Man who killed Clackamas Co. weighmaster sentenced to life in pr - KPTV - FOX 12

Man who killed Clackamas Co. weighmaster sentenced to life in prison

Posted: Updated: Feb 27, 2018 08:26 PM
Dirck White in court on Tuesday. (KPTV) Dirck White in court on Tuesday. (KPTV)
Grady Waxenfelter (Family photo) Grady Waxenfelter (Family photo)

It’s been four years since an Estacada man was executed on the side of the road, and Tuesday his family members poured into a Clackamas County courtroom to face his killer for sentencing.

Dirck White was given life in prison with a minimum of 25 years for the murder of Grady Waxenfelter.

He’s also serving a life sentence with a minimum of 30 years in California, for a shootout with Los Angeles police officers. Investigators say that’s where he escaped to after killing Waxenfelter, and when he was arrested there he had the same gun in his hand.

Prosecutors estimate White will be in his 90’s before he may have a chance at release. They say he’s also suspected in a child rape case out of Washington state, but the victim in that case may drop the charges given his two life sentence convictions.

“Justice was served, in that it’s very unlikely he’ll ever live to see the outside of a prison again, and I’m satisfied with that,” Waxenfelter’s cousin, Karin Stanley, told FOX 12.

Stanley was one of several family members who spoke in court Tuesday, describing Grady Waxenfelter as a loving husband of 28 years and father of three, who was a hard worker with a big smile.

“Grady was a wonderfully kind man that left an impression on everyone he came into contact with,” his widow, Tedra Waxenfelter, said in court. “If you hadn’t done what you did to him that day, you too would have been a better person just for meeting him.”

On Feb. 6, 2014, Waxenfelter was working as a Clackamas County weighmaster, wearing a uniform and stitched badge, when he pulled over an overweight commercial truck on Highway 224. The driver of that truck, later identified as White, shot him in the head three times.

In court Tuesday, White told the Waxenfelter family he extends his condolences to them and can’t understand the kind of family love they described in court because he never experienced that family love for himself.

But he also alluded to the fact that he mistakenly thought Waxenfelter was a police officer, and said that’s why he killed him.

“If you want to know why he had to die, it wasn’t something that was planned,” White told the court. “Every time a cop lies on a police report, every time a cop lies on a witness stand, every time a guy is kicked when he’s down by the DA and the prosecutor because they have enough power in their hands to send you to prison for a year or send you to prison for 10 years, every time a correctional officer spits in your food, all these things are taken a tally of. Somebody’s going to keep a tally of it. I kept a tally of it all my life. It doesn’t excuse what I did, but that’s the reason.”

The prosecutor on the case told the judge in his 24 years on the job, White is one of the most dangerous criminals he’s ever come across.

The Waxenfelter family said after court Tuesday they were happy with the sentence, and happy to have it over.

“We can’t keep thinking of this man’s name, we can’t keep thinking of his face anymore,” Stanley added. “Today’s the day where we get to let that go, we get to – as much as we can – set him aside and move on.”

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