Police Log

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The Port Townsend Police Department responded to 224 calls between Sept. 22 and Sept. 28, including 3 burglary reports, 11 incidents of harassment, 5 reports of threats and 5 requests for welfare checks. Officers made 62 traffic stops. Among the incidents were the following:

Police stopped a driver on Sims Way at 1:50 a.m. on Sept. 22 because the driver’s vehicle did not have a functioning rear license-plate light. The registration for the vehicle had expired in December 2015, and the driver had no proof of insurance in the vehicle. Citations were issued.

Officers responded to a business on Water Street at 4 p.m. on Sept. 22, after it was reported that a man, who appeared to be intoxicated and was stumbling around looking for his car, had fallen down in the parking lot. Police called a cab to take the man home.

At 7:45 a.m. on Sept. 23, police warned a driver after the person had stopped traffic near one of the traffic roundabouts on Sims Way to take a picture of a sign that had been posted in the roundabout.

At 2 p.m. on Sept. 24, an officer spoke to the owner of a vehicle parked on Water Street with two dogs locked inside. The animals appeared to be in distress, panting and lethargic. Both dogs drank a bottle of water each. The dogs were taken to the animal shelter and later released to the owner after a discussion about animal abuse.

An officer on foot patrol at 2:30 p.m. on Sept. 24 near the wave-viewing dock on Water Street spoke with a group of transients about keeping their noise level down and cleaning up after themselves.

At 5 p.m. on Sept. 24, an officer spoke with an elderly man who was pushing a shopping cart downtown near Tyler Street and shouting to himself. The man stated he was homeless and was waiting for the shelter to open. He said he did not need assistance.

On Sept. 25 at 7:30 p.m., a person reported that a purple bicycle had fallen out of the back of her truck on Sims Way. The woman said she had attempted to find it, but was unable to locate the bike. The following day, the woman reported that she had found her bicycle.

Police stopped a driver traveling on Sims Way at 9 p.m. on Sept. 26 for speeding and making a left turn where it was prohibited. The driver’s license had been suspended, and the vehicle registration had expired. He was arrested for driving with a suspended license.

At 6:30 a.m. on Sept. 27, police responded to an area on Water Street where a person had been found sleeping in a pile of boxes. The reporting party said he didn’t want anyone sleeping outside of his business where he piles boxes during the day. When police arrived on the scene, there was no one in the box hut. The reporting party was advised to call police if the subject returns.

A report was filed with police at 7:30 a.m. on Sept. 27 about money missing from a local business on Tyler Street. There was no forced entry to the business, and the reporting party thought a former employee might have taken the money kept in a till bag under the counter. An estimated $800 was in the bag.

At 9:20 a.m. on Sept. 27, police received a report from an employee at Grant Street School stating the school garden had been vandalized the previous weekend. Damages were estimated to be approximately $75.

At 2:10 p.m. on Sept. 27, police were called to an area on Water Street where a person reported that a man had been using a pay phone when someone grabbed the receiver and hit him with it. The person commented that the subject had been on the phone too long. Both parties had left the area before police arrived.

At 4:40 p.m. on Sept. 27, police responded to a residence on Landes Street where someone had dumped a bunch of trash out on the corner of Landes and Hill streets. Animals had gotten into the trash and were dragging it around the neighborhood. The garbage appeared to have been set out for curbside pickup, but not in containers. The residents believed to have dumped the trash did not appear to be home and the residence appeared to be vacant.

Police responded to the restroom area at Kah Tai Lagoon Nature Park at 5:50 p.m. on Sept. 27 after someone reported that a group of five people were smoking marijuana and might be intoxicated. The reporting party said that one man had pulled a knife on another, but believed it might have been a joke. The officer cleared a group of individuals out of the parking lot, where they cleaned up the garbage on the ground and then moved on. There was no indication that marijuana was being used or that anyone was drinking.

A man was arrested at 7:45 p.m. on Sept. 27 near a shopping center on Sheridan Street for throwing and breaking alcohol and wine bottles in a grocery store at the center. He was escorted out of the building, but attempted to return. The man then was seen walking back and forth around area businesses and subsequently was arrested and transported to jail. Estimated cost of damages was $110. The store manager asked that the man be banned from the premises.

At 11:20 p.m. on Sept. 27, a man left a restaurant on Water Street after he was seen ripping items off the walls. He left the scene when he was confronted by another person. The male subject was seen driving away from the area in a white Subaru. Washington State Patrol was advised to be on the lookout for the vehicle.

At 8:40 a.m. on Sept. 28, officers responded to a report of an individual living in her car in the parking lot next to a business on Water and Quincy streets. It was reported that the female subject was moving her car several times a day, then returning at night and hanging her laundry out near her car. This had been going on for the past two weeks. The business owner requested that the subject and others with her move out of the parking lot. The subjects said they would no longer stay there.

At 11:50 p.m. on Sept. 28, police responded to a call at the Port of Port Townsend marina, where a male subject on a sailboat was hitting other boats and arguing with another subject. The man was issued a citation for failure to show that he had a boating education card. The following day, a woman who lives aboard her boat at the marina reported that the male subject had made unwanted advances and threatened to kill her. The reporting party said she would provide police with a written statement and decide if she wanted to press charges.

Resource officer returns to duty

Port Townsend Police Officer Jeremy Vergin was set to resume his duties as the resource officer for Port Townsend School District this week, according to Police Chief Michael Evans.

Police department staffing issues had made it necessary for Vergin to return to patrol duty. However, with recent new hires, bringing the total number of police officers to 14, Officer Vergin will be back in Port Townsend schools, Evans said.

The program began in Port Townsend in the mid-1990s. Sgt. Troy Surber and Sgt. Garin Williams previously served as school resource officers.

The first school resource officer program in the country was started in 1953 in Flint, Michigan. The cost to provide a resource officer in Port Townsend district schools is paid by the police department.

Vergin is to work with all schools in the district, including private schools, and be based at the high school, Evans said. Vergin’s duties include safety education, traffic safety and enforcement, attendance at some after-school programs and working with local juvenile services staff.

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