Opinion

People came forward in the Keller murders. Why not now for Lucinda Fisher? | Opinion

Supposedly, it’s the best kept secret in the Valley.

Somebody drove the truck that killed 57-year-old Lucinda Fisher, also known as Lucinda Pieczatkowski, in the early hours of January 1, 2013. It’s been 12 weeks since Fischer’s death, but precious few details have been announced by the sheriff’s spokespeople after officers impounded the white pickup believed to have been involved in Fischer’s death, just a day later.

Speculation on the identity of the driver in the fatal hit and run accident is starting to hit the Web. You had one anonymous parent who spoke to KIRO Radio last week, characterizing the whole thing as hush-hush, while offering secondhand info about the investigation. As the scuttlebutt has it, plenty of locals are in the know about the driver but are unwilling to come forward.

Being in the media, I prefer to get my news straight from the horse’s mouth. So, when Staff Reporter Carol Ladwig and I were on a trip across town the other day, we popped in on the North Bend Police Station to see if Chief Mark Toner could open our eyes.

Obviously, there’s only so much that the local chief was at liberty to say about a case under investigation. Just because things are quiet, however, doesn’t mean that detectives have been snoozing. Rather, with weeks passing and the person responsible apparently uninterested in coming forward, they’re building the strongest possible case.

Remember last spring, when people came forward following the horrific, high-profile Keller murders? You had the fast initial call reporting the blaze, that helped preserve vital evidence. Then there were the tips connecting Keller’s pickup with the Rattlesnake Ridge trailhead. Without active public involvement, it’s conceivable that the search for Keller might have taken weeks longer, or that his hideout might never have been found.

Contrast this with the current case. When investigators meet a potential witness, Toner says, the witnesses often aren’t surprised to see them. They were waiting for detectives to knock. Have you solved it yet? deputies are often asked. How’s your investigation going?

That’s a telling statement. Whose investigation is it? If it isn’t on the public’s behalf, and locals appear not to care enough to come forward, maybe this one isn’t worth solving. The Keller family got its justice, but maybe there isn’t justice for everybody in the Valley.

We need to make this our investigation—something that the community actively wants to solve. If you’ve got something to say, or saw something with your own eyes on New Year’s Eve about the events that led up to Lucinda Fisher’s death, say it. There happens to be a cash reward, $1,000 for a tip that brings an arrest. But the real reward of taking responsibility is that it crushes the ugly criticism that secrets hold more weight than truth in the Valley.

 

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