Crime

Man accused of attacking deputy, punching police dog in the head

K9 Jaxx of the Thurston County Sheriff’s Office.
K9 Jaxx of the Thurston County Sheriff’s Office. Courtesy

Deputies arrested a 21-year-old man Wednesday after he reportedly attacked a Thurston County deputy and punched a police dog in the head.

Jaxx, a Thurston County Sheriff’s Office K9, bit Samuel A. Beam after deputies say Beam attacked the dog’s handler. Beam allegedly punched the dog several times in the head.

Beam was booked into the Thurston County jail and appeared before Thurston County Superior Court Judge Erik Price on Thursday. Price set bail at $3,000 and found probable cause for five charges: third-degree assault, first-degree criminal impersonation, harming a police dog, resisting arrest, and obstructing a police officer.

“There seems to be an escalation here of activity, and that’s very concerning,” Price said.

He said Beam’s alleged actions posed a great risk to law enforcement.

At the time of his arrest, Beam had an outstanding warrant for failing to appear in court for a 2016 case. Price set bail in that case at $2,000.

Court documents give the following account of Wednesday’s incident:

At about 2:15 p.m. Wednesday, a Thurston County deputy pulled over a red Nissan Altima near the 200 block of the Nisqually Cutoff Road Southeast after noticing the car had a defective headlight. The deputy spoke with the female driver, who said she didn’t realize the light wasn’t working.

Meanwhile, the deputy noticed that a male passenger, later identified as Beam, was acting suspicious.

“I noticed that the passenger would not look at me directly and appeared very nervous,” the deputy reported.

The deputy asked Beam his name, and he said it was Joshua. He began spelling the name “J-A-U-S-H,” and the deputy concluded that he was probably lying. Beam changed his answer and said his name was David, and that he was born in 1980. Beam changed his answer again and said he was born in 1996.

Again, the deputy concluded that Beam was lying. Beam said he was just nervous, and that his name was actually Samuel Beam. The deputy learned that Beam was wanted on a felony warrant, and asked Beam to step out of the car.

Deputies say Beam tried to run away, so the deputy grabbed him by the waist and pulled him to the ground. Beam grabbed the deputy’s flashlight and began swinging it. Believing Beam was going to assault him, the deputy released Jaxx.

The deputy commanded Jaxx to apprehend Beam, and Jaxx bit Beam in the thigh. Beam punched the dog in the head, and Jaxx let go.

Beam allegedly tried to run away again, and Jaxx caught him. He bit Beam’s jeans, and Beam’s pants fell down. Jaxx bit Beam again.

Beam reportedly punched the dog in the head four or five more times.

Eventually, Beam said, “I give up,” and the deputy pulled Jaxx off of him. Beam reportedly apologized as he, Jaxx and the deputy waited for other law enforcement units to arrive.

He was treated at a local hospital for the dog bites, then booked into the Thurston County jail.

Amelia Dickson: 360-754-5445, @Amelia_Oly

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