Wayne Hower, the man who killed South Kitsap store owner Al Kono in cold blood, was allowed to plea-bargain his charge from aggravated first-degree murder down to second-degree murder with a firearm. He was sentenced to 23 years and four months. The 45 year-old killer will be out of jail at age 68 — if, and it’s a big if, he even serves the entire sentence.
There’s no way former prosecutor, Dan Clem would have plea-bargained a cold-blooded murder. Clem always tried those cases personally — and never lost. Meanwhile, Prosecutor Russ Hague has a track record of plea bargaining rather than going to trial. After losing the slam-dunk, Buddy the police-dog case — which he tried to blame on Judge Anna Laurie — does Hague even have confidence in his own ability to win a high-profile case like Kono?
Hague owes the citizens of Kitsap County a public apology for allowing Hower to get off so lightly.