Letters to the Editor

Your views in 200 words or less

Tag: Mark Lindquist

May
27th

TACOMA: Community discussions are vital

I applaud The News Tribune for inviting community leaders in for a discussion (Karen Peterson column, 5-24) to avoid a flare-up that we’ve seen in many other cities recently regarding police and community relations.

Recently, at City Club of Tacoma, we had a program titled “Can Ferguson Happen in Tacoma?” The News Tribune and City Club invited some of the same community leaders, such as Lyle Quasim and Tacoma Police Chief Don Ramsdell. But we had one additional, and in my opinion, key player involved: Pierce County Prosecutor Mark Lindquist.

Lindquist was a vital part of our program, lending his

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May
19th

PROSECUTOR: Accuser’s reputation for integrity is topnotch

If one were to rank the staff of the Pierce County Prosecutor’s Office by their reputation for integrity and honesty, Steven Merrival would be at or near the top. Mark Lindquist, who knows? He doesn’t carry a caseload and only appears in court if there are news cameras present.

The Latin phrase is “esse quam videri” – to be rather than to appear to be. Lindquist spends inordinate amounts of time and taxpayer money to give the appearance of an ideal prosecutor. His office’s performance, however, has been one scandal after another of hidden evidence, unethical courtroom behavior, coverups, and

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May
14th

PROSECUTOR: Merrival is honest, fair, ethical

Re: “Staffer files complaint on Lindquist” (TNT, 5-14).

I am a retired public defender who practiced in Pierce County for 22 years. I have known Steve Merrival since 1973, when he was a law student at the University of Wisconsin Law School. I was director of Wisconsin Indian Legal Services and hired him as a student intern.

Merrival went on to become a prosecutor. As a public defender in Pierce County, he and I have been counsel for the defense and he was counsel for the plaintiff in countless cases.

I have no personal knowledge of the allegations he has made in his complaint against Pierce

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May
8th

PROSECUTOR: Misconduct in office runs deep

Pierce County Prosecutor Mark Lindquist claims that his office’s trial tactics and charging decisions should not be considered to be “misconduct.” Lindquist has gone far beyond mere “error” in his willful and deliberate violation of appellate and state Supreme Court orders.

Lindquist’s recent Viewpoint piece (TNT, 5-3) fails to address why his office has been found to have committed misconduct in a disproportionate number of cases and how his office alone is calling the Supreme Court’s decisions “unexpected.”

Lindquist addressed only one of the multitude of brazen miscarriages of justice committed since his election. He does not, because he cannot, defend

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May
4th

PROSECUTOR: Misconduct isn’t just a word

Thieves say they “boost” or “borrow” items; robbers “jack” things. Pierce County Prosecutor Mark Lindquist’s complaint that the courts should call prosecutorial “misconduct” an “error” (Viewpoint, 5-3) is a similar attempt to hide a misdeed with banality or wit.

Criminal defendants are not guaranteed trials free of error, but they are guaranteed trials free of prejudicial error. The question is whether an error may have made the difference in the trial’s outcome. If the reviewing court decides that it did, then a new trial is ordered. Prosecutorial misconduct may be prejudicial, but is not always found to be so.

Lindquist has

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April
22nd

JUSTICE: Cases show cause for concern

I am quite concerned about two different legal issues covered in Sunday’s News Tribune. The first article concerned the office of our county prosecutor and its high rate of overturned convictions. The second was about our state auditor, Troy Kelley, and his indictment.

Prosecutor Mark Lindquist has been dismissive of what the state Supreme Court has judged about many of his prosecutions. He seems to forget his place in the legal food chain in this state. It is his job to prosecute under the law. It is not his job to circumvent our legal process to convict.

It is a matter

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April
20th

COUNTY: Denial doesn’t solve prosecutor’s problem

Re: “Misconduct in court” (TNT, 4-19).

The Pierce County prosecutor’s defense that what the appellate courts have determined to be prosecutor misconduct is actually vigorous and aggressive prosecution. It is suggested that a change in laws caused many reversals, but the other counties are subject to the same laws, at the same time, and do not have the same rate or reversals. None have had a prosecution dismissed for vindictiveness.

The prosecutor’s office, we are told, conducts internal reviews and training sessions. The response that it did nothing wrong suggests there will be no change in prosecutorial conduct, anymore

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April
1st

COUNTY: Case adds to concerns about prosecutor

Re: “Judge calls 2nd child abuse case ‘vindictiveness’” (TNT, 3-31.)

The dismissal of criminal charges against Lynn Dalsing because of prosecutorial vindictiveness raises concerns far beyond whether or not she will get the court-ordered discovery long delayed because of her prosecution.

Prosecutors are suppose to tell the truth and provide the material without being asked whether it helps their case or not. Our system of justice depends on this. The resources of criminal defendants are limited. Prosecutors have a duty to provide discovery without being asked.

In Texas in 2004 Cameron Todd Willingham was executed for the arson deaths

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