News

Case file reveals details on Wallace-911 case

A police photograph of the crime scene shows a close-up of the stairs where Victoria Walker said Matthew Friar tied her up and held her against her will in his family’s home in Freeland in February 2006. Police took the fibers in the photograph as evidence. - Island County Sheriff’s Office photo
A police photograph of the crime scene shows a close-up of the stairs where Victoria Walker said Matthew Friar tied her up and held her against her will in his family’s home in Freeland in February 2006. Police took the fibers in the photograph as evidence.
— image credit: Island County Sheriff’s Office photo

BY BRIAN KELLY,

MICHAELA MARX WHEATLEY

AND SPENCER WEBSTER

South Whidbey Record

While the final chapter has yet to be written, disturbing new details have come to light on the 911 call scandal that cost Island County deputy sheriff Jay Wallace his chance to become sheriff and, likely, his career in law enforcement.

Wallace was fired nearly two years ago when then Sheriff Mike Hawley accused Wallace of shirking his duty and not properly responding to two 911 calls made by a woman who was being held against her will and assaulted in a cabin near Freeland Hall on

Feb. 7, 2006. The woman escaped from her captor the next day and called police from Freeland Park.

Hawley said Wallace lied to investigators during an internal review of the police response, and Wallace was later charged by the state Attorney General’s Office for making false statements under oath. The case was thrown out of court in January 2007 when an Island County Superior Court judge ruled Wallace’s report of the incident at the Freeland cabin could not be used against him.

Wallace is still fighting to get his job back. The Island County Sheriff’s Deputies Guild filed a grievance after the deputy was fired in April 2006, claiming Wallace’s firing violated the guild’s agreement with the county that requires just cause for all discipline.

A decision on the union grievance is expected in the coming weeks.

But while Wallace awaits a decision on whether he will get his deputy’s job back, the case file on the 911 case — released last week by the Island County Prosecutor’s Office in response to a request by The Record — calls into question some of the initial allegations made by authorities in the weeks following the incident.

Some of the just-released information corroborates claims made by Wallace as he defended himself against criminal charges, including that they were both on drugs and “partying” the night of the 911 call. Other details in the police records cast doubt on the victim’s credibility.

Both versions of the story — from Wallace and official statements at the time by police authorities — lack information vital to the case.

A shocking crime

Initially labeled a kidnapping and sexual assault, the February 2006 incident at a summer home near Holmes Harbor grabbed headlines when it was announced by police in the days following the crime.

Police said Matthew Friar, a

26-year-old Bellingham resident, had been staying with a friend at his family’s cabin at 1480 Shoreview Drive, near Freeland Park.

The friend, 26-year-old Victoria Walker, was allegedly held against her will and sexually assaulted by Friar. Walker escaped from the home the next morning and borrowed a phone from a stranger at Freeland Park to call police.

As police investigated her story, their attention soon turned to Wallace, one of two deputies who had been working the graveyard shift on the South End the night of the incident.

Walker told authorities that she had called 911 twice before she escaped. Wallace came to the door after the first 911 call and knocked on the door of the cabin, then left. He was at home in Greenbank getting lunch when Walker’s second 911 call came in, but he never went back to the cabin to check out the call.

Wallace told a 911 dispatcher on the night of the 911 calls that he saw a man run into the living room, put on a pair of pants, then run to the back of the home and wouldn’t come to the door.

He later said he had actually seen a naked woman, who grabbed a pair of jeans, hop around on one foot as she tried to put them on, and then run to what looked like a rear bedroom in the cabin.

Friar was initially charged by the Island County prosecutor on three separate counts; unlawful imprisonment, harassment with threats to kill his victim and assault in the fourth degree-domestic violence. The prosecutor’s office later dismissed the case after Walker disappeared; Friar was sent to Bellingham on outstanding warrants.

A review of the case file on the 911 call casts new light on both Friar and Walker, however.

Walker made a similar claim that she was held against her will in an incident in King County that investigators later said was unfounded. She also willingly visited the Friars’ family cabin in Freeland to help Friar avoid arrest on a warrant in Bellingham, and knew that Friar was a drug abuser with a violent past; she was warned by his friends and family before she came to Whidbey with him, including a Bellingham woman who had been assaulted by Friar almost four months to the day before the night of the Freeland 911 calls.

The night of her alleged assault, she also told police both she and Friar had taken prescription drugs and had been drinking.

Records also show that Walker had a history of mental health problems, and had been arrested nine times in the years before the Freeland incident.

The county’s case collapsed after Walker was kicked out of an abused women’s shelter on Whidbey for not following the rules.

Police searched for her for months, without success.

Attempts to reach Walker for comment in Bellingham were unsuccessful. Friar died of a heroin overdose in Portland, Ore. in October 2007.

Credibility gap

“Credibility was an issue. Ultimately it hurt our case. That and the fact that we couldn’t find her,” said Island County Prosecutor Greg Banks.

Although news reports of the 911 case consistently claimed Walker had been sexually assaulted — and her alleged rape was mentioned in then Sheriff Hawley’s reasoning for dismissing Wallace — Walker only made the claim of being sexually assaulted after being prodded by a 911 dispatcher. She repeatedly refused to talk to police about the alleged sexual assault during subsequent interviews with police, and the prosecutor’s office never accused Friar with sex crimes when he was charged in February 2006.

Banks said it is typical that victims of sexual assault or domestic violence change their stories or refuse to testify.

Police records show Walker made similar claims in the months following the Freeland incident.

After disappearing from Whidbey Island, Walker popped up less than two months later in Bellingham. Walker had called Bellingham police accusing another boyfriend of domestic violence March 21, 2006.

In May 2006, she accused another man of holding her against her will in King County.

A King County officer told Island County investigators that Walker had reported that she was kidnapped again. During the King County investigation, Walker disappeared and the case was closed as unfounded.

The incidents would have hurt her credibility in the Island County case, Banks said.

“It would have been relevant at a trial. She would have been cross examined about that,” he said.

Media attention on the 911 call case would have made a successful prosecution even more difficult, Banks said.

“The controversy around what Wallace had done — it would have been a complete other sideshow,” Banks said.

The public attention surrounding Wallace would have made it difficult to assemble a jury, he said.

Ultimately, however, Walker’s disappearance was the key problem.

Banks said county law enforcement did enough to help her and monitor her whereabouts. Police contacted her father and her former boss, and asked police in Bellingham to watch for her on the street. But when county officials tried to make contact with her in the months following the Freeland incident, she actively dodged them.

“She appeared to take steps to avoid us,” Banks said.

Without Walker as a witness, the case fell apart.

There was physical evidence, Banks said, but she was the only one who could have put it in context.

Walker had testified that she had been tied up at the staircase at the cabin, for example, and crime scene photos showed that fibers had been caught in the wood.

“Without her testimony, it would have been fibers on the stairs. We wouldn’t have been able to get any of this evidence admitted,” he said.

Friar had history of violence

Friar was born June 23, 1979 to Mary and Michael Friar in Bellingham.

Family friends said he father was a fisherman who died at sea; his mother worked for the school district.

By the family’s account, Friar did well in school. He was involved in sports — he went to the state finals for wrestling in the 215-pound weight class — and also made it to the state playoffs with Tumwater High School’s football team.

High school friends said he began selling drugs his junior year, and acquaintances also said that Friar and his brother, Joe, had been affiliated with gangs in their younger years.

Friar had a criminal history stretching back more than a decade at the time of the Freeland incident. He had two felony convictions; one for second-degree malicious mischief in 1993, the other for possession of a firearm in 2001.

His record also included three gross misdemeanors; one for third-degree theft in 1994, and two fourth-degree assault convictions in 1998 and 2004.

He was also charged with misdemeanors for second-degree criminal trespass in 2001 and driving with a license suspended/revoked in 2003. He also had previous charges for possession of a dangerous weapon, and two cases of violating domestic violence court orders in 2004 and 2005.

Jumping bail

Four months before the Freeland 911 case, almost to the day, Friar was arrested after an domestic dispute with his on-again, off-again girlfriend in Bellingham.

Yolanda Davis called police after she got into an argument with Friar, telling him he couldn’t come and go at her place at the Park Ridge Apartments anytime he wanted or bring his friends there without her permission. The pair had been dating for several months.

It was just after 11 p.m. Oct. 7, 2005. The couple argued and it quickly became heated.

Davis, 37, claimed Friar was drunk and on drugs at the time, and got angry. He said he didn’t have to listen to a “bitch,” and started throwing things around her apartment.

She asked Friar to leave, but he grabbed her and threw her to the floor, then started kicking her.

When she got up and grabbed her 7-year-old son, Friar locked the apartment door so they couldn’t leave. She ran to the bathroom and locker herself in, but Friar kicked the door in and pulled her out, then threw her to the ground.

The woman got up and ran to her bedroom and locked the door, but Friar kicked it down. Davis grabbed a portable stereo and threw it at the bedroom window so it would break and get somebody’s attention outside.

Friar told her that if she ever “opened her mouth like that again, he would kill her and her son,” according to a Bellingham Police case report of the incident. He then grabbed a butcher knife from the kitchen and ran off.

Davis called police to report the assault.

Police brought in a K-9 unit to search for Friar but the dog could not find a scent.

Officers left the scene, but went back to the apartment building after getting a report that Friar had come back, but was chased away by some of the tenants.

As police searched the area near the apartment complex, someone who lived there pointed out Friar to police, standing nearby in the parking lot. He was arrested and booked on two counts of felony harassment, fourth-degree assault, and third degree malicious mischief/domestic violence.

Friar was charged on Oct. 12 in Whatcom County Superior Court for two felonies, unlawful imprisonment and harassment, and fourth-degree assault and malicious mischief.

Leaving Bellingham

Walker later told police she had come to Whidbey by bus from Skagit County. She said it was Friar’s mother idea to come to the Freeland cabin, so he could avoid arrest on outstanding warrants from the assault case in Bellingham after he jumped bail. Friar’s mother gave the couple a ride to a bus stop in the Mount Vernon area.

The pair made it as far south on Coupeville.

Claudia Riggins, a ferry worker at the Keystone terminal, told police she gave the couple a ride to the Freeland cabin in early February when they showed up too late to catch a bus to Freeland.

The ferry worker described Walker as tall, thin and pretty, but her description of Friar was not as generous.

He was “not good looking...rolled his own cigarettes, always moving, hyper, seemed like a ‘drugger’ or a ‘loser,’” she said in a statement to police. “He was dressed like a bum. She seemed to have a lot more class than he did.”

Riggins said the couple acted like a boyfriend and girlfriend, but she didn’t see them kiss in the two hours or they hung out in the waiting room at the ferry terminal. “She kept telling him to ‘settle down,” ‘be quiet,’ ‘knock it off,’” Riggins said.

Riggins said the woman said her van had broken down between Mount Vernon and Anacortes, and the couple asked about finding a taxi to take them to Freeland.

The ferry worker, though, offered to give them a ride after her shift, on her way home from work. They accepted, and Riggins said the ride was uneventful other than a call the woman got on her cellphone, apparently from her job.

At the family cabin

By Walker’s account, their stay at the Friar family cabin went pretty well in the days leading up to the 911 incident. They would watch movies, walk down to the park by the harbor, or just hang out.

Things started to change Feb. 6, the day before police came to the cabin.

Just before noon, they made a grocery run to Pay-Less; mostly breakfast items like eggs and OJ, frozen waffles and a box of Cap’n Crunch. Friar picked up some snacks, too, a can of Pizza Pringles and some Jelly Belly candies.

Friar came back later that afternoon just after 4 p.m., to get a couple sirloin steaks from PayLess with his food stamps and bag of Seattle’s Best Coffee.

Back at the cabin, Walker was making a marinade when she said they got into a dispute and he threw a bottle of Worchester sauce at her face.

She got it in her eyes, and then mistakenly grabbed a small bottle of bleach to clean her face when she had been reaching for a bottle of saline cleaner. They called 911, and Walker was taken to the emergency room by ambulance for treatment.

Story changes

In a later interview, Walker told Det. Susan Quandt she had gotten into an argument when she was making dinner.

They had a couple of drinks, but they started arguing over “something silly” and Friar threw a bottle of Worchester sauce at her.

When she was taken by ambulance to the hospital, Friar told her to lie about her name and her birth date. Since she had already given medics her name, she gave them a wrong birth date.

While at the hospital, the couple crossed paths with then-Sheriff Hawley, who was sitting in the emergency room. He later said Walker came in with her head wrapped in towels, and her boyfriend told the attending nurse they had been barbecuing and his girlfriend accidentally got sauce in her eye when she was struggling to open the bottle.

In the later interview with Quandt, Walker filled in many of the missing details of the events that happened after her visit to the emergency room.

But her story started to change, according to a transcript of the interview.

Walker said she got Worcestershire sauce in her eyes because the cap wasn’t on tight enough, and it splashed her in the face when Friar asked why it was taking so long to make the marinade and tried to take the bottle away from her.

Quandt, though, reminded Walker that she had said earlier that he threw the bottle at her. Walker said she was having trouble remembering specifics.

“In my mind, in my mind he threw it at me. I was in the process of making it; he had tried to grab it from me,” she said.

Walker said a nurse at the hospital knew something was wrong, and handed him a CADA card when Friar couldn’t see. “I should’ve left then,” Walker told the detective.

She said he seemed concerned about her eyes, but then started asking about her pain medication, and then if he could have a couple of the vicodin she had been given. She refused, took two and went to bed.

The next day, Friar went to PayLess and started panhandling. A deputy stopped him from begging, and Friar gave the officer his brother’s name instead of his own.

Walker said Friar began talking about making a life on Whidbey and got “kind of delusional,” she said.

“It was like the picture he was painting was that we were gonna stay there permanently,” she said, adding that he got angry when she didn’t want to talk about that, or the time he spent in prison.

When her boss called to find out when she would be back to work, Friar got suspicious that she had something romantic going with her employer. He began to question what she was doing while he was gone panhandling, and they began to argue.

“It was like he was making all of these weird scenarios up in his head about what he thought I as doing ...while he was gone,” Walker told the detective.

They put in a movie and she started to make dinner. When she reminded him that they had to get back in time for his court date, but Friar wasn’t interested. The argument exploded after Friar started bragging about getting away from the police earlier in Freeland.

“He had no intentions of going back to quash his warrant. He figured he could hide out in Oak Harbor,” she said.

Victim gives details

Friar had taken prescription drugs the night of the first 911 call, Walker said, and probably the pain pills she had gotten at the hospital. She drank two glasses of wine, then went into a back bedroom to lie down and dozed off.

She then said she heard his cell phone ring, and Friar then came and pulled her out of the bed by her hair. He was angry that someone had called looking for her.

“I don’t know if it was my boss or if it was a friend... he came in enraged, screaming about my ex-boyfriend calling his phone or something,” Walker told Quandt in her Feb. 9 emergency room interview. “I couldn’t really answer, and I just told him, I told him he was nuts. And that’s when he started accusing me of being crazy.

“He started screaming at me saying...you’re the one that’s [expletive deleted] crazy if you think that I’m gonna put up with this. And you don’t believe me and I, you know, well, I’m going to make you believe me.”

Walker said he started hitting and kicking her, and she got up and ran into the kitchen. She grabbed the phone, dialed 911, and dropped the phone.

When Wallace’s patrol car pulled up, Walker said he pulled a sheet around her neck and face and pulled her into the back bedroom closet. “He just kept saying, baby, don’t send me back to the wood pile, and I’m sorry, I’m sorry.”

Walker said she felt something in her side, and she wasn’t sure if it was the end of a knife or a gun. She said he threatened to kill her and her son.

She heard someone banging on the door, “Sheriff’s office,” and she could see a police flashlight shining through the window. Twenty minutes later, the police left. Friar got sick and started vomiting.

Walker went to the bathroom, pushed the screen out, and tried to climb out the window. She turned on the sink to hide the noise she was making. Walker said she got halfway out the window, and could see the lights of the police car driving away.

She pulled herself back inside, and Friar confronted her when she came out of the bathroom and accused her of trying to run away.

He tied her to the stairs again, she said, this time by her neck and ankles. He started telling her prison stories and threw things at her while she was tied up – an orange, a coffee cup - when he thought she wasn’t listening to him.

Her memories are more disjointed in a transcript of her Feb. 9 interview with Quandt, however. She admitted her memory of the night was distorted, and she wasn’t clear about the exact order of events.

Even so, she said she could remember getting hit. Smacked from behind and knocked out. Tied up and then later, sat down in a chair and threatened with a knife.

“He says, you know I love you, right? He says, but there’s just parts of you that I can’t love, and we’re gonna work on getting rid of those. You’ll be a better mother this way.”

She said he rubbed a knife along her leg, then stuck it into the floor by her feet.

She remembered Friar apologizing again and again, getting her a glass of wine, and pulling out a hide-a-bed. Walker didn’t remember falling asleep, but she woke up on the hide-a-bed.

Walker said her memory of the events were choppy; she blacked out and remembered being tied to the bottom of the stairs. She remembered him telling her that if she could handle what he was doing, she could “deal with anything out there in the real world…and that this was his gift to me.”

She said she remembered waking up later in bed, and he was there, and started to apologize.

“I’m sorry you had to go through that,” Walker recalled. “Just make sure the house is cleaned up before we have to go tomorrow.”

He went back to sleep, and Walker started to clean the dishes. She put her stuff in a garbage bag, and pretended to be taking out the garbage when she took it outside.

When she came back inside, she just stood and listened. She figured he was still asleep. Walker looked briefly for his gun, but then she opened the back door and ran out. She found a man sitting in a Jeep at Freeland Park and asked if she could borrow it to call police.

Police called to scene

Deputy Gomez was the first to arrive at Freeland Park.

Walker was in the back of an ambulance. According to Gomez’ report, she was highly upset; crying, sobbing, and constantly looking out of the ambulance as if someone unwanted was coming.

Walker told the deputy that she came to Whidbey with Friar a few days earlier. Friar’s mom had suggested they go to the cabin so her son wouldn’t be picked up on the warrant from the Bellingham Police Department, Walker said.

The night before, they had been drinking and things go out of control after they argued. Friar became violent and started hitting her, and pushing her around. He then tied her up with some bed sheets to a ladder in the cabin so she wouldn’t leave.

She said she called 911, but when police came, Friar put her in a closet “and told her if she made a sound she would get hers.”

Gomez asked her about the sexual assault claim made during the last 911 call, but Walker said she didn’t want to talk about it. Gomez told her that Det. Quandt would meet her at the hospital.

Walker said Friar was still asleep in the cabin, but had a gun. Gomez called Deputy Rick Felici and Det. Mark Plumberg to go to the home.

Felici got there about noon; Plumberg, 10 minutes later. They decided that Plumberg, dressed in civilian clothes, would go to the door and knock while Felici and Gomez waited around the side of the house.

Plumberg knocked on the front door but nobody answered.

When he got to the back door and knocked, the door popped open, and a few minutes later, Friar walked out onto the rear deck.

“Who the hell are you?” Friar asked Plumberg.

The detective told him, and asked him to take his hands out of his pockets as Gomez came around the corner and put him in handcuffs.

Friar got angry and fast, according to police reports. “That crazy bitch woke up in the middle of the night and went crazy and I’m the one getting arrested?” Friar shouted.

Plumberg said Friar looked like he was out of it. His speech was slurred, and he was barefoot and drooling. When Gomez started to read Friar his Miranda rights, Friar yelled racial slurs at the deputy and also became beligerent with Plumberg and Felici.

Gomez asked Friar if he understood his rights, and asked if he wanted to say anything about what happened.

“Nothing happened,” Friar said. “She’s a bitch, that’s what, and I’m not telling you a f****** thing.”

Gomez put him in his patrol car and started driving north to Coupeville. In his report of the incident, Gomez said Friar continued to hurl racial insults at him and began kicking the metal partition between the front and back seats of the patrol car, and then the door, when Gomez ignored him. The deputy stopped on Highway 525 at Mohawk Drive near Greenbank to warm him he would be charged if he damaged the patrol car.

Friar was then taken to the jail to be booked on the felony warrant out of Bremerton.

Police collect evidence

After Gomez took Friar to jail, a neighbor walked up to talk to Det. Plumberg.

Michael Andersen was a longtime friend of the family, and was the caretaker for the Friar’s family cabin. In fact, he helped build it with Friar’s grandfather, and was called “uncle” by some of the Friars.

Andersen gave Plumberg the OK to go into the home to look around. They went inside, and Andersen said the couple had made a mess of the place.

There were dishes on the floor, and six wine bottles were scattered throughout the house. Andersen said it looked like they had helped themselves to his wine collection, which he kept in the garage next to the home. He said Walker must have gotten in there when he opened the garage to let Friar borrow his bike.

Plumberg found a knife that was stuck in the carpet under the coffee table in the living room. Andersen said it hadn’t been there before Friar and Walker came for their visit.

After Plumberg took photographs of the scene, Andersen picked up food that had been left in the bedroom and the dishes on the floor. He found a bra on the floor of the living room, and put it in a plastic bag and gave it to the detective.

Reluctant witness

Det. Quandt heard talk on the radio about the incident soon after Walker called 911.

Deputy Gomez called her at 11:40 a.m., and said the woman had told him she had been raped and assaulted the night before, and was being taking to Whidbey General Hospital by ambulance.

Quandt went to the emergency room, and met with the victim in an exam room where she was talking about her injuries and bruises with a nurse. She was bruised from her head to her ankles and was extremely sore.

The detective took photographs as a nurse pointed out bruises on the woman’s neck, her right shoulder, and on the right side of her ribcage. There was also bruising on her upper right arm, her right leg and right ankle.

When Quandt asked if she had been sexually assaulted, Walker wouldn’t talk about it and refused to have a rape examination conducted.

Back at the Freeland cabin, Det. Mark Plumberg called Quandt to say Friar had been taken into custody. He said the house was “trashed.”

About an hour later, a CADA advocate arrived at the hospital and met with the victim. Walker agreed to a sexual assault examination, but did not want to file a complaint.

A few hours later, her doctor told police she said she had consensual sex with Friar the night before the assault. She also said the pair had a sexual relationship while they were in Bremerton.

While at the hospital, Quandt also learned more about the two 911 calls that police had received from the cabin.

The I-COM 911 system records calls even before they are answered by a 911 operator, and on the first call, the one made at 11:23 p.m., a man’s voice could be heard yelling “I’ll f*** you up” as a woman screamed in the background.

When the 911 operator picked up the call, however, the line was silent.

Wallace, the deputy who was fired for his failure to response appropriately to the 911 calls, later blamed 911 dispatchers for not telling him about the voices that were heard on the first emergency call.

Friar calls story bogus

After her visit to the hospital, Quandt went to see Friar at the jail as he was being booked. She told him he had been arrested on the warrant out of Bellingham, but was also facing charges of kidnapping and second-degree assault.

According to Quandt’s case report, Friar told her that Walker wasn’t held against her will and he was the one who had been assaulted.

“It was my house. She could have left any time. She woke up in the middle of the night crazy with a knife and burned me with wax. But I wouldn’t charge her. I didn’t want her there. I asked her to leave and she wouldn’t. Nice of her to charge me before she left.”

Quandt asked if Friar wanted to make a statement. “Not really,” he said.

The next day, Thursday, Judge Alan Hancock gave deputies a search warrant for the Freeland cabin. Police took evidence including empty wine bottles, bed sheets, a telephone, fibers from the drop-down stairs, an empty four-pack of hydrocodone, a pain killer, and Friar’s prescription bottle of flurazepam, an insomnia drug.

Police met again with Walker that afternoon and took more photographs of her injuries. She said she had talked to a neighbor back in Bellingham, who said her apartment had been broken into, and Walker blamed Friar’s arrest.

Quandt conducted an extensive interview with the victim.

She said she had known Friar since they were kids. They didn’t go to school together, but their mothers were friends, and the pair were sweethearts in middle school.

She lost track of him until seeing him outside a Bellingham coffee shop about a month before they came to Freeland. Walker said she later found out he had been selling crack outside the coffeeshop where they met.

Walker also told police she knew about his past, and that he had a warrant for his arrest in Bellingham. She had accidentally met the victim of one of his warrant charges, who told her what had happened to her when she was with Friar, and she told Walker to be careful.

Walker, though, told Quandt that she thought Friar needed a friend and agreed to come down to his family’s cabin with him on her vacation from work. She also told police she had consensual sex with Friar while they were dating in Bellingham.

Police learn more about victim

On Monday, Feb. 13, Quandt got a voice mail message from Walker that she had left about 8:30 p.m. Friday. Walker said she wanted to press sexual assault charges, and said had filed for a restraining order against Friar - it was dismissed a week later when Walker didn’t show up in court. Later that day, Quandt talked with a detective from the Whatcom County Sheriff’s Office, who said the sheriff’s office had contacts with Walker stretching back to 1995. She had been involved in drugs and had been arrested nine times. The detective also said Friar had gang affiliations.

Quandt called Walker where she was staying at the CADA shelter about 5 p.m. She set up an interview at the Oak Harbor Police Department for 1:30 p.m. the next day, and Walker said she had her Friar’s friends in Walla Walla were trying to raise bail money. He’d been involved with a gang called the Westside Bloods when he was younger, she added.

The following day, Quandt talked with a detective who worked for the Northwest Drug Task Force. She knew Walker from two years’ earlier, when Walker was using methamphetamine and had done some work for the task force. The detective said that while Walker had mental health problems, her credibility was good. Walker had also given the Bellingham Police Department useful information during a murder investigation four or five months earlier.

The detective on the task force also said Friar’s brother Joe had been involved in the past with big drug dealers, but had been “quiet” for the past two years.

Quandt then went to the Oak Harbor Police Department to conduct another interview with Walker, but she never showed. Her case worker at CADA said she thought Walker had gone back to Bellingham to handle issues involving her son. The case worker later called back to say she had spoken with Walker, who had agreed to come back for an interview the following day.

On Wednesday, Quandt got ready for the interview, and three other officers were going to watch on a closed-circuit television.

Walker never showed. Quandt called the CADA shelter, and later learned Walker never came back to the shelter the night before, though her personal belongings were still there.

Walker showed up at the shelter on Thursday, and she was locked out for not following the house rules.

Walker was given her stuff, and she left. Police never found her again.

Still, they kept trying. Quandt heard from a social worker who said she had lost visitation rights with her son in January 2006 because she did not go to the hearing.

Quandt continued her investigation after the case was dropped by the prosecutor’s office.

She called Walker’s father on March 28, and he said she was sleeping “couch to couch” and hadn’t seen his daughter in two weeks.

The following week, the detective talked to her boss, who had used her in the past as a part-time delivery person. He hadn’t heard from her in almost a month, and was looking for her to return equipment and checks.

“Good luck on finding her,” he said.

In late April, Bellingham Police told Quandt that police had made contact with Walker on March 21 in response to a domestic violence complaint. Police gave Quandt a phone number for Walker, but she never called back.

In mid-May, Quandt tried the phone number again. A woman at the number said Walker had been briefly involved with her son, but hadn’t been seen since March. She also said a detective in King County had called the number looking for Walker.

A few days later, Bellingham Police called Quant to say they had found Walker in a Bellingham drug house. Friar was living there, and police had responded to a call that he had been assaulted.

Later that day, Quandt learned from a King County detective that Walker had filed a complaint in King County claiming she had been kidnapped, but police later discovered she was under the influence of an unknown substance at the time of the incident and couldn’t remember what had happened. The detective said he talked to her father, who said his daughter was schizophrenic and wasn’t taking her meds.

The King County detective also said Walker disappeared during their investigation, and police later closed the cause because it appeared to be unfounded.

Case is closed

Friar was charged with three counts on Feb. 13; unlawful imprisonment, harassment with threats to kill, and fourth-degree domestic violence assault. He faced between four months to a year in jail on each count.

The case began to crumble when Walker disappeared, however. Later that month, Banks dismissed the case and said it would not be re-filed.

The case against Wallace continued.

He was charged with lying in his statements to police about his response to the 911 calls, but the case was dismissed.

Sheriff Mark Brown said a decision is expected soon on Wallace’s fight to get his job back.

The deputies’ union want Wallace reinstated with back pay and benefits, plus a letter of apology to Wallace from the county that would be published in all newspapers that carried stories and editorials regarding Wallace’s discipline.

“It’s gone to arbitration and the judge has all the information. He has yet to deliver a finding,” Brown said.

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