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Posts published in “Day: December 4, 2014”

Cause of a massive panic

frazier DAVID


When a second grade student at a Middleton elementary school noticed “a gun” in the backpack of a fellow 7 or 8-year-old second grader, he did the right thing and told his teacher.

The teacher did the right thing and notified school officials. From that point it got weird according to a report in the DAILY PAPER. For better or worse–remember, we are talking 7-year-old kid with a toy gun zipped away in his backpack–school officials called the Canyon County sheriff.

In a normal society untainted by school shootings, cops killing 12-year-old kids on video, big kids scaring cops so bad they blow away the kid resulting in riots, a copper would be sent to visit the classroom.

We are no longer a normal society. Canyon’s Sheriff responded with 18 coppers, several nearby schools were “locked down,” and the poor little 7-year-old was immediately suspended from school. We don’t know the words used by the teacher, the administration, or the dispatcher, but such an over reaction is bound to make future witnesses “gun shy” about reporting potential misbehavior.

A seasoned teacher would have simply picked up the child’s backpack and in a worse case scenario, called the boy’s mother. The sheriff says the kid did not display the toy gun (with red cap on the barrel), didn’t threaten, didn’t point it at anyone.

There is the usual “continuing investigation,” but we suspect somewhere after the well intended notification by the second grade student and confiscation of the toy, the report escalated to, “Gun in a classroom> call police> unknown weapon at school> send back up> lock down schools just in case> suspended for no tolerance.”

Everyone needs to calm down and COMMUNICATE. Everyday folks on cell phones race to call 911 to report car crashes. Police get so many calls with reports in the “east lane, west lane, just before and just after milepost 54,” that the dispatcher sends fire trucks, ambulance, and police fearing multiple crashes and injuries.

Today’s computer dispatching and truncated lingo can have tragic results when responding officers are sent to “man with a gun” calls instead of “caller thinks there is a boy with a fake gun.” A 12-year-old kid was killed by Cleveland coppers who made a hasty response, driving within 8 feet of the youth across the grass in a small park.

On the front pages


Here’s what public affairs news made the front page of newspapers in the Northwest today, excluding local crime, features and sports stories. (Newspaper names contracted with location)

Warrentless blow draws banned by supreme court (Boise Statesman)
Deputy moved up to state prison director (Boise Statesman, Nampa Press Tribune)
Major downtown Caldwell buildings redeveloped (Nampa Press Tribune)
Amy's Kitchen co-owners talk about Pocatello (Pocatello Journal)
Idaho Rail Shop deals with fire damage (Pocatello Journal)
Legislative leaders mostly stay in place (TF Times News)
Business coalition urges Boulder as monument (TF Times News)
Glanbia will grow its operation at TF (TF Times News)

OSU master gardeners won't help on pot grows (Eugene Register Guard)
UO strike by graduate assistants continues (Eugene Register Guard)
Klamath College dealing with budget gap (KF Herald & News)
Water agreement draws backing from cattkemen (KF Herald & News)
Schools at Medford see administrator raises (Medford Tribune)
Jackson Co wants control of federal lands (Medford Tribune)
Salmon license plate debate continues (Medford Tribune, Pendleton E Oreognian)
Study: Wolf kills may increase livestock attacks (Pendleton E Oregonian)
Pendleton buys new street sweeper (Pendleton E Oregonian)
$583,000 sought for state pot administration (Portland Oregonian)
Progress on Oregon caves expansion bill (Salem Statesman Journal)
Child care costs in state growing (Salem Statesman Journal)

Bainbridge councilman may quit over records case (Bremerton Sun)
Growth in Kitsap aimed around cities (Bremerton Sun)
Former bikini espresso hits demolished at Everett (Everett Herald)
State planning tolling lanes on 405 (Everett Herald)
Area crabbers faring better this season (Longview News)
Hanford may become national historical park (Longview News)
Scientists researching the Northwest fault (Port Angeles News, Longview News)
Olympic Medical exec gets pay raise (Port Angeles News)
Maybe progress for Alpine Lakes wilds bill (Seattle Times)
WSU: Wold kills may increase livestock kills (Spokane Spokesman)
Tacoma will close unlicensed pot shops (Tacoma News Tribune)
Franciscan Health names new CEO (Tacoma News Tribune)
Study reviews cost of water plan at Yakima (Yakima Herald Republic)