A man charged with threatening to blow up Puyallup City Hall told police he was just blowing “off a little steam.
Pierce County prosecutors didn’t take it so lightly and charged the 64-year-old with threatening to bomb property. The man pleaded not guilty Thursday and was ordered jailed in lieu of $100,000.
The threats came May 8 in a phone call to Chris Beale, a Puyallup city employee who is running for Tacoma City Council.
The exchange started off pleasantly enough.
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The man thanked Beale for handing out pamphlets, but then began talking about his political views. He was angry.
Angry about a sidewalk in front of his home, red light cameras, a 20-year-old incident involving a dispute with a city inspector and an unfinished a rain garden at the City Engineer’s Office, according to charging papers.
“As he discussed each incident, he became more upset and began using abusive and vulgar language,” records show.
The man allegedly asked Beale to come to his house so they could talk.
He indicated he wanted to punch and hurt city employees, and “blow up City Hall and kill all those incompetent (expletive).”
Beale called police after he hung, saying he took the threats seriously.
Officers went to the man’s house and took him into custody.
The man was angry. He said he didn’t know it was a crime to make threats.
“Can’t a guy blow off a little steam?” he complained. “Chris was supposed to come down here and talk to me. No one can take a joke anymore.”
Stacia Glenn: 253-597-8653