Editor’s note: Compiled from reports to Tacoma police.
June 14: The fracas over a Facebook video started in an apartment and spilled into the parking lot.
Officers drove to an address in the 1300 bock of North Highlands Parkway in response to a reported fight between a man and a woman. Reaching the parking lot, they saw the woman. She was 19, and she carried a 2-month-old baby.
She said she was in a fight with the child’s father. She said he took her cellphone battery. She started to say more when the father walked toward the patrol car and yelled at the woman.
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The father was 21. One officer told the mother to walk away so they could talk to him. She hesitated, and started yelling back at the man. The officer kept the two of them separated, told them to cool down and called for backup. Three more officers arrived, cuffed the father and put him in a patrol car.
The mother said the couple argued over an old Facebook post. The father didn’t like it, but the mother kept re-posting the video, she said.
The father got mad, took her phone, removed the battery and hit her in the face, she said. The mother hit him back and kicked him, she said. The father left the apartment with her battery, so she chased him into the street. Noticing bystanders, the mother told them to call police.
The father told almost the same story, but denied hitting the mother. He admitted removing the phone battery. Officers took it from him. He said the mother started beating up on him and hit him with a car seat.
Officers looked at the man’s face and saw no marks, though his shirt was torn. The mother had a swollen eye. They checked records on the father and found two active warrants for his arrest. They booked him into the Fife City Jail on suspicion of misdemeanor assault.
June 16: The transient claimed officers violated his grilling rights.
He was 44, crabby and hungry at 6:43 a.m. Officers found him walking away from a restaurant parking lot and a pile of charred, waterlogged cardboard in the 200 block of St. Helens Avenue.
A witness told officers Tacoma firefighters doused the cardboard after the transient set it on fire. The firefighters told the transient to stay in the area, the witness said, but the transient got aggressive and left.
The restaurant owner said he’d recently paid the transient to pick up garbage from the parking lot but that he kept coming back, asking for more money. The owner said he arrived to open the restaurant, saw the transient next to the cardboard blaze and called 911.
The transient was walking in an alley nearby when officers stopped him. They’d seen him before. He told them to leave him alone.
Officers said they needed to talk to him about the fire. The transient said he was trying to smoke some meat he found in the garbage. That was his right, he said — and this was entrapment.
Officers told him to sit. The transient swore and tried to walk away. Officers cuffed him and asked for identification. He had none, but he gave a name.
Officers told him he was under arrest. The transient yelled as officers tried to read him his rights.
In the patrol car on the way to the Fife City Jail, he shouted threats. He claimed his uncle was a Marine sniper. He said the officer would be dead or in federal prison soon. The officer booked him on suspicion of second-degree reckless burning.
June 16: The dispatch call reported two men fighting over strawberries. Officers drove to an address in the 1300 block of Fawcett Avenue and broke up the brawl.
One man was 53, a homeowner. The other was 39, a transient.
The homeowner said the transient kept picking strawberries from the planting strip in front of the house. That led to a confrontation and a fight, the homeowner said.
Both men had scratches and limited damage. Officers made a judgment call: The fight was a draw, both men could walk away, no one had to go to jail.
The homeowner “was good with this,” the report states.
The transient wasn’t. He argued that he had a right to pick the strawberries.
Officers told the man no. He kept arguing, despite being told he could walk away. His arguments became irrational. An officer took the man to the Tacoma Rescue Mission and told him not to pick the strawberries.
An hour later, the homeowner called to say the transient was back, yelling and screaming. Officers drove back to the planting strip. They cuffed the transient, who yelled about the strawberries and his rights.
One officer asked the man if he understood the previous warning. The man said he had a right to pick the strawberries.
The officer took stock and decided. He arrested the transient, who was booked into the Fife City Jail on suspicion of creating a public disturbance.