Crime

Police Beat: A full moon, a failing marriage and an unwanted guest

Editor’s note: Compiled from reports to Tacoma police.

March 24: The sun was out, but the moon was full.

Officers drove to an address in the 6100 block of South Fawcett Street, responding to a report of indecent exposure.

They found a 57-year-old man working on a van parked in the street. They knew the man from prior contacts. He wore a green sweater and blue jeans that were too loose. His back end was exposed.

Officers spoke to a neighbor, who said he got home about 20 minutes earlier. He saw the van man, who pulled his pants down. The van man turned his head and gave the neighbor a look, then turned back and hitched his pants up, before pulling them down and exposing his backside again.

The neighbor said he had security footage. Officers looked at it. The neighbor’s description matched the footage, frame for frame.

Officers spoke to the van man and told him he was under arrest. They rounded up his dog and put it in his house. They booked him into the Fife City Jail on suspicion of indecent exposure. They also noted that the neighbor had filed an active anti-harassment order against the van man in August 2014. The order was still active.

March 24: Perhaps it’s etched in the endless list of unwritten rules — never bring a gun to a failing marriage.

The dispatch call started as a report of domestic violence with a weapon. On the open 911 line, a man and a woman screamed at each other. The woman’s voice reportedly said, “Get out of my house — you’ll never see the kids again.”

A moment later, the woman was on the phone, telling the dispatcher her ex was leaving after pointing a gun at her. She said he might be headed for his mother’s house in Fife.

Officers drove to an address in the 3300 block of South Ainsworth Avenue. They knocked on the door. It was dented, marred by bits of mud and dirt.

Inside, the woman tried to open the door. She said it was stuck, that her husband tried to kick the door in and jammed it.

Officers spoke to the woman through a window. She was 30. She said she and her husband were estranged, but they had two children and held joint custody.

She said her husband came to the house while a male friend was visiting. The woman and the friend were on the couch, undressed. The husband got mad. He screamed at her, pointed the gun at her and then at his own head.

The male friend backed up the woman’s account. Officers drove to an address in Fife and spoke to the ex-husband. He was 29, and emotional. He said he caught his wife sleeping with another man.

He said he had stayed the night at his ex-wife’s house, an arrangement that simplified the chore of taking kids to school. While there, he said he’d left his gun on top of the entertainment center, forgotten about it and left to take the children to his own apartment.

He came back to get the firearm and found the couple on the couch, he said. He admitted screaming and yelling and picking up his gun. He denied pointing it at anyone and said it was in the holster the entire time.

Officers checked back with the ex-wife, who said the gun had been left on the entertainment center and was never removed from its holster.

Officers took the ex-husband to the Fife jail and booked him on suspicion of intimidation with a weapon and malicious mischief.

March 23: Depending on the kindness of strangers is one thing; exploiting it is another. The couple took the woman in out of pity. The woman, 29, said she was homeless and had a baby in her care. The couple agreed to let her stay for a while. That turned out to be a mistake.

The dispatch call started as a report of an unwanted person. Officers drove to an address in the 2300 block of South Hosmer Street.

The couple, a 35-year-old man and a 25-year-old woman, were parked nearby, waiting. They said the guest was inside. They were trying to evict her, and she wouldn’t leave. They signed a no-contact order and gave it to the officers.

Officers knocked on the door of the house and spoke to the 29-year-old woman. She smiled; she said she knew the paperwork was coming. Officers handed her the no-contact order and told her it was time to leave.

The woman flew into a rage. She said she’d filed a no-contact order first, against the couple. She said her victim advocate told her those were the rules.

Officers told her it didn’t matter who filed first. The woman turned and ran into the house. Officers followed her and brought her out. They allowed her to grab a few belongings.

The woman called her victim advocate. One officer spoke to the advocate and explained the situation, noting that filing first didn’t matter under the circumstances. The woman separated from officers briefly, saying she was going to get her court paperwork.

Officers learned from the couple that a flat-screen TV had been taken from the house.

Officers ran a background check on the 29-year-old. They found two active arrest warrants and a suspended driver’s license.

After that, the woman called one of the officers and said she had her paperwork ready. The officers agreed to meet her. She was standing outside the home where she’d been evicted — a direct violation of the fresh no-contact order.

The officer told her she was under arrest. The woman yelled that she’d done nothing wrong. Officers transported the woman to the Fife Jail. She shouted obscenities along the way and told the officer he was a corrupt cop. She was booked into the jail on the warrants and on suspicion of violating the no-contact order.

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