douglascountysheriff148On 08/04/16 at approximately 2:30 PM Douglas County fire units and deputies responded to a brush fire east side of Highway 97 at mile post 228.  There are fire units from Douglas County, Chelan County, and BLM.  There are also two fixed wing and two helicopter assets fighting the fire. 

The fire is moving S/SE and had burned about 500 acres.  The Sheriff’s Deputies have given out 8 level I and II in  the Browns Canyon area.

The Sheriff’s Office also used the AlertSense system to send out warnings to people in the area.  There have no reports of damage or injuries.

douglascountysheriff148After weeks of surveillance by our investigations team, The Douglas County Sheriff’s Office SRT raided this illegal marijuana grow on Badger Mountain at approximately 6:00 AM this morning.  The location was near the end of Redfield Rd. approximately four miles from Badger Mountain Rd. 

There were about 646 plants with a street value of approximately $840,000.

The suspects had been living in a shack with filthy conditions. They were not at the scene when the Deputies arrived. The team also located a flatbed truck used to haul water to the plants, generators for lights, a bulldozer used to clear the land, and a .40 cal pistol.  

The property was seized as items used to facilitate an illegal drug grow/trade. The owners may come forward to claim the property and request a hearing to have it returned.

I am extremely proud of my team for their work on this case. A large scene like this means the deputies and evidence techs worked long hours in the heat to ensure a proper investigation. They did outstanding work.  I also appreciate the assistance from the DEA and the Washington Liquor and Cannabis board.

douglascountysheriff148On 07/02/16 at approximately 11:30 AM. the Douglas County Sheriff’s Office received a request for assistance from the Brewster Police Department to arrest a subject who was wanted for domestic violence assault. 

Deputies accompanied the Brewster Police Chief to an address in the 500 Blk. of West Cliff in Brewster, WA.  The mother of the suspect gave the Chief and Deputies permission to enter the residence to locate her son, 22 year old Salvador Saucedo-Torres.  Once inside, they found that Saucedo-Torres was in a room at the back of the house.  As the Brewster Chief tried to talk to him, he became highly aggressive and punched her in the face.  As the Deputies tried to pull him back, the suspect abruptly turned and hit one Deputy in the face creating a cut above his eye.  The suspect also punched a Sheriff’s Office sergeant several times. 

Saucedo-Torres was subdued and taken into custody.  He was booked for two counts of Assault 2nd degree for his attack on the Brewster Chief and the Deputy, one count of Assault 3rd degree for assaulting the sergeant, and one count of Assault 4th degree (domestic violence) as part of Brewster PD’s earlier investigation.  The suspect was not injured.

Domestic violence situations are very dangerous for law enforcement.  I am grateful no one was hurt more seriously.

Very Respectfully,

Sheriff Harvey Gjesdal

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douglascountysheriff148On 07/15/16 at approximately 3:07 PM Douglas County Deputies responded to an assault complaint on Old Ferry Rd. near Orondo.  One Deputy contacted the victim at the scene, but the suspect had fled up Pine Canyon on Hwy. 2.  He was located and detained by a second Deputy who was responding from Waterville. 

The victim and witnesses reported the suspect, 56 year old Miguel Garcia-Berrera of Waterville came to a residence located near the intersection of Orondo Loop Rd. and Old Ferry Rd. where the victim was helping a friend work on a car.  The victim and Garcia had a history of not getting along and an argument started.  Garcia pulled out a knife and told the victim he was going to kill him and his family.  The victim ran into an orchard, pursued by Garcia.  During the chase, Garcia threw his knife, a rock, and a metal pipe at the victim.  The victim was able to escape and call 9-1-1. 

Garcia was arrested for attempted assault and felony harassment (threats to kill).  He was transported to the Okanogan County Jail without incident.  There were no injuries.

douglascountysheriff148On 07/02/16 at 1:50 AM Douglas County Deputies were on routine patrol in 2500 Blk. of Foster Creek in Bridgeport.  They observed a vehicle being driven by a male they suspected to have a suspended driver’s license.  They ran the vehicle and discovered it was listed as stolen.  The vehicle pulled into a minimart.  The driver and one passenger exited the vehicle and went inside the store.  The Deputies followed and located the subjects inside the store. 

Upon questioning, the driver, 29 year old Leonardo Lopez of Bridgeport, said the vehicle belonged to his cousin and he had permission to drive it.  He was not certain what his cousin’s name was. Lopez’s driver’s license was suspended.  The passenger was identified as 20 year old Victor Valdovinos of Bridgeport was found to be in possession of 13.3 grams of suspected methamphetamine.  He was also minor in consumption of alcohol.

Lopez was arrested for possession of a stolen vehicle and driving with a suspended driver’s license.  He was booked at the Okanogan County Jail without incident.

Valdovinos was arrested for possession of methamphetamine with intent to deliver and minor in possession/consumption of alcohol.  He was booked at the Okanogan County Jail without incident.

The Deputies used great observation skills and quick action to bring these suspects to justice.  I appreciate their good work.

Very Respectfully,

Sheriff Harvey Gjesdal

douglascountysheriff148The Douglas County Sheriff’s Office is happy to announce the implementation of the AlertSense (company name) Public Alert Warning System.  This will enhance public safety in two ways:

  1. First, once requested by a public safety entity, the service will automatically alert anyone with a cell phone or hardline phone within a defined area.  For example, if there is a fire closing in on a populated area, I can call RiverCom and have them basically draw a polygon around the imperiled location.  The software activates the cell towers in the area and sends a message to all cell phones regardless of the carrier.  It also sends a message to all hardline phone.  That data was populated using the white and yellow pages.
  2. Second, citizens can sign up to receive the alerts.  This allows subscribers to receive the alerts even if they are not in the defined area.  In this case, a homeowner would be able to receive the alert via cell and e-mail.  The subscriber would be able to enter locations such as their home, a child’s school, or the home where aging parents live.  Simply put, add all locations that matter to you.  There is no cost and persons may sign up at:  http://public.alertsense.com/SignUp/?regionid=1183   One may also go to:  http://www.douglascountysheriff.org/ and click on the AlertSense logo at  the bottom of the page.

We will still use local media, and when appropriate, law enforcement personnel to alert community members of danger.  This is just another layer of notification to keep the public informed.

This has taken us some time to plan and put into use.  I am extremely grateful to my Undersheriff, Kevin Morris, my Emergency Management Specialist, Mike Dingle, and my Administrative Assistant, Tiffany Augustson for all their work on this project.  I also appreciate all the support we were given by our board of county commissioners.

Very Respectfully,

Sheriff Harvey Gjesdal

douglascountysheriff148On 06/24/16 at 9:15 PM Douglas County Sheriff’s Deputies responded to a fire on Rock Island Grade approximately 1 mile from Hwy. 28.  A Deputy located a man watching the fire.  He admitted he had accidently started the fire.  He said he had been camping in a wide spot in the road.  He was preparing to leave and was attempting to burn a bag of trash and an old sleeping bag.  The fire got away from him and caught the brush on fire. 

The subject was identified as a 61 year old Wenatchee man.  The case was sent to the Douglas County Prosecutor for consideration of charges.  Douglas County Fire District 2 was the initial response. The incident was turned over to BLM firefighters today. 

I can’t urge people enough to be careful with fire. 

Very Respectfully,

Sheriff Harvey Gjesdal

douglascountysheriff148On 06/14/16 at approximately 5:04 AM Douglas County Deputies responded to an assault complaint at the 500 Blk. of West 1st Ave in Waterville.  The female complainant reported that she had befriended a subject identified as 24 year old Ashley M. Knight of Chelan. 

Knight told the victim she was homeless and asked the complainant if she could stay with her for a while.  The complaint consented.  She then went out for the evening.  When the complainant returned home at approximately 4:30 AM, there was an unknown black Durango parked in the driveway. 

When the complainant entered the house, Knight and an unknown Hispanic male were rummaging through her belongings.  When the complainant confront Knight and the Hispanic male, Knight struck her in the jaw with the hammer.  Knight and the Hispanic male then fled in the black Durango.  The victim refused medical attention and said she would take herself to the doctor. 

Chelan County Deputies later located Knight in Wenatchee and turned her over to Douglas County Detectives.  She was  booked into jail for Assault 2nd degree and Burglary 1st degree.

I appreciate the great investigation done by our team and the assistance by our partners in Chelan County.

Very Respectfully,

Sheriff Harvey Gjesdal

douglascountysheriff148On 06/15/16 at approximately 8:15 PM RiverCom dispatch received a call from a subject who reported a burglar was at her residence and had shot one of her family members.  Deputies responded to the scene which was in the 2600 Blk. of 10th St. NE near East Wenatchee.  Units from the East Wenatchee Police Department and Washington State Patrol also arrived to assist.  They found two injured males at the location.  One appeared to have gunshot wounds.  The other appeared to have been stabbed and may also have had a gunshot wound.  Both were transported to Confluence Hospital.  At the time of this release, Douglas County Sheriff’s Deputies, crime scene team members, and detectives are at the scene of the incident and at the hospital working on the investigation.  The condition of the two wounded persons is not known.  No further information can be released at this time.  Additional information will be released as it becomes available. 

UPDATE:

Thus far, the investigation indicates that on 06/15/16 at 8:15 PM RiverCom dispatch received a call from a female who reported that her house was being burglarized and that her father had been shot.  When Deputies arrived they found the suspect, later identified as 35 year old Seth Williams of East Wenatchee, and the male homeowner facing each other in the street in front of the residence.   The Deputies could see both parties were injured.  Williams was subdued.  Both men were transported to Confluence Hospital.   Williams passed away at about 12:15 AM while in surgery.  The victim was released to go home on Thursday morning.

Physical evidence, interviews with the victim, and interviews with witnesses revealed that at approximately 8:10 PM the homeowner at the residence noticed a red pickup pull in his driveway.  He recognized the driver as Seth Williams.  The two had known each other as fellow veterans for about five months.  As the victim approached the truck, Williams produced a rifle from inside the vehicle and shot at the victim.  The round grazed the front of his chest.  The victim, who was armed with a 9 mm pistol, chose to retreat towards the road.  The rifle used by Williams had jammed with the first shot.  Williams came after the victim carrying a knife and swinging a set of binoculars by the strap.  The victim was able to deflect the binoculars, but Williams was able to stab him in the leg with the knife.  The  victim drew his pistol and shot Williams several times.  At this point, law enforcement officials arrived and took custody of Williams and requested medical aid for both men. 

A related case occurred at 1800 hours that same day when the victim reported a burglary at the residence.  Family members spotted a male leaving the a shop area carrying a duffle bag.   The male fled in a red pickup.  Investigators found a shop window had been broken to gain entry.  Williams is suspected to have been the intruder.  Additional details are being gathered by investigators.

No clear motive has been identified, but Williams may have been struggling with emotional issues.  An autopsy has been ordered and additional investigation is being completed.  The evidence available suggests the this was a case of self-defense by the victim.

Very Respectfully,

Sheriff Harvey Gjesdal