Battery bandits, dinghy debacle, public property yields pot grow; San Juan County Sheriff's Log

San Juan County Sheriff's Department reported responding to these calls:

Sept. 1: Prompted by an anonymous tip, authorities discovered, uprooted and seized 20 marijuana plants growing on Orcas Island's Crescent Beach Preserve. The plants, varying from one to four feet in height, were planted in two separate locations on the preserve, located just east of Eastsound. Three water jugs and one plant container were also confiscated.

Sept. 8: A San Juan Island couple was flown off-island because of a high-level of intoxication, prompting investigation of a Friday Harbor bartender for over-service. The husband suffered injuries to his back and face after falling down a flight of stairs leading to the restaurant’s upper deck; his wife was passed out at the bar. They reportedly shared $60 worth of beer and cocktails  during that visit at the bar.

Sept. 10: Failure to wear a seatbelt prompted the arrest of a San Juan Island woman for driving with a suspended license following an early evening traffic stop near the intersection of Guard Street and Tucker Avenue. The 38-year-old, pulled over at about 7:30 p.m., was also ticketed for driving with expired tags, and for driving without insurance and a seatbelt.

Sept. 13: An estimated $1,200 worth of power tools disappeared from a west side Orcas Island resort in an apparent theft. Authorities reportedly questioned an individual that management of West Beach Resort suspects may be responsible. The missing tools include two chain saws and a trio of cordless tools; saw, screwdriver and flashlight.

Sept. 15: The capsizing of an 8-foot dinghy that sent two Tacoma men into the waters of Friday Harbor in mid-evening remains under investigation by the United States Coast Guard. The men, brothers, ages 58 and 56, reportedly tried without success to race in front of a ferry just before it docked, and ended up in the water when the "prop-wash" from the ferry, which powered into reverse to avoid a collision, capsized the dinghy. They were fished out by the ferry crew.

Four warrants, three issued in San Juan County and from the city of Shoreline, prompted the arrest of an early evening arrest of an Orcas Island man. The 25-year-old, who was taken into custody at his Hemlock Street home at about 6 p.m., was escorted to Friday Harbor after failing to come up with $1,500 bail.

Sept. 16: An 8-foot dinghy, equipped with an outboard motor, vanished from the Rosario Resort marina in an apparent late-night theft. Valued at $2,600, the dinghy belongs to a Lynden, Wash., man who reportedly was at the resort for the weekend.

Sept. 17: A 17-year-old Lopez boy suffered cuts and bruises following an early evening collision with a tree in the 800 block of Channel Road. The boy reportedly missed a bend in the road and slammed his pickup into the tree as he was retrieving a bottle of water that had fallen onto the floor of the vehicle. His passenger, a 16-year-old boy, escaped the crash without injury.

Sept. 18: Two vials of prescription medication, one containing 40 tablets of powerful painkillers, vanished from an Orcas Island woman's pickup in an apparent late morning theft. The 31-year-old left her purse in the pickup, reportedly unlocked and parked in the 500 block of Madrona Street at the time, walked her children to school, and then returned at about noon to find the contents of the purse scattered inside the pickup and both vials of medication missing.

Sept. 23: A late-night arrest of a San Juan Island woman suspected of driving drunk also led to the arrest of her husband for allegedly obstructing the investigation. The couple was taken into custody at their Harbor Street home at about 2 a.m. The woman, 43, was issued a criminal citation for DUI and released, while her husband, 51, was booked and held in custody pending a court hearing wherein release conditions would be set.

A warrant and a collision with a tree led to the arrest of a Orcas Island woman in the 1400 block of Orcas Road. The 23-year-old, accused of violating a no-contact order, reportedly lost control of her vehicle while swerving to miss a deer and then crashed into a tree. She was also ticketed for driving without a license and without proof of insurance.

Three pieces of heavy machinery were disabled after the batteries of each disappeared in an apparent theft at a San Juan Island gravel pit. Someone reportedly also tried without success to remove a radiator from one of the pieces of machinery, stationed at a gravel pit in the 1000 block of Three Corner Lake Road.

Sept. 26: A warrant for failure to appear in court prompted the arrest of a Morton, Wash., woman at the ferry landing in Friday Harbor. The 43-year-old, who was taken into custody at about 11:30 a.m., and then later released after posting bail, reportedly failed to appear in court on a charge of driving with a suspended license.

Sept. 27: An estimated $2,000 worth of household belongings and artwork disappeared from a San Juan Island storage unit in an apparent break-in and theft. The list of missing items, belonging to Edmonds man and contained in a storage unit in the 3000 block of Beaverton Valley Road, include a Marjorie Walker lithogram, Japanese reverse-painting on glass and copper sauce pans and cooking pots.

— Scott Rasmussen


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