The Radio Equalizer: Brian Maloney

25 March 2005

County Courts Repeatedly Let Criminal Abuser Walk

Why Wasn't Aurora Avenue's Demolition Man in Jail?

When domestic violence spills out into the streets and injures innocent bystanders, it's officially time to stop ignoring it.

No longer can we say that it's not our business because it takes place behind closed doors. These guys are getting downright bold. This one had no fear and posed a grave danger to the public.

It would be easy to chalk this up to one madman, but there have been so many incidents in recent years, particularly in the Puget Sound area.

The bigger question, of course, is why courts in Snohomish and King Counties have let this menace go free so many times.

This perp's done everything under the sun: convictions for domestic violence three times in Edmonds this past year alone, multiple evictions for non-payment of rent, forged checks, you name it.

Amazing there are people still willing to rent to this guy!

He's been a no-show in court a whopping 12 times!

Could you get away with this even once? How did he?

Most fascinating: the phony check got him four months in King County Jail, while the three domestic violence convictions in Snohomish County obviously didn't result in much, if any, jail time.

He's been right back out on the street each time.

Now four people are in the hospital, plus six cars smashed up, after his cake-topper on Aurora Avenue north of Seattle, because of this menace. A 10-block chase after his ex-girlfriend, waving a BB gun, created this daytime mess.

Even after seriously injuring her, he got out of the car to scream at her some more. Apparently he wasn't done venting.

It took this extraordinary incident to finally see this thug, so far unnamed by the papers, see a significant bail amount imposed.

In a week where the need for judicial reform has never been more clear, it's time for liberals to think about the end result of the soft-on-crime morons they elect time and again.

This would also be a great time for the Seattle Times and Post-Intelligencer to review their policies of leaving such suspects unnamed until charges are filed. The fact that he has so many prior convictions makes it important for the readers to know his name at the time the incident is first reported to the public.

(Seattle Times-Sarah Jean Green)

Yesterday, King County District Court Judge Sue Noonan said she was granting a prosecutor's request to set bail at $750,000 because of the man's "extraordinarily dangerous conduct." He is being held in the King County Jail on suspicion of domestic-violence assault and three counts of vehicular assault, jail records show. Prosecutors have until Monday to charge him.

The Seattle Times usually does not name criminal suspects before charges are filed.

Just after 2 p.m. Wednesday, the 39-year-old man began chasing his 43-year-old ex-girlfriend as they both drove in separate pickups on Aurora Avenue North in Shoreline. The chase started near the intersection with South 185th Street and ended 10 blocks to the north with a multi-vehicle crash that sent the man's ex-girlfriend and three other drivers to area hospitals, said King County sheriff's Sgt. John Urquhart.

During the chase, the man apparently pointed a BB rifle at his ex-girlfriend and used his vehicle to bump her vehicle, Urquhart said. He is accused of then forcing the woman's truck into oncoming traffic, setting off a chain-reaction wreck involving five other vehicles. Immediately after the crash, witnesses told investigators the man went up to the woman's vehicle and was screaming and swearing at her as she lay seriously injured in her mangled 1983 Ford pickup.

The ex-girlfriend, who is from Edmonds, and a 59-year-old Everett woman are both in serious condition at Harborview Medical Center in Seattle, a hospital spokeswoman said. Two men, a 43-year-old from Edmonds and a 21-year-old from Seattle, were treated and released Wednesday night from Northwest Hospital & Medical Center in North Seattle, a nursing supervisor said. A 78-year-old Edmonds man was treated at the scene.


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