Jessie Stensland

Jessie posted 449 stories to South Whidbey Record.
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Online threats could land Freeland man in prison for two years

A 45-year-old Freeland man may face more than two years in prison…

  • Nov 19th, 2016 2:00pm

Island County has high net wealth, low credit card debt

Island County residents are doing pretty well financially, according to reports from…

  • Nov 19th, 2016 6:00am

WEAN loses appeal of environmental regulations decision

A state board denied an environmental group’s request to reconsider parts of…

  • Nov 9th, 2016 4:00pm

State Board of Health to consider COER complaint

The Washington State Board of Health will consider in a meeting today…

  • Nov 9th, 2016 12:00pm

Beating heroin — Island County builds outreach team to combat rising South Whidbey drug problem

A trio of Island County employees from different disciplines will hit the…

  • Nov 9th, 2016 6:00am

ELECTION RESULTS: Bailey leads race for senate; HPJ, Johnson for commissioners

The incumbent candidates in state and county races affecting Whidbey Island were…

  • Nov 10th, 2016 9:18am

Navy will test wells on Whidbey for possibly hazardous contaminants

Wells near NAS Whidbey, OLF Coupeville to be tested for possibly hazardous chemical …

  • Nov 1st, 2016 4:00pm

Mall shooting suspect appears in court, waives speedy trial

Suspect mall shooter waives right to a speedy trial as investigators continue to build case…

  • Nov 1st, 2016 2:30pm

Rape charge dismissed against man, 35, in Freeland case

Prosecutors recently dismissed charges against a 35-year-old man accused of raping a woman in her Freeland home in August. The case may not be over, however. The charges were dismissed without prejudice so they can be refiled in the future if the evidence supports them, according to Island County Chief Deputy Criminal Prosecutor Eric Ohme.

  • Oct 25th, 2016 10:14pm

Bailey, Homola battle for key senate seat

A race for a state senate seat is one of the few contests that’s sparked any heat between candidates in local and state campaigns affecting Whidbey Island. It’s a particularly important race for state political parties and should also be a close one.

  • Oct 25th, 2016 2:14pm

Sheriff Mark Brown was in Burlington Macy’s during shooting

Island County Sheriff Mark Brown and his wife were inside the women’s Macy’s store at the Cascade Mall in Burlington when a man opened fire and killed five people Sept. 23. Brown said he was unarmed at the time so he chose not to go after the shooter. Instead, he got his wife out of the store and did what he could to help from the parking lot.

  • Oct 19th, 2016 8:02pm

Island County officials await Supreme Court decision on private attorneys

For 111 years, a law that allows county commissioners to hire private attorneys has gone unchallenged.

  • Oct 14th, 2016 10:40pm

Housing, jet noise key issues for commissioner candidates

Two Oak Harbor residents with very different backgrounds and personalities are vying for a seat on the Island County Board of Commissioners.

  • Oct 7th, 2016 11:05pm

Beach access trial delayed; Both sides agree not to talk to press

A trial that is supposed to decide the ownership of a sliver of waterfront property in Greenbank is now delayed.

  • Oct 4th, 2016 9:02pm

Arcan Cetin had troubled past, records show

Arcan Cetin did not fall through the cracks. Cetin’s struggle with mental-health problems are well documented, as are the efforts made by the law-and-justice system, treatment providers and his family to get him help, court documents and mental-health records show.

  • Oct 4th, 2016 2:40pm

Nabbing suspected mall shooter just another day on the job, cop says

The day after catching a suspected mass murderer and making international news, Lt. Mike Hawley was back at work on North Whidbey, investigating a burglary in which a suspect left behind a prescription bottle with her name on it.

  • Sep 28th, 2016 6:49pm

Whidbey man held for Cascade Mall slayings in Burlington

Days after five people were killed in a shooting at the Cascade Mall in Burlington, the Oak Harbor community is still reeling with the knowledge that the man who committed the inconceivable act of violence is one of their own.

  • Sep 27th, 2016 9:35pm

Freeland man who pointed laser at ferry jailed, fined in court

Shenanigans with lasers earned a Freeland man a jail sentence and more than $100,000 in fines.

  • Sep 23rd, 2016 11:12pm

Convicted Greenbank murderer sentenced, again

A convicted murderer was resentenced in Island County Superior Court last week after his conviction was appealed without his knowledge or consent.

  • Sep 20th, 2016 9:47pm

Island County settles lawsuit over Ledgewood landslide

Island County commissioners this week settled two lawsuits brought by Central Whidbey homeowners affected by a massive 2013 landslide. The more than 65 plaintiffs in the lawsuits will split $1.5 million, which will be paid by the Washington Counties Risk Pool. The county also agrees to rebuild the portion of Driftwood Way, destroyed in the Ledgewood Beach landslide, unless there’s unforeseen geological problems or the county can’t secure easements.

  • Sep 19th, 2016 4:22pm

Island County, Oak Harbor team up to tackle low-income housing

Two elected officials want to put the “task” back in task force. Island County Commissioner Jill Johnson and Oak Harbor Mayor Bob Severns decided that the dire need for affordable housing on North Whidbey is well documented and people have had plenty of discussions about the topic.

  • Sep 13th, 2016 9:54pm

WhidbeyHealth appoints veterinarian to board

The new member of WhidbeyHealth’s board of commissioners has performed countless surgeries and regularly prescribes medicine, but he doesn’t have a medical degree. At least not to practice on humans.

  • Sep 11th, 2016 3:57pm

Clinton drive-by shooting suspect charged

The star witness for the prosecution in an Oak Harbor murder trial earlier this year is accused of shooting up a Clinton house Aug. 5 as revenge for being ripped off in a drug deal, court documents indicate. In March, Oak Harbor resident Bryce Hill, 19, testified in Island County Superior Court against his former friend, Christopher Malaga, who was ultimately convicted of the first-degree murder of Oak Harbor resident Adam Garcia. The motive for the Oct. 18, 2014 shooting wasn’t related to drugs, but occurred when Hill was selling cocaine to a fourth man at the scene.

  • Sep 5th, 2016 4:05pm

‘Killer couple’ featured in Oxygen network TV series

Just as one of the parties in a highly publicized murder case was released from prison, yet another TV crime series recounted the sordid story of a 2003 murder on Whidbey Island.

  • Aug 31st, 2016 2:00pm

Suspect charged in rape of South Whidbey woman

A 35-year-old man is being held in Island County jail on $250,000 bail after he allegedly raped a Freeland woman in her home Aug. 20, according to court documents.

  • Aug 30th, 2016 10:16pm

Montgomery wins again: Skagit County judge nixes summary judgment bid for second time, case heads to trial

A dispute over public beach access in Greenback will likely go to trial in October. Skagit County Superior Court Judge Laura Riquelme denied Island County’s motion for summary judgment in its lawsuit against Greenbank residents Bruce and Joanne Montgomery. County officials asked the judge to end the three years of litigation and find that a disputed beach property at the end of Wonn Road belongs to the public.

  • Aug 28th, 2016 6:10pm

Nortier in charge of getting Island Transit back on track

Don’t be surprised if the new leader of Island Transit takes a seat next to you on the bus. Mike Nortier, the director, has been riding bus routes to help him get a feel for both the system and the riders.

  • Aug 12th, 2016 2:18pm

Teens chase boat thieves through Whidbey waters with drone

Two teens with a drone and sheriff’s deputies thwarted South Whidbey boat bandits out for a joyride Wednesday. The unusual case, complete with a happy ending, made regional and even national TV news this week.

  • Jul 22nd, 2016 10:35pm

Island County jailer gets job back; arbitrator demotes her over jail death

The only person fired in connection with a young man’s death inside the Island County jail has returned to work.

  • Jul 26th, 2016 2:43pm

Navy asks public about plans to remove explosives on Central Whidbey

The Navy is asking members of the public what they think about plans for removing any potentially explosive materials from an off-limits wetlands on Central Whidbey Island. The 423-acre former Lake Hancock Target Range is now a pristine, brackish lagoon surrounded by freshwater marsh and uplands. It’s located across the highway from Greenbank Farm.

  • Jul 12th, 2016 9:49pm

Wonn Road ruling expected soon

A judge in Skagit County Superior Court is expected to make an important ruling in the near future about Greenbank’s famed disputed access — the end of Wonn Road. Attorneys representing Island County, advocacy group Island Beach Access, Greenbank residents Bruce and Joanne Montgomery, and neighbors to the Montgomerys argued at length over motions before the court last week Thursday.

  • Jul 11th, 2016 4:36pm

Oak Harbor man flips truck, drags deputy in car chase

A 26-year-old Oak Harbor man sustained serious injuries from rolling his pickup truck after dragging a deputy and then leading him on a car chase, according to Island County Sheriff Mark Brown. The deputy responded to a report of a disorderly man at a parking lot on Goldie Road just outside Oak Harbor at 8:52 p.m. Thursday.

  • Jul 5th, 2016 9:30pm

County follows IBA with motion to end Wonn Road fight

A judge may make a decision this summer on the ownership of a small piece of beachfront property in Greenbank that’s been in litigation for three years.

  • Jun 7th, 2016 9:11pm

State supreme court will hear Banks’ case

The state Supreme Court accepted on direct review the Island County prosecutor’s lawsuit regarding the county commissioners’ use of outside attorneys. Direct review means that the case will jump past the appeals court and go straight to the high court. Island County Prosecutor Greg Banks said it’s rare for that to happen. The question the justices will settle is whether the commissioners have the right to hire private attorneys for legal work the county prosecutor says he is willing and able to do.

  • Jun 4th, 2016 4:00pm

Price Johnson, Johnson have challengers for Island County

There will be races for Island County commissioner after all. Just hours before press time, Gary Wray, a Coupeville Republican and business owner, filed against incumbent Helen Price Johnson, a Clinton Democrat representing District 1 — South and Central Whidbey. Also, two previously undeclared candidates filed this week to run against Island County Commissioner Jill Johnson, a Republican who is seeking her second term. The seat represents District 2, which is roughly the city of Oak Harbor.

  • May 23rd, 2016 6:51pm

Filing Week begins with no surprises; Price Johnson, Johnson both file

No surprise local candidates appeared during Filing Week as of noon on Tuesday.

  • May 17th, 2016 10:12pm

Island County yields largest presidential primary turnout in state

There’s keen interest in the May 24 presidential primary election among Island County voters, even though the results are unlikely to affect the race.

  • May 19th, 2016 11:31pm

Excess poop spurs expansion plans for Island County

In the past three years, the amount of stuff from septic tanks and sewage treatment plants making its way to Island County’s treatment facility has doubled in volume. Since the plant was at capacity, county officials have decided it is time to expand. While officials in the city of Oak Harbor are building a $100-million or so sewage treatment plant in the middle of the city, county officials are quietly moving ahead with plans to enlarge a smaller sewage treatment plant that most people don’t even know exists. The project is estimated to cost $2.3 million.

  • May 17th, 2016 2:40pm

Whidbey Island child rapist gets 35 years

Insisting that he was wrongfully convicted, a Whidbey Island man convicted of child rape remained defiant at his sentencing hearing Thursday. Jonathan Sage, 33, gave a long, rambling speech in Island County Superior Court that blamed investigators, a prosecutor, the judge and jury for an outcome he described as unjust, but he also delved into his grievances at the county jail and a short-lived hunger strike.

  • May 13th, 2016 10:27pm

Birds of a feather: Sprightly duck is part of the family

In many ways, Sprite is a typical “teenager.” Sometimes she doesn’t want to hug her mommy — especially if someone else is watching — or do what she’s told. She’s sassy and can be rude to others in the household. She watches TV, eats Doritos and would rather hang out with friends than be cooped up in the house.

  • May 3rd, 2016 10:15pm

Coupeville girl killed in morning crash

An 18-year-old Coupeville woman injured in a possible DUI-related accident Monday morning later died that day at Harborview Medical Center in Seattle, the Washington State Patrol reported. She was identified as Keesha M. Harden.

  • May 3rd, 2016 10:00pm

Clinton burglar gets sentenced to eight years in prison

A burglar who robbed a South Whidbey couple of sentimental treasures and a sense of security was sent to prison this week.

  • May 4th, 2016 5:10pm

Coupeville ferry riders should expect delays

Anyone planning to drive onto the Coupeville-to-Port Townsend ferry in May should make reservations as soon as possible, a Washington State Ferries spokesman warns.

  • Apr 29th, 2016 8:49pm

Costs mount for major crime in Island County

A spate of serious crimes has been expensive for Island County. Elaine Marlow, the county’s budget director, recently warned the commissioners about mounting defense costs for two murder cases. At the same time, detectives in the sheriff’s office have a backlog of lower-priority cases as they deal with a murder and other serious cases.

  • Apr 26th, 2016 9:53pm

Oak Harbor garbage truck dumps burning trash on highway

A solid waste collector with the city of Oak Harbor saved a garbage truck last Wednesday afternoon by dumping trash on the side of Highway 20. Dave Zylstra said he was hauling a load of garbage to the transfer center in Coupeville when he started smelling smoke. He looked out his rearview mirror and saw that the smoke was coming from the back of his truck.

  • Apr 26th, 2016 9:16pm

Whidbey climate warriors lobby for carbon tax

They’re a small group on Whidbey Island but they are dedicated.

  • Apr 19th, 2016 10:06pm

Board OKs transit agency’s new director contract

Members of the Island Transit board unanimously approved a contract today that the agency’s attorney, Matt Hendricks, negotiated with Nortier. Nortier retired in January after serving as the commanding officer of Whidbey Island Naval Air Station. He has more than 20 years of experience as a Navy officer. The transit board members unanimously chose Nortier from among three finalists following closed-door interviews last month. The board members directed Hendricks to negotiate a contract with him.

  • Apr 13th, 2016 10:00pm

Island Transit to charge fees on 412 route

For the first time in Island Transit’s 29-year history, the agency will begin charging fees this summer — but only on one route. Island Transit board members unanimously voted Monday to reestablish the 412 route and to charge a $2 fare; riders 8 years old and younger will ride free. The 412 route, which is part of the Everett connector, runs from Camano Island to Everett. It was cut in 2014 after state funding for the route dried up, but the funding was reestablished for the current biennium.

  • Apr 12th, 2016 10:32pm

Jury finds South Whidbey man guilty of raping children

Prosecutors and detectives hope that guilty verdicts in a child rape trial Monday will help bring closure for two boys who survived devastating abuse, neglect and rejection.

  • Apr 12th, 2016 10:09pm

Trail date set for former Langley businessman accused of child rape

A former Langley man who ran a public relations firm on South Whidbey is slated to go to trial on child rape charges on April 5.

  • Apr 1st, 2016 11:35pm