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Capitol Hill Odd Fellows building owner accused of attempted mass tree murder in Chelan

(Image: The Lookout)

(Image: The Lookout)

While developer and Capitol Hill real estate investor George “Ted” Schroth might support a project to make 10th Ave in front of his Odd Fellows building a pedestrian-only plaza, you might want to hold off on any landscaping plans.

Wednesday, Schroth is scheduled to enter his plea in Chelan County Superior Court on charges that the 46-year-old poured 81 bags of salt around the bases of 123 trees neighboring The Lookout, Schroth’s Chelan, WA-located “lakeside village.” Police say evidence left at the scene and video surveillance from the local Wal-Mart prove Schroth is an attempted tree murderer:

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Schroth has not replied to CHS about the case.

On Capitol Hill, the Eastside residing Schroth is best known as the landlord at the Odd Fellows building at 10th and Pine. He and wife Tricia Schroth acquired that property for $8.5 million in 2007. CHS wrote about the transformation of Odd Fellows from a neglected but well-used home for arts groups and performance spaces here last year as we looked at the creation of a new arts district in the neighborhood.

In the Chelan case, Schroth is charged with one count of first degree malicious mischief for the alleged October attempt to kill off the Whiskey Ranch trees. Police say the extent of the damage to the trees might not be known until later this spring. If all of the trees die — each a 30 to 40-foot poplar — the salting damages will include more than $295,000 in replacement costs.

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15 thoughts on “Capitol Hill Odd Fellows building owner accused of attempted mass tree murder in Chelan

    • Not cool, definitely, but psychopath might be pushing it. They are trees. I mean, we all use cut down trees right? TP, paper towel, etc.

      • We harvest trees as a resource, and they are harvested by those that they belong to. This is different. The definition of a psychopath is someone who knows the difference between right and wrong, but doesn’t care. I think it fits this case. He doesn’t own the trees, and he knows what he did was wrong, but he didn’t care.

  1. In their arrogance, the rich often don’t think rules and laws apply to them. Want to make a statement in reply? Boycott all Odd Fellows establishments!

  2. This is a guy who pushed out a whole host of Capitol Hill arts organizations from the Oddfellows building so he could turn it into a gentrification playground. Why is anyone surprised at this? If anything, this is just the Universe dumping his bad karma back onto him.

  3. I’ll never eat at Odd Fellows again. If they’re going to rent from this guy I refuse to support that business.

    • Don’t punish small businesses for the misdeeds of their landlord. They’re not the ones killing trees, and I’m certain the owners are just as disgusted by this nonsense as anyone. That’s like refusing to be friends with someone because the bank that handles their home mortgage was involved in fraud and tax evasion.

  4. Small world. We had a company event at The Lookout and I remember thinking those trees kind of ruined the view. I figured they were some sort of windbreak though.

  5. While salting the trees was clearly wrong, there are two sides to this story. Schroth is being painted as a greedy developer who destroyed the neighboring property for financial gain. Fair enough, if he really did what he’s been accused of.

    Unfortunately, the part of the story that isn’t being told is that those trees were planted with the sole intent of completely blocking all views of the lake and destroying neighboring property values. How would you like it if your neighbor maliciously put up a 30′ high concrete wall across your back yard and then told you they’d remove it for a price? Who’s the real psychopath here?

    The City of Chelan should’ve had an ordinance in place to prevent these trees from being planted in the first place.

    • Actually, those trees were planted well before the Lookout was ever anything. Teddy being the greedy narcissist that he is is guilty as ever. If you’ve ever met him, you’d know. He oozes unjustified entitlement and swims in an ocean-sized ego.

  6. Pingback: Capitol Hill developer pleads not guilty in Chelan tree poisoning attempt | CHS Capitol Hill Seattle