Conviction for Seattle man in fraud scheme

Herald staff

SEATTLE — A federal grand jury convicted a Seattle man of conspiring in a counterfeit check-writing scheme to defraud the Bank of America out of more than $85,000, the U.S. Attorney’s Office said Wednesday.

Everett Brawley, 30, faces up to 30 years in prison and $1 million in fines. He is scheduled to be sentenced Feb. 16.

Prosecutors said Brawley and his co-conspirators deposited two phony checks worth $49,000 into an account for a man named Dwayne Adams at the Northern Tier Federal Credit Union in Minot, N.D., in June 1999. Then they wired $48,500 from that account to various locations in the Seattle-Tacoma area.

A third check for $36,454.50 was then deposited in Brawley’s account, from which he made three cash withdrawals totaling $25,000, U.S. Attorney Katrina Pflaumer said.

  • Indian culture festival planned: A coalition of American Indian groups, local businesses and government agencies is putting on a two-day celebration of American Indian culture in Tacoma this weekend. The event, called the "Urban Indian Days Celebration," will bring Indian art, food and experts on traditional American Indian skills to Freighthouse Square from 10 a.m. to 7 p.m. Saturday and Sunday. The gathering has two main purposes, according to Joyce Dixon, president of the Urban Indian College Foundation and co-chairwoman of the Urban Indian Days Coalition, which organized the celebration. "We want it to be a celebration and also an educational process for the general public," she said. "There are members of 150 different tribes living in and near Tacoma. We wanted to make people aware of the American Indians living next door."

  • Man ‘killed three times,’ police say: A man found dead in a car trunk, with a plastic bag taped over his head and his hands and feet bound, was killed by someone, but exactly how he died was not immediately determined. Juan Pablo Guzman Reynoso, 21, of Wapato also had marks on his neck suggesting strangulation and his chest had a series of puncture wounds. Coroner Maurice Rice said the autopsy indicated Reynoso was killed either by suffocation or strangulation. The shallow holes in Reynoso’s chest were made by a thin, sharp instrument. "At this point, it looks like he was killed three times," Lt. Dan Garcia of the Yakima County Sheriff’s Office said before Tuesday’s autopsy.

  • Boy slain while hunting, man held: A Coos Bay man was held on a charge of manslaughter after a 13-year-old Eugene boy was killed and his step-grandfather wounded while elk hunting in the Coast Range near Roseburg. Michael Claude Krossman, 43, was held Wednesday on $160,000 bond on a charge of second-degree manslaughter pending arraignment, Douglas County sheriff’s deputies said. He spent the day with investigators at the scene of the shooting. Krossman was arrested Tuesday after 13-year-old Creston Andrew Schieler was shot through the chest and his step-grandfather, Joseph Roy, 70, of Roseburg, was shot through the arm, authorities said. The boy had been elk hunting on Burnt Mountain about 25 miles west of Roseburg near the border of Douglas and Coos counties , deputies said.

  • Child killer loses appeal: Convicted child killer Elizabeth Diane Downs lost another appeal Wednesday when the 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals rejected her claim involving investigation material. In one of Oregon’s most notorious crimes, Downs was convicted of murder in the 1983 shooting death of her oldest child, then 7, and attempted murder in the wounding of her other two children. Downs is serving a prison term of life plus 50 years, in a California prison. She was sent out of state after she escaped from the Oregon Women’s Correctional Institution in Salem in 1987. She was caught in Salem 10 days later.

  • Man accused of killing friend: A logging company owner has been charged with killing his best friend with a shotgun blast as the victim was talking on the phone with his wife. Robert Mark Liles, 58, of Shady Cove was charged Tuesday with murder in the Monday night slaying of Charles Early May, 28, of Crescent City, Calif. "I shot my best friend," Liles said in a court affidavit. Liles and May had apparently been drinking Monday night at Liles’ rural home when they got into an argument. While talking with his wife, May said Liles was "acting weird," the affidavit said. Shanna May told Jackson County sheriff’s deputies that she heard her husband exclaim, "Bob!" before dropping the phone, and then she heard a gunshot. Liles told deputies that he didn’t remember the shooting, and must have blacked out. "I’m sorry it happened. We never had a fight before," Liles said in the affidavit.
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