Update: Stolen West Seattle totem pole recovered – in Oregon

December 10, 2009 at 10:29 am | In Crime, Rotary Club of West Seattle, West Seattle history, West Seattle news | 84 Comments

(scroll down – we’re continuing to add elements as this story develops)

(Photo added 11:05 am – the recovered poles in Oregon)
As reported here late yesterday, police arrested a West Seattle man in connection with the theft of the 18′ totem pole from Rotary Viewpoint Park, which we first told you about last Thursday morning. When we reported that the suspect was in custody, police had just made the arrest and hadn’t yet figured out where the stolen pole was; this morning, they know. Southwest Precinct Lt. Steve Paulsen tells WSB that after extensive questioning, the suspect told them where it was: The Salem, Oregon, area. And Lt. Paulsen says police there already “have it in custody on a trailer in an impound lot” – he says it’s reported to be in good shape and does not appear to be damaged. Now they’re coordinating with the Parks Department to figure out how and when to bring it back here. Plus, Lt. Paulsen says, they “recovered another totem pole but can’t figure out where the other one belongs yet.” They also will be investigating whether the suspect is in possession of any other stolen property. We’re not identifying the suspect yet because (to our knowledge) charges are not yet filed – we can tell you he is a 69-year-old North Admiral resident, and the house where the crane driver said last weekend that he’d dropped it off is in the Lake Sawyer area. We didn’t publish this last weekend because no arrest had been made, but here’s a photo we took as the two sleuthing Rotarians (left and right) and the crane-truck driver went to knock on that house’s door last Saturday – note the Santa hat, left over from the Rotary’s Christmas Shopping Spree hours earlier:

Stay tuned for more followups. The Rotary Club of West Seattle, meantime, which donated the park and the pole to the city in 1976 – and made its own inquiries to try to help track down the pole (as detailed here) – tells us they’re working on coordinating an event for the pole’s return. 11:07 AM UPDATE: Adding photos provided by police (one above, one below), showing the recovered Rotary pole (and its mystery companion) in Oregon.

12:06 PM UPDATE: Just checked with Parks spokesperson Dewey Potter to see if there’s any info yet on their side regarding plans for the pole’s return. She says, “It’s my understanding that the pole will be in police custody as evidence for some amount of time (no clue yet how long that will be). … We’re all for a celebratory event to welcome the pole back to the people when the time is right.” 12:28 PM UPDATE: For the latest on Rotary’s plans on helping that happen, we just talked to past president Josh Sutton on camera at the viewpoint park – he explains how your help will be important:

(The website he mentions is westseattlerotary.org.) He added, “Rotary’s owned this totem pole in our hearts for a long time, but West Seattle owns this totem pole and we’re committed to getting it back to the folks of West Seattle in great shape.”

1:41 PM UPDATE: Just drove by the park and spotted Rotary sleuths Duane and Kenny being interviewed by KING5 – we didn’t park in time to get the photo op but did talk to Duane, who says he’s glad that Seattle Police have gone to great lengths to find the totem pole, and he’s now hopeful that prosecutors will go the extra mile to make sure justice is served. And one more note – just talked again with Josh Sutton, who says you can NOW donate through the Rotary website to pay for getting the pole back in place, with a community event, as soon as possible – he wants to stress, this is NOT meant to be in lieu of restitution from the suspect, but if and when the time comes that they get reimbursed that way, the money people have donated “will go to do good work in the West Seattle community.”

2:25 PM UPDATE: Answers to a couple followup questions we asked Lt. Paulsen at Southwest Precinct: 1. Will the crane truck driver face charges? Nothing’s final yet, but he notes that they are being very cooperative witnesses. 2. Is there a chance the stolen Tillicum Village storefront art work on Avalon (here’s our story from two months ago) is linked to all this? Too soon to say but Lt. Paulsen indicates they are actively investigating and more “recoveries” are possible.

84 Comments

  1. Way to go!!

    Comment by I. Ponder — 10:37 am December 10, 2009 #

  2. Thunderous cheers for Lt. Paulsen and department/others, WSB, pro-active members of the Rotary Club of West Seattle, Parks Dept, and others, including observant WS residents!

    Comment by n. drew — 10:42 am December 10, 2009 #

  3. Excellent. I knew the guy wouldn’t keep it close by- too risky. Glad it’s been recovered!

    Comment by Lachlan — 10:42 am December 10, 2009 #

  4. This is great news!

    Comment by MargL — 10:45 am December 10, 2009 #

  5. I’d be happy to tow it back free of charge.

    Comment by Donn — 10:45 am December 10, 2009 #

  6. Seems to me that the transportation of stolen property across state lines could open up the suspect to Federal charges.

    Comment by christopherboffoli — 10:48 am December 10, 2009 #

  7. This 69 year old I don’t give a damn about anybody else thieving a*swipe from North Admiral should have his a*s kicked and then thrown in jail for 10 years which hopefully would be a life sentence. There is just something about this that bothers me so much…like if they had stolen something from my front yard.

    Comment by Big Guy — 10:49 am December 10, 2009 #

  8. Pure speculation here: I wonder if the same person took the art from the Tillicum Village building?

    Comment by DaveB — 10:54 am December 10, 2009 #

  9. Good work, folks! I’m glad that someone noticed it was gone. Who knows what would have happened otherwise.

    Comment by sw — 10:57 am December 10, 2009 #

  10. I bet this guy has been doing this for a while. Obviously he’s got consideralbe resources to pull something like this off AND be living in North Admiral. I hope the police do more investigation about what else he has stolen and where it ended up. Maybe we are on the brink of cracking open a whole art theft ring.
    This has been the best story, I’m glued to the blog waiting for the next update.

    Comment by sophista-tiki — 10:59 am December 10, 2009 #

  11. where’s the picture of the sleuthing rotarians???

    Comment by sophista-tiki — 11:01 am December 10, 2009 #

  12. I’m so happy to hear the totem is safe and in one piece. I’d like to see the guy that took it nailed to it for a public flogging during the return ceremony. The nerve of some people!

    Comment by Lori — 11:02 am December 10, 2009 #

  13. That took some ballz to steal something that big and noticeable. What was he going to do with it, erect it the front of his yard and hope no one would notice.

    Comment by jiggers — 11:12 am December 10, 2009 #

  14. Great job WSB!!! Though it’s been said, it bears repeating. This never would have come together so cleanly if the WSB hadn’t been on the case! Tremendous work!

    Comment by Hooray WSB! — 11:13 am December 10, 2009 #

  15. Glad to hear it’s undamaged.

    .

    Again, I’ll be interested in exactly what role the crane co played in this. Are they the party that transported it as well?

    .

    There’s much more I want to say on this, but will wait for more info before giving more opinions.

    .

    What I’m essentially trying to say is, the Totem should be transported back immediately, and most of all safely, and all expenses incurred should be the full resposnibility of the parties involved in any stage of the theft or transport.

    .

    Mike

    Comment by miws — 11:14 am December 10, 2009 #

  16. Good work WSB – hopefully they will throw the book at this guy and publish his name and address maybe we can all come by and remove his siding and windows. See how this creep likes it.

    Comment by laurie — 11:26 am December 10, 2009 #

  17. Hopefully they’ll be able to get more people on accesory to crime /facilitating a crime and receiving / possession of stolen property.

    People need to know theft is not tolerated in WEST SEATTLE.

    Comment by Donuts for all — 11:27 am December 10, 2009 #

  18. Sophista, sorry about that, I just realized a few minutes ago it still wasn’t showing up but it should be now.
    .
    We’re off interviewing a Rotary spokesperson right now for more on plans for commemorating its return.
    .
    And I am told citywide media is finally jumping into the story (although remember, we have an informal partnership with the Times, so they have been linking to our coverage as it happened – the rest of the city DID know about this as a result – somebody asked last night about other media coverage and I meant to mention that. PI.com also wrote an item last week, sourced to ours but also with some independent contacts)….TR

    Comment by WSB — 11:33 am December 10, 2009 #

  19. I think I’m actually surprised that the suspect/culprit in this case is as old as he is, and obviously fairly well off, considering he has a home in WS AND in Lake Sawyer.And, yes, I’d be investigating his background just a little more. Something sounds very fishy about this…I’m with the “art theft ring” idea….especially Native American art. Hope they get warrants for his house here, too.

    What nerve…jerk !

    Comment by JanS — 11:36 am December 10, 2009 #

  20. I worked across the street from this for three years, and have been following the story avidly since it broke last week (just one more reason I’ve fallen madly in love with the WSB). While a more recent part of West Seattle’s history, the Rotary Viewpoint totem pole for some is an iconic symbol of our vast neighborhood and a reminder of the spirit of selflessness and community. (That the local Rotarians had a large hand in recovering the stolen pole is no coincidence.) The concern shown and eventual recovery of this public artpiece is a testament to the fact that, no matter how bohemian or hipster or “other” this “urban suburb” gets, we have roots that still run deep; we are ever vigilant and proud of the little ol’ Westside and the symbols that mark its centuries-old continuity.

    Comment by Harpy — 11:37 am December 10, 2009 #

  21. And he would have gotten away with it too, if it weren’t for you meddling kids and your West Seattle Blog!

    Comment by Aaron — 11:40 am December 10, 2009 #

  22. It looks like it needs a little work on it , I know some one that works on Totem , Carlos Espinoza he came out in the Latino Cultural Magazine the October issue he is a local artist in West Seattle , he has some of his work at Cafe Rozella , real nice person .
    Ya that Totem needs some work on it perhaps some one should get a hold of Mr. Espinoza to do this

    Comment by LMA — 11:40 am December 10, 2009 #

  23. scooby snacks for everyone!

    Comment by Denny — 11:41 am December 10, 2009 #

  24. Jan – I’m checking court records, as we would do with any suspect – started to do that last night but the main part of the online records shuts down access fairly early in the evening.

    Comment by WSB — 11:51 am December 10, 2009 #

  25. 69 years old. I wonder how long this has been going on for?

    Comment by I\'mCold — 11:58 am December 10, 2009 #

  26. This guy must be off his nut. Perhaps if he got a totem pole shoved where the sun don’t shine, he’d shy away from them in the future. That isn’t very nice of me to say but I’m still in disbelief that someone would so brazenly take a West Seattle icon — steal property with a big crane and tow truck — in a view /park area, in a well traveled busy area!!! That is freakish. It seems we’ve all been violated because it is public property and was stolen from all of us. Way to go WSB!!! What a great place for community to come together and do good deeds!

    Comment by bongo — 12:03 pm December 10, 2009 #

  27. Aaron, thanks for the laugh! A nice bit of icing on this cake.

    It’s hard to believe we have such a lousy neighbor living here in West Seattle. You’d think after nearly 70 years of life the guy would have grown up a little.

    Comment by Steve — 12:04 pm December 10, 2009 #

  28. Congrats to the Rotarians, WSB, and SPD!
    Thank you for recovering an impotant (in more ways than one) symbol.

    Comment by k — 12:05 pm December 10, 2009 #

  29. Hey all, a friendly word from your co-publishers … Obviously as has been evident all along, this crime has felt like a violation against the entire community … but please avoid even fantasy expressions of desired violence against the suspect, should he be proven guilty. We try to keep the community discussion on this site a little more dignified than other news sites and it gets harder as the crowd continues to grow and the volume of comments (THANK YOU FOR PARTICIPATING!) increases, but I know it’s possible. Another neighborhood news publisher in another state did something that I still swear we’ll do one of these days – change the wording on the “POST” button for a comment, to something like “MY MOMMA WOULD BE OKAY WITH ME SAYING THIS.” Keep that in mind. Thanks again for being the coolest community on earth … TR

    Comment by WSB — 12:13 pm December 10, 2009 #

  30. Thank goodness his A** is busted. Otherwise, the Statue of Liberty at Alki could be next!

    Comment by madashell — 12:17 pm December 10, 2009 #

  31. Who knows. Maybe Santa was just taking the pole back to his workshop to have it repainted (to look like that old picture at the top of the story), only to then return it to the cheers and adulation of all the Whos in Whoville.

    Comment by huindekmi — 12:23 pm December 10, 2009 #

  32. What happened to the paint on both poles? Did he remove the paint? Or was the pole that worn already? I seem to recall the paint being in pretty good shape the last time I really looked at it. I hope that the Nation who made it can restore it for us, as I don’t think it’s really appropriate to have an “outsider” working on sacred religious/spiritual/cultural symbols.

    Comment by sacatosh — 12:29 pm December 10, 2009 #

  33. Glad I wasn’t drinking anything, Aaron!
    -
    This is such great news; excellent work by all involved. I am looking forward to hearing more as the investigation continues; this a*s wasn’t working alone. I’m also suspicious about possible links to the Tillicum Village theft.
    Hope the other totem recovered in Oregon is returned to it’s home as well.

    Comment by dawsonct — 12:33 pm December 10, 2009 #

  34. maybe the crane company that removed it can donate their services to put it back..

    Comment by JoB — 12:38 pm December 10, 2009 #

  35. Huindekmi, that analogy occurred to me a few days ago while The Kid and I were driving by (believe it or not, till this got mostly solved, we ran by a couple times a day to make sure it hadn’t somehow reappeared!). The Grinch sounded pretty convincing when he told his tale to Cindy Lou Who.

    Comment by WSB — 12:43 pm December 10, 2009 #

  36. Happy Ending Approved! Here is another story of a stolen Seattle Totem from a long time ago – http://www.historylink.org/index.cfm?DisplayPage=output.cfm&file_id=2076 -

    Comment by rnl — 12:49 pm December 10, 2009 #

  37. I agree, the crane company IS responsible for the cost of putting it back too. UNLESS they were giving property documentation like a ‘fake’ parks department document, then it’s their fault too! If the crane company just pulled out the poll because someone paid them cash, it’s their fault. They knew it was in a park obviously, why did they let someone just take it without any authority or documentation? If I pay this crane company $300 will they pull at ATM out of a drive through for me and load it in my car?

    Comment by Alki Area — 12:49 pm December 10, 2009 #

  38. Was listening to KOMO 1000 just after 11 AM today and heard “According to West Seattle Blog…”

    Kudos!

    Comment by Robert — 1:02 pm December 10, 2009 #

  39. madashell: I think someone did steal the statue of liberty…or maybe just the arm….some years ago.

    Comment by maude — 1:13 pm December 10, 2009 #

  40. “If I pay this crane company $300 will they pull at ATM out of a drive through for me and load it in my car?”

    Maybe… but you probably won’t get the cops to help by directing traffic for that.

    Comment by KBear — 1:18 pm December 10, 2009 #

  41. Please note if you are checking the comment thread before the main story – the Rotary is NOW accepting donations to get the pole back in place with a community event as soon as feasible. And if they are ever reimbursed through restitution, the equivalent money will go “to do good work in the West Seattle community,” as Josh Sutton put it. (But he adds, “Right now, we just don’t have a ‘lost totem pole’ fund!” – TR

    Comment by WSB — 1:48 pm December 10, 2009 #

  42. Maude, lesson: whatever’s not nailed down (or bolted in the case of the pole) is liable to be snatched (or rigged and hoisted by your friendly, customer-service oriented crane company).

    Actually, I feel kinda sorry for the crane guys. These days, ya don’t turn down work.

    Comment by madashell — 1:50 pm December 10, 2009 #

  43. I love this story! My little dude will be so thrilled. We definiitely need to have a party for the pole.

    great work!!!!!!!

    Comment by ln8r — 2:01 pm December 10, 2009 #

  44. It looks from the photo as if either the paint was in really, really bad shape, or someone had started sanding it all off. There’s hardly any paint on it.

    Comment by cathyw — 2:07 pm December 10, 2009 #

  45. Great news! I was hooked on this story, too.

    Now they need to post a good photo of the mystery totem – maybe someone will recognize it.

    Comment by LatteRose — 2:17 pm December 10, 2009 #

  46. I’m thrilled, relieved and grateful that totem pole has been located, and still in one piece!

    Also: no charges filed YET? The Hell??!

    And Harpy that was so beautifully written I have to copy and paste it and can only say, hear hear:

    “While a more recent part of West Seattle’s history, the Rotary Viewpoint totem pole for some is an iconic symbol of our vast neighborhood and a reminder of the spirit of selflessness and community. (That the local Rotarians had a large hand in recovering the stolen pole is no coincidence.) The concern shown and eventual recovery of this public artpiece is a testament to the fact that, no matter how bohemian or hipster or “other” this “urban suburb” gets, we have roots that still run deep; we are ever vigilant and proud of the little ol’ Westside and the symbols that mark its centuries-old continuity.”

    Comment by Mookie — 2:18 pm December 10, 2009 #

  47. Excellent. I’m so glad to hear it has been found and isn’t damaged. I grew up in West Seattle, and I remember when that totem pole went up. It’s truly an icon of the Westside.

    I hope the crane company has learned to check things out before taking an “unusual” job. Sheesh. As for the thief… I hope they really nail him. He’s obviously been at this a while.

    Comment by Pony — 2:29 pm December 10, 2009 #

  48. Looks to me as though the paint has been hand stripped to make it look more like an authentic native totem.

    This guy is a professional thief and scoundrel.

    We really need more “public humiliation” sentencing options in our criminal justice system.

    Stockades should be setup next to the totem site.

    Comment by I. Ponder — 2:34 pm December 10, 2009 #

  49. Hooray for alert readers and amateur sleuthing! Can’t wait until it’s back where it belongs.

    Comment by Mary T — 2:40 pm December 10, 2009 #

  50. FYI re: charges – I just checked with the Prosecuting Attorney’s Office – no, the case has not yet been referred. But we will check daily and let you know when charges are filed – TR

    Comment by WSB — 2:57 pm December 10, 2009 #

  51. Is the “suspect” in jail or eating lunch at the Bakery?

    Comment by I. Ponder — 3:14 pm December 10, 2009 #

  52. What’s next……The Space Needle? LOL

    Comment by Arbor Hgts Resident — 3:57 pm December 10, 2009 #

  53. Great news that the totem pole was recovered! One thing that’s still troubling about this story is the idea that the SPD came along during the theft in progress and directed traffic while the stuck crane got towed out and then made its getaway.
    .
    Were you able to find out if that actually happened, or was that just some erroneous reporting by a commenter?

    Comment by Odoodem — 4:02 pm December 10, 2009 #

  54. Why, exactly, does someone steal a totem pole? Just wondering.

    Comment by sarelly — 4:17 pm December 10, 2009 #

  55. Wow, and it made it all the way to Oregon?? That’s rediculous!

    Now what about the other totem pole? It had to come from somewhere!?! How can we solve that aspect of this puzzle? It would be rad to get that one back where it belongs as well.

    Comment by Westside J. — 4:26 pm December 10, 2009 #

  56. My husband made a good point. If this person is so well off financially why wouldn’t he just buy one or have one made?

    Comment by vumamma — 4:54 pm December 10, 2009 #

  57. Aaron’s comment FTW! And a big thanks to the “heroes of hyperlocal” WSB. I love this site so much. Need an intern?

    Comment by Lindsey — 5:42 pm December 10, 2009 #

  58. Just have one made or buy one??? Nice idea. But….
    Authentic Native art fetches a HUGE price down south. The Navaho are having a very hard time with grave robbers. We have been fighting this for generations. If someone didn’t know that the pole was a public piece, it could be given a new “story” and sold in New Mexico or Arizona to a private collection through a gallery that couldn’t care less about ethics. I am very grateful that this pole is going to come home.

    Comment by Been here a long time — 5:45 pm December 10, 2009 #

  59. We have lots of room for paid help, actually – editor@westseattleblog.com – or also volunteer help on small but vital tasks sometimes :) like Sue Scharff, who checked restaurants to see who’s going to be open Thanksgiving … that was a lifesaver … there is so much info to gather and share and sometimes there just aren’t enough hours in a day … TR

    Comment by WSB — 5:48 pm December 10, 2009 #

  60. I am so very curious to find out the reason why, as well as how he had the nerve to pull this off right there in front of everyone driving up and down 35th and Alaska! And….can’t wait to hear what the crane company was told and/or how they bought the story hook, line and sinker!

    Comment by LAP — 6:11 pm December 10, 2009 #

  61. here is Mr. Espinozas web site
    http://www.carlosespinozaart.com
    ..
    .
    (editor’s note – this is in reference to LMA’s earlier comment:
    http://westseattleblog.com/blog/?p=24096#comment-716252 )

    Comment by LMA — 6:52 pm December 10, 2009 #

  62. “And….can’t wait to hear what the crane company was told and/or how they bought the story hook, line and sinker!”
    $$$$

    Comment by austin — 8:13 pm December 10, 2009 #

  63. My $.02 is that this is an “art” market theft. 150 year old Saguaro Cactus 45ft tall are stolen out of the desert parks for people with taste for the authentic. This totem pole was much easier to steal, with traffic control assist no less. Yes scooby snacks to all for the recovery.

    Comment by Bettytheyeti — 8:59 pm December 10, 2009 #

  64. Good news !
    Just wondering…who’s going to repair the damaged lawn? Looks pretty messy there.
    Thanks for all the good work to all involved!

    Comment by M. — 9:00 pm December 10, 2009 #

  65. Great news! I drive 35th everyday and the park looks, well, just plain naked. Can’t wait until it’s back up.

    I do have to ask, what nut rents a crane, backs it up on a busy thoroughfare in a downtown district, and steals a TOTAM POLE!?! The man needs serious therapy.

    Comment by epl — 9:20 pm December 10, 2009 #

  66. What an idea for a name for a band: The Sleuthing Rotarians – someone ought to honor them that way!

    Comment by MMB — 10:48 pm December 10, 2009 #

  67. hooray, for locating our totem pole! i think this guy isn’t into authentic poles to sell to artsy collectors. he’s into some twisted charlie brown christmas tree idea. i suppose you can say at least the crane company got paid for their work. it’s almost midnight. did that make any sense???

    Comment by LyndaB — 11:39 pm December 10, 2009 #

  68. The reason I think market for collectors is the presence of the other totem pole. And the missing painting from Tillicum Village. The WS pole was sanded for disguise or to add some distress aging. And the simplest motive is the profit motive. The WSB even mentioned 2 other missing pole in B.C. and Bellevue. That sounds like a market to me. The rotarians guessed a replacement would cost $75,000. That could keep someone in scratch tickets. I do believe there is a connection.

    Comment by Bettytheyeti — 11:35 am December 11, 2009 #

  69. Just to be clear – there was one missing pole, east side of Vancouver, returned fairly quickly. There was no *Seattle* eastside pole theft.

    Comment by WSB — 11:43 am December 11, 2009 #

  70. I hope this incident will raise some awareness of the need for routine conservation efforts, not just when something has gone missing.

    Comment by tina — 11:46 am December 11, 2009 #

  71. Would it be preposteous to propose an auction of local artist interpretaions of the park/pole as a fundraiser for the Rotary clubs efforts

    Comment by sophista-tiki — 2:05 pm December 11, 2009 #

  72. Great job, Guys! We must always protect our Indian Heritage.

    Comment by Sherrie — 3:57 pm December 11, 2009 #

  73. I would like to say thank you for all the effort put into finding the totem pole. My father Robin Young is the one that carved it. There is such pride and heart that goes into the craftmanship and our family is very thankful.

    Comment by Tracy Zimmerman — 6:46 pm December 11, 2009 #

  74. You all should be ashamed of yourselves to judge so quickly. There is a possibility that if you exercised patients that the Totem Pole would have been returned fully restored.

    My thoughts: Yes he is well off, so this was not taken for financial gain. He is a long time resident of West Seattle and refurbishing the totem pole was his way of giving back to the community.

    I think we should be thanking him and any donations be given to him for his efforts to give back to the community.

    Regards and Happy Holidays!

    Comment by Anthony — 9:26 pm December 11, 2009 #

  75. Anthony, assuming you really do know the suspected thief, please let him know he is perfectly welcome to tell his side of the story; we’d be interested in interviewing him or publishing a statement, as long as we could verify it really was from him. Does he contend he had authorization/permission for this planned “giving back to the community,” or did he just think nobody would notice if he took it for a while?

    Comment by WSB — 9:38 pm December 11, 2009 #

  76. Anthony, I find what you say hard to believe. If he is truly a “benefactor”, why didn’t he go through proper channels? We can’t all do whatever the hell we feel like, whenever we feel like. And then…he lied when they came to ask him about it…now what does that tell you? Nothing altruistic, I’m betting. We’re all waiting with bated breath to hear this guy’s side of the story, if there’s a plausible one. Many of us doubt it.

    Comment by JanS — 9:45 pm December 11, 2009 #

  77. Just because the guy has some money does not necessrily equal upstanding citizen.
    Doing something like restoration on public art requires paperwork, You dont just haul it off to Oregon without permission. I think Anthony is just trying to stir things up with his comments.

    Comment by sophista-tiki — 10:59 pm December 11, 2009 #

  78. Oh Pollyanthony, what an amusing little story; Dr. Seuss comes to life!
    I think another possibility is that this wealthy, long-time W.S. resident has a side business stealing and selling art, and doesn’t give a damn about the community he lives in beyond how it can enrich him.

    Comment by dawsonct — 2:47 am December 12, 2009 #

  79. Anthony, how did this guy become so “well-off”?

    .

    Bernie Madoff was “well-off”.

    .

    Mike

    Comment by miws — 7:56 am December 12, 2009 #

  80. @Anthony: Perhaps A.I.G. and Citibank and the BofA execs have a position for you in their p.r. department. I for one would like to see the person who “stole” the totem pole continue with the “giving back.” So this was a 2 for 1 restoration package? That post is just priceless. @WSB thank you for the correction. I wonder why the Eastside totem was taken in the first place then returned?

    Comment by Bettytheyeti — 10:09 am December 12, 2009 #

  81. Can’t find any followups since the original article. But they were even caught on surveillance video – and this pole was less than half as tall as “ours.” This is the Vancouver story about its return (short story tho) that I linked in one of the earlier threads.
    http://www.ctvbc.ctv.ca/servlet/an/local/CTVNews/20091207/bc_totem_returned_091207/20091207/?hub=BritishColumbiaHome

    Comment by WSB — 10:23 am December 12, 2009 #

  82. I can’t tell if Anthony is for real or if he’s just messing with us. Either way, I can’t wait to see where this story goes. I hope you’re writing a book Tracy!!

    Comment by WSMom — 11:18 am December 12, 2009 #

  83. Oh, and by the way Anthony, I am not in the least bit ashamed of myself of the people on WSB for drawing reasonable conclusions based upon this man’s actions.

    Comment by WSMom — 11:22 am December 12, 2009 #

  84. Anthony,you’re the one who should be ashamed.You know you can’t just take something that doesn’t belong to you,even if we believed there was “altruism”behind it.That’s like stealing someone’s truck and saying you just wanted to give it a tune up.

    Comment by Guy — 11:10 pm December 16, 2009 #

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