Crime

Police beat: Beer and pool, road rage, and a stinky chase

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

June 5: One man nodded off at the table. The bar owner told him to wake up — it was time to go.

The man, 45, woke, swore and tried to stop the owner from taking his beer glass.

The owner again told him to leave. The man refused.

His friend, 34, got up to play pool, and periodically filled the older man’s beer glass. The owner called police.

Two officers drove to the bar in the 2600 block of Pacific Avenue. The owner pointed to the two unwanted guests.

The older man had gotten up to play pool. He held a cue in his hands. An officer told him to put it down. The man swayed and refused, his eyes half-open.

The older man had gotten up to play pool. He held a cue in his hands. An officer told him to put it down. The man swayed and refused, his eyes half-open.

The second officer spoke to the younger man and asked what the problem was this evening.

No problem, the younger man said.

Hadn’t the owner asked the men to leave?

“No, no one told me anything,” the younger man said.

The officer asked the question again. The man denied it again.

The officer said the men had to leave.

The younger man said he’d paid for his beer. Why couldn’t he finish it?

The officer said the man needed to leave. The man turned to his pitcher of beer and started filling his glass.

The officers grabbed the man by the collar of his jacket and took him outside. They asked for his identification.

The man kept talking about his beer. He said he had a bicycle nearby and needed to retrieve it.

He started to pull away. The officers warned him against it and told him he’d have to be cuffed. The man kept pulling away.

His friend, the older man, came out of the bar and approached. The officers told him to back away. He didn’t. The officer drew a stun gun and told the man to back up. Instead, the man bent toward his friend. The officer pulled him back and sat him down.

Soon, the first man was cuffed. Officers booked him into the Pierce County Jail on suspicion of trespassing and interfering with the officer. They transported the other man to the Tacoma Rescue Mission. Both men were told they were banned from the bar.

June 4: The road-ragers blamed each other. Officers weren’t sure who started the fight.

One man, 30, drove a black 2001 Saturn. He told officers he was driving on Pacific Avenue near South 72nd Street when another guy driving a 2014 Ford Fusion started tailgating him.

The man said he he tapped on his brakes to make the other driver back off.

The man said he he tapped on his brakes to make the other driver back off.

It didn’t work, the man said. The other driver sped up and hit the rear bumper twice. After that, both men drove to a restaurant parking lot and started arguing. The second driver left, the man said, but he dropped a prescription bottle during the altercation.

The officer checked the bottle — Oxycodone, it said — and the address. He drove to a house in the 200 block of East 64th Street and spoke to the other driver, a 39-year-old man.

The man said the other driver had provoked him, tried to bait him into a collision, kept braking suddenly. He also noticed the prescription bottle was empty, though it hadn’t been before.

The officer wrote the man a citation for misdemeanor hit-and-run, drove back to the restaurant parking lot and gave the other man a case number.

June 3: The charges came with a special kind of stink.

On paper, they were listed as attempting to elude a police vehicle, unlawful possession of a controlled substance and driving with a suspended license. In real time, they reflected a May 9 chase into a pile of yard waste and manure.

An officer on routine patrol at South 72nd and Hosmer Streets at 11 p.m. noticed a car ahead of her, a gray Nissan Armada. Abruptly, the driver accelerated, as if to run a red light, then slammed the brakes with a squeal.

The officer ran a quick license plate check; the vehicle had been reported stolen two weeks earlier.

She alerted dispatch and started to follow the car. The driver changed lanes repeatedly, turned sharply around a corner, and pulled onto a dead-end street.

The officer followed. The car drove over lawns and between buildings. Following, but occasionally losing sight of the car, the officer found a pile of yard waste bins blocking an alley. The stench of manure was everywhere.

Along with other officers, she soon found the car, abandoned but damaged. Inside was a wallet belonging to the 23-year-old driver, and a receipt from a bail bond company.

Along with other officers, she soon found the car, abandoned but damaged. Inside was a wallet belonging to the 23-year-old driver, and a receipt from a bail bond company.

Officers tracked the driver and another man down nearby, walking casually but breathing heavily, their pants covered in grass and debris, the stench of manure rolling off of them.

The 23-year-old said he was out on bail from a charge in Thurston County.

Where was his wallet? Stolen, he said.

Why was it in a stolen car?

The man said the car wasn’t stolen; he’d just bought it from someone. At first he said he was driving, then he said he wasn’t; he knew his license was suspended.

Officers booked the man and his friend into the Pierce County Jail on prior arrest warrants. Prosecutors tacked on the additional charges later.

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