No judge, so Makah postpone pretrial hearing for five who killed whale

NEAH BAY — The Makah Tribal Court has postponed a pretrial conference for five whale hunters because there is no judge to conduct it.

No new day has been set for the hearing that was to take place Tuesday.

The defendants also face trial in federal court in March.

One purpose of the session scheduled Tuesday was to set a trial date in the Makah court.

Jean Vitalis, former Makah chief judge, originally was expected to hear the case — but left the bench after her contract was not renewed.

The new top jurist, former Associate Judge Emma Doulik, has recused herself, citing “strong emotions” about issues stemming from the Sept. 8 killing of a gray whale in the Strait of Juan de Fuca.

The tribe then asked Quinault Chief Judge Edythe Chenois to hear the case, but she begged off on Thursday, citing health reasons.

The Makah next hoped to bring in Tulalip Associate Judge Theresa Pouley, but, as of Friday afternoon, Pouley said she had not received a request to do so.

More in News

Piper Pettit, project manager for the state Department of Transportation, speaks to the Port Angeles Business Association on Tuesday about upcoming fish passage projects that will significantly impact traffic in the city. (Ken Park/Peninsula Daily News)
Culvert plan in Port Angeles told

Construction expected summer 2023 at earliest

Memorial Day edition to be online only

Help available if needed to set up access

Danny McEnerney.
New Jefferson County Fair manager tells of upgrades

‘Focus on providing ways for people to get a dose of joy’

Port Townsend Paper fined for water quality violations

Power outages among reasons for spill, says general manager

Plan could add 3,000 square feet to Sequim Library

More details expected on Thursday

McDonald Creek, as seen from Old Olympic Highway on Sunday, May 22.
McDonald Creek fish passage project expected to begin this summer

Work to improve fish passage in McDonald Creek has moved a step… Continue reading

A crow makes off with a crab stolen from a gull on the beach at the Port Townsend Boat Haven. Cloudy skies are forecast Tuesday and Wednesday with high temperatures near 60 degrees. A chance of rain returns for Memorial Day weekend. (Steve Mullensky/for Peninsula Daily News)
Crab dinner to go at boat haven

A crow makes off with a crab stolen from a gull on… Continue reading

Washington state’s rate of COVID-19 cases on the rise

The rate of COVID-19 cases is rising in Washington. The… Continue reading

Orca, stuck overnight, finds its way into Strait

Researchers identify whale as 8-year-old male from transient pod

Most Read