking in to the First Security Bank on Edmonds Way. Yes, he was wearing a black wig. And he passed a note to the tellers demanding cash. And yes, he was wearing a sporty black tracksuit.

Perhaps the FBI should enlist the help of the Washington State Ferries, whose Edmonds-Kingston run would provide Mr. Man Hands his most convinient access to both banks.

Anyone with information about him is asked to call 911.

Photo courtesy of the FBI.

When he Smokes Crack, the Pants Come off, Island Sex Offender Tells Police

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This just in from Central District News: a Bainbridge Island man told Seattle Police April 8 that when he smokes crack, his pants are one of the first things to go.

The News reports that, during their perusal of the police reports, a woman and her two children came upon a man wearing a jacket and tube socks. But no pants.

The woman told the man, who turned out to be a sex offender that lives in the Wing Point area of Bainbridge, that she was calling police. He took off, but the cops found him, and arrested him for lewd conduct.

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The Gun Debate Reloads

handgun.jpeg(Blogger’s note: To read earlier analysis and stories on the gun debate, click here. Please feel free to take the poll to the right of this page as well.)

There are those who believe more guns equal more crime. And those who believe more guns equal less crime. Both sides are armed with statistics and rhetoric they’ll readily share.

I’ve said this before. But now, the gun debate —thanks to some horrifying incidents around the country, Mexico’s drug war, a recession, a Democrat in office and an increase in the number of concealed pistol licenses — has again emerged front and center.

Last year, the conversation revolved around school shootings in the wake of tragedies at Virginia Tech and Northern Illinois University. This year, it has spread to all aspects of American life.

Our area has also seen such tragedy with guns. Remember in 2005 when a shooter opened fire on a crowd at the Tacoma Mall?

Lest we forget, in 2008, there were, in total, about 258,000 people in the state who can choose to carry a hidden lethal weapon on their person, according to the Department of Licensing.

Rather than ask the ageold question about gun control (take the poll on the right for that), I’ll ask this: in the wake of new developments in the gun debate, has your view changed?

Robbed Store Owner who Shot Back is Investigated

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A Vancouver, B.C. jewelry shop owner shot at men robbing his store this week — and he may find himself in trouble for it.

The gun debate, I surmise, is a little different north of the border.

According to the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation, three men came into the downtown Vancouver jewelers’ store about 10 a.m. Tuesday. One of the men took a hammer to jewelry cases; waved a gun around.

At some point, the store’s owner took out a gun and very likely shot one of the men. The suspects fled before the cops arrived.

The man was allowed to have the gun, but, “No one is allowed to have a gun on their premises for protection in the city,” a Vancouver cop told CBC news.

So police are investigating two crimes at once.

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UPDATE: Masked — and very Frightening — Robbers Continue Puget Sound Spree

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Two men wearing dark clothing and ski masks enter the Shelton Kentucky Fried Chicken (pictured). They bind the employees and a customer with duct tape and force them to the ground. They get the restuarant’s cash and go.

Sound familar?

Unlike Hollywood’s depictions of such violence, this kind of robbery is quite rare. Yet police believe two men have been perpetrating such frightening crimes around the area, including a bunch right here in Kitsap County.

A story in King 5 March 20 quoted one such customer in the KFC who witnessed the robbery.

“I thought I was going to die. I thought they were going to shoot us in the back and leave,” said the woman.

UPDATE: The Tacoma News Tribune has added a story of their own, saying police have now connected the suspects to 11 takeover robberies. Click here to see a mugshot of one suspect.

Put simply, these men need to be stopped, most importantly for the extreme trauma they are putting their victims through.

CrimeStoppers is offering a reward for any information leading to the suspects’ capture. Detectives ask that anyone with information call Detective Sgt. Eric Bockelie at (360) 337-5618.

Photo courtesy of the Olympia Police Department.

Port Orchard Molestation Suspect Arrested, 16 Years After Warrant Issued

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You could give all kinds of reasons law enforcement keeps a national database of warrant suspects. Well, here’s another, provided by the U.S. Customs and Border Protection.

A week ago at Sea-TacAirport, Nestor Domingo, 55, of Port Orchard, was arrested by customs and border protection officers upon his return to the country from The Phillipines.

Domingo had a Kitsap County Superior Court warrant for child molestation. From 1993.

The 55-year-old’s name was run through the National Crime Information Center (NCIC) database, which surfaced the warrant. He was taken into custody by the Port of Seattle Police Department, and is now in the Kitsap County jail on $10,000 bail.

Here’s a little more on the U.S. Customs and Border Protection:

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Info on New Inmate Public Records Law Requested … by Inmate

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The recently-signed inmate public records abuse law will soon face its first test, following an inmates’ public records request for any information on the new inmate public records abuse law.

Sound redundant? To Sen. Mike Carrell, R-Lakewood, the author of the new law, it’s ironic.

“I think it’s fitting that the very person who prompted the law in the first place will be the legal test case to try it out,” Carrell (pictured) said in a press release Monday. “It’s ironic that the individual is an inmate seeking excessive public records on bills that prevent inmates from seeking excessive public records.”

The new law’s aim is to cut down on public records requests by inmates that seem “abusive.” The attorney general’s office reports that in 2007, the Department of Corrections (DOC) staff spent 12,494 hours responding to offender records requests, costing taxpayers more than $250,000 and six full-time employees.

Carrell’s bill, signed into law March 20, had only two lawmakers vote against it (one of them was Poulsbo Democrat Sherry Appleton, and you can read about her no vote here).

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Mason County Budget Belt Tightening Squeezes Out Five Deputies

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“I don’t want to live in the Old West,” one resident of Beard’s Cove told the Mason County Commissioners Tuesday. “It would be a free-for-all.”

The resident, referencing commissioner Tim Sheldon’s declaration of “open season on criminals,” argued against cutting deputies from the Mason County Sheriff’s Office. Still, Sheldon and his fellow commissioners, citing “a time of unprecedented financial difficulties,” cut five deputies, according to a Kitsap Sun story by Barbara Clark.

Clark recorded a brief confrontation between Sheldon, whose been advocating for the self-reliance of his citizens, and Mason County Sheriff Casey Salisbury, who’d been critical of what he felt were vigilante-promoting comments.

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