Former Police Officer On 20th Day of Hunger Strike
John Taft Investigative Reporter
GRANTS PASS, Oregon (10-02-02) – A retired police sergeant whose wife of almost 44 years describes him as being "steadfast in what he does and "very focused." Jail employees must be wondering how far is this retired police officer willing to take his hunger strike? No one wants another death in the Josephine County Jail. This would most likely bring unwanted fame to Judge Alan Coon, Sheriff Dave Daniel, and an ugly image to the county.
Ray Karczewski, 64, was arrested on September 12, 2002, on the orders of owl faced Judge Alan H. Coon. During an afternoon court recess several witnesses were clustered near a water fountain on the second floor of the courthouse when Corporal John Justema and Deputy Malin came over and arrested Karczewski. The details can be found at (go to). Ray Karczewski regards himself as a political prisoner in the Josephine County Jail. He believes his constitutional rights have been violated and as a man of integrity in quest of justice he began a hunger strike that is now in its 20th day. Karczewski entered the Josephine County jail at 280 pounds and is well over 6 feet tall. His wife reports he has gone down two clothing sizes so far.
A man is slowly dying in the county jail for his political beliefs. A sane rational man who appears willing to take those beliefs to the ultimate conclusion is something county officials have never previously encountered. The jail and county officials have an unusual dilemma on their hands. They assuredly will move very cautiously as more information dribbles out of the county jail about this hunger strike.
This story has the potential of attracting global interest thus putting the Josephine County criminal justice system on the world map. To date, Southern Oregon’s media has been as quiet as a barnyard rooster that sleeps until noon.
John Taft can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org This story is posted on http://www.strobezone.homestead.com