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Cheney Free Press
Cheney , Washington
January 22, 2015     Cheney Free Press
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January 22, 2015

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Thursday, Janua 22,2015 Page 10 Free Press continued from page 1 for Cheney and45 percent for EWU, dispatch calls ~ to Eastern jumped 22.65 percent while Cheney calls ~,~', ~ "~'~.". ~ ~~' '~-~ increased 16.40 percent. ' ;': ~ ....... :'i Some might look at the number and see an in-~':7:1 crease in workload, which it is. Cheney Police Chief John Hensley sees it as a reflection of the public s ~~ confidence in the department to handle their needs, although the sheer volume of the calls did catch him off guard. "I was a bit surprised that we got over the 50,000 mark," Hensley said. "That's significant." Correspondingly, calls for service for Cheney patrol officers also increased, up just over 10 percent from 2013 to 7,956 calls. The previous four years, patrol calls for service have run between the mid- 7,100s to low-7,200s. Department Cmdr. Rick Campbell said it's important to differentiate between the two calls for service. A call where an officer responds to a request for service from someone locked out of a vehicle is one patrol call. From dispatch's perspective, the initial call to the department is one call, the call to the officer is a second call, a return call to the individual is a third call and a call to a locksmith a fourth. Campbell isn't surprised by the increase in calls either, noting dispatchers provide a variety of services, more than simply alerting officers to a citizen's need. The more people there are, the more requests for department services will take place. "As the (EWU) student population grows, the city population grows, the calls will increase,." Campbell said. For Hensley, the disturbing statistics in the end of year report come from the 10 categories of of- fenses listed in the Uniform Crime Report. Cheney had witnessed a steady decline in reports, from 759 in 2010 to 531 in 2013. in Cheney Graphic by Brittani Montecucco The top-five criminal offenses in Cheney, based on volume, are shown above. That rose again last year to 606, a 12.37 percent jump. The biggest concern for Hensley is the up tick in property crimes. Between 2010 and 2012, Cheney averaged 250 theft reports per year, but saw a decrease to 208 in 2013. As 2014 ended, officers had logged 215 reports, a figure that might have been below 200 if not for a rash of car thefts taking place from Nov. 19 - 22. Over that period, 19 third-degree theft and one sec- ond-degree theft reports were made, most coming from a small area near Salnave Elementary School and Salnave Park, as well as the Avalon Place de- velopment and Eagle Ridge Apartment complex along Betz Road. "There were 17 in one night, with all but two having things placed in plain sight," Hensley said. "All of those were preventable." Also increasing over 2013 numbers were as- saults, domestic violence, restraining orders, motor vehicle thefts and rapes, the latter up from two to eight. One category of decline was drug offenses, dropping from 38 in 2012 to 23 in 2013 and seven in 2014. Not increasing, and not reflected in the MAR, was officer response time, which Hensley said re- mains at a highly effective three minutes. Another stat not reported is what Hensley termed as "clearance rate," the percentage with which a department investigates a crime, identifies a suspect and makes an arrest. The department is running a 30 percent clearance rate overall, better than the national average of 20 percent, and does very well when investigating crimes such as assault and rape. "It's the property crimes that get you because you don't have any workable evidence," Hensley said. Crime stats aside, Hensley is pleased with the over- all professional growth within the agency. Line offi- cers tell him morale is better than it's ever been, and only one citizen complaint was received in 2014. There are numerous areas to be concerned about, such as overtime, staffing levels and replacing ag- ing equipment, but overall Hensley believes his department's service is excellent. "I'm very pleased with what we're doing right now," he said. "I go home at night and think, 'we did a good job today.'" John McCallu m can be reachedat jmac@cheneyfreepress. com. continued from page 1 complaint from a resident, a code enforce- ment officer will investigate the matter. According to the ordinance, city depart- ment directors, a director's designee, building and construction inspectors, a fire marshal or any other person assigned or directed by the city manager may act as code enforcement officers. One part of the ordinance concerns .junk vehicles on property. If a vehicle is in violation of the city's nuisance code and is on private property, the code enforce- ment officer shall issue a notice to the landowner who received the notice who then can respond within 14 business days. If the city determines that the vehicle is on the property without the landowner's consent, and that they have not accepted the vehicle's presence on their property, they will not be charged the cost of ad- ministration or removal of the vehicle. Another amendment discusses the civil violation process. For each violation, the penalty shall be a $250 fine for the first day, $500 for the second day and $1,000 for each subsequent day the violation exists up to a maximum monetary fee of $5,000. A person who receives a civil violation can respond within 14 days by paying any fine and correcting the viola- tion, entering into and complying with a volun, tary correction agreement with the city or requesting a hearing to contest the abatement. It can also seek the judicial violation, process to obtain a warrant of abatement The ordinance states the city may from Spokane County Superior Court waive the monetary penalty if corrective when the situation requires. action is completed by the date specified According to Braaten, the changes in the violation notice or a voluntary cor- in the ordinance will eventually become reCtion agreement, its own separate chapter or they will be The ordinance also states that the city applied to other areas of code enforce- may perform abatement when the terms ment. of a civil violation notice has not been "The codes will be the same for all appealed or complied with, the terms of code enforcement whether ifs the build- a voluntary compliance agreement have ing code or planning code, that's what not been met or a hearing examiner rules will be used," Braaten said. "We're still in favor of the city. The city can use any working on it but eventually it will go lawful means to enter the property and into the same code." take preventive measures to remove or AI Stover can be reached at correct the,condition that is subject to continued from page 1 gested the committee put together a half-day seminar in mid-March for residents to attend. The seminar would have presentations focusing on the city's deer feeding ordinance, deer biology and suggestions for animal deterrents. "It will be similar to the presentation I gave at the first meeting but I'll cater the information to make it coincide with "Hunting is much further down the road." Department of Fish and Wildlife district wildlife biologist Michael Atamian the citv's ordinances," on KXLY 920, to the semi- Bennett said. nar to provide gardening The committee also tips for residents. suggested bringing in "Anyone who is inter- master gardeners from ested can come to one of Washington State Uni- these30-minute presenta- versity and Phvllis Ste- tions," Bennett said. phens, who hosts "The One suggestion for Lawn and Garden Show" public outreach was ; oiOn PTOMETRY "- ~ ~2~Dr. Scott Borgholthaus 509.235.2010 1867 1st Street Cheney, WA With Your CLub Card Hass Avocados Conventional or Organic. Club Price: $1.25 ea. for Club Price Prices effective 1/22/15 thru 1/27/15 corn Pri,x ~ ~ thi ad are effecdve 7am, Yhttr~tay~,w 22 &u ]'ue~4ff, Jauu,~y 27, ~01S (m[~ othawi, noted) at yore 27] 01 st Street, Cheat)', WA Safemty grote, I~m offeted f'~ ~le a not a;*i~le to ot~e~ dialers or ~hoie~lMz. Q#nfir." t~hts re etved, ,~ e of produ~ ~ontahing phedritte, p~u~eph&ine or phenyll~opmolzm n limited M aw On Buy One, Get One ~e ("BOGO") often ca'.tomer mu',t pur&as the first it~ to r eed~' the ",ec~itd item free, BOGO offers arc not V2 pfi~ ",zion. F only a ~itgle i em purc.M',~ the r~ola pdc apples, M anaf.~aur~:ff ~oupons may be uv,'d on purcha ed m o lly- not on free items, Limit one coupon per purr.ha~ditem, Customer*fill be ee~ponsibl fbr m on the purtha~ed and f~'ee it.s, SOME ADVERTISING ffEMS MAY NOI' BE AVAILABLE IN ALL SI'ORES, gore e advcr~scd prio~ m'.' be evm Io*~/a ,,om store~. ~l appli~ble taxes mu~ be paid by Ihf pmd,asm We resm,e the right to c~cra all pdnt,:d ~or*, 20/S Safeeay ]no, AI,E LL',tffS ARE PER HOUSEHOld, PER I)AY. SELECTION VARIK~ ISY S'['OR[;~ ONLINE AND IN4'['ORE PR[CI~, D[SCOUNTS AND ()F[~I~S MAY [)['r'FER, sE posting no feeding signs suggested the commit- about their progress on throughout the city. Brown tee conduct more deer deer counts. When the also said he would talk to surveys before they focus committee conducted its MayorJohnHigginsabout on hunting, first deer survey Dec. 6, mailing copies of the ordi- "Hunting is much 2014, they left the state nance to every citizen, further down the road," institutions out of the The committee also Atamian said. survey because the deer discussed hunting within The committee re- problems were primarily city limits. Michael At- quested that Eastern in residentialareas. amian, district wildlife State Hospital attend the Al Stover can be reached biologist with the DFW, Feb. 11 meeting to talk at To all our good friends who have been such loyal customers of J&J Lube, we wish t.o extend our sincere appreciation for your continued support and friend- ship these past nineteen years. We have so enjoyed doing business with you. We have sold J&J Lube to Steve Sessions and Chuck Eldridge who are affiliated with Grease Monkey. We are confident they will take good care of you and your auto needs. Jerry is still active at our J&J Auto & Truck Repair shop on 21st Avenue and Hayden in Airway Heights and we hope you will keep in touch. Please stop by sometime and say "hi". Sincerely, Jerry & Jeanne Newcomb