Man says he's sorry for bomb hoax
The man who held police in a standoff at a Medford television station in early February has pleaded guilty to menacing and possessing a hoax destructive device.
Mark Allen Dickey, 49, of Cave Junction, entered his pleas to the misdemeanor charges Tuesday afternoon in Jackson County Circuit Court. He was sentenced to 60 days in county jail and was set to be released today because of time already served, officials said. Dickey has been in the Jackson County Jail since Feb. 9.
Dickey went to KTVL in a graffiti-covered van Feb. 7, made ranting threats that prompted the evacuation of the television station and adjacent Radio Medford offices, and finally surrendered after a roughly five-hour standoff.
During negotiations, police learned Dickey previously had caused a disturbance at the Jackson County District Attorney's Office because he was angry over how officials had handled a case involving a woman he knew and wanted to bring attention to it. Dickey was taken to Rogue Valley Medical Center on a mental hold for evaluation shortly after his arrest.
An initial psychiatric evaluation by Dr. Michael Knapp found that Dickey didn't know his behavior was illegal and couldn't act in a lawful manner because of a personality disorder and a temporary psychotic episode, his court-appointed defense lawyer David Orf said in court Tuesday. The evaluating doctor said Dickey could be found guilty but insane.
Knapp's report also noted that after getting mental health treatment in jail, Dickey could assist in his defense.
Orf said Dickey had complied with treatment in jail and would continue to follow his treatment plan.
"That is the safeguard in this case," Orf said.
Dickey, who appeared in court via a video connection, sat quietly as the facts of the case were recounted.
"I am responsible, and I'm sorry," he said.
Orf noted that Dickey had a limited criminal history and the standoff was out of character for him. Court records show he was convicted in 2001 of reckless endangerment and driving under the influence of intoxicants.
Orf recommended that Dickey be sentenced to 60 days in jail for each charge, rather than the 90 days set out in sentencing guidelines.
Judge Ron Grensky sentenced Dickey to 60 days for each of the misdemeanors, to be served concurrently and with credit for time served. Dickey also must comply with mental health treatment and have no contact with the district attorney's office or KTVL. He will be on probation for 18 months. A second-degree disorderly conduct charge was dropped as part of the plea agreement.
"I would have liked to see 90 days," said Ginger Greer, the deputy district attorney who prosecuted the case. She added, though, that continued mental health treatment was the most important component of the sentence.
KTVL General Manager Kingsley Kelly, contacted after the sentencing, said the good news is no one was injured in the standoff and Dickey got the help he needed.
"It sounds like he was contrite, but we hope in the future the only contact he has with Channel 10 is watching us on TV," Kelly said.
Reach reporter Anita Burke at 776-4485, or e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org.