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Joint Base Lewis-McChord

Crime rises with more soldiers

With more soldiers stationed there than ever before, crime is on the rise at Joint Base Lewis-McChord.

The News Tribune of Tacoma reports that the base recorded new highs last year for misdemeanor crimes and for offenses involving driving under the influence of alcohol or drugs. Felonies and domestic violence were also up compared with the previous year, but they were down significantly compared with 2008.

The statistics reflect crimes committed on and off base.

Lewis-McChord has 34,000 active-duty soldiers — 15,000 more service members than were stationed there in 2003 — and the base’s top military police officer says the increase in crime can be attributed to the increase in population.


Woman robbed, husband injured

Seattle police are looking for two men suspected of robbing a woman at her home and pistol whipping her husband nearby early Sunday.

The woman told police that around 3:30 a.m., she heard a knock on the front door of her home, in the 5800 block of Renton Avenue South. Police said she peeked out a window, told one of the men to leave and then called her husband at work.

Several minutes later, police say, she observed two men huddled near her back door, one of whom pointed a handgun toward her. Just as she called 911, her husband arrived home.

She then saw one of the men chase her husband outside, and after a loud crash at the back door, the other man demanded money and drugs. Police say he fled after she gave him an undisclosed amount of cash.

Meanwhile, her husband was chased down and pistol-whipped near the corner of South Juneau Street and Renton Avenue South, police say. He was taken to Harborview Medical Center with facial lacerations.

Police described the husband as hostile and said he refused to provide any information.

Port Angeles

Eatery donates money on walls

Customers at a landmark burger joint called Fat Smitty’s on Washington’s Olympic Peninsula have wondered for years how much money was plastered to the eatery’s walls and ceiling.

The answer, it turns out, was a pretty penny.

The Peninsula Daily News reports that Carl “Fat Smitty” Schmidt enlisted Boy Scouts and Cub Scouts to take down the dough this weekend, including many dollar bills decorated by patrons who stuck them on the walls. The total: $10,316.

Schmidt says he’s giving all but $3,000 to a local Boy Scouts project. The rest will go to St. Jude’s Children’s Research Hospital in Memphis, Tenn. Schmidt’s connection to that hospital wasn’t immediately known.

The tradition of affixing money to the burger joint’s walls began years ago when a traveling salesman wrote his name on a single dollar bill and tacked it to the wall.

Times staff and news services