Two Climbers Rescued at Mount Stewart
- Written by Sergeant Kent Sisson, CCSO
Sheriff Brian Burnett reports two climbers were rescued from Mount Stuart in Chelan County Sunday evening and Monday afternoon. One of the subjects suffered life threatening injuries Sunday when a boulder he was leaning against broke free while ascending the West Ridge route of the mountain at approximately 8,500 feet. Tim Pate (64yoa) of Camas, WA fell nearly 50 feet after the large rock dislodged and he careened over a ledge. Pate was found to be unresponsive when his climbing partner -Jim Schiller (59yoa) – of Happy Valley, Oregon - traversed down the slope to his location. Schiller called 911 at 6:48pm to report the incident and requested a rescue.
Due to Pate’s reported unresponsive state on the mountain, Chelan County Sheriff’s Office search and rescue coordinators requested a hoist capable helicopter from Naval Air Base Whidbey Island. A Sheriff’s Office SAR coordinator was able to communicate directly with Schiller via text messaging. Coordinates were obtained for the incident location on the southwest aspect of the mountain. Pate remained unconscious throughout the rescue response. The Navy Blackhawk helicopter was over the scene by 8:45pm and successfully hoisted Pate into the aircraft which was staffed by a Navy medic. Pate was determined to be in very critical condition and was expedited to Harborview Medical Center in Seattle.
Schiller was left on the mountain hoping to descend Monday. Sheriff’s Office SAR personnel received a phone call from Schiller early Monday morning. He was requesting assistance descending the slope. Schiller advised he was exhausted and felt he was unable to safely make trek by himself.
Initially, SAR coordinators planned to insert Chelan County Mountain Rescue personnel below Schiller’s location via the Sheriff’s Office helicopter. The team would have had to ascend nearly 1,000 feet to reach him and then make a decision to ascend or descend the mountain with Schiller. At 1:00pm on Monday it was determined that the Whidbey Island Naval flight crew would be available to respond back to Mount Stuart to extract Schiller via hoist. A Sheriff’s Office deputy who had already been inserted below Schiller’s position would also be hoisted into the aircraft.
Both subjects were successfully removed from the mountain by 3:00pm and transported to Pangborn Memorial Airport in East Wenatchee. Schiller is in good condition. He stated that Pate was the more experienced climber during their attempt to summit Mount Stuart. Schiller said he was not comfortable descending the mountain by himself after Pate’s accident. The two climbers began their ascent of the mountain on Sunday morning after camping near Ingall’s Lake on Saturday night.
Pate remains in critical condition at Harborview Medical Center. He suffered head, neck, back, and abdominal injuries from the fall.
Sergio Valdez Arrested in Phoenix
- Written by Jason Mathews, Undersheriff, CCSO
On July 18, 2017 Sheriff Brian Burnett reports Sergio I. Valdes was located and arrested in Phoenix, Arizona.
On May 29, 2017, Valdes was involved in a physical altercation at Slide Waters in Chelan, Washington. When Valdes left the scene he took his two young children, a 6-month old and an 18-month old, and fled the area. The Chelan County Sheriff’s Office notified our local community and sent out a nationwide alert attempting to locate Valdes and the two children. The Sheriff’s Office Detective Unit also worked with the National Center for missing and exploited children and Washington’s Most Wanted to try to locate Valdes and the children. All involved agencies were working diligently to locate Valdes.
On July 17, 2017 the Chelan County Sheriff’s Office developed a possible location for Valdes in Phoenix, Arizona. Our Detective Unit notified the U.S. Marshal’s Service, specifically the Pacific Northwest Violent Offender Task Force. The Pacific Northwest Offender Task Force than worked with another Marshal’s Task Force in Phoenix and were able to successfully locate and arrest Valdes. Both children were located in good health and were taken into protective custody. Our local Child Protective Services is working with the children’s mother and Phoenix agencies for the children’s safe return.
Arrangements are being made to transport Valdes back to Chelan County when he will be charged with Custodial Interference 1st degree, a felony, and other crimes. Valdes is also awaiting his sentencing in Douglas County for crimes he was convicted of prior to fleeing the Slide Waters incident.
Entiat Fatality - Driver Crossed Centerline
- Written by Sgt. Jason Reinfeld, CCSO
Sheriff Brian Burnett reports on July 12th, 2017 at approximately 1604 hours, Chelan County Deputies responded to an injury collision at approximately milepost 4.5 on Entiat River Road in Entiat, WA. A vehicle driven by 29 year old Walter J Wilson of Entiat was travelling northbound and crossed over the centerline. It collided head-on with a vehicle driven by 48 year old Deborah Augustus of Entiat.
Ms. Augustus sustained fatal injuries as a result of the collision. Mr. Wilson was arrested and booked into Chelan County Regional Justice Center for Vehicular Homicide
Body of Missing Swimmer Recovered from Lake Chelan
- Written by Rich Magnussen, CCSO
July 5, 2017 - At approximately 12:45pm a body believed to be that of 23-year-old Donghoon Lee of Seattle was recovered from Lake Chelan.
A boater in the area observed the body and called 911. The Chelan County Sheriff’s Office Marine Patrol and Chelan County Fire District #7 personnel responded to the area and recovered the body.
The body has been turned over to the Chelan County Coroner’s Office.
The South Korean Consulate has notified Lee’s family.
Lee disappeared on June 20th while swimming with friends in Lake Chelan.
Man Booked for 1st Degree Murder in Manson
- Written by Sheriff Brian Burnett
Sheriff Brian Burnett reports on June 30th, 2017 at approximately 1754 hours, deputies responded to a death investigation on Harris Avenue in Manson. Deputies arrived and located 56 year old Maria Ocampo, a Manson resident deceased. A male subject who was on scene identified as 25 year old Rafael Ocampo from Manson was detained and interviewed. He was booked into the Chelan County Regional Jail for the charge of Murder in the 1st Degree and for violating a no contact order.
Washington State Patrol Crime Lab and the Chelan County Sheriff’s Office Detective Unit are at the address processing the scene. The investigation is on going and more information will be released at a later date. Per Chief Deputy Coroner Earl Crowe, an autopsy is scheduled for Wednesday July 5th in the afternoon.
Body of glissading victim recovered
- Written by Rich Magnussen, CCSO
Updated Release 06/25/2017
On Sunday June 25, 2017 at approximately 11:30am, a team of Chelan County Mountain Rescue (CCMR) members and a Chelan County SAR Deputy recovered the body of Benjamin Gore (19yoa) from Aasgard Pass. Gore disappeared into a crevasse on June 4th while glissading down Aasgard Pass. Initial attempts to locate Gore were unsuccessful due to the snow depth and fast running water. The body has been turned over to the Chelan County Coroner’s Office and the family has been notified.
Overdue Hiker Found Deceased on Chelan Butte
- Written by Rich Magnussen, CCSO
On Thursday June 22, 2017 at approximately 1230hrs, RIVERCOM dispatch received a report of an overdue person in the Chelan area. The caller advised that her son was camping somewhere in the Chelan area and they hadn’t heard from him in two days. The caller also advised that the subject’s two dogs had been located by a hiker on the north side of Chelan Butte but her son was not with them.
The subject was identified as Johnathan M. Taylor (31yoa) of Mount Vernon, WA.
A Chelan County Deputy responded to Chelan Butte and located the subject’s vehicle abandoned at the top of Chelan Butte. Deputies searched the area but were unable to locate Taylor. A Chelan County Sheriff’s Office helicopter was called in to assist in the search but was also unable to locate Taylor.
On Friday morning, Chelan County Search and Rescue deputies and members of Chelan County Volunteer Search and Rescue began an extensive ground search of the area. At approximately 1430hrs, searchers located Taylor deceased at the bottom of a steep embankment on the south side of Chelan Butte. It is not known what caused Taylor to fall.
Next of kin has been notified.
Possible Drowning in "Three Fingers" Area of Lake Chelan
On 6/20/17 at approximately 3:22 pm Chelan County Marine Deputies responded to calls of a possible drowning in the area known as “Three Fingers” on Lake Chelan, within the Chelan City limits. Upon further investigation it was learned that a group had rented a boat and were swimming off the back of the boat towards the middle of the lake in approximately 30-40 feet of water.
While swimming one individual from the group started experiencing difficulties. Others from the group attempted to throw him a personal flotation device but were unsuccessful before the he sank beneath the surface. The group of friends was unable to locate the distressed swimmer.
The Chelan County Sheriff’s Office responded with multiple vessels along with the aid of rescue swimmers from Chelan Fire, but were unable to locate the missing swimmer who has been identified as 23 year old Donghoon Lee of Seattle. Donghoon was on break from attending the University of Washington on a Student Visa from South Korea. Rescue workers continued to work into the evening but were unsuccessful in locating Donghoon who is presumed to have drowned.
Chelan County Sheriff’s Office staff were able to work with staff from the South Korean Consulate and make the emergency notification to Donghoon’ s family.
Search and recovery efforts are scheduled to continue at 10:00 am on Wednesday, June 21. Equipment and personnel include three vessels from the Chelan County Sheriff’s Office Marine Division, two divers from Chelan County, and seven to eight volunteer divers from Steven’s County along with underwater camera equipment from the Douglas County Sheriff’s Office.
The Chelan County Sheriff’s Office would use this time as a reminder to stay educated on water safety in order for everyone to have a safe and healthy summer while visiting Chelan County.
Sheriff Searching for Sergio Valdes
- Written by Rick Johnson, Chief of patrol, CCSD
The Chelan County Sheriff’s Office is attempting to locate 28 year-old Sergio I. Valdes, who has two outstanding felony warrants for his arrest. On May 29, 2017, Valdes was involved in an altercation at the Slide Waters amusement park in Chelan. He fled the scene and took with him his two youngest children, being 18 months- old Casper, and the other 6 months- old Aviahna. Valdes is believed to still be with his children but their whereabouts are unknown. The children’s mother has not seen them since May 29.
Help us get these children back to their mother and family safely. Anyone with information about the whereabouts of Sergio Valdes or his children are asked to call the Chelan County Sheriff’s Office at 667-6843, or the RiverCom dispatch center at 663-9911
Sheriff Brian Burnett Installed as President of WASPC
Chelan County Sheriff Brian Burnett was recently installed as the newest President for WASPC, Washington Association of Sheriffs and Police Chief’s.
WASPC held their annual spring conference at the Spokane Convention Center May 22 – 25, 2017. During which the now Past President, Kennewick Police Chief Ken Hohenberg, officially installed Sheriff Burnett on Wednesday evening.
WASPC currently has 198 Police Chiefs and 39 Sheriff’s as active voting members, and many other associate and affiliate members.
The Washington Association of Sheriffs and Police Chiefs values: a mission-driven association; quality services; honesty and integrity; accountability and responsibility to our members; diversity; public/private partnerships; competent, professional staff; membership involvement and progressive innovation. WASPC offers four types of membership: life, active, associate, and affiliate. Membership within WASPC offers numerous benefits at all levels.
Benefits of WASPC Membership:
• Pro-Law Enforcement Lobbying Efforts on both the State and Federal Levels
• Discounted Registration on WASPC Conferences and Vendor Trade Shows
• Training Opportunities at Discounted Rates
• Get-The-Word-Out Email Notifications
• Access to the WASPC Members-Only portions of the WASPC Website
• Informational Documents
• Law Enforcement Online Forums
• Membership and Agency Directories
Sheriff Burnett will serve a one-year term as President of WASPC. He has previously served one year terms as Vice President and President elect, before serving as a Sheriff at large position. Sheriff Burnett calls the opportunity both an honor and humbling, since his nomination came from his peers of the 38 other elected Sheriffs of the State of Washington. WASPC alternates the President position annually from Sheriff to Chief and back to Sheriff.
Sheriff Burnett stated that he originally became involved with WASPC to help network with other Sheriffs and Chiefs from around the state, in order to form relationships and gain knowledge on best practices in Law Enforcement in order to reduce liability for the taxpayers of Chelan County.
Sheriff Burnett’s term as WASPC President runs from May 2017 – May 2018. Sheriff Burnett is also a current co-chair for the Sex Offender Notification and Registration Committee.
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