When Garrett A. Bakken last July was charged with the felony DUI offense of vehicular assault after veering off Lake Washington Boulevard in Renton, Wash. and slamming into a pedestrian on a pathway, the story garnered coverage from local television and online news outlets and even made the New York Daily News. According to court files, Bakken’s blood alcohol level was nearly two-and-a-half-times the legal limit, and he initially drove away after the impact. At first, the victim’s identity was unknown. Last week on Friday May 3 to no fanfare Bakken, following an earlier plea agreement, was issued by King County Superior Court Judge Andrea Darvas a “standard range” sentence on the charge for a first-time felony offender: six months work release. Starting later this month the Renton man, 28, will go each weekday to work but spend nights and weekends in county custody until nearly Thanksgiving. For the victim, however, life is nowhere near its “standard range” prior to the accident.
Collaboration in Civic Spheres
Archive for the ‘King County’ Category
by Matt Rosenberg May 9th, 2013
by Matt Rosenberg May 7th, 2013
Washington state has one of the lowest rates of out-of-wedlock births in the U.S., according to the Census Bureau. A new report issued in May 2013 says that in the most recent year for which detailed American Community Survey data on the subject are available – 2011 – 35.7 percent of births nationwide were to unmarried women. In Washington, the rate was just 27.7 percent or fifth lowest overall, but it ranged widely within the state by metro region. Tri-Cities and Bremerton were far below the national average, while greater Seattle, Olympia and Bellingham were somewhat below it. Spokane was slightly below the national average, Wenatchee above it, and Longview and Yakima far in excess of it. State-by-state, the only ones with lower overall rates than Washington were Utah, New Hampshire, Montana and Nebraska. They ranged from 14.7 percent to 25.3 percent. It matters, say the authors of the report, because children born outside of marriage are more likely to be raised in poverty, and have poor developmental and behavioral outcomes.
by Matt Rosenberg May 3rd, 2013
A 29-year man from India in the U.S. on a work visa and employed at the time as a San Jose, Calif.-based software development manager for Amazon.com, was arrested April 12 and charged April 19 in King County Superior Court with the felony offense of attempted commercial sexual abuse of a minor after becoming ensnared in a Seattle Police Department vice unit sting involving an apparent 15-year-old prostitute. Public documents in the case file assert he agreed to pay the apparent prostitute $60 for oral sex, cuddling and fondling in his room at the Seattle Hyatt at the end of a five-day business trip here in mid-April. It is another in a series of Seattle Police vice unit busts attempting to root out alleged patrons of underage prostitutes – engineered through online hook-up ads, emails and text messaging conversations. Similar cases recently filed have not yet yielded convictions but have already resulted in a University of Washington-Bothell teaching associate being placed on temporary leave, and a managing director of the Seattle-based national firm Slalom Consulting being dismissed from his job.
by Matt Rosenberg May 2nd, 2013
A 62-year-old West Seattle man has been charged by King County prosecutors with the Class A felony offense of child molestation in the first degree after in one visit to her West Seattle home allegedly first tickling and then groping the buttocks of his niece, age seven, over her strong objections. She is described in court records as suffering from several different developmental disabilities. A separate Seattle Police incident report adds that according to her mother “her mental state is much closer to that of a three-year-old than age seven.” The defendant is Thomas Michael Weishampel, who according to the Seattle Police probable cause report in the court case file, resides in the 8400 block of 40th Ave. Southwest.
by Matt Rosenberg April 29th, 2013
Jason Edward Price, 42, of Seattle’s Ravenna neighborhood, is facing charges in King County Superior Court for commercial sexual abuse of a minor. Court records recently accessed by Public Data Ferret show he was charged March 8 after a sting operation set up by the Seattle Police Department’s Vice and High Risk Victim unit. According to a police report in the court file, Price conversed online with an apparent 15-year-old female prostitute, agreed to pay her $140 for oral and regular sex, and asked her to come to his home in the 5700 block of 17th Ave. N.E. – north of Ravenna Boulevard and just south of Ravenna Park – after 9 p.m. because his young children would be asleep by that time. When another undercover Seattle police detective appearing to be the 15-year-old girl met him at a pre-determined location near his home, and he motioned for her to cross the street over to him, he was arrested by SPD surveillance units who had staked out the spot.
In a statement to Public Data Ferret, a spokesman for the Seattle-based national business and technology consulting firm Slalom Consulting confirmed Price worked there but has been dismissed as a direct result of the company learning about the alleged crime.
by Matt Rosenberg April 22nd, 2013
An Orange County, Calif. Oracle software expert who bills himself at his LinkedIn page as current “finance lead consultant at Boeing” has been charged in Washington state with the felony crime of commercial sexual exploitation of a minor after a sting operation by Seattle Police resulted in his arrest at Spring Hill Suites Renton less than two weeks ago.
According to a report from the Seattle Police Department’s Vice/High Risk Victims Unit, attached to King County Superior Court charging papers in the case, Javier Ramos Palomino, 48, of Aliso Viejo, Calif. was ensnared in a Seattle Police vice unit sting operation that began at an online hook-up site. It involved an apparent 15-year-old female prostitute.
by Matt Rosenberg April 19th, 2013
A 30-year-old Kirkland man named Bahman Dabestanisharifabad, from Iran, pled guilty last month in King County Superior Court to felony harassment and felony witness tampering. This occurred after incidents in January of this year when he threatened to punch his girlfriend’s head into the outer wall of their apartment building, subsequently pointed a gun at her, and threatened to get her family in Iran imprisoned if she told local police.
The convictions for the two crimes each carried a penalty of up to five years in prison or a fine of up to $10,000, and a standard range sentencing range of four to 12 months in jail. But in a plea deal Dabestanisharifabad was instead ordered by Judge Bruce E. Heller to complete domestic violence batterer’s treatment and barred for five years from contact with his former live-in companion.
by Matt Rosenberg April 17th, 2013
In separate cases, criminal prosecutors in King County, Washington and Delaware County, Pennsylvania have charged the same 20-year-old Virginia man with felony sex offenses after he used social media to arrange hook-ups allegedly resulting in sex with young teen girls. Charged in King County with Rape of a Child 3 and in Delaware County with a series of alleged sex crimes is Ashley Ryan Hareford. He
is now was being held in lieu of a $1 million bond in a Delaware County jail. Although the alleged sex acts with a 14-year-old runaway foster child for which Hareford is charged in King County occurred in May of 2012, the case was not referred to King County for possible prosecution until late January 2013 and charges were filed just more than two weeks ago, on April 1. Despite having aroused suspicions almost as soon as he arrived in Puget Sound last May, Hareford was able to skate out of town within days of admitting to Puyallup Tribal Police he had had sex with the girl, who he claimed had told him she was 18. When she finally came forward in October with a different story, he was long gone. She said he used Facebook and Myyearbook.com to build trust with her before hitchhiking cross-country to meet in person.
By no later than Nov. 30, say Delaware County authorities, Hareford had again used social media, in this case the chat app Party In My Dorm, to successfully woo a 13-year-old Radnor Township, Pennsylvania girl upon whom he allegedly also perpetrated a series of felony sex offenses.
Whether and when he will have to fully answer for the Washington state child rape charge is unclear at this time. (UPDATE – 4/17/13, 3:51 p.m.: Delaware County District Attorney’s Office spokesperson Emily Harris tells us Hareford pled guilty yesterday and was sentenced on the Pennsylvania charges to 15 to 30 years in prison. Phillynews.com reports District Attorney Jack Whelan said Hareford will be extradited to Washington to face the charges there after he finishes his just-issued prison term.)