Cowlitz Co. Sheriff's Office
Emergency Messages as of 3:57 pm, Sun. Feb. 18
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News Releases
Cowlitz Deputies arrest 14 yr male for stabbing grandmother in the neck: She is out of surgery expected to live. - 02/13/18

Cowlitz County: Last night, about 8pm Sheriff Deputies were dispatched to a stabbing that had just occurred in the 800 block of Stella road. (about 4 miles west of Longview). A man, Kenneth Harla, 55 years, who lives at the house was reporting that his sister, Sharon Hesseldahl was stabbed in the neck by her grandson. (She is 59 years and also lives at the house). Deputies arrived and found the 14 year old grandson standing in the living room motionless. The victim was being attended to by her brother. She had been stabbed in the neck with a very large kitchen knife while sleeping on a couch.

The ambulance arrived and took Hesseldahl to St John Hospital. As of early this morning she was out of surgery and stable.

We are researching details whereby the same grandson had been arrested in Hamilton in Skagit county (WA) for stabbing his mother. We do not have additional details about this event. Questions about the previous stabbing in Skagit County need to referred to the authorities in Hamilton Wa - Skagit County.

We are not going to describe the nature of the victims injuries, or description of the knife, in further detail. We are not disclosing the results of the interview with the grandson publicly at this time.

The 14 year old boy's name is not being released at this time. He was booked in at the Juvenile Detention facility last night for Assault 1st degree. Questions regarding court appearances, should be referred to Cowlitz Superior Court.

The case will be sent to Prosecutor later today, or early tomorrow. They will review the case and make the decisions regarding charging.

We are not able or willing to answer questions regarding the 14 year old grandson's mental state, capacity, or evaluations.

We do not have pictures to distribute.

I will be available to answer other questions by phone or in person today until 2pm.

C. Rosenzweig

Wirkkala arrest
Wirkkala arrest
Cowlitz Sheriff detectives arrest 6 for trafficking in stolen firearms, Burglary, and drug charges in large scale investigation (Photo) - 02/08/18

Update: One additional photo added that shows firearms that were recovered out in the woods by detectives ....

(original release below)...

Cowlitz Sheriff detectives have arrested 6 men and recovered dozens of stolen guns, drugs, and cash in one of the largest burglary investigations in recent years.

1) Booked 2-7-18 Wirkkala, Nicholas L. 35 years, Longview
a. Charges: (UPF) Unlawful Possession of a firearm
b. Methamphetamine: Possession with Intent to Deliver

2) Booked 2-7-18 Willard, Brian John 37 Kelso,
a. Charges: UPF and
b. Possession of stolen firearms (3 counts)
c. Possession of Meth: Intent to deliver

3) Booked 2-2-18 -- Sweetin, Zachary R. 33 years, Longview
a. Charges: Possession Stolen firearm. (9 counts)
b. Trafficking in Stolen property
c. Possession of Meth

4) Booked: 1-30-18 Novy, David John, 59, Longview
a. Charges: Possession of Stolen Firearm(10 counts)
b. Making False statements
c. Illegal transfer of firearm

5) Booked 1-16-18 Novy, David John
a. Charges: Criminal Conspiracy
b. Trafficking in stolen property (firearms).

6) Booked 1-12-18 - Chandler, Shannon Lee 41 years, Longview
a. Charges: Burglary 1st degree
b. Possession of Stolen firearm
c. UPF.

7) Booked 1-2-18 -- Zigler, Keith L. , 47 years, Castle Rock
a. Charges: --UPF
b. Possession of Stolen Firearm
c. Identify Theft (forged a check)
d. Possession of stolen property.

The investigation recovered over 34 guns, 27 of them from one case. Stolen firearms were recovered from thefts out of Longview and Olympia. The victim does not want to be identified and we are not releasing his name or his address, or other identifying information about him. The investigation has been ongoing since the first burlgary was reported in November of last year. CCD Rosenzweig reports "Detective Riley McNeal (lead on this case) and Lorenzo Gladson have done an outstanding job of solving this case and recovering the victims property. They have spent hundreds of hours on this case working days, nights and weekends".

Other items recovered, were body armor, masks, ammunition and drug paraphernalia. The firearms were located hidden in the woods, in homes, a boat, lawnmower, and in two cases, they were recovered by divers in local rivers.

CCD Charlie Rosenzweig, and Detective Sergeant Troy Brightbill will be available to answer media questions tomorrow (Thursday) in person or on the phone between 0900 and 1000 hours.

Photos Courtesy of Cowlitz County Sheriff's Office.

CCD Rosenzweig

Cowlitz Search and Rescue volunteers find elderly missing man's body in the Lewis River: No crime suspected - 02/07/18

Cowlitz County: Deputies got a call from the manager of the Lewis River RV park, Maija Traffee, late yesterday that an elderly man who lives in the park had not been seen for several days. A deputy contacted the RP and learned that the man who had health problems and dementia, was not in his trailer and his car was there too. The deputy talked to neighbors and no one had seen him. One neighbor said that they had heard him yelling at about 0300- 0400 that (Tuesday) morning. They said that since he had dementia, this was not uncommon, so tghey were not concerned.

The deputy made calls relatives and local hospitals but no one had seen him.

Cowlitz County Search and Rescue volunteers were brought in early today (Wednesday) and they found the victim's body out in the river. Divers were called to the scene to assist in the recovery. It was roughly 100 yards or less down stream from the victims trailer, which was on the river.

Since Deputies have not had a chance yet examine the victim, that will happen later today. There is nothing that we are aware of that would indicate this case involves any crimes.

The victim is: Orley, Stephen Glen, 69 years of age. Resides at the Lewis River RV Park at 3125 Lewis River, Woodland Washington.

We do not have any photos to release at this time.

Cowlitz County sees rash of new scam reports where people are threatened with arrest if they don't pay a fine - 02/06/18

Cowlitz County: The Cowlitz County Sheriff's Office joins other local law enforcement agencies advising the public to be aware of scammers who call people and threaten them to pay a fine (over the phone) or face being arrested.

While the tactics vary, they are the same in that the scammers try to convince people to either give them a credit card number, or more commonly, they try to get the people to buy gift cards and then give the caller the PIN codes off the cards so the scammer can obtain the money from the card.

People should never give the PIN codes off gift cards or their credit cards numbers to anyone over the phone they do not personally know and trust.

Sometimes the scammers tell the people that they will be arrested if they don't pay the fine. These are scams! Law enforcement officers do not call people and threaten them with arrest if they do not give them money.

Sometimes callers tell people there is a warrant because they did not show up for jury duty, or they did not pay their utility bill, or they did not pay a speeding ticket and they must pay a fine over the phone or they will be arrested. These are always scams!

People need to know calls where there is a threat to pay a fine over the phone, is the telltale sign it is a scam.

The Cowlitz County Sheriff's Office has solved some of these cases, and in fact one husband and wife teams was arrested in Las Vegas a few months back, after Cowlitz detectives solved the case that involved a local woman loosing thousands of dollars in a phone scam.

Fortunately, most people recognize the calls as scams. One woman did lose several hundred dollars before she figured out it was a scam.

People should NOT call law enforcement unless they actually lost money in the scam.

Cowlitz Sheriff deputies arrest husband and wife after pursuit: Couple wanted on Robbery out of Bellingham - 02/02/18

Cowlitz County: Early this AM Longview Police attempted to pull a vehicle over for a burnt out tail light. Attempts to stop the vehicle were not successful. Sheriff's deputies and troopers form the Washington State Patrol found the vehicle on Pleasant Hill road and after a short pursuit they also lost sight of the vehicle. A short time later, Sheriff sergeant Tonissen found the car wrecked on a side road. Deputies found paperwork in the car and learned the car was connected with a couple who were wanted by Bellingham Police for Robbery. Deputy Spaulding was called out with his K9 but the track was unsuccessful. Deputy Spaulding contacted the Lexington Chevron and the Ostrander Store with the photos of the suspects out of Bellingham. The Chevron staff indicated the 2 suspects had been in the store in last 2 days. The Ostrander Store called in shortly after Deputy Spaulding was there saying the 2 suspects were in the store. Deputies responded along with Kelso Police Officer Drakos and took the subjects into custody without incident. The male was armed with a loaded .40 cal handgun and possessed heroin. The female was attempting to make purchases with a credit card stolen from a Longview resident. The male possessed additional ID's and credit cards in the name of others. Both had outstanding extraditable felony warrants from Colorado as well as a warrant from Bellingham for Robbery 1st. Deputies are working with Bellingham to apply for a search warrant on the vehicle.

The male is : Michael Scott ENCK, AKA (Smith). 30 years.
The female is: Brittany Marie Ridgeway AKA (ENCK). 32 years.

Both booked the Robbery Warrants out of Bellingham, as well as extraditable warrants out of Colorado, and several local charges.

Questions will be answered by Cowlitz Sergeant Brad Thurman. 360-577-3092.