Letters to the Editor

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RECALL: Why Lindquist needs to go

Letter by Alberto Ugas, Sumner on Oct. 25, 2010 at 3:38 pm with 2 Comments »
October 25, 2010 3:48 pm

Being a public servant is not only a privilege, it is an honor that I personally do not take lightly. Never have I claimed nor practiced the art of smooth and silky talk that is devoid of truth or integrity. I do not care to participate in such endeavor.

As the top real estate appraiser for Pierce County, it is my sacred duty to ensure the assessments of all properties are uniformly and equitably administered. The injury inflicted to our system, with hundreds of thousands of falsified appraisals entered into the public records, will take at least four more years to cure given our present resources. Such injury and abuse must never be allowed to visit Pierce County again.

Prosecutor Mark Lindquist was formally asked on six different occasions to uphold the rule of law. Each and every time, Mr. Lindquist declined to do so, even after Gov. Gregoire’s office stated it was his responsibility to instigate an investigation.

It is a lighter task to display the backbone to prosecute the least amongst us; it is far more daunting to possess the courage to go after the political insiders who game the system.

The blindfold on Lady Justice represents objectivity; that justice should be meted out without fear or favor, regardless of identity, money or power. To the extent we have a prosecutor who does not measure up to such a standard, we are all in peril.

Ugas is Pierce County’s deputy assessor-treasurer.

Leave a comment Comments → 2
  1. olympicmtn says:

    Keep pushing forward for justice. I like others could care less who discovered the falsification of documents once considered a crime.

    Don’t let them marginalize you or other voters who want accountability in Pierce County. Madsen intentionally falsified documents. Period.
    Lindquist and Sheriff Pastor turn the other way when fellow Democrats are accused of a crime. The TNT and others have lost all credibility, instead of actually investigating they try throwing a red herring at the allegation or the complainant.

    Well listen up many are fed up with the TNT, the corrupt practices of politicians (Democrats in Pierce County). Do you recall Pearsall-Stipek (lawsuits, choking incidents regarding voter fraud, Ebersole (MLK housing fiasco), Mark French (former child porn guy who got 30 days on his yacht for kiddy porn??? That being recommended by YOUR “elected” PROSECUTOR).

    So don’t think for a second that the Sheriff or Prosecutor cares about crimes by politicians because they do not. If they can’t prosecute for kiddy porn they can’t prosecute for fraudulent signatures when assessing property.

    Oh and one more thing to get you going tonight. Read what we just found out about Zina Linnik from KIRO news (Not the TNT). Tacoma doesn’t even keep track of sex offenders!!!!! Feel better now parents?

    Kick the bums out come November.


    KIRO Radio

    On July 4, 2007, 12-year-old Zina Linnik was snatched from behind her family’s Tacoma home and murdered by a known sex offender.

    Now, Linnik’s family is suing the state, Pierce County, and the city of Tacoma for failing to keep tabs on Terapon Adhahn before he committed the heinous crime.

    In preparing his case, Linnik family lawyer Tyler Firkins asked the defendants to answer a series of questions, and a few of Tacoma’s answers are troubling, he said.

    Since 2000, cities have been required, by state law, to verify sex offenders’ addresses by sending them, via certified mail, verification forms. According to the statute, “the chief law enforcement officer [...] shall make reasonable attempts to locate any sex offender who fails to return the verification form or who cannot be located at the registered address.”

    In the lawsuit’s discovery phase, Firkins asked Tacoma’s lawyers the following question: “By year, how many unregistered sex offenders who failed to return verification forms were located by Tacoma after failing to return the verification form from 1998 to 2007?”

    The city’s response, in a document provided by Firkins to KIRO-FM: “There are no records to indicate that such mailings ever occurred. The Tacoma Police Department has never done any mailings.”

    “The response is, we’re not sending out these forms, and therefore we don’t have any to produce to you, since we don’t send them out,” said Firkins. “Even though that’s a direct violation of the statute.”

    For comment, the Tacoma City Attorney’s office directed us to City Manager Eric Anderson, who said he did not know if forms had been sent out. “I think what it means is that they hadn’t yet talked to Steve Holmes, the detective who did that work,” Anderson said.

    But why would the city declare no mailings had been done if it had not done the requisite research? “The city’s attorneys are more competent than that,” Firkins said.

    Other cities tell us they also do not send forms via certified mail, as the statute requires. The City of Seattle interprets the rule as a minimum requirement; it contacts offenders by phone, and if officers get no response, they visit the offenders in person, said Seattle Police spokesman Sgt. Sean Whitcomb.

    Pierce County also does physical visitations for sex offenders countywide, said Sheriff’s office spokesman Ed Troyer. However, the statute calls for city police organizations to attempt address verification “if the offender registers to live in an incorporated city or town.”

    “I believe [Holmes] did his work according to the law,” Anderson said.

    But when we asked Anderson’s office how specifically Tacoma tracks its offenders to comply with state law, we got no response.

    Terapon Adhahn, Zina Linnik’s killer, never registered as a sex offender in Tacoma, so either way, the city would not have been required to verify his address. But Firkins said even so, the responses raise disturbing questions about how sex predators are tracked in the city.

    “For a decade now, the city of Tacoma, as far as we know based on their answers, hasn’t complied with the statute,” said Firkins.

    Right now, there are 128 sex offenders whose whereabouts are unaccounted for in Pierce County, said Troyer. More than 100 others have registered as transients, giving the county no way to track them.

  2. ThinkerDem says:

    The refusal to address the issue of Madsen’s unitlateral choice to violate the law requiring physical inspections every 6 years began with the Republican-dominated County Council report of 3/31/09 that said the skipped inspections “did no harm” to ordinary taxpayers–which is patently untrue as was found in the report by Diamond Consultants that was done a year later for Pierce Co. Human Resources’ investigation of Washam’s persecution of an employee who served under Madsen but was not in a policy-making role. The Sheriff and Prosecutor accepted the first (bogus) report and ignored the second which explained that the obsolete property descriptions that were not updated after new construction, property updates, etc. were input into the computer program that performed the annual statistical property valuations. What resulted was classic “garbage in–garbage out” property assessments. Taxpayers were harmed by the comparison of their properties with others that appeared to be comparable because the property changes were never seen nor were they recorded. Don’t put all the blame on Democrats, though some is deserved–they relied on the Republican County Council’s whitewashed “no harm” nonsense.

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