Crime

Police beat: Men attacking cars, and a Seattle cop in the City of Destiny

Editor’s note: Compiled from reports to Tacoma police and the Pierce County Sheriff’s Office.

Oct. 28: If you’re in the midst of a custody battle, perhaps 4 a.m. isn’t the best time to demand an audience with your 7-year-old.

The dispatch call reported a vandalized vehicle. The caller suspected her ex.

An officer drove to the 8700 block of South Hosmer Street and found a blue 2015 Hyundai Sonata in the parking lot of an apartment complex.

The car looked like an assault victim. Three tires were flat. The back window had a hole the size of a softball. The other cars in the lot were undamaged.

The car looked like an assault victim. Three tires were flat. The back window had a hole the size of a softball. The other cars in the lot were undamaged.

The 35-year-old woman who called police walked to the car and spoke to the officer, who noticed her tears. The woman said the car had been damaged at about 4:20 a.m.

She was certain of the time because her ex had called around the same moment, demanding to see their daughter. Also, a neighbor had heard a loud voice in the lot. The woman said she’d been afraid to look outside.

She said her ex, 41, stayed at an apartment across the street. They were fighting in court over custody of the child. The woman’s girlfriend, standing nearby, echoed the story.

The officer advised the woman to seek a restraining order against her ex, and gave her an information sheet. He left the scene and parked nearby to write a report.

In the midst of that task, he spotted the woman and her girlfriend again, arguing with a man.

“He hit me!” the girlfriend said.

“I slapped her,” the man said.

The officer stepped out of his car and called for backup. He cuffed the man, who turned out to be the ex. The girlfriend was yelling at him. The officer told her to back away.

The man said he had followed the two women into a nearby store, asking questions about his daughter. That started the argument, which spilled into the street. The man said the girlfriend hit him with a glass bottle, so he slapped her.

What about the car that had been damaged?

The man said he owned the vehicle and he could do whatever he wanted to it.

Did he damage it?

“If you got me on camera doing it, then yes, but you don’t got me on camera, then no.”

The officer shifted to the woman. She said that her ex started the argument in the store, and made it worse by pushing the girlfriend, who pushed him back, which led to the slap. The girlfriend had hit the man with the bottle, the woman said.

An interview with the girlfriend yielded the same story. The officer decided to arrest the ex.

On the way to the Pierce County Jail, the man kept saying he could do whatever he wanted to his own car, without admitting he’d done anything. He added that he was a convicted bank robber and he would remember the officer’s name. He was booked on suspicion of malicious mischief and misdemeanor assault.

Oct. 28: The Seattle cop was off-duty, at home in Tacoma, but his professional radar kicked in when he noticed the man walking the small dog.

The man was looking at a parked car that didn’t belong to him. The cop knew it; the car belonged to a neighbor.

The man looked around, seemingly checking to see if anyone was watching. He opened the passenger door, leaned in, reached for something, then shut the door and walked on.

The cop figured something was up. He walked toward the man, identified himself as an off-duty police officer, and told him to stop.

The man started fidgeting. The cop drew his gun and repeated the command. The man ran, threw something away, and tried to cut through a thicket of bushes. The cop caught up.

The man started fidgeting. The cop drew his gun and repeated the command. The man ran, threw something away, and tried to cut through a thicket of bushes. The cop caught up.

When Tacoma officers arrived in the 5400 block of North 39th Street, they found the cop holding the man at gunpoint. The cop gave a swift account of the incident.

Officers cuffed the man, 29, and asked what he was doing. The man said he was just walking his dog. An officer told him that the Seattle cop had provided a detailed statement.

“I have the right to remain silent,” the man said, and stopped talking.

Officers spoke to the owner of the car. She said she didn’t know the man. They searched a yard where the man had thrown something, and found a portable GPS system and a power cord.

The man had a prior warrant for his arrest. The officers booked him into the Pierce County Jail on the warrant and suspicion of vehicle prowling. The dog was taken to a kennel at police headquarters.

Oct. 31: The drunken man didn’t care what the school staff thought, didn’t care what his girlfriend thought and didn’t care what her father thought. The sheriff’s deputies were unmoved.

The dispatch call reported a domestic assault with a knife. Deputies drove to the 100 block of 134th Street East and spoke to a woman who said her boyfriend was out of hand.

She and her family had gone to Midland Elementary school for a holiday event. Her boyfriend was drunk, she said, and school staff said he shouldn’t be there.

The woman asked her boyfriend, 29, to leave. He wouldn’t. The woman’s father asked him to leave. At first he refused, then started to go, but he argued with the father just outside school grounds.

The two men started yelling. The father pushed the boyfriend. The boyfriend pulled a knife. The father punched him in the face. The woman took the knife away.

The two men started yelling. The father pushed the boyfriend. The boyfriend pulled a knife. The father punched him in the face. The woman took the knife away.

She drove him home in her truck. On the way, they argued. The boyfriend complained that she didn’t stand up for him and took her father’s side.

He smashed the passenger window with his elbow and cut his arm. He kicked the windshield, creating a spider web of cracks.

Arriving home, he ripped the broken glass from the passenger window. He picked up a rock and slammed it on the the hood of the truck. The woman told him to stop. He snapped off the antenna and told her she cared more about the truck than him.

He balled his fist and threw a punch at her head, barely missing. He went inside the house and locked the door.

As she told the story to deputies, the woman cried and trembled. She said she was afraid, and that her boyfriend would try to hit her again.

Deputies knocked on the door several times. Finally, the man came out, wearing only boxer shorts. His elbow was bleeding.

He said the woman’s father punched him in the face. He denied threatening anyone with a knife. He said he broke the window because he was frustrated, because his girlfriend wouldn’t stick up for him.

Deputies called an emergency medical team to treat the man’s wound, then booked him into the Pierce County Jail on suspicion of malicious mischief and misdemeanor assault. They helped the woman file a domestic violence report, and told her how to seek a protection order.

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