By Joseph Snook
Clackamas County, Oregon – On Wednesday November 16, 2016, Kevin Olsen’s fate rested with jurors shortly after closing arguments were made in his Assault IV criminal trial. Although assault in the fourth degree is only a misdemeanor charge in Oregon, Mr. Olsen had much more to lose. He faced as many as three years in a state prison to be exact for already being on probation in South Dakota.
In an unrelated incident Mr. Olsen was forced to take a plea when South Dakota wouldn’t honor his medicinal marijuana card issued in Oregon which resulted in Mr. Olsen being put on probation.
If convicted at trial, incarceration would have had devastating effects on not only his freedom, but also his company as well as the livelihood of his recent bride, and their family. Aside from all the pressure Mr. Olsen believed the truth would set him free, but how was he going to obtain the truth? His search for help led him to the US~Observer.
Several key pieces of evidence were obtained by the US~Observer, they were utilized to inform the public, and at trial, which helped seal Mr. Olson’s Not Guilty verdict. The evidence obtained by the US~Observer was irrefutable. Video footage of the incident correlated with other evidence obtained by the US~Observer. After a two day trial, supporters of Mr. Olsen were the only seats taken in the courtroom. His wife, friends, and witnesses sat alongside Mr. Olsen, patiently waiting for the jury’s decision. The trial was full of surprises, especially lies from Gene Kalar, the alleged victim. The lies told, the attempts to twist evidence into something it was not and the continuation of Mr. Olsen’s case should be a stern warning to any law-abiding citizen – your freedom should never be taken for granted. Aside from the unwarranted trial at the taxpayer’s expense, Mr. Olsen’s jurors absolutely saw through the mess of lies – rightfully, and unanimously finding Mr. Olsen not guilty. Another US~Observer vindication!
South Dakota doesn’t honor medicinal marijuana cards. Mr. Olsen should have known the implications of being caught with his medication in that state, but there’s a logical argument Mr. Olsen shared. He stated, “Why should anyone face years of incarceration for a plant that is now legal in over half of the states in this country?”
Despite the ramifications of his probation, and year long wait for his day in court on the false assault charge in Clackamas County, Oregon, coupled with the costs to defend himself, Olsen still maintained his innocence, knowing the evidence would set him free. Many others have lost their freedom under similar circumstances simply because they were unable to obtain crucial evidence.
Gene Kalar testified that he’d never seen the video footage of the incident that left Kevin Olsen’s freedom hanging in balance. Gene claimed that Kevin, “Punched him with a closed fist,” although the footage clearly showed different. As the video was played in the courtroom, Mr. Kalar, while he was on the witness stand, still refused to accept the truth of what happened. He continued to claim he knew what happened and didn’t need to see the video. Some call that perjury.
Mr. Kalar’s claim that he never watched the footage was very difficult to believe; especially considering two witnesses stated that he was provided the footage on a thumb drive shortly after the incident. One of those witnesses was the manager of Tollgate Inn where the incident occurred. To make matters even more confusing, it was discovered during trial that the video cameras which captured the entire incident were installed by Gene Kalar himself!
Mr. Kalar, a Veteran, and former Captain of a nearby Fire Department must have some deep connections because he was able to elude criminal charges. According to direct witnesses, on the night of this incident the police told them they would need to find other law enforcement if they wanted Kalar charged for his assault. Seemingly, the prosecutor decided to continue this case despite the evidence shared by the US~Observer clearly showing Olsen’s innocence, because of who Gene Kalar used to be. Gene should have been charged with assault for following Mr. Olsen’s friend into the parking lot as Kevin’s group left Tollgate Inn, eventually punching Roy Swan in the face, shattering his cheek bone, then drop-kicking Mr. Swan in the genitals. Instead of Gene being charged, Swan was charged with harassment. Swan had no prior criminal history, and is also a local business owner. Both Mr. Swan and Mr. Olsen were attempting to avoid conflict by leaving the establishment, as a likely “drunk” Gene Kalar pursued them both, essentially taking the law into his own hands.
Gene Kalar Attempts to Deceive the Court?
Gene Kalar told one witness that he was going to show up in court with a walking cane to give jurors the impression that he was impaired. This witness stated that Gene has never used a walking cane in all the years they had known each other. On the day of trial, Gene left the cane at home, instead showing up with what appeared to be ear muffs? His hearing was allegedly impaired – but one very close witness stated that when Gene is drinking wine in a packed bar, he can hear conversations from across the room with televisions playing, music, chatter, etc. That same witness stated, “Gene usually comes to the bar after already having some drinks. His lips are purple from the wine he’s already consumed before he shows up.”
US~Observer Uncovers Evidence
After conducting a full investigation into this matter, the US~Observer contacted John Foote, the elected District Attorney in an attempt to share evidence the prosecutor’s office did not have – evidence that proved Mr. Olsen’s innocence. Several witnesses were not contacted by police for a statement. Those key witnesses had very compelling information that we uncovered – evidence clearly supporting Mr. Olsen’s innocence. By contacting the D.A. it was our intention to share that evidence, saving time for all involved, and the taxpayer’s money while helping an innocent Mr. Olsen. In a response letter from prosecutor Grace Pauley, who was assigned to the case, she simply shared her gratitude, essentially saying, we will continue to prosecute. She ended up passing the case along to a young prosecutor named Jeffrey Nitschke, who likely followed orders and simply prosecuted. I’m not sure how Clackamas County D.A.’s office operates, although the norm is if you’re handed a case, and you believe there was no crime committed, you may decline to prosecute and dismiss the charges. In the future, I’m hopeful Prosecutor Nitschke will be that person – one who truly serves justice and declines to prosecute someone who is innocent. Nitschke’s nascent abilities were clearly demonstrated although he was handed a losing case to begin with.
As for District Attorney John Foote, I believe he was simply instructing his deputy prosecutors to handle the case as they saw fit. Hopefully he will heed our communication in the future should there be reason to communicate again! One can only imagine how a retired Fire Captain and Veteran (Gene Kalar) could deceitfully use his credentials and connections against someone with a criminal record.
In a recent text message almost two weeks after trial, Mr. Olsen stated, “I’m still waking up laughing.” He’s a genuine, down-to-earth, nice guy. When he talks, it’s almost as if you’ve revisited childhood memories of someone reading your favorite bedtime story. He can definitely captivate one with his words. Several times throughout Mr. Olsen’s testimony, he went completely off topic, yet even the Honorable Michael C. Wetzel, the presiding Judge, listened, as we all did – in awe. If anyone needs a PR guy, Mr. Olsen is your man!
Mr. Olsen’s attorney, Eric Hale, was a precise and detailed litigator. He should be commended for a job well done. Also, Judge Michael C. Wetzel should receive a medal of honor for being an absolute breath of fresh air as a neutral referee in this case. Good Judges are hard to find, and Clackamas County has definitely found one of them. Judge Wetzel is also a Major with the Army National Guard. From one Vet to an Active Soldier – Hooah Honorable Michael C. Wetzel!
Helping innocent victims of the judicial system is what drives home what the US~Observer does – Vindicate the Innocent! Today, the taste of freedom lingers with Mr. Olsen and his family. What a sweet day for justice.
To view Olsen’s original article, with video: click here.
Editor’s note: In the upcoming months we will likely be reporting further on this case. Our sources have shared some interesting news of what may come… Stay tuned!