The Goldendale Sentinel - Headlines & History since 1879

By Paul Strot
Klickitat resident 

News: Klickitat is a decent town with decent people


I must respond to a story recently published in The Sentinel that I believe to have maligned the community of Klickitat, the townspeople, and the Klickitat County Sheriff. The story was about alleged arson at the residence of Leslie DeHart in Klickitat.

I would like to specifically address a few of Mr. DeHart’s statements, which are nothing other than untruthful and without merit. Pertaining to the sheriff’s office, Mr. DeHart claims in the published story that a sheriff’s deputy said to him: “Oh yeah, is this your first summer here? We're sorry you have to experience this. It's not uncommon for 30 or 40 tweekers to sit down in the middle of the road and just thieve and cause havoc.” Mr. DeHart alleges the officer “knew what was going on and nothing was being done about it.” These are simply ridiculous statements.

Mr. DeHart claims his house is in the middle of a mini-community of heavy drug users. His portrayal is of a community composed solely of criminals, thieves, and drug users. Not true. The overwhelming majority of townspeople are good and decent folks, many of us working to make the town a better place.

I am a 14-year resident on the same street as Mr. DeHart, and we share the same neighbors. I can truly say I have never been harrassed, felt intimidated, or threatened. My property has never been bothered, and I get along with my neighbors.

The possible arson I won’t comment on other than to say it is under investigation and that is another matter and up to the sheriff to decide.

In conclusion, Klickitat is in no way without its share of problems and is a little rough on the edges, yet it remains a good place to live with many fine folks residing here.


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