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Court orders restitution from man who altered course of Mason County river

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A picture of the redirection of the Tahuya River

SHELTON, Wash. (AP) — A Mason County judge has ordered a man to pay restitution after being found guilty of altering the course of the Tahuya River.

William Cayo Sr. must pay $50 per month to the state environmental restoration fund. The restitution ordered was $200,000.

A jury found him guilty in April of violating the water pollution control act and the shoreline management act. Cayo used an excavator and bulldozer to fill the river channel near his home, and to redirect the river.

Washington Attorney General Bob Ferguson says Cayo was sentenced to, and has since served, 30 days in jail and ordered to pay fines totaling more than $8,000, in addition to the restitution.

A National Marine Fisheries Service biologist’s report says Cayo harmed several endangered species, including steelhead, coho salmon and chum salmon, and degraded water quality.