Corvallis Gazette-Times from Corvallis, Oregon on March 10, 1995 · 2
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Corvallis Gazette-Times from Corvallis, Oregon · 2

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Corvallis, Oregon
Issue Date:
Friday, March 10, 1995
Page:
2
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A2 CcKvali.J Gazene-Times Corvai Or . FrxJay. Vaxh 10, 1995 Ddy city editor: Barbara Curtm Night City editor: Rob Pnowe Telephone' 753 2641 Hem about Benton County, the mj-v.'iiamc;:e Vac ord te Pac.'-c No'thAC'J Co V - ft n n AuOCfd Prn Larry Gibson, seen hero on the witness stand Thursday in Roseburg, said of his son, "Sometimes I'm optimistic and hope he's still alive, and other times I don't know." ROSEBURG - Taking the witness slant! in the culmination of his murder trial 6n Thursday, Larry Gibson denied abusing his children, but acknowledged that he somebrnes spanked them hard enough to make his fingers hurt. The former Douglas County sheriff's deputy testified he wasn't responsible for the disappearance of his 24-year-old son. Tommy. "Sometimes I'm optimistic and hope he's still alive, and other times I don't know," Gibson testified. Gibson Is charged with murder and murder by-abuse in the March 18, 1931, disappearance of his son. The boy's body has never been found. After testimony from three witnesses vouching for Gibson's truthfulness and a psychologist, the defense rested. Closing statements are scheduled for Tuesday In Douglas County Circuit Court. Defense lawyer Alan Scott said taking the witness stand was difficult for Gibson. "But he wants to tell his story." Under questioning Scott, Gibson contradicted earlier testimony from his estranged wife and daughter. Judy Gibson has said he hit or yelled at their children daily. Karen Gibson, 8, has said she watched from a bedroom window as her father hit her litUe brother four times and put him in the back of the sheriff's department patrol car the day he disappeared. But under cross-examination from District Attorney Ted Zacher, Gibson said he lightly slapped his daughter in the face and once told his half sister that he had spanked his daughter, Karen, too hard. Gibson acknowledged that his current inability to remember much of the day his son disappeared four years ago was in contrast to the details he gave investigators at the Ume. n n raes-ifne-Misj mm Ex-Douglas County deputy testifies in murder trial of son n Dressed in a grey double breasted suit. Gibson calmly described how he went outside for his daily run into the hills around their home on the morning his son disappeared. Gituson said he was carrying a .4Salibrrr pistol in a shoulder bolster and Tommy was playing in the yard Gibson said that when he approached a fence running beside the house to jog up a road into the hills. Tommy said, ' Goodbye Daddy. I love you." Gibson said he waved to his son and said he loved him, too Gilon said he shot at a cat walking down the hill and saw it jump in the air and hit the ground running, then he crossed the fence and headed up the road lie. added that he didn't remember how he passed a muddy spot in live road. The prosecution has argued that Gibson showed no signs of mud after coming back from the jog, indicating he was lying about his actions the day his son disappeared. Gibson said he kept running up the road for 20 minutes, going beyond the Donner family's home More turning back, stopping at a pond along the way. Zacher asked if Gibson recalled telling people he turned back at the Donner house, but Gibson said be didn't remember. When he returned home, Gibson said he found his wife sitting in a rocking chair inside the house and she asked if Tommy went Jogging with him. Gibson said that Tommy never went jogging with him. The couple searched for the child, but couldn't find him, Gibson said. Under cross-examination, Gibson said he doesn't have a clear recollection of the events of the day Tommy disappeared. "The whole day is Just chaos, a Jumble. I can't remember everything that's going on," Gibson said. Zacher pressed Gibson to acknow ledge that his current inability to remember details of the day was different from the statements he gave to investigators. Gibson said he didn't remember telling investigators that he had checked the cat after shooting it, in contrast to his testimony that he went Jogging without checking the cat. "You never told an investigator that you were having memory problems." Zacher said. "I don't think I did," Gibson replied. "In fact, you gave them lots of details in your interviews," Zacher said. "Yes, I did," Gibson said. Zacher asked Gibson why he threw away one of Tommy's toy guns after the boy disappeared. "I don't know," Gibson said, looking at the toy gun wrapped in plastic. "It's just old." Gibson testified that he put on his uniform and drove to two rest areas on Interstate 5 looking for Tommy, spending 10 to IS minutes at each stop, then returned home, where he found more people searching for his sort. Gibson said he looked for Tommy at a fe.w places around the property the next day, but then gave up searching because be felt the sheriffs department was doing well enough without him. 4 4 j 'V. s-' - v : Workers romove a fallen fir tree from an on ramp to Highway 26 in Portland on Thursday. a .a P lODu Sff(QJlf A band of thunderstorms that blew Into Western Oregon Thursday afternoon knocked down power lines throughout the Interstate 5 corridor, cutting power service to thousands of people. Portland General Electric Spokesman Dave lleintman said 70.000 pxple lost power from Portland to Salem. About 150 crews were working to restore service. (In Corvallis, power lines were downed by a fallen tree in the 2800 block of Northwest Highland Drive. Pacific Power and Light crews fixed the lines ) An estimated M,0iw to 25,000 people remained without electricity late Thursday, The temperature was expected to dip to the mid 4os overnight. "Power is wit in a small neighborhood We're blowing like crazy. Some trees are down, there's some high water and one slide. And It's getting uglier by the minute.' Coot County shertfft Sgt. Lisa Wampote In CoquIIle. here and a house there," said PGE spokesman Michael Tevlin said. "Restoring service is time consuming." Winds gusting to 59 mph in Portland blew trees onto cars and apartment houses, but no injuries were reported Three old Eiplar tre crashed on an apartment Jildmg in southeast Portland At the Salem Armory, a girls state prep basketball tournament game was delayed 13 minutes when the lights went out Scattered power outages were reported further south in the Willamette Valley, Radio station KU'C in Eugene was knocked off the air when the power failed In southwest Oregon, strong winds accompanied by heavy rains knocked down trees and caused brief power outages. Tin rains triggered mudslides. "We're blowing like crazy." said Coos County sheriff's Sgt Lisa Wampole in Co-quille. "Some trees are dow n, there's some high water and one slide. And it's getting uglier by the minute." 1 3eai iZand to opan shop to help raise money for program By Tracy Loew Heartland Humane Society will open a resale shop downtown to help raise money for its effort to end euthanasia in Benton County. The Cat's Meow ... and Dogs, Too will open sometime next week at 464 S W. Madison Ave., the former location of Branston's Custom fYaming. Linda Branston has moved her framing business to her home while searching for another location Heartland's resale store will carry used clothing, household items, Jewelry, rrafu, hooks and collectibles It also will feature cat and dog specialty gift items such as cards, iewelry and planters And it will sell cat and dog paintings on consignment for local artists The store will I staffed by Heartland volunteers, who hoj to eventually raise at least $10,ou0 a year from the store, said Marti Baldissen, executive director of the organization. The money will go to general operating expenses, which have increased since Heartland took on its "Euthanasia is Not the Solution" campaign in February, Baldisseri said. The campaign is a five-year effort to stop putting healthy, adoptable animals to sleep. The drive encourages people to spay or neuter their pets and to address animal behavior problems before taking the pets to shelters. The resale store will be open from 10 a.m. to 6 p m. Tuesday through Saturday; and noon to 5 p m. Sunday. A grand-opening celebration is planned for noon on Friday, April 7. Donated items for the store are currently being accepted at the shelter, lorated at 5311 S W. Airport Place. The shelter is open from 10:30 a m. to 5:30 p m. Tuesday through Friday; from 10 a m. to 5 pm. Saturday; and from noon to 5 p m. Sunday. Heartland also will pick up items on Fridays. For more informabon, call the shelter at 757 9uuo. Man accused in courthouse shooting pleads innocent SKATTLK - This time there was no shortage of courtroom security. At least a dozen bailiffs, jail guards and King County police officers were present Thursday for the arraignment of Timothy Craig Blackwell. charged with the fatal courthouse shooting of his pregnant wife and two women who testified for her in divorce proceedings. Blackwell, 47. of Kirkland. pleaded innocent to three counts of aggravated first degree murder and one count of first-degree manslaughter in the death of Susana Kemerata Blackwell's 8-month old fetus. Superior Court Judge Brian Gain set a pretrial hearing for March 23 Deputy prosecutor Kerry Keefe said the trial probably would begin in about six months. Presiding Superior Court Judge Ann Ellington will appoint an out-of-ounty judge at a later time to hear the case, Gam said. Prosecutors have not decided whether to seek the death penalty. The only alternative punishment upon conviction on the aggravated murder charges would be life in prison w ithout parole. Terry Mulligan, Blackwell's public defender, sought in vain to bar photographs or television broadcasts of the defendant's face. Mulligan told Gain he was concerned about "potential jurors ... speculating on what's going on in his mind, based on various facial expressions " "The state Constitution requires open and public meetings" in court. Gain said Washington storm kills woman Tr-o Av v.itM l'it A motorist was fatally crushed by a falling tree as a Pacific storm packing wind gusts of more than BO mph raked Western Washington on Thursday. More than loo.OoO people lost power at the afternoon peak of the storm Winds subsided by nightfall and utilities in most affected counties said power was restored to most customers by 'Thursday night. In Whatcom County, a woman was killed when a tree about 18 inches in diameter and 40 feet tall fell on top of her car, said county Fire District 2 Chief Tom Fields. "The whole thing, the roots came out of the ground." Field said The accident hastened on a county road a few miks southeast of Bcllingham. The woman, the only person m the vehicle, was killed instantly. Crews had to cut apart the car to remove her body, Fields said. The Washington State Patrol identified the woman as Cynthia A. Ijisee, 43, of the Bcllingham area. Across the region, tree limbs crashed onto power lines and highways, roofs were sheared off houses and houses were lifted off their foundations. Gusts as high as 81 mph were reported at Cape Disappointment along the coast, with sustained winds of up to 50 mph reported in some areas. "I was standing here in the office and I saw my car start to blow sideways," said Tracy Co-lard, operations supervisor for the Grays Harbor lublic Utility District. "They said it was 71 "miles per hour. It was a pretty goxl gust." Grays Harbor County had lO.OOO-tS.OOO customers without power at the height of the storm. clG;fcttc-Timcs 333 H sn3 HEAOLINf NEWS up1,tHi rvr'y i 1 hou li) St -i ;;"',) - e a u m m ail HUE. U 752-5555 i,il.tri Monday irwu ll.y I.''..- '.;1H MfM1.tU-1 tK r t.H h (),y .i,t.! ( ,M '.HI Ipirirvii. 'ii.ti , t:) i it.r: ',8 I 4 i::!::!:::::;::::;:;:;::;;:;!!! A FREE news and Information service provided by the Corvallis Gazette-Times! Just di.il 752 5555 from any touch-tone phone, then use the 4-digit extensions listed to access information. T7T I iH ! t, .1,11. innnnzz joke or THI OAy upd.itni d.oly TOOAVSPEOPLI ufwi.u-1 Jify ( r't'M'lv New 'i ENTERTAINMENT upitetrd A.i'y V -.si ! '. 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