Tuesday, May 27, 2003
The Memorial Day weekend brought many visitors to the Columbia River Gorge and kept Hood River law enforcement officials on the move.
In addition to nine DUII arrests throughout the county, the most notable incident occurred on Saturday. City police were sent scrambling after a Salem man drove through a barricade at the Mt. Hood Railroad parking lot and parked his van on the tracks. The driver, Kerry Dannunzio, 32, allegedly attempted to elude city police when they arrived on the scene. Capt. Kevin Lynch said Dannunzio, who was standing near the drivers’ door of the vehicle, told officers he needed to care for his 2-year-old son who was inside and then jumped behind the wheel and took off.
Dannunzio allegedly drove eastbound down the tracks until reaching the Second Street overpass where he exited the van and attempted to flee on foot, leaving his child behind. Lynch stated that Dannunzio became combative when he was caught by police and had to be physically restrained. He was lodged in NORCOR and the child was turned over to his mother, who was later located in Hood River.
County deputies were also kept busy, catching the operators of a mobile methamphetamine lab in action at Wyeth.
In addition, they broke up an underage drinking party in Cascade Locks and responded to the scene of a one car rollover accident involving alcohol on Fir Mountain Road.
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Lawnmower torches Arbor Vitae on Portland Drive
The riding lawn mower driven by Norma Cannon overheated and made contact with dry arbor vitae owned by Lee and Norma Curtis, sending more than a dozen of the tightly-packed trees up in flames. The mower, visible at far right, was totaled. No one was injured; neighbors first kept the fire at bay with garden hoses and Westside and Hood River Fire Departments responded and doused the fire before it reached any structures. Westside Fire chief Jim Trammell, in blue shirt, directs firefighters. The video was taken by Capt. Dave Smith of Hood River Fire Department. Enlarge