Paula Wissel

Law & Justice Reporter

Paula reports on groundbreaking legal decisions in Washington State and on trends in crime and law enforcement. She’s been at KPLU since 1989 and has covered the Law and Justice beat for the past 15 years. Paula grew up in Idaho and, prior to KPLU, worked in public radio and television in Boise, San Francisco and upstate New York.

Paula's most memorable moment at KPLU: “Interviewing NPR Senior News Analyst Daniel Schorr about his ability to put current events in historical context. It’s something I aspire to.”

Pages

World War II history
9:32 am
Mon April 25, 2011

Want to fly in a B-17 bomber?

The Liberty Foundation

You might hear an unusual rumbling overhead today in Seattle. An original World War II bomber will be in the sky. The Boeing B-17 is part of a traveling history exhibit that lets you actually fly in the plane. 

Read more
Rising fuel costs
2:59 pm
Tue April 19, 2011

Local business hurt by gas prices seek help from Congress

Doug McClure, owner of Zeeks Pizza, U.S. Sen. Maria Cantwell, U.S. Sen. Patty Murray, and Warren Aakervik, owner of Ballard Oil, at a news conference April 18, 2011.
Paula Wissel/KPLU

U.S. Senators Patty Murray and Maria Cantwell say Wall Street speculation in the oil and gas market is directly affecting small business in Washington. 

At a news conference held at Local Roots Organic in Seattle they were joined by several business owners who said high gas prices are taking a toll on their bottom line.

Read more
New citizens
11:57 am
Wed April 13, 2011

Public library hosts naturalization ceremony

Twenty-eight countries were represented at a citizenship ceremony at the downtown branch of the Seattle Public Library on April 12, 2011.
Paula Wissel

For the first time, the Seattle Public Library was the venue for a naturalization ceremony.  Eighty-six people from twenty-eight countries were sworn in as American citizens.

Read more
News Business
3:50 pm
Tue April 12, 2011

Reporters stop tweeting

AP reporters and photographers rallied outside their Seattle offices to call attention to contract negotiations with the company.
Paula Wissel

The Associated Press reporters and photographers around the country weren't tweeting or uploading their stories to Facebook today.  They also refrained from using their personal cell phones or cars for business.

Read more
Healthy Lifestyle
7:18 pm
Wed April 6, 2011

Ready, set, walk!

Hundreds turned out at Seattle city hall for National Start Walking Day
Paula Wissel

How about going out for a stroll? Today is National Start Walking Day.  The American Heart Association, which sponsors the day,  says taking just 10 minutes three times a day to walk will help you live longer.

Several hundred people turned out at Seattle city hall to kick off Start Walking Day by taking a 30 minute walk around downtown. Mayor Mike McGinn and King County Executive Dow Constantine led the way.

Read more
Museum of Flight
10:59 am
Wed April 6, 2011

State delegation wants space shuttle to land in Seattle

Space shuttle Discovery is towed to the Orbiter Processing Facility after landing at the Kennedy Space Center in Cape Canaveral, Fla., Wednesday, March 9, 2011.
AP

In a bipartisan push to bring the retired Space Shuttle to the Museum of Flight in Seattle, Washington's U.S. Senators Patty Murray and Maria Cantwell, along with the state's entire congressional delegation, have sent a a letter to Charles F. Bolden, the Administrator of NASA, urging him to select the museum as the home for the retired NASA Space Shuttle Orbiter.

In the letter, the delegation says:

Read more
Law & Justice
8:37 am
Wed April 6, 2011

Higher court fines imposed on Latino drug offenders in Washington state

Court fines issued to felons in Washington vary according to the criminal’s ethnicity and location. That’s the conclusion of a University of Washington study published online in American Sociological Review.

Read more
Nuclear weapons
5:06 pm
Mon March 28, 2011

Anti-war protesters sentenced for breaking into Naval Base Kitsap-Bangor

Five peace activists who broke into Naval Base Kitsap-Bangor have been sentenced to prison.  The group cut through fences at the Trident submarine base on November 2, 2009 to reach an area near where nuclear warheads are stored.  Bangor is the largest nuclear weapons storehouse in the United States.

At a trial in Tacoma in December, the Bangor trespassers, also known as the "Bangor Five," were found guilty of conspiracy and destruction of federal  property. 

Read more
Jobs
11:51 am
Wed March 23, 2011

Boeing Company hiring 100 people a week

Boeing workers wait on lifts and platforms for a look at Boeing's new 747-8 passenger airplane prior to the plane's first flight, Sunday, March 20, 2011, at Paine Field in Everett, Wash.
Ted S. Warren AP

Here's some good news in a down economy.  Michelle Dunlop writes in The Herald of Everett that Boeing is hiring 100 people a week and has been doing it for the past several months.

Dunlop writes:

Read more
Theater
9:38 am
Wed March 23, 2011

Seattle actor Mark Chamberlin dies

Mark Chamberlin as Odysseus in Taproot Theatre's just-completed run of "The Odyssey." Chamberlin died Tuesday following a weekend bike accident.
Erik Stuhaug Courtesy Taproot Theatre

Seattle’s theater community is reeling this morning at the loss of one of their own.  The Seattle Times reports actor Mark Chamberlin died Tuesday after a weekend bicycle accident.

Read more
Law & Justice
12:03 pm
Tue March 22, 2011

Are drug courts working?

Magistrate Gordon M. Smith presides over drug court in Providence, Rhode Island, June 2007.
AP

Drug courts have long been viewed as a success.  The courts give drug offenders charged with non-violent crimes the option of treatment rather than prison.

The courts, including those in Washington State, have proven effective in reducing repeat offenses. But some critics say too much money is being poured into drug courts.

Read more
Iraq war anniversary
3:16 pm
Fri March 18, 2011

How important is a protest sign?

Art Boruck in his print shop, March 2011, holding the sign he designed before the start of the Iraq war.
Paula Wissel KPLU

How important is a protest sign?  That’s the question we’re asking on the 8th anniversary of the war in Iraq.

Back in 2003,  in the weeks and months leading up to the invasion of Iraq by the U.S. and Coalition forces, millions of peace activists around the globe rallied against war. 

At every protest you saw the same signs-- red, white and blue placards with the words “No Iraq War.”  All of them came from one place, a family run sign shop in Seattle.

Read more
Medical clinic protests
6:13 pm
Mon March 14, 2011

Justice Department sues anti-abortion activist

Federal prosecutors have filed a lawsuit to prevent an anti-abortion protester from blocking access to a medical clinic in Lynnwood.

According to the U.S. Department of Justice complaint, John C. Kroack walked into a Lynnwood health clinic on Jan. 7, 2010, became agitated as he talked about abortion and tried to force his way into one of the exam rooms. Prosecutors say a nurse had to hold her body against the door to keep him from breaking it down.

Read more
Coffee
8:30 am
Wed March 9, 2011

Starbucks unveils logo, celebrates 40 years

Starbucks baristas and employees at corporate headquarters celebrate new logo with CEO Howard Schultz on March 8, 2011.
Starbucks

In 40 years it went from a tiny store near Pike Place Market to a global brand, recognized around the world.  Starbucks is celebrating its  anniversary with a new, simplified logo that doesn’t have the word "Starbucks" or "coffee" on it. 

On Tuesday, a band played and hundreds of employees gathered and cheered as the logo was unveiled at Starbucks headquarters in Seattle.  CEO Howard Schultz told the crowd there were many doubters in the beginning who didn’t think Starbucks could ever go beyond the West Coast. "But they were wrong," he said.

Read more
Crime
5:05 pm
Tue March 8, 2011

Murder, car thefts at historic lows in Seattle

Seattle Police Department Sgt. Sean Whitcomb holds a sign meant to be placed in cars to deter thieves.
Paula Wissel

The homicide rate in Seattle is at its lowest level since 1958.  Most other major crime is down as well.

Murder, rape, robbery and other violent crime was down 9 percent in 2010 compared to 2009. The 2010 crime statistics were released Tuesday by the Seattle Police Department. As KPLU reported, the  Seattle Police Department has also released a report showing that the use of force by officers is rare and below the national average.

Read more

Pages