Editor’s note: Compiled from reports to Tacoma police.
May 15: Apparently, the idea was to spray-paint the roof of the Honda, confusing witnesses who linked it to earlier car prowls.
The clever ploy failed. Workers at the hardware store in the 1000 block of North Pearl Street instantly recognized the car and the two occupants: vehicle prowlers who had been spotted in the same parking lot a week earlier.
An officer drove to the lot, and saw a man and a woman walk quickly into the store before he could talk to them. He pulled up to the Honda and checked the plate, which matched the information he’d been given in the dispatch call. He took note of the black spray paint on the roof.
Meanwhile, employees of the store hustled out to tell him the man and the woman had fled through an employee-only emergency exit.
By this time, the officer had matched the plate to records associated with the woman, who had active arrest warrants. The officer then spotted the man, running toward a nearby gas station and scurrying through a hole in a fence.
The officer drove around the block, caught up with the man and detained him. The man, 52, denied fleeing from the store and denied running from the Honda, though the officer had seen him step out of the passenger side.
The man added that he had a warrant for his arrest. The officer confirmed it, also finding a second warrant. The man changed his story and admitted he’d been in the car. He carried a glass bubble pipe used for smoking meth. The officer handed him off to a state community corrections officer who had responded to a call.
Separately, a state trooper responding to the scene spotted the woman and detained her. The officer drove over, recognized the woman and took charge of her. The woman, 30, gave a name. The officer told her she had warrants and she was under arrest.
The woman gave a different name, which was linked to two more warrants. The man was booked into the SCORE jail in Des Moines. The woman was booked into the Pierce County Jail for her warrants.
May 14: The man tried to climb into a stranger’s car. When police stopped him, he behaved oddly, and said he was addled by low blood sugar.
After a bit of questioning, he stopped acting confused and shifted to profane defiance.
The dispatch call said a man tried to enter a newspaper delivery driver’s car while the driver was sitting inside. Her husband had confronted him, and the man walked away. The driver told dispatchers the man wore gloves.
Two officers drove to the 900 block of Stadium Way and spoke to the driver and her husband. They said the man had walked into the yard of a house nearby. Officers soon found him — the man was standing by the front door of the house. He wore thin black gloves.
The man said he was lost, and having a diabetic emergency. He walked unsteadily and slowly, leaning on a car to hold himself up. Asked for identification, he gave it. One officer called for medical aid.
The man said he didn’t need aid. He just needed a ride to someplace where he could buy a snack and get his blood sugar up. He said he didn’t know where he was or what was going on. He said he’d been visiting a friend who lived nearby, and gotten lost.
The officer was skeptical. The man’s fatigue and weakness seemed selective and theatrical. The officer asked what the gloves were for.
The man straightened instantly and told the officer to shut up and not say another word. The man said he wore the gloves because he was cold.
The officer, preparing to cuff the man, told him to turn around. The man refused and cursed, shouting, “Show me the RCW! Show me the RCW!” referring to state law.
The man said he was walking away because he’d done nothing wrong, and officers couldn’t prove otherwise. An officer told him he wasn’t free to go.
The man replied with a string of curses, shouting, “Lawyer! Lawyer! Lawyer!” He clenched his fists. The officer took hold of him, wrestled him to the ground and cuffed him. He was booked into the Pierce County Jail on suspicion of obstructing an officer.
May 13: After the bartender cut the man off, he stepped into his car, shifted into reverse and toppled a light pole. He tried to drive away, but the broken light fixture tangled itself in the undercarriage.
Officers found him at the intersection of South 6th Avenue and St. Helens Avenue. The man, 25, fumbled for his driver’s license and forgot to provide proof of insurance until the officer asked him again, but he still couldn’t find it.
He said he’d had “only one drink,” and needed to go home, but he wanted someone to help him move his car. He failed the field sobriety test, and lost a contact lens in the midst of it.
The bartender said she’d cut the man off earlier because he was too drunk. She said she persuaded the man to get out of his car. She said she and two co-workers tried to help the man move it, but couldn’t. They moved the broken pole out of the roadway.
At police headquarters, the man took a breath test. The readings came back: 0.175 and 0.165, twice the legal limit of 0.08. Officers booked him into the Pierce County Jail on suspicion of drunken driving.