Jan. 6: A Thurston County judge sentences Peter James Inouye to life in prison for sneaking into an 11-year-old girl’s Olympia home in February 2007 and raping her at knifepoint.
Jan. 8: A judge sentences Vincent Farler to six years and three months in prison for operating a boat while under the influence of alcohol during a Nisqually River accident that killed a man and two Yelm-area children. No one on the boat was wearing a life jacket.
Jan. 13: Taylor Shellfish Farms agrees to pay nearly $630,000 in back rent to the state Department of Natural Resources, settling a long-running dispute about oysters and geoducks it harvested without a permit on state tidelands.
Jan. 30: Tumwater City Councilwoman Karen Valenzuela is appointed by Gov. Chris Gregoire to the Thurston County commission.
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March 12: The Lacey City Council votes to allow churches to house tent cities for the homeless outdoors.
March 23: Transient Tommy Lee Crow Jr. is sentenced to 55 years in prison for beating, then burning David Miller and Norman Peterson in their tent at an Olympia campsite nearly a year earlier.
March 27: The Bread & Roses Advocacy Center closes. The center, at 1009 Fourth Ave. E., helped homeless people find housing and social services, and obtain services such preparing résumés. It was forced to close after it didn’t renew a large part of its annual funding – a federal grant that typically was about $40,000 a year, former board President Rob Richards said.
May 29: Timberland Regional Library’s board of trustees votes unanimously to levy fines for overdue library materials for the first time in the organization’s 40-year history. The fine system took effect Oct. 1.
June 11: The Evergreen State College’s board of trustees approves a tuition increase of 14 percent for 2009-10 and an additional 14 percent increase for 2010-11.
Aug. 14: Accounting data show that the Port of Olympia generated a nearly $440,000 operating profit through the first half of 2009, a huge turnaround after it reported a net loss of about $475,000 in the first half of 2008.
Aug. 21: Hundreds of shoppers line up as grocery store Trader Joe’s opens on Olympia’s west side.
Sept. 30: The Skokomish Tribe’s Lucky Dog Casino in Mason County closes for the winter because of the recession, with no reopening date scheduled.
Oct. 22: Robert Ottoboni of Olympia is sentenced to four years in prison after he crashed his car into another vehicle while racing to the veterinarian’s office to obtain care for his dog. A 4-year-old boy in the other vehicle suffered disfiguring facial injuries, and Ottoboni acknowledged drinking beer and smoking marijuana earlier in the day.
Oct. 26: Thurston County Sheriff Dan Kimball wins all of his motions, including payment of his legal bills, in his ongoing legal battle with the Thurston County Board of Commissioners. He had filed an appeal in Thurston County Superior Court in May, alleging that the commission exceeded its authority by ordering him to cut his command staff to reduce costs.
Nov. 3: Lacey voters oust Mayor Graeme Sackrison, Deputy Mayor John Darby and Councilwoman Ann Burgman; Olympia voters oust council members Jeff Kingsbury and Joan Machlis; and Tumwater Councilman and Mayor Pro Tem Pete Kmet defeats fellow Councilman Neil McClanahan in the race to be Tumwater’s next mayor.
Nov. 6: Thurston County Sheriff Dan Kimball and county commissioners settle their legal dispute over proposed budget cuts. The commissioners agree to rescind sections of two resolutions whose passage led to Kimball’s appeal to Thurston County Superior Court, and to pay $25,591.25 in taxpayer money to the private attorney retained by Kimball. In exchange, Kimball withdraws his appeal.
Nov. 16: A 40-year-old Olympia man is found shot to death on Capitol Way. The man, Shaun Allen Peterson, died of gunshot wounds to the neck and torso. Police later arrested shooting suspect Robert J. Maddaus; he is being held with bail set at $2 million and could face 40 to 50 years in prison if he’s convicted.
Nov. 19: Allan R. Simmons of Olympia is sentenced to life in prison under the state’s “three strikes” law for raping and assaulting a woman who offered him a ride home from downtown Olympia on April 12.
Dec. 9: U.S. Rep. Brian Baird, D-Vancouver, announces that he won’t seek a seventh term. He represents the 3rd District, which includes most of Thurston County.
Dec. 19: A Thurston County deputy fatally shoots John C. Vu, who allegedly shot and killed another man during a dispute over an iPod.