On Wednesday March 16th at approximately 10:55 AM Port Angeles Officers were dispatched to a reported fight in progress on the 400 block of East First Street involving a male brandishing a knife. PenCom received multiple calls on the incidents and responding officers eventually located the suspect on the 200 block of South Peabody.
The investigation showed that the suspect brandished a large knife and threatened two individuals in an incident that began on the sidewalk and moved into the US Post Office. The suspect in question was detained by officers based on reasonable suspicion that a crime had occurred and the suspect in question had committed the crime of assault with a knife. Officers located two separate victims and obtained statements from each that established that there was probable cause to arrest the suspect for assault in the first degree.
The suspect was arrested and transported to the Clallam County Jail where he was booked on two counts of Assault in the 1st degree. Officers recovered two knives from the suspect, including one that matched that described by both victims. The knife recovered had an approximately 6 1/2 inch blade and was approximately 10 1/2 inches long.
The investigation showed that the suspect confronted and threatened the first victim with a knife on the 400 block of East First Street. Given reported threats made and the brandishing of the knife the victim (later) reported being afraid that he would be stabbed. A second victim saw the assault unfolding and yelled to the suspect to stop and stated he would call the police. The suspect turned his attention on that victim and approached within 10 to 15 feet, according to the victim. He stated that he feared for his life.
Officers were able to make an arrest on probable cause for Assault in the 1st Degree based on the statements from both victims and their demeanor, recovery of a knife from the suspect that matched the knife described by both the victims and the reported distance between the suspect and victims when the knife was brandished and the threats made. The Prosecuting Attorney's Office will review the case and make a final charging decision.
Yesterday PAPD had four officers assigned to dayshift from Blue Squad. Between 6 AM and 5 PM they were dispatched to over 50 calls. Several calls involved violence and there were several disturbance calls and incidents that required multiple units. This included a domestic violence case where and arrest was made for Assault 4/DV (2022-4619 ) and an agitated subject who assaulted officers (2022-4634) and struggled with them in the roadway on East First Street. With the assistance of PA Fire Paramedics this individual was taken into civil custody under the Involuntary Treatment Act and transported to the Olympic Medical Center.
The balance of the rest of on duty PAPD yesterday was attending mandatory use of force (Bola wrap) and firearms training. The Deputy Chief, the Code Enforcement Officer, Clallam Sheriff's Deputies and the Lower Elwha Police assisted the Patrol Shift with some of yesterday's calls but the majority of the workload fell onto these 4 officers. All four remained well beyond their scheduled 11 hour shift as they were completing required reports and processing evidence. Also notable is that PA Fire reports responding to 31 calls on Wednesday.. Their “normal” call average is 15.
Washington State remains 51st (or in last place) in the United States (including the District of Columbia) in terms of the ratio of sworn officers to the population.