Archive for the Crime Category

The Viretta Park Repair Shut Down by City of Seattle

Posted in Blogging, Check It Out, Crime, Environment with tags , , on March 13, 2011 by taraden

Press Release: The Viretta Park Repair Project shut down by The City of Seattle, The Seattle Parks Department, The Green Seattle Partnership (GSP), and the neighbors of Viretta Park
 
The Viretta Park Repair Project (VPR) looks to restore and ecologically repair Seattle’s Viretta Park.  The project also looks at collecting ideas to create a small memorial for Nirvana singer/songwriter, Kurt Cobain.
 
Initially the project was given a green light by the city of Seattle, Seattle Parks Department and the Green Seattle Partnership to remove the invasive species that were taking over areas of the park and to gather ideas on what volunteer’s and neighbors would like to see happen at Viretta Park.
 
We held our first work party on February 20th, 2011 and had various local media outlets attend to cover the event.  Fifteen volunteers, including families and children were present that day and all together the volunteers logged a total of 41.5 unpaid hours.  We got an amazing amount of work done that day.  We stuck exactly to the guidelines that the city and GSP had laid out and the only work done that day was the removal of approved invasive species such as clematis, blackberry and ivy.  The Parks Department and GSP were willing volunteers of the work party as they provided all of the tools and provided clean up for the project.
 
Currently the Seattle Parks Department is experiencing massive budget cuts and conducting massive employee layoffs.  So why has a volunteer project such as this one been shut down? In the 4 hours that volunteers were present at Viretta Park on February 20, 2011 we logged in as many hours as one park employee would work in a full week!  Why is the Seattle Parks Department turning away volunteer work at a time when they are faced with such significant cutbacks?
 
Although neighbours who live in the area of Viretta park seem to be quite protective of this park, not one neighbor came to help with the invasive species clean up effort on February 20th, although signs were posted in the park 5 days prior to the event.  The VPR has always stated that we encourage neighborhood involvement and we looked forward to collaborating with neighbors on what type of ecological restoration they would like to see done.  We never even had the opportunity to meet with the parks department and neighbors to share ideas and discuss what everyone would like to see happen at Viretta Park before this project was shut down.
 
One or more neighbors has strongly voiced that they are opposed to the project and went as far as to send the VPR a threatening email.  We feel the only reason why this project has become such an issue is because the project and park are associated with Kurt Cobain.  The neighbors have been actively voicing their opinions on how they “disliked” Kurt and on the “type” of people who visit the park to honor him.  Stereotyping all fans who visit the park as “riff raff” or “druggies” is simply not morally or ethically correct.  I have visited Viretta Park many times.  I do not use illegal drugs nor do i think that I should be classed as “riff raff”.
 
This project has never been solely about Kurt Cobain.  It is about coming together as equal human beings to make a park a better place for ALL who use it.  Yes, fans of Kurt Cobain visit the park.  They will continue to do so regardless if this project is shut down or not.  The neighbors are not going to make them “go away” and stop them from coming to the park.  Viretta Park is a PUBLIC park.  Not PRIVATE property.
 
We have also heard a rumor that a neighbor in the Viretta Park neighborhood has contacted the city of Seattle claiming that a statue was erected in the park and that illegal work parties were being held.  Neither is true.  If you go to Viretta Park, there is no statue.  In fact, a statue wasn’t even something that the VPR would have even considered as a memorial as we do not feel that would be a good “fit” for the park.  We also have only performed one work party, which we had city and parks approval.  We do not know exactly what was said to the city regarding the “ghost statue” and “illegal work” but we will file a motion with the city through the public disclosure process.
 
A “city employee” was involved in the initial organization of the project.  He has interests in permaculture and was involved mainly because of the repair and restoration component of the project.  This employee was told by the parks department that he should take the necessary training and after he did so, was told by the parks department that he could start volunteering his personal time in the park, removing invasives.  Now he has been asked to resign from the project and has been told not to volunteer his time cleaning up at Viretta Park. Are city employee’s not allowed to volunteer during their own personal time?  This “city employee’s” job is now in danger due to the fact that he was interested in making Viretta Park a better place for everyone and collect ideas from ALL involved.  This includes the City of Seattle, The Seattle Parks Department, The Green Seattle Partnership, neighbors of Viretta Park AND the Nirvana/Kurt Cobain fans who frequent the park.  And HERE is where we find the problem and the controversy lies.
 
Is it the fact that this employee was not only trying to work with the City of Seattle, parks, GSP, neighbors  but ALSO with Nirvana/Kurt Cobain supporters that we are having the shut down issue?  The same people who the neighbors have stereotyped as “riff raff” in their exclusive Seattle neighborhood?  The fact that this project is at all associated with Kurt Cobain IS the reason why neighbors and the parks department have had this project shut down. 
 
The park is ALREADY associated with Kurt Cobain and has been since April 8th, 1994 and it will continue to be associated with him for years to come.  Kurt Cobain had a massive impact on the local Seattle music scene as well as the worldwide music scene and was a talented musician.  He is still greatly loved and respected all around the world.
 
We are not going to give up and just walk away from this project.  The VPR is considering holding a “group event” touring local Kurt Cobain sites on April 5th, 2011 in lieu of the now cancelled work party that we were to hold on that date.  We are wanting to connect with other supporters of this project.  People interested should visit our wiki page or our facebook page for updates on this group event.

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The Kurt Cobain Murder

Posted in Blogging, Court System, Crime, Kurt Cobain, Life, Nirvana, Observations, Politics, Ramblings, Random Thoughts, World, Youth on March 26, 2010 by taraden

With the 16th anniversary of the death of Kurt Cobain coming up on April 5th I thought I would write a post on the subject…..

Having been a fan of Nirvana since the early 90’s, the question of Kurt Cobain’s death, whether you believe suicide or murder, has always been something that I have thought about over the years. I had always thought that he had never just committed suicide, that something more had happened. I also did not necessarily just assume that Courtney Love had killed him… but I had always thought that she had something to do with his death.

In September 2009 I went to Seattle, Washington with my sister.  we went to a Pearl Jam concert just outside of Portland, Oregon and then headed to Seattle the following day to walk around the city and see the “sights”.   We also traveled to the area of Madrona, Seattle to try to find Viretta Park. Viretta park is located right beside Kurt Cobain’s former house, where his death took place. It also acts an “unofficial” memorial to Kurt with the park benches decorated with notes from fans who leave flowers and other mementos behind.  There are reports that Kurt used to frequent the park and there is a report from one of Kurt’s neighbours that she saw Kurt in the park, sitting on the park bench on the morning of April 3rd, just hours or days before his death (depending on when you believe Kurt actually died). We never did end up finding Viretta Park during that Sept 09′ trip, as the area is a little confusing and without actually researching the area and getting directions, it was difficult to find.  In march of 2010 I had a trip to Seattle already planned.  I was heading there for a Matthew Good concert and figured I would do some online research of Viretta Park and surrounding the area and planned on finding the park and Kurt’s house.  I printed off maps & directions and was looking forward to paying Kurt a visit. I also did a lot of research on his death. I came across investigator Tom Grant’s website cobaincase.com Tom Grant is a private investigator who Courtney Love hired in the last few days of Kurt’s life to track down her supposed ” heroin junkie husband who was on a suicidal rampage and who had just bought a gun”.

Anyone wondering what happened to Kurt Cobain, Nirvana fans, people interested in crimes that have not been properly investigated by police or just anyone who wants to hear the truth about events that took place in the last few months of Kurt’s life should visit Tom Grant’s site and read the facts that he has uncovered.

Traveling to Seattle after reading the details of Tom Grant’s investigation, visiting Viretta Park and the house at 171 lake Washington Blvd east really put things into perspective for me.  As I drove through the outskirts of Seattle towards the area of Madrona, I tried to imagine what the park would be like.  I had wondered for days.  Was it heavily wooded?  Would I run into anyone there?  Would I be freaked out going there?  As I followed my directions I eventually ended up at 39th Ave East and East John Street, the entrance to Viretta Park, I was about to find out.  I parked my car at the side of the road and started to walk towards the park entrance.  As you enter the park (at the upper portion) it appears as if you are about to trespass onto some wealthy persons front lawn.  The Starbucks chairman Howard Schultz used to live at the house at the top of Viretta Park.   Off to the left of the Schultz driveway is a staircase, a very steep staircase, that heads down into the lower portion of Viretta Park.  As you travel down the steep staircase and look off to your left, there is Kurt’s former house and the area in which the greenhouse used to stand, where Kurt’s body was found on the morning of April 8th, 1994.  Courtney Love had the greenhouse torn down after Kurt’s death.  Once at the bottom of the stairs, the park opens up a bit and there, to the left, is Kurt’s bench.  While I was at the park there was also another Nirvana fan there, writing a message to Kurt on the bench and leaving some flowers and a drawing for him.  I spoke to him briefly, he was from Japan.  He had me take a few photos of him and Kurt’s bench with his camera and asked if he could take a picture of me, so that he could remember another fan who he met there.  It was nice to meet another Nirvana fan there.

At first, walking up to the bench, seeing all the messages left for Kurt on the bench, having read all the details on http://www.cobaincase.com on the events that took place within the last few months of Kurt’s life… it all just kind of hit me.  It was really sad.  I felt sad and felt that this was so unfair, for Kurt.  I shed a few tears while at the park and really wanted to find out more about what to do to try to get this case reopened.

A month before Kurt Cobain died, he suffered from an overdose in Rome.  After reading the facts that Tom Grant provides at cobaincase.com, there is no doubt in my mind that Kurt’s “Rome Incident” was 100% a murder attempt on him by Courtney Love and Michael “Cali” DeWitt, Courtney’s long time friend and live in nanny.  Courtney Love has planted so many stories in the press, has put Kurt in such a negative light, during his life and after his death, making his drug usage out to be more than what it actually was.  She was the junkie in the relationship.  She was the one who was telling the press that Kurt was a junkie and trying to drag his name through the mud, attempting to make him seem like a suicidal junkie.  There are many reports of people who knew Kurt and other musicians who toured with Nirvana that said that in the last year of his life Kurt was clean and was happy.  He planned on leaving Courtney love, who was cheating on him with Billy Corgan from the Smashing Pumpkins.  Kurt was having a lawyer draw up a new will, excluding Courtney form it and was planning on leaving the music business.  Courtney Love had motive to have Kurt killed.   It’s like she had his death planned for months.

Something needs to be done to reopen this case.  The Seattle Police Department started investigating Kurt’s death as a suicide right from the start, because that is what it “appeared” to be.  Courtney Love was friends with one of the detective’s assigned to the case, along with the medical examiner.  The police basically took whatever Courtney had to say about Kurt’s death and believed every word without giving his death a proper investigation.  Just because something looks a certain way, doesn’t mean it necessarily is that way.   Courtney Love planted a false missing person’s report on Kurt, claiming to be Kurt’s mother and claiming that Kurt was on heroin, had a gun and was suicidal.  It was Courtney that planted the idea that Kurt was suicidal in the minds of the police.  She then hired private investigator Tom Grant to help “find her missing suicidal husband” but then did everything in her power to prevent Mr. Grant from actually finding out where Kurt was.

There have been a few websites that have been created to spread the word on what actually happened in March and April of 1994 and to try to get this case reopened.  I really wish I would have researched Kurt’s death a long time ago.  A lot of information has been lost, websites shut down, articles that are hard to find.  But there are still a few sites out there with a ton of information from people who are dedicated to bringing some justice to Kurt Cobain.

To find out more information on the circumstances surrounding Kurt’s death, you can visit the following sites……..

Private Investigators Tom Grant’s site  cobaincase.com

Justice For Kurt site  www.justiceforkurt.com

The Death of Kurt Cobain

Frances Barnett’s      In Defence of Kurt Cobain this is one of the websites that has since shut down but a lot of information from the site was archived at  “The Death of Kurt Cobain” website

You may think “who Cares”.  This death happened 16 years ago…. get over it.  BUT Kurt’s death was not properly investigated.  There is so much information and facts that investigator Tom Grant has uncovered that shows that Kurt’s death was something more than just a suicide.  Everyone deserves justice.   If something like this happened to you or one of your family member or friends, I am sure you would want the police department to do a proper investigation and to rule out all possibilities before making a ruling.  The Seattle Police Department DID NOT do this in Kurt’s case.  At the very least this case needs to be reopened and Kurt’s death declared as “Undetermined”.

So what can we do?  Well that might just be the hard part.  We have a police department who has dealt with this very high profile death, who made assumptions on what had taken place and now probably doesn’t want to admit they were wrong.  The best thing we can do is to write to the Interim Chief John Diaz at the Seattle Police Department and ask for them to reopen this case.  Please send letters to….

Chief John Diaz

Seattle Police Department

PO Box 34986
Seattle, WA 98124-4986

AND

You can also bring awareness to this case by reviewing the facts and information on Tom Grant’s website www.cobaincase.com and telling friends, family, co-workers or anyone about the events of this case and how badly this case was investigated.  Hopefully one day Kurt will finally receive the justice that he deserves.

This April 5th (the date that the coroner placed Kurt’s death) I am heading to Viretta Park to pay a visit to Kurt.  I know that in the past years fans have gone to the park on April 5th for a memorial for Kurt.  I have searched the internet,trying to find information on any type of meeting happening this year but can’t find any information on anything.

SO… if you have any info on a time that people will be  meeting up..please leave a comment and let me know.  I am heading to the park on April 5th regardless if anyone else is planning on attending… so I will be there… somewhere in the neighbourhood of 2pm.  If your in Seattle and a fan of Kurt and would like to stop by Viretta Park on April 5th for a memorial to Kurt…. I would love to meet up with you  🙂

All Work and No pay…..

Posted in Blogging, ChildCare, Crime, Home, Life, Observations, Personal, Ramblings, Random Thoughts, Rants, Work on November 20, 2009 by taraden

I have, for the past 2 and 1/2 years ran a childcare out of my home.  My common law husband and I had our son in Feb of 2007 and as of Jan 2008 I have operated a childcare as my own business and as my primary source of income.

At first I ran a Registered License Not Required Childcare and everything worked out great. When my son was at the age of  3 months, he and I joined a “mommy and me” group and I quickly found clients to fill my future business venture.  These were not only clients but friends.  We came to know one another and see each other outside of the childcare setting.  I could trust them.

Then my husband and I decided to purchase a home together and everything changed.  I, having lived in Port Coquitlam for 5+ more consecutive years, moved to the city of Abbotsford, where I knew no one and away from all my childcare clients.  Starting my childcare business was a challenge but I went about it the right way, the legit way.  I became a fully licensed family child care with the Fraser Health Authority in the beginning of June 2009 and I can honestly say that things have gone downhill from there.

I have spent the time to jump though the ministry`s hoops, had the proper training, first aid, criminal record checks, home safety inspection and fire inspections.  I provide a safe, fun environment for children and feel like I deserve to get paid for the work that I do.  I have had nothing but problems with families paying their childcare bill.

I currently have 6 children enrolled in my childcare.  Not all children come every day.. I have a few that come on a part time basis, but those families are the ones that seem to have their shit together.  I have one mother, single mother, I might add, who brings her son 2 days per week.  She is a student at the local university and I receive childcare subsidy payments for her son to attend my childcare.   I must say that this single mother has her shit together more than any other family that I deal with on subsidy.  She does not receive full payment for her son`s childcare but every month she pays her portion, on time, every time.  Right now, as I speak I am owed over $1000.00 in childcare payments from other families that I deal with that can not seem to get their shit together.

To you, this may seem like a bunch of bitching and moaning but a month before Christmas and the fact that some days I am working 10 hour days, it is nothing more than serious.  I have been watching peoples children on a daily basis, changing their children`s diapers, wiping their noses, making sure that they are fed, dry, happy, safe and am owed money for doing so.  Parents need to realize that childcare providers are the ones that are there caring for their children when they are not and they need to be paying their childcare bills.  When you sign a contract…… read the terms of that contract… if you do not want to pay…..realize that in the future there could possibly be a consequence for your decision.  I will take you to court and fight for what is mine.  I do not watch peoples children for free while they go and line their bank accounts and how dare they think that I would.  PERIOD!

Crackdown on Crime?

Posted in Court System, Crime, Funny Stuff, Glitches, Health, Home, Life, Me, My Travels, Observations, Personal, Politics, Ramblings, Random Thoughts, Rants, World, Youth on July 25, 2008 by taraden

Today I received a ‘leaflet’ in the mail from my local MP, James Moore regarding which political party is on the right track when it comes to crime in this country. The main point of the leaflet is “Age Is No Excuse.” That just because an offender of a crime is a youth, they should be treated no less than an adult (depending on the severity of the crime… of course.) The point of this leaflet was to choose a political party member who you thought was “on the right track” at combating crime. I was seriously baffled at the notion of having to decide which political party leader was ‘on the right track’….. but here were the options…..

  • Stephane Dion
  • Stephen Harper
  • Jack Layton
  • Elizabeth May

I personally wondered where the “NONE OF THE ABOVE” check box was and quickly realized that there was not one and decided to write Mr. James Moore a letter, letting him in on my view of the Criminal Justice System in this country. The following was sent to his office….

July 25, 2008

Re: “Above the Law” leaflet

To James Moore, MP

Your office recently mailed out a leaflet entitled “Above the Law” asking the citizens of Port Moody, Westwood and Port Coquitlam a question regarding the Criminal Justice System in this country. Your leaflet asked “Who do you think is on the right track on crime?” Well, Mr. Moore, my answer would have to be none of the above. The criminal Justice System in this country is a complete joke. Not only for the light sentences of youth AND adult offenders but for failing the victims of crime as well.

First of all we have our Attorney General, Wally Oppal who seems to come up with excuse after excuse regarding the way that criminals in this country are sentenced. I have contacted him on several occasions regarding the dragging death of Grant De Patie and the reduced sentence of youth offender Darnel Pratt. Now we find out that Mr. Pratt seems to be in some more trouble after assaulting another inmate while incarcerated. The reduction of his sentence now in hind sight seems rather wrong, don’t you think?

I also contacted Mr. Oppal in regards to the Oak Bay murder / suicide involving Mr. Peter Lee. Mr. Lee had assaulted his wife prior to the murders and was arrested for causing bodily harm and aggravated assault. Police made recommendations to the court that he remain in custody. Instead Mr. Lee was released on bail with numerous court orders not to contact his wife, enter the home, or posses any weapons. But did that protect Ms. Park and her family? No. Now every politician, judge and police officer in this country should carry that family’s blood on their hands for not ensuring their safety and for not making the laws around sentencing these offenders more strict.

And lastly ( I could go on, but I will not take up any more of your time) I would like to mention Mayor Scott Young. I am a resident of Port Coquitlam. I grew up in this town and have lived here for the majority of my life. I am also a victim of domestic violence and assault. I do not appreciate the fact that the Mayor of my hometown has been charged and convicted of assault and continues to remain Mayor of this city. I do not appreciate his pompous attitude regarding the matter either. That right there shows you just how screwed up this system is.

I was beaten by my now ex-boyfriend. He gave me two black eyes, choked me, held me against my will for over an hour while confining me and threatening to kill me. After fleeing the scene he was found by police, appeared before a judge and was released on bail with numerous court orders not to contact myself or my family. While awaiting trial he breached those conditions on numerous occasions to the point where I had to have my phone number changed. Each time he breached those conditions I called the RCMP officer in charge of my file to inform him of what was going on and every time I would have to leave a voicemail because he was never available to speak to me in person. By the time the date of the trial came my ex decided to play it safe and accept a plea bargain. He pled guilty and in return the crown sentenced him to a few days in jail. At that time my ex had an extremely lengthy criminal record. He is a career criminal. His mother has informed me that to this day he is still in and out of jail on a regular basis. And you want to know why this is? Because every single time he commits a crime in this country all he gets is a slap on the wrist, released on bail, court conditions that he can breach because he knows he can get away with it, and a minor sentence EVERY SINGLE TIME. And now I have a Mayor that is convicted of assault and I am expected to take him seriously? Please!

There is a lot that needs to be done about the Criminal Justice System in this country Mr. Moore regardless of the offenders age and I believe those changes can not come soon enough. All the offenders mentioned above, regardless if they are a youth offender or an adult seem to think that they are “Above the Law.” As for if any of the candidates mentioned on your leaflet are on the right track against crime in this country? I guess only time will tell.

I thank you for your time.

Thats my take on the system…….

ICBC SUCKS

Posted in Court System, Crime, Glitches, ICBC Sucks Ass, Life, Rants, World on June 18, 2008 by taraden

Back in 2005 I was involved in a very MINOR accident. It was mainly my fault and I was prepared to accept the fact, that I would be responsible for fixing the other driver’s vehicle and that would probably be it.

Now, three years later ICBC has settled an injury claim with the other driver for a mere $56,000.00. Car damages amounted to just under $2000.00 on a 2005 Mazda 3. I was driving my dad’s car at the time of the accident, so they have found that we were in breech of his insurance coverage and now ICBC is coming after me for the grand total of $58,000.00.

Not only did ICBC not want to investigate this accident and the so called “injury claims” of the other driver, they decided to settle out of court, and without ever really caring to hear my side of how the accident happened. I suppose that is because of the fact that they were going to pin the whole 58 grand on me.

Now…. I have been in talks with ICBC to arrange some sort of payment plan… as I can clearly not afford to pay them $58,000 all in one lump sum. As a matter of fact, it is going to take me a VERY LONG TIME to be able to pay off $58,000. I was sent an “Income and Assets” form through their “Claim Recovery Department” and was told to fill out all of my monthly income and expenses and send it back to them. Which I did and it clearly showed that I am not able to make huge payments on this amount. In fact, the amount I am able to pay is quite small without having to become homeless or have my children starve. They reviewed the information I sent them and have come to the conclusion that I can make small payments on the $58,000 balance I owe them…. BUT… they will not be able to allow me to insure any vehicle or renew my driver’s license once it has expired because the amount that I owe is so great and the payment that I am able to make is so small. So…. basically ICBC is now penalizing me because I can’t afford to pay an amount which pleases them on a trumped up, over-blown injury claim that THEY decided to award this other driver…. without the opinion of a judge or jury. Am I the only one that thinks that this is not fair? There are drivers that are convicted of vehicular manslaughter who receive driving bans of 2 years, 5 years. There are people who have been caught driving drunk (Gordon Campbell would be a PRIME example) still able to drive on a daily basis. And then there is ME. I make a total of $1600 a month. Out of which I have to pay rent, bills, help to cloth and feed two children and also take care of myself. Now, I am going to be penalized for the rest of my life because of the simple fact that I do not make enough money to afford to pay more of a monthly payment.

ICBC SUCKS!!!!!

I Don’t Find That Funny……

Posted in Crime, Life, Observations, Random Thoughts, Rants on May 28, 2008 by taraden

A young Vancouver couple placed an ad on Craigslist, trying to sell their 7 day old baby for $10,000. A woman living in Maple Ridge saw the ad and phoned police to give them the cell phone number that was placed in the ad. When police finally showed up at the apartment the couple claimed that they had place the ad as “a hoax”.

I don’t find placing an ad on Craiglist to sell your young baby for $10,000 very funny…. do you? Luckily the child has now been taken away from the couple. Imagine growing up to find out that your parent once posted an ad on an online garage sale type website trying to sell your ass.

The police also mentioned that the parents are known to have addiction problems. Making the whole story of it being “just a hoax” even more unbelievable.

A Dumpsterless Vancouver?

Posted in Crime, Environment, Health, Home, Life, Observations, Politics, Ramblings, Random Thoughts, Rants, World on November 30, 2007 by taraden

There has been talk in Vancouver lately about removing the dumpsters that line the city’s alleyway’s in an attempt to beautify and clean up the city. Local businesses are on board with the idea claiming it would create a crime free environment. The Downtown Vancouver Business Improvement Association found that the majority of dumpsters in Vancouver were vandalized, filthy and filled with needles.

Hmmm… lets think about that for a moment. Don’t you think the City of Vancouver has far more pressing issues to be dealing with right now than the removal of dumpsters from the alleyway’s? How about the situation of the Downtown Eastside and the people who inhabit that area on a daily basis? What will happen to them? Where does the DVBIA think all these needles will end up? Will they just disappear? I think not. Take a browse at Matthew Good’s view of the area… a area in which he lives. People suffering from mental illnesses, unable to “legally” treat their illness and forced out on the street to fend for themselves. What will happen to the people who rely on these dumpsters to earn a living and find a meal. As “gross” as that may sound to some… that is reality. I am sure that Mr Sam Sullivan has more important things to be thinking about… and if you ask him…. he would probably end up saying…. ummm “The Olympics”?