Picking up where we left off from Tuesday’s post:
Flickr – Creative Commons License
Montesano City Council Member Tyler Trimble isn’t that different from Star Trek’s Tribbles. The little critters aren’t “isolated incidents.” Neither is this fella.
Continuing the Trimble chronology from 2007, Trimble shows up in two separate investigations during the spring and summer 2013 time frame. One focused on inappropriate computer use by Public Works employees. The other had to do with paint.
In his June 10, 2013 cover letter regarding the investigation into inappropriate computer use, Brian Schumacher begins:
“About a month ago we were asked to examine some computers that had been in the possession of the City of Montesano’s Public Works Department (users and supervisors). There were two investigation occurring, one involving allegations of potential theft of city property and one involving supposed pornography on city computers.”
Schumacher is a former Montesano city councilman. His technology company is Iron Heights, located in Elma. The report is six pages. An addendum report was filed with the city dated June 17, 2013. A Modification to the Original Report was submitted on July 9, 2013. For more fun, check out the City of Montesano Computer Investigation by William Curtright dated August 6, 2013. (Curtwright was the city’s independent investigator.) About 25 pages.
Still got that HazMat suit on? Good. Cuz you’ll still need it. Micro-short version:
Guess who the Low Use, High Risk “Employee F” was? While not prominent, here’s what Schumacher writes in his June 10, 2013 report regarding “Employee F’s” computer usage:
If you’re having trouble reading that, let me help out:
Employee F was the only one who ended up in the Low Use, High Risk quadrant. There was very little content found, but the information we did find showed a lack of judgment in the mid-range Scale of Indifference.” (Emphasis added.)
Give the guy credit for being a “busy bee.” Trimble also shows up in an investigator’s report dated March 18, 2013 by Hoquiam Police Department Det. Sgt. Shane Krohn. The report is titled: Internal Investigation: Russ Burke.
Krohn’s March 18, 2013 report is about 30 pages. A follow-up report dated April 16, 2013 is another 12 pages. Here’s an interesting excerpt (page 14):
Tyler stated while he worked for the City of Montesano, Burke would send him to Auburn to Alpine Products Inc. to pick up paint. Tyler said Burke would have him pick up paint for Burke’s personal business at the same time as paint for the city. Tyler related this was probably not very ethical since he was on city time. (Emphasis added.)
“Young and stupid” defense, again?
“The investigator found that Mr. Burke hired summer help for the City who also worked as employees for RC Striping. Mr. Burke directed a City employee using a City truck on City time to pick up paint for his business. The paint supplier located 80 miles from the City – 160 miles round trip. This use of City employees, even in conjunction with a pick up of additional City paint, is not justified.”
Aw, c’mon now, you say. That was 2013. Three years ago. Water under the bridge, right?
Wait. It gets better. Remember that “expungement” thing that held up my PRR submitted to Montesano PD in May 2015? Check out this puppy:
A four-page motion to vacate Trimble’s “gross misdemeanor” conviction was filed in Gray Harbor District Court in April 2015. According to court documents, the “motion for vacating conviction records for the following offense(s) is granted” (see 3.2). Court documents also show that “It is further ordered that (3.3):
- The defendant’s guilty plea for the offense listed in paragraph 3.2 (“telephone harassment”) is withdrawn and a not guilty plea is entered.
- The guilty verdict for the offense listed in 3.2 is set aside.
- The defendant has paid costs incurred by the court and probation services in the amount of $500.” (page 4, 3.7)
The Order on Motion Re Vacating Conviction is signed and dated April 17, 2015. It’s date-stamped “Received” by the Montesano Police Department on May 14, 2015. (See upper right hand corner of page 1 in PDF, above.)
Refresh my memory here. When did candidate filing week fall last year? You know, the Trimble mayoral run?
Probably just a coincidence.
Less than a year later – in early 2015 – Trimble is the subject of at least one documented grievance by a city employee. In an email dated January 8, 2015 to Teamsters union rep Mike Werner, deputy clerk Ashlee Sund writes:
I am formally requesting to file a grievance against the City. On Wednesday January 7th, 2015 Councilman Tyler Trimble made comments that I feel were threatening and harassing. I said something about our office. He said “this is my office and all I need is 4 votes and your office is gone.” I was very upset and felt threatened. I am sending this to you because I don’t feel I have proper representation at the City. Thank you. Please advise me how to proceed.
Werner side-steps neatly in his response, saying that Trimble “is not a member of the bargaining unit nor is he a city employee.” He advises Sund that she “may have possible recourse by filing a (sic) EEOC complaint or civil suit. I will discuss this with my fellow Agent’s (sic) and see if there is any other remedy that could be perused (sic).”
Sund said later, “That was all I heard from him (Werner). He never got back to me on anything.”
A hand-written note from then-City Administrator Kristy Powell to Sund appears on the original email to Werner. It says:
“Tyler and I met to discuss this issue. Tyler apologized and Ashlee explained that she felt very threatened. The issue was resolved after the apology and a discussion of the balance of power.”
We’re told that Trimble’s “apology” was along the lines of, “I’m sorry you took it wrong.” Also that the limp mea culpa sprang forth only when a city investigator and the city administrator demanded it.
Sund, you may recall, was one of two deputy clerks recently “laid off” by The Vinster. Of Trimble she adds, “Everybody is still wondering how someone can be on city council with a record like his.”
Then there’s this stroke of Trimble genius regarding “free” downtown Wi Fi: “It gives you some time, and it’s not meant for a citizen of Montesano — it’s meant for a traveler coming through, the tourist in town, that’s what it’s meant for.”
Remember, good citizens of Montesano. The “free” downtown Wi Fi is “meant for” travelers and tourists, not residents. Savvy?
The trouble with Trimble, among other things, is his track record. Over years. “Phone harassment.” Inappropriate computer use. Paint mule. Conviction cover-up? Threats to city employees.
The same galactic arrogance and juvenile impertinence evident in Trimble’s “all I need is 4 votes and your office is gone” comments of 2015 echo his “things are gonna blow over… It was isolated and taken care of” remarks of 2007. That’s about an eight-year point spread.
See a pattern here? How long does the Young and Stupid defense hold water? (Someone get this guy some help. Please.)
Come on, folks. There are truckloads of good people in Montesano. So why is a perennially “young and stupid” fella with a history of poor judgment (to put it charitably) serving on your city council? Don’t you deserve better?