LONGVIEW — First, Ronald Michael White used his girlfriend’s credit card to woo his estranged wife with thousands of dollars in gifts.
Then he claimed membership in the Volksfront neo-Nazi group while serving a prison sentence for the crime.
And then, authorities said, White started writing threatening letters to the Woodland Police Department, suggesting he would send the white supremacist group after the officer who investigated the case.
Authorities arrested White, 47, of Vancouver on Monday on suspicion of intimidating a witness. Police appear to have moved swiftly to put an end to the alleged intimidation after, according to a report, White left a threatening voice mail message for the officer Friday.
White’s reference to his affiliation with Volksfront was clearly an attempt to intimidate, Woodland police said in a report, adding that authorities believe White “intends to follow through with these threats.”
The officer, police said, took the threats so seriously that he moved his wife and children out of their home for their safety.
White, a registered sex offender with a history of convictions for violent crimes, was released from prison last month, authorities said. Police said that in 2010 White stole a credit card from his girlfriend of about three weeks and racked up more than $8,500 in charges. White used the stolen card to buy a bed set with pillows and blankets, jewelry, and a sofa, loveseat, end tables, a cocktail table and flowers, a report said. White had all the items delivered to his estranged wife in Vancouver “in hopes of getting back together with her,” police said.
White pleaded guilty in the case and was sentenced to 29 months in prison, the report said.
A state corrections spokeswoman said Wednesday that White spent just less than 19 months in prison and was released from the Stafford Creek Corrections Center in Aberdeen on Oct. 9.
While in prison, police said, White started writing letters to the Woodland Police Department and the officer who investigated the fraud. In the letters, White accused the officer of having an affair with White’s wife as well as the victim in the credit card case.
Police said White also said in the letters that he had joined the Volksfront group while in prison. White referred to the white power organization as his “new family,” and said he had “spread the word about what (the officer) has wrongly done to him,” according to the report.
In the letters, White said he wanted to meet with the officer and “talk” about the situation. One letter stated, “See you in 22 1/2 months, liar.” Another said, “Make no mistake. I am part of the Volksfront.”
On Friday, police said, White left a voice mail for the officer at the Woodland Police Department, again accusing the officer of framing him and having a sexual relationship with White’s wife. White, who left a callback number during the message, said he planned to talk about the situation with someone police believe to be a Volksfront member, the report said.
When he was arrested, White told police “it was his intention with the letters and phone calls to ruin (the officer) by getting him fired and to embarrass him,” according to the report. But White told police he had not intended to “create fear of physical harm.”
White is being held in the Cowlitz County Jail on $30,000 bail. Woodland police have requested a protection order barring White from contact with the officer and his family.
Police said White’s criminal history includes robbery, assault, stalking, harassment, heroin possession and various weapons violations.
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