Below is a letter written to the Everett Herald editor expressing the writer’s amazement at the Herald’s investigative reporting skills and ability to spot a real news story. The editor, who has the honed skills of a Jimmy Carter micro-manager, called the writer letting the writer know he was available to talk when the writer was ready to have a “serious” conversation about his letter. This is double speak for, “We aren’t going to actually post your letter because that would give the writer to much credibility.” Cowards!

Too bad she wasn’t charged with welfare fraud for being an illegal then she would have only had to pay $500.


Dear Everett Herald reporter David Chircop, City Editor Robert Frank,

I’m responding to your most enlightening article published earlier this month headlined,

“Everett council hopeful pleads guilty to shoplifting.”

I would like to commend you for bringing this most important story to our attention – giving us valuable insight into the big-city machinations surrounding Everett’s quaint “justice” system.

Your intrepid reporting ferreted out the facts of this amazing incident where a local woman allegedly attempted to rob a QFC supermarket of $3.18 worth of chocolate milk! Needless to say, this hooked my interest.

For boosting extra copy in the future, might I suggest having used something like the following headline: The Great Everett [alleged, attempted] Chocolate Milk Heist

Having done a little subsequent investigation myself, the more details I found in, and not in, your article, the more intrigued I became..

It is truly an amazing story; a woman, with no criminal history, starts a life of crime at age thirty-nine! And, stunningly, she is so unpracticed that she attempts to “hide” the cocoa-colored loot in her front jacket pocket – leaving the bottles’ blue caps protruding for all to see. And, to compound this blundering, yet budding criminal career, from an adjoining internal coffee shop, she then drew more attention to herself as she waved down her friend returning from the external parking lot. (perhaps, this friend had been recruited to be her getaway driver! – better look into this angle..)

Needless to say, thank God this nascent criminal activity was nipped in the bud as she was man-handled, hustled off to a back room to be brow-beaten into submission. Lord only knows if the powers that be had not intervened, what started with mere jugs of chocolate milk would have undoubtedly escalated to lifting bubble-gum and perhaps other candy, and if not swiftly and mercilessly dealt with, she might soon step up her operation by cleaning out the Hostess snack rack.

And then it dawned on me… perhaps, there’s a little more to this story than first meets the eye – which is, as you may have surmised, the main reason I’m writing to you.

There seem to be some fascinating dynamics here: Why would a patriotic, single mother suddenly risk it all by allegedly lifting 3 dollars and 18 cents worth of chocolate milk? Or, more incredibly: why would anyone detain, threaten, arrest, and prosecute by trial, for which the plaintiff would incur enormous comparative costs, a person in such a (literally) worthless case where no loss actually occurred??

Enter the city of Everett’s “public defenders.” This is where it starts to get really interesting. I’m sure you’re familiar with the venerable adage, “You get what you pay for.”

The defendant’s top-notch, “cost-free” legal representative convinced her to plead guilty before the magistrate to criminal theft, in order avoid a costly trial in exchange for the extraction of an “administrative” court fee, attendance in a “theft awareness” re-education class, and a promise to obey an order to abstain from further criminal activity for one year.

Failure to comply with this sterling stroke of justice would result in a possible 1-year jail term – all resulting from pleading guilty to attempting to steal 3 dollars and 18 cents. That’s $3.18.

And, just how much was that punitive tax- uh, fine- er, sorry, “administrative fee”? $609.00

$609 dollars turns out to be one-hundred ninety two times (192x) the amount of the alleged, attempted theft – to which it was “advised” that she plead criminally guilty. That $609 fee is also, merely 19,051% greater than the attempted theft amount of $3.18.

Now, being the intrepid reporter that you are, always looking out for the ‘little guy’, I know you find that compellingly interesting, as well.

But then, in my amateur sleuthing, it was uncovered that one of the “public defenders” stunningly subjected the defendant to overt slurs such as “Nazi” and “racist” because this mother and Citizen, just happens to be the leader of a local organization, the Minuteman American Defense – which works to resist our country’s incessant criminal invasion by hordes of illegal aliens.

Hmmm.. the plot thickens..

And, as your story illuminated, she also just happens to be running for a position on the Everett City Council.

You have undoubtedly uncovered the tip of an iceberg, here, with this story. Make no mistake about it, the “justice” in this case has nothing to do with protecting society from shoplifting.

If ever you wanted to move up from AAA into the journalistic Big-Leagues, this story appears to be it – if you are willing to really dig into the obvious confluence of powerful forces and their agendas. (is there a miniaturized version of the Pulitzer available?)

Here’s a lead to get you started: I noticed the La Raza link featured at the top of the Herald’s online webpage.

Brushing up on my Spanish, most curiously, I determined that “La Raza” translates to “The Race”. Which Race, exactly, I ask?

And La Raza’s banner’s subtitle, “Nuestra Voz, Lejos de Casa”?: That’s, “Our Voice, Far from Home”.

And, which Home of “The Race” would that be?

Thanks for refocusing your tremendous resources to peel back the layers of this incredible story.

With cheers, and with all due respect to big-city reporters,

-Jefferson Paine