Foul-mouthed longshoreman's TV tirade leads to his arrest

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by KGW Staff

KING5.com

Posted on September 14, 2011 at 7:13 AM

Updated Wednesday, Sep 14 at 7:14 AM

KELSO, Wash. – A Kelso man arrested for allegedly assaulting a guard and vandalizing a rail car at the Port of Longview was the same person who confronted a TV news crew last Thursday, police said.

Ronald Stavas, 45, was arrested Monday night and booked into the Cowlitz County Jail on four felony charges: burglary in the first degree, assault in the second degree, intimidating a witness, and sabotage.

At his initial appearance in Cowlitz County Superior Court Tuesday morning, bail was set at $50,000 for the crimes, which allegedly occurred on Sept. 8.

Raw video: Longshoreman confronts KGW news crew

A witness told police he recognized Stavas after seeing video on KGW-TV of an angry man who confronted a news crew at the Longshoremen union hall.

Tension has been growing amid the union and the port, over the right to work at a new grain terminal in Washington state.

Hundreds of Longshoremen stormed the Port of Longview on September 8, overpowered and held security guards, damaged railroad cars, and dumped grain that was the center of a labor dispute, according to Longview Police Chief Jim Duscha.

A federal judge later ordered union protesters to stop using illegal tactics.

Also arrested on Monday was Shelly Porter, 39, of Longview. She was charged with criminal trespass for allegedly blocking a train.

KGW is the Portland sister station of KING 5.

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