6 November 2015
Witness description aids police
Less than 24-hours had elapsed after a Florence woman called police to say she had just surprised a burglar in her home and the loss of several thousand dollars worth of jewelry.
Susan Smith was able to provide police with a good description of the woman who she said had gained entry to the home through an unlocked window.
Sergeant Harry Johnson heard the description, and immediately identified a suspect. Johnson spent time Wednesday night staking out a likely location. He arrested 33-year old Jasmine Leah Meltzer on a previous warrant as she was coming out of a Florence home. A search of that home revealed nearly all of the stolen jewelry. Smith said police told her they were able to recover all but three pieces.
Meltzer is facing felony burglary charges. It’s not the first time she has been arrested within 24-hours of allegedly committing a burglary. She and two men were taken into custody in July just one day after a break-in at the Bridgewater Restaurant.
Fire Station struck by burglars
Two generators, a weed trimmer, a chain saw and several other items were stolen from a rural fire station in the Florence area this week.
Division Chief Marvin Tipler with Siuslaw Valley Fire and Rescue said the total value of the equipment comes to more than $12-thousand.
He didn’t say how thieves gained entry, but said the gear was stolen from the Canary Road Station southeast of Florence sometime between 11 Sunday morning and six PM Monday.
In addition to the power equipment, two portable radios, a pair of binoculars and a Heat-Finder were stolen.
The Lane County Sheriff’s Office is investigating.
Port Manager Applicant List Cut
A list of ten applicants for the Port of Siuslaw Manager position was trimmed to six last night by Port Commissioners. President Ron Caputo said the half-dozen will be invited to make presentations to the Commission and answer questions.
Before paring the list in Executive Session last night, the Commission tentatively set aside Monday, November 16th for the interviews. They also determined they would like to interview the top four applicants.
Each of the six will make separate power point presentations to the Commission and answer questions later this month.
The Commission also decided last night to pay retiring manager Bob Forsythe through December 23rd, but relieve him of any further obligations immediately. Administrative assistant Dina McClure was named interim manager.
Caputo said his hope was to have a new manager identified and hired by December First but acknowledge it may take a little longer.
Coastal residents have been following the progress of a mule-drawn wagon headed up Highway 101 this week. The wagon, emblazoned with an evangelical Christian message is driven by a former Arizona taxidermist, Randy Boehmer. An informational handout from 2008 provided by Boehmer during a brief stop Thursday afternoon in Florence quotes him as saying he isn’t going anywhere in particular, just “wandering and telling anyone who will listen about God.”
The drover didn’t take time to do that in Florence however. After declining an interview he got back on the highway with his five mules and two dogs in search of a suitable campsite north of Florence before the sun went down.
Winter log booms going in place to protect marinas
Winter preparations are under way at the Port of Siuslaw sport and commercial moorages. Later this month log booms will be placed at entrances to all marinas to help keep debris out.
Even with the booms, a considerable amount of storm debris can accumulate the basin, potentially damaging vessels and docks.
Boaters are advised to use care when operating around the log booms. You should not try to move them during strong winds or rough water conditions. Officials say boaters are responsible for securely replacing the booms after your boat enters or exits the marina or boat launch area.
Slash burn fills skies over Florence with smoke
Dense smoke from a logging slash burn descended on Florence yesterday morning. Siuslaw Valley Fire Marshall Sean Barrett said Roseburg Forest Products was burning debris yesterday morning east of Woahink Lake. An unanticipated inversion caused the smoke to stay low and flow over the Siuslaw River and into downtown Florence.
Barrett said crews worked to reduce the intensity of the fire and smoke began clearing by late afternoon. It did return somewhat later in the evening.