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Day: June 9, 2017

Keizer students turn grades, behavior around

By DEREK WILEY
Of the Keizertimes

Elsa Chavez-Chavez’s face lit up as she talked about graduating from McNary High School in front of her parents, younger brother and sisters.

“Since I’m the oldest one, I wanted to be the first to graduate from high school and get a diploma so my parents could see me,” Chavez-Chavez said. “I just wanted to prove everyone that doubted me that I wasn’t going to graduate and I am now. I’m so excited.”

Chavez-Chavez, one of three Keizer students to receive a 2017 Turnaround Achievement Award, wasn’t sure she would graduate on time a year ago.

“I was slacking and it was hard to concentrate and then all the family problems going on were super stressful,” Chavez-Chavez said. “My friends all supported me and pushed me. I stayed after school and met with teachers. I don’t miss as much school. Now I have good grades, As and Bs.”

Claggett Creek eighth grader Betsy Serpas Quintanilla, who went from making mostly Cs to As and Bs, also wanted to be a good influence on her younger siblings.

“I want to be a model to my little sisters,” Quintanilla said. “They say that the little siblings always follow your footsteps so I want to make sure they do good as well.”

Quintanilla has roles models of her own in her mom who took care of the family when her dad left and her older sister, Sarai, who is finishing up nursing school in El Salvador.

Quintanilla wants to be a lawyer and thought if she was going to go through that much school, she might as well begin to enjoy it. Playing soccer and volleyball and running track and field, Quintanilla also needs good grades for athletics.

Whiteaker eighth grader Matthew Warner had behavioral and academic issues, spending most of the seventh grade in the principal’s office while failing many of his classes.

After going to counseling during the summer, Warner decided to make a change.

“I thought I should stop doing what I was doing and start actually acting like a grownup,” Warner said. “I stopped fighting with people and started listening to the teachers.”

Warner, who now makes mostly As and Bs, has also found classes he enjoys like computers, shop and foods.

“I really didn’t like people and I didn’t like teachers because I didn’t like school at all,” Warner said. “Now I really like school because I have all my friends here and I get to hang out with them more often.”

The 23rd Annual Turnaround Achievement Awards were sponsored by Town & Country Lanes. The recipients were honored at a banquet on May 16 at Keizer Civic Center.

KPD night shift makes do

By ERIC A. HOWALD
Of the Keizertimes

At 11:30 p.m. Friday, June 2, Sgt. Jeff Goodman and Officer Kevin DeMarco are at the front door of a home where gang members are known to associate – not far from the Keizer Police Department (KPD) station.

DeMarco was first on the scene and Goodman joined him a few minutes later on a report of a domestic disturbance that became a noise complaint. The caller said several juveniles were in the driveway playing music loud.

Goodman knocks on the door, announces the presence of police, and a TV flickering behind a curtain goes dark. Then the world’s worst ninjas try to make their escape.

Behind the home, there is rustling and movement that can be heard in front of the house, it goes on for several seconds as Goodman makes his way around the left side of the house and DeMarco watches the fence along the right side. The pair calls for assistance from the two other officers on duty, Rodney Bamford and Scott Bigler. Reserve Officer Garrett Van Cleave is riding with Bigler. Soon enough, DeMarco spots a young man trying to leap over a fence. He disappears behind the home and approaches with the intent to detain him.

Goodman is still in the backyard and DeMarco returns to the front of the home with a man in handcuffs when someone emerges from between two homes a couple of doors down and begins walking away from the scene.

The figure is out of sight by the time the back-up officers pull into the short dead-end street.

All four officers spend about 15 minutes on the scene trying to figure out what happened before they arrived and why at least two people tried to run. In the end, no one ends up going to jail.

Tonight is something of a rarity, not only has it been what Goodman called “unusually quiet,” there are also four officers on shift. Bamford had the early evening hours off, but joined the night patrol after a family commitment ended.

Even still, Bamford, Bigler and Van Cleave had to leave other calls to back up DeMarco and Goodman. More often than not, the KPD shift has only three officers on duty most nights.

“We run at three because of the ways we have to schedule time off and make up for training hours,” said Goodman, the night shift supervisor.

Department policies require a minimum of three people per night shift, but Goodman wants to see a four-officer minimum become the standard.

“A domestic disturbance call takes a minimum of two officers to respond and, when we only have three officers on shift, we literally do not have enough people to take the second domesticcall,” Goodman said.

To establish a four-officer minimum, KPD needs at least two new officers – a task seemingly easier said than done. Members of the city’s budget advisory committee have advocated for new officers for several years to no avail. City officials are careful about funding new positions anywhere in city offices.

On Monday, June 12, the Keizer City Council will meet for a work session to discuss the possibility of implementing a public safety fee that would pay for five new officers (see related story Page A1). I rode along with Goodman last week to get a ground-level take on how additional officers would impact the KPD night shift.

Domestic disturbance calls are actually one of Goodman’s favorite types of calls.

“If something happened to me or one of my family members, I’d want an officer to show up that knows the laws, understands the situation,” he said. “Everybody gets in verbal arguments. You don’t want an officer there that is not caring.”

After nearly 25 years on the job, finding a resolution to a domestic disturbance is one of the things he can actually feel good about for the most part.

“You might catch a criminal or put three people in jail one night, but then you realize those people’s lives are all messed up,” Goodman said. “In domestics, you can leave the victim – sometimes and even the suspect – feeling grateful you showed up.”

Domestic disturbances can also be some of the more unpredictable calls. Victims, as well as offenders, can turn on police. A week before our ride-along, one victim pulled a knife on Goodman after taking the woman’s husband into custody.

“They call 9-1-1 wanting help and you start dealing with the problem and the victim realizes that the person they love, and who might pay their bills, is going to jail,” he said.

At least twice in recent months, the KPD night shift has been caught short-handed. In March, a would-be burglar got trapped in a window while trying to enter a local store and all of Keizer’s night patrol officers were tied up with an investigation into a menacing incident down the street.

In April, a lack of officers to create a secure perimeter and evacuate a family that was the victim of a home intruder delayed an arrest by almost an hour.

While both incidents were handled as quickly as possible, neither of them rose to the level of life-and-death. Goodman said one of those incidents, in 2014, that led him to begin pushing for additional officers.

About 1 a.m. on March 6, 2014, Keizer police and the Keizer Fire District received a report of a shooting at a residence in west Keizer. It happened at precisely the wrong time.

Goodman said two officers were already on a scene dealing with an intoxicated driver.

“I don’t think it was alcohol, it was drugs. She was basically parked in the middle of River Road and we couldn’t just walk away. She would have killed someone,” Goodman said.

Two officers did respond to the scene, but it wasn’t enough to safely clear the way for medics to enter the home.

“We thought we had the shooter trapped. We could have sent someone through the front door and had one person in the back, but then you have the possibility of chasing an armed person through a residential neighborhood,” Goodman said.

Eventually, the remainder of the officers were able to make it to the scene and determine it was safe for medics to enter. It turned out that the homeowners’ son had shot and killed his mother and grievously injured his father.

However, there was enough of a delay in the immediate response to cause frustration on the part of police and the fire district officials even though it likely would have made no difference in the outcome.

In October 2016, Goodman himself was involved in an incident when a suspect drew a gun on him. Goodman spotted a Honda Civic heading north on River Road at a high rate of speed. After pacing the driver going 46 mph in a 35 mph zone, Goodman initiated a traffic stop. The driver continued north on River Road and turned east on Chemawa before turning into the main entrance of the Safeway parking lot. The Civic then turned back into the parking lot and was nearing the unpaved area when the driver got out of the still-moving Honda and squared up his shoulders.

Goodman was never certain the suspect had a gun, but all of his body movements seemed to suggest it. The man ran to the rear of the Civic and turned in what seemed to be a firing position again when the gun – later determined to be a 1911 Colt handgun – flew out of his hand.

The gun didn’t discharge and the man took off running past Shari’s and across River Road. The gun was later found in bushes near Shari’s and the safety was off. What exactly the suspect intended to do with the gun is subject to some speculation.

Goodman learned later just how far the man was willing to take it. The old gun required the person firing it to draw back the hammer before firing a shot. Upon closer inspection, the round in the chamber had evidence of a hammer strike.

“I don’t know if he tried to fire it and it just didn’t go off, but I think he would have killed me that day. I didn’t realize the severity until it was all over,” Goodman said.

Even as he called for back-up, Goodman never told the two other officers the man might have been armed. He simply wasn’t sure. It was too dark and things were moving too fast. The nearest officer that night was at the station, the third officer was at the Skyline Ford location on River Road north.

“If I yell, he’s got a gun, it’s almost the same as pulling the trigger even if it doesn’t play out that way. I was not there beyond a shadow of a doubt,” he said.

Even on a quiet night, he hands out a few tickets, makes another traffic stop that ends in a warning, looks into the source of some 9-1-1 hang-ups, and checks in on a woman whose partner kicked in the door to her home. When the parties to a domestic dispute are already separated, one officer can take the call, but others are standing by in case the perpetrator comes back.

He even takes a few minutes to interact with a group of teens at an apartment complex in south Keizer. He organizes an impromptu race with the winner getting $1.

Shortly after the scene at the problem house near the station, Goodman gets a call from the Marion County jail. Salem officers have picked up a woman wanted by Keizer police. The woman got into a traffic accident while driving a stolen vehicle. She gave the other party involved someone else’s driver’s license before taking off on foot.

Luckily, the other driver snapped a photo of the woman and police were able to identify her by that. She was in custody at the jail, but Goodman had to physically go there and sign paperwork for the charges from the crash to be lodged against her.

In the end, it will take three times as long to drive to the jail and back as it will to complete the paperwork, but it takes him out of the city and leaves the night shift short-handed while he’s gone.

If Goodman were transporting a suspect to the jail, it might put him out of commission for two or three hours depending on how many other agencies are in line before him. If a Keizer officer ends up at the hospital investigating sexual abuse charges, it could leave them a man down until the reports can be taken.

“The biggest thing is most of the time we can handle most of the calls, but there will be that one day when you need four officers. If we had four officers, I think we would be fine,” Goodman said. “The city council is just gambling that nothing bad is going to happen. All these years they’ve been getting lucky, but the luck is going to run out.”

Do no harm

To the Class of 2017:

The easy part is over. People will say that if you can get through high school, you’re set. Except for college. Except for a job and a career. Graduates in every generation say the same thing: “I’m glad high school is over.” Yet, many people say they remember their high school days fondly—the structure, the friends, the sports, the activities. All of that without thinking much about how it is all paid for.

If you paid attention to your studies you have exited high school with a solid base of education that will serve you well as you enter your college days. For those foregoing further education in favor of the military or directly into the job market, your education will serve you well, also.

One of the key lessons you learned through the past 12 years of schooling is how to treat people, how to socialize with others. That’s important because the world is full of people. You will meet people at college, at work, in the military, on a mission.

How you deal with other people will have a huge impact on your success. The Golden Rule may sound trite but it has always been true: when you treat others well, you will be treated well in return. Be polite. Don’t be nasty. Be helpful. Don’t be selfish. You know the rules, practice them out in the real world—the payoff will be amazing.

The world you entered at birth is so much different than the world you enter out of school. Everything seemed to be so innocent back when you were a baby. Ask your parents and grandparents—they’ll agree.

You are a generation that lives in a world in which terrorist attacks are common occurances. Terrorism can hit home (as the attack on Portland’s MAX train last month attests), but for most of you terrorism is an item in the news—if  you pay attention to the news.

You are joinng millions of others who are taking their first steps into a post-primary education life. That life will include making good decisions for yourself and others. Too many bad decisons are fueled by alcohol and the mob mentality. Just this week Harvard University rescinded the acceptance of 10 incoming freshman for exchanging obscene and racist Facebook posts.

There is nothing so promising as a high school graduating class that enters the world. Everything is possible, there are rules and boundaries to test and stretch. The same ol’ doesn’t have to continue to be the same ol’.  It is within your power to control the destiny of the planet you will inherit.

And even if you are not going into medical school take a lesson from Hippocrates: Do no harm.

  —LAZ

A razor and an iron

By LYNDON ZAITZ

I come from a customer service background, primarily in food and beverage. Restaurant companies are serious when it comes to not only the cleanliness of their shops but also a clean, presentable staff.

Companies in the 1970s and 1980s had dress and grooming guidelines. If you wanted a job you wore the uniform or you cut your hair or you covered your tattoos. A number of high profile court cases put the scotch on such rules. And it shows these days.

Far from a crotchedy ol’ man, I find myself railing (in my mind) against the standards so many businesses seem to have adopted these days when it comes to how they allow their employees to appear.

Back in the 1960s parents and older people wanted to chase after and cut the ‘hippie’ hair of kids. Meh…hair styles come and go. I find I want to chase after employees with a razor. I think to myself: commit to a beard fully or drop the whole thing and shave. The employee with a quarter inch, spotty beard, is a not a paragon of fashion or hipness in my book. Not every person who can grow some hair on their face should have a beard; mostly it just looks unkempt and sends a message that they don’t much care about personal grooming.

I also find myself wanting to chase after some of the employees I see working in customer service with a good steam iron. Wrinkles equal carelessness.

I understand an employee guidebook that allows beards, but I don’t understand where—in any employee manual—that it is perfectly acceptable to look like a slob. Wearing casual clothes when one works at Google or Uber is fine, wearing wrinkled clothes while serving fast food or working in a deli is quite another.

Can the managers of the world tighten up their grooming standards? Please?

(Lyndon Zaitz is publisher of the Keizertimes.)

Teen charged with stalking after breaking windows

A 17-year-old was charged with stalking a business after shattering windows at Keizer Sub Shop twice in May.

About 3 p.m. on Wednesday, May 31, Keizer police officers responded to the business at 4490 River Road North on the report of a gun being fired at the windows. The suspect then fled the scene.

Officers arrived and determined that it was unlikely a gun was used, but another officer found the suspect nearby on Cherry Avenue Northeast. He was detained and taken to the scene where he was identified as the culprit. He had also previously victimized the business with another broken window on May 7.

The boy was arrested for menacing, disorderly conduct and criminal mischief and taken to the Marion County Juvenile Department.

The following day, June 1, the same teen was found walking toward Keizer Sub Shop by a Keizer officer. Fearing he might be returning to do additional damage, and knowing the teen was on runaway status, he was taken into custody and issued an Oregon Uniform Stalking Complaint for stalking the business.

Keizer Police Deputy Chief Jeff Kuhns said the teen is a ward of the state that officials have had trouble placing in a home. The State of Oregon had placed him in a hotel room with Department of Human Services workers outside the room 24/7. However, the workers could not prevent the teen from leaving, only report him as a runaway when he did so.

Because of the escalating incidents, Keizer police detectives have requested that state officials find an alternative form of supervision.

Monday, May 29

• 9 a.m. – Failure to perform duties of driver when property is damaged on 900 block Delta Drive NE.

• 1:09 p.m. – Theft from motor vehicle on 4200 block Meadowbrook Court NE.

• 6:03 p.m. – Arrest for theft, shoplifting, reckless driving, and criminal conspiracy on 6200 block Ulali Drive NE.

Tuesday, May 30

• 1:10 a.m. – Arrest for disorderly conduct and interfering with police officer on 300 block Sandy Drive N.

• 1:20 p.m. – Arrest for theft of bicycle on 1000 block Clear Lake Road NE.

• 2:51 p.m. – Arrest for shoplifting on on 6200 block Ulali Drive NE.

• 5:04 p.m. – Theft on 500 block Dearborn Avenue N.

• 9 p.m. – Criminal mischief and vandalism on 3300 block River Road N.

Wednesday, May 31

• 9:37 a.m. – Criminal mischief and vandalism on 2500 block Jorie Lane NE.

• 9:45 a.m. – Motor vehicle theft on 5500 block River Road N.

• 1:12 p.m. – Arrest for criminal mischief and vandalism on 4900 block Delight Street N.

• 2:21 p.m. – Traffic accident on River Road North and Garland Way North.

• 7 p.m. – Motor vehicle theft on 3500 block Sandra Avenue N.

Thursday, June 1

• 3:30 a.m. – Shoplifting and criminal conspiracy on 4300 block River Road N.

• 9:19 a.m. – Shoplifting on 900 block Chemawa Road NE.

• 10:30 a.m. – Physical harassment on 1800 block Alder Drive NE.

• 9:44 p.m. – Arrest for warrant on 600 block Manbrin Drive NE.

• 11 p.m. – Theft from motor vehicle on 5400 block McLeod Lane NE.

Friday, June 2

• 3 a.m. – Shoplifting on 4300 block River Road N.

• 3:43 p.m. – Arrest for warrant on 900 block Chemawa Road NE.

• 5:58 p.m. – Arrest for assault on 4900 block 13th Avenue NE.

• 11 p.m. – Theft from motor vehicle on 4500 block Northside Drive NE.

Saturday, June 3

• 1 a.m. – Theft from motor vehicle on 4300 block Northside Drive NE.

• 3 a.m. – Theft from motor vehicle on 4400 block Northside Drive NE.

• 6:20 a.m. – Arrest for unlawful possession of methamphetamine on 4300 block Rivercrest Drive N.

• 8 a.m. – Theft from motor vehicle on 4300 block Rivercrest Dirve N.

Sunday, June 4

• 2:28 a.m. – Arrest for unlawful possession of methamphetamine on Chemawa Road North and Newberg Drive North.

• 9:13 a.m. – Theft from motor vehicle on 4000 block Filbert Street NE.

• 11 a.m. – Theft from motor vehicle on 1100 block Clearview Avenue NE.

Backlash builds against Griffin

By DEBRA SAUNDERS

By mid-week last week, comedian Kathy Griffin had apologized for posing for a photo with what looked like the blood-soaked decapitated head of President Donald Trump.

“I went too far,” she said in a contrite follow-up video. “I sincerely apologize.”

But it was too late.

Squatty Potty CEO Bobby Edwards announced that it was suspending an ad campaign featuring Griffin as the Utah-based bathroom-stool company saw the stunt as “deeply inappropriate” and “contrary to the core values our company stands for.”

CNN also announced it was terminating Griffin’s appearance on its New Year’s show, after earlier criticizing the photos as “disgusting and offensive.”

Sen. Al Franken, D-Minn., still planned to appear with Griffin on a tour to promote his new book, Al Franken: Giant of the Senate. Franken called the photo shoot “a horrible mistake,” but said “she did the right thing asking for forgiveness.”

The question is: What ever made Griffin and photographer Tyler Shields think that it was acceptable, or even funny, for Griffin to pose as an Islamic State terrorist would, holding what looked to be the hacked-off head of a U.S. president?

It is clear that the photo—posted earlier on TMZ—was not a spontaneous gaffe. Griffin and Shields produced a video about the production in which Griffin joked, “We have to go to Mexico. Because we’re going to prison, federal prison.”

Radio talk show host Rush Limbaugh likened the video to “the political assassination of Donald Trump.”

Tweeting Wednesday morning, Trump said Griffin “should be ashamed of herself” for the photo. “My children, especially my 11-year-old son, Barron, are having a hard time with this. Sick!”

And first lady Melania Trump issued a statement in which she said, “As a mother, a wife, and a human being, that photo is very disturbing. When you consider some of the atrocities happening in the world today, a photo opportunity like this is simply wrong and makes you wonder about the mental health of the person who did it.”

Many conservatives believe left-leaning Hollywood has two standards -one for Democrats who always are victims, and another for conservatives who get what’s coming to them.

“Clearly there is a history of the Hollywood left feeling emboldened to make outrageous statements about conservatives,” former GOP strategist Alice Stewart observed.

Stewart said she believes in free speech, but she also believes in consequences. She applauded Griffin for apologizing and “my employer CNN for canceling her contract for New Year’s Eve.”

When British filmmaker Gabriel Range made a movie about the assassination of George W. Bush during a 2007 trip to Chicago, he won an award. Then the fantasy of assassinating a president was art, as Griffin described her photo shoot.

But when Republicans target Democrats in less direct fashion, they can be accused of inciting violence. Griffin herself assailed former GOP vice presidential candidate Sarah Palin for releasing a map with targeted congressional districts in crosshairs. When a madman shot and critically wounded Rep. Gabby Giffords, D-Ariz., whose district was in the map, Griffin tweeted, “Happy now Sarah?”

Democratic strategist Maria Cardona saw no need to condemn Griffin. “Frankly I don’t think she matters,” the CNN contributor wrote in an email. “I think Trump made a mistake in responding to her because it elevated her and her disgusting antic to a level she doesn’t deserve. And sure, hypocrisy abounds on both sides. Ted Nugent threatened President Obama’s life and Nugent was invited by Trump to the White House.”

In 2012, Nugent, a gun-rights activist, said Republicans “should ride into that battlefield and chop (Democrats’) heads off in November.”

Comedian Will Durst took time off from working on Durst Case Scenario, his one-man show about Trump, to comment on the Griffin controversy.

“You know Kathy Griffin is tasteless,” said Durst, who nonetheless refused to condemn her. “The guy who she is mocking and scoffing,” he said, has “laid a base of attack and bluster and baseless claims, so it’s a whole different playing field.”

Former first daughter Chelsea Clinton was not as understanding. “I hope we can at least agree that it’s never funny to joke about violence toward anyone, and particularly in this politically charged moment, toward our president,” she told “The View.”

(Creators Syndicate)

Exit from Paris climate accord is wrong

Give or take a year or two, the Industrial Revolution began in earnest in Great Britain during the last decade of the 18th century. So, a mere 227 years ago on planet Earth, a relatively small-sized but somewhat unique, rocky world circling a comparatively small star at 4.5 billion years of age, the human species started to add significantly to naturally-occurring air, water and soil contaminants, rendering them often-dangerous to the health, even survival, of many living creatures.

Then, in the waning years of the last century (mainly the 1980s), humankind began to notice that human activity was causing so much pollution in every way that it was calculated as inevitable that, should the waste and wantonness continue, there’d be no certainty the planet would, before long, due to climate change and a multitude of other threatening conditions, allow its “smartest” species to survive, homo sapiens dating back by fossil-finds some 200,000 years.

Down close to the present time, there have been fits and starts among the nations of the world to try to bring to a halt, or even, if possible, to reverse, the serious threat to the air, water and soil for plants and animals on the planet. This concern resulted in the Paris climate agreement, co-signed and adopted by 195 nations on December 12, 2015, to mitigate and control greenhouse gasses, scheduled to officially get underway in 2020.

Now, President Trump has announced that the U.S. will withdraw from the agreement, joining Nicaragua and Syria, originally unable to sign. However, the nuts and bolts of the agreement, more accurately the money and power behind its rejection here, have most to do with the fact that America’s powerful corporations and super wealthy multi-national business interests, who can make or break Trump financially, are those to whom Trump now bows. American billionaires like Carl Icahn and the Koch Brothers can’t wait for the Trump administration to gut climate and pollution controls at home and abandon international sanctions abroad so they can get back to drilling wherever they please for crude oil and other fossil fuels currently restrained by some environmental regulations.

Meanwhile, Trump supporters, his “core base” of voters who seem always to agree with him, commonly believe he’s pulling out of the climate pact because he believes climate science is a Chinese hoax. These same folks, including coal miners, oil-drilling roughnecks and others in declining blue collar American industries, view him as working in their interest to place them back to their former jobs.  What’s going on here in employment opportunities, however, now and into the foreseeable future, look to disappoint many of those for whom Trump made promises.  Meanwhile, serious persons seeking real work futures are advised to study U.S. labor market information and thereby seek education and training in career-vocational-technical schools and programs.

The sovereignty and cohesion of America has been threatened multiple times but appear at present under greater strain from within and outside than ever before. Ripping up a global climate agreement fulfills the aspirations and determinations of the corporate interests and wealthy entrepreneurs among us whose apparent need to make more and more money trumps all other considerations.  In the mean time, the masses want to protect their loved ones from a planet gone totally-exploited for the sake of big bucks, with no care for the continuation of a livable world.

(Gene H. McIntyre lives in Keizer.)