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Man arrested after threatening neighbor with hatchet

A Roseburg man was arrested after he reportedly threatened a neighbor with a hatchet early Friday morning.

Gerald Lee “Jerry” Crandall, 64, reportedly approached the neighbor over a money dispute, according to a court document.

At approximately 5:40 a.m. Friday, officers from the Roseburg Police Department were called to the disturbance at 1806 NE Todd St. after the intended victim told 911 dispatch that Crandall had allegedly chased him with a hatchet. After earlier contacts with Crandall, the reporting officer said Crandall was “paranoid about people watching him” and described his hatred for his neighbor.

A witness who heard the disturbance told police that Crandall had screamed at his target, calling him a profane name and screaming, “I’m going to kill you, (expletive), you better wake up.” Crandall then reportedly began beating on the wall of that witness’ house, telling them to “stop watching him.”

When Crandall approached the home of his intended victim, his movements were caught on a home security camera, according to police. Crandall reportedly struck the front door of the home with a hatchet multiple times.

When asked what Crandall’s intentions were when he went to the neighbor’s house wielding a hatchet, he reportedly said he “wanted to drive the spike end of the hatchet into (the victim’s skull) to kill him,” according to the court document. Crandall later told the investigating officer that once he was out of jail, he would try again.

Crandall was arraigned in Douglas County Circuit Court Monday and charged with first-degree attempted burglary, first-degree attempted assault, unlawful use of a weapon, menacing, second-degree criminal mischief and second-degree disorderly conduct. Bail was set at $50,000.

Bond levy for Winchester Dam approved by voters in Tuesday's special districts election

Voters in the Winchester Water Control District overwhelmingly approved Ballot Measure 10-184 Tuesday by a vote of 91.43% to 8.57%%

The measure called for a $3 million bond levy to pay for repairs to the Winchester Dam.

In addition to financing the repairs, the money will go toward paying fines, penalties and legal fees related to the dam, and refinance existing debts.

The Winchester Dam was constructed in 1890.

The Winchester Water Control District is currently embroiled in a federal lawsuit over the state of the dam.

The suit, brought by Water Watch of Oregon and the fly-fishing group Steamboaters, was filed in U.S. District Court in Eugene in November 2020. It alleges harm to several species of fish, including the federally protected coho salmon.

According to Water Watch, leaks in the dam cause fish to die and the structure’s fish ladder is also poorly constructed.

The group also alleged that in 2018, concrete damage near the base of the dam led to repairs that caused further damage after fresh concrete poured into the river.