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Woman gets 10 years for shooting

A woman who shot a man three times after he accidentally hit her with a half-pint bottle has been sentenced to 10 years in federal prison.

Leona Sutton, 34, is a methamphetamine addict who federal prosecutors say is very dangerous.

“Defendant's livelihood has been a criminal one. Daily use of methamphetamine and distributing it to feed the habit,” according to a sentencing memorandum prepared by the U.S. Attorney's Office. “The public is not safe when she consumes alcohol or methamphetamine. It also is not safe when she has access to a firearm.”

Sutton shot the man, with whom she frequently used meth, on Oct. 2 with a .22 caliber rifle in Keller, Wash., on the Colville Indian Reservation.

Family told the FBI she had a history of violence and frequently tried to coerce her ex-boyfriend into assaulting people” and “routinely told him that she wanted “to kick someone's ass,” prosecutors wrote.

U.S. District Judge Frem Nielsen on Thursday sentenced Sutton to 120 months and 1 day in prison for discharging a firearm during a crime of violence and assault with a dangerous weapon, followed by three years of probation. She also is to pay $5,796.24 restitution. Nielsen recommended she undergo treatment for drug addiction while in prison.

Mike Ormsby, U.S. Attorney in Eastern Washington, praised the sentence in a prepared statement.

“Crimes of violence will not be tolerated in the Eastern District of Washington, particularly those crimes occurring on Tribal lands,” Ormsby said. “The Sutton case is yet another example of the United States Attorney's Office’s commitment to prosecute vigorously violent crimes.”
  

Gun suspect arrested after shooting

Gunfire at a party in Spokane Valley early Sunday led to the arrest of a 24-year-old suspect.

Edgar Ambriz Viveros is accused of firing a pistol at a home in the 15000 block of East Mission Avenue, where sheriff's deputies responded to a report of a shooting about 4:50 a.m.

No one was shot but on person cut his hand on broken glass during the altercation, according to the Spokane County Sheriff's Office.

Witnesses said Viveros fired the gun and fled in a vehicle before deputies arrived. Deputies found a vehicle matching the description in the area of Pines and Cherry roads.

Two men were detained for questioning after the vehicle was stopped at Pines Road and Maribeau Parkway. Major crimes detectives identified Viveros as a suspect and arrested him for first-degree assault.

Trial begins in horrible child abuse case

A jury trial began this week for a young man accused of brutally assaulting his infant daughter.

Tyler L. Jamison, 20, has been in the Spokane County Jail since April 2010, when his 2-month-old daughter, SkyeLynn suffered what Spokane police  initially feared would be fatal injuries but has since been adopted through a foster family.

Jamison is charged with first-degree assault. Police say he described weeks of horrible abuse that was sparked by the baby's crying.

He cut off her breathing until she turned pale “a couple times a day until his fingernails started leaving scratches and cuts on SkyeLynn’s skin,” according to court documents. He didn’t want anyone to notice what he was doing, so “he started cupping his hand over SkyeLynn’s nose and mouth when she would cry.”

Jamison also reportedly told police that he sometimes squeezed SkyeLynn and may have broken ribs. Medics said the girl’s ribs appeared to have been broken at different times.

Superior Court Judge Maryann Moreno is presiding over the trial, which began Monday. Sharon Hedlund is prosecuting. Jeff Compton is defending Jamison.

Past coverage:

April 12, 2010: Injured baby improving at Spokane hospital

April 8, 2010: Police: Baby brain dead after assault by father

Police arrest robbery, eluding suspect

A Spokane man suspected in recent robberies and of eluding police at least twice was arrested Monday after ramming a police cruiser.

Shane Lawrence Hagedorn, 30, was driving a red Oldsmobile Achieva on West Wellesley Avenue about 9 p.m. when members of the Spokane police Patrol Anti-Crime Team tried to block him at a red light at North Division Street, according to court documents.

Police say Hagedorn and his car are linked to at least two police chases and several robberies. He packed up his car and collided with Officer Jeremy Daniel's cruiser, then rammed the passenger side of Officer Sean Wheeler's cruiser before again striking Daniel's car.

Hagedorn was pulled from his vehicle and booked into jail on assault charges. He also faces drug charges for OxyContin and methamphetamine found on him after his arrest.

Hagedorn nearly died in 2008 after he was shot several times in his stomach during a fight at the West Wynn Motel, 2701 W. Sunset Highway.

It was described as a confrontation over a girl that started with threats on the phone. The gunman, Anthony R. Covert, then 19, was sentenced to 30 years in prison after a jury convicted him of attempted first-degree murder, first-degree assault, two counts of second-degree assault and two weapons charges.

Covert's lawyer said Hagedorn instigated the fight.

“This is a case where somebody (Hagedorn) thinks he has the upper hand and he’s going to wreak havoc on someone else and he miscalculates,” Assistant Public Defender Al Rossi said at Covert's sentencing in November 2009.

Covert is serving his sentence at Washington State Penitentiary in Walla Walla.

3 plead not guilty in downtown assault

Three men accused of a brutal beating in downtown Spokane late last month have pleaded not guilty.

Clayton M. Cotter, 21; Schuyler Ray Cotter, 19; and Michael W. Baesman, 34; are accused of beating a man unconscious June 27  near West 2nd Avenue and South Jefferson Street.

Clayton Cotter remains in jail on $10,000 bond. His younger brother is out of jail and was summonsed to court this morning for his arraignment before Superior Court Judge Annette Plese.

Baesman is at Geiger Corrections Center on $10,000 bond. He and the elder Cotter were arraigned Tuesday
Just after the brothers were arrested, prosecutors charged them with unlawful possession of a firearm for a case from December.

Police searched a home in the 1600 block of East Glass Avenue Dec. 8 after reports that the brothers lived there and had been possessing firearms. One witness said the men and their friends shots into a diaper box in the basement on a daily basis. Police seized a .22 caliber Mossberg 702 Plinkster rifle, along with rounds of .22 caliber ammunition and shotgun ammunition.

The downtown beating came at a time of concern from businesses and city leaders about roving packs of violent young people. Police have made several arrests.

On June 16, 18-year-old Eric James Smith was arrested for allegedly beating a bouncer at Jimmyz, 521 W. Sprague, who had just left work. David Reynold said he was surrounded by a large group of men who were “getting mouthy” and “getting in my face,” according to court documents.

Reynolds said the men retreated when he showed them his handgun. He was treated for a head injury at a hospital. Smith pleaded not guilty June 26 to second-degree assault and remains in jail on $20,000 bond.

Police say an increased focus in the downtown area has aided in the arrests.

Reports of gunman led to SWAT standoff

Spokane police arrest Maceo L. Williams, 27, after a SWAT team standoff on Thursday. (SPDphoto)

A SWAT team standoff in West Central Spokane Thursday was spurred by reports that a suspected drug dealer with a gun had told people he wasn't going back to jail without a fight.

Maceo L. Williams, 27, was arrested for violating his Department of Corrections probation after police pumped pepper spray into a home at 2301 W. Broadway Ave. Williams had refused to come out of the home for hours.

Williams is a reputed gang member who told people in the neighborhood about his arrest warrant, according to court documents.

Police were watching a home at 2415 W. Dean Ave., Thursday where Williams was said to be living when they saw him leave on a bicycle. He ended up at the West Broadway Avenue apartment.

Four occupants exited at the request of police, including Candice Lyons, who described herself as Williams' “street sister.” Amanda Tucker, who identified herself as Williams' girlfriend, told police Williams had a BB gun that he used “so no one disrespects us,” according to court documents. Lyons said Williams had a 9 mm handgun.

The SWAT team used a siren and bullhorn to try to contact Williams. They also used a robot to try to establish phone contact with him before pumping pepper spray into the home.

Police seized two BB guns and baggies of suspected methamphetamine or other white drugs at the home, according to a search warrant filed Friday.

Williams was arrested last December after a SWAT team standoff at 13110 N. Addison St., in north Spokane.

Police then were looking for him and a reputed Sureno gang member, Bobby S. “Angel” Decaney (pictured left), after a woman was assaulted and robbed of methamphetamine. 

Superior Court Judge Sam Cozza in April sentenced Williams to four months in jail with credit given for about four months already served for riot and second-degree attempted theft. He also was sentenced to two years probation.

Judge Greg Sypolt sentenced Decaney, who faced life in prison if convicted of his third violent felony, to nine months in jail and two years probation in April for the same charges. He remains in jail.

‘Take a Midol’ remark leads to assault

A dispute over a dinged car in a parking lot led to an assault arrest when a woman brandished a weapon after being told to “take a Midol,” Spokane police say.

Shawna M. Sweet, 23, is accused of striking Derek Boyer’s hand with the butt of a large hunting knife that was still in its sheath.

Boyer was sitting in a parked car outside the Smoker’s Outlet, 928 W. Indiana Ave., on Monday when Sweet opened the passenger door to the car she was in and it struck the car Boyer was in, according to court documents.

A verbal confrontation ensued, and Boyer told Sweet to “take a Midol” and called her a derogatory term that refers to her sexual orientation. Boyer told police that Sweet charged at him and pounded his hand with the butt of the knife. He struggled to get free and Sweet hit the car roof, denting it.

Police reviewed surveillance video that shows the incident happened how the victim and witnesses described.

Sweet told police she struck Boyer's hand with her fist, according to court documents.

Prints, Facebook aid in shooting probe

A Montana man charged in connection with a February shooting outside a Spokane Valley tavern thanks in part to evidence on Facebook is back in Spokane. 

Jarrod E. Veilleux, 29, is accused of shooting a man in the stomach as he smoked in an outside area on the east end of the Oasis Tavern, 14913 E. Trent Ave., about 9 p.m. Feb. 24. 

The victim told police he'd been beaten up at the same bar two years ago but had no idea if it was related, according to court documents. He said he was going through a contentious divorce but he had no idea why anyone would want to shoot him.

Detectives identified fingerprints on a pint glass and on a glass whiskey tumbler as belonging to Veilleux and Terrance D. Riley, 33.

The men were on probation in Montana and prohibited from leaving the state. They were jailed in Montana.

Veilleux appeared in Spokane County Superior Court today on charges of first-degree attempted murder and second-degree assault. Riley is charged with first-degree rendering criminal assistance.

Veilleux has the word 'Pile' tattooed across the knuckles of one his hands, which matches witness descriptions of the shooter. A sheriff's detective also reviewed the men's Facebook profiles and noted Veilleux with a blue Ford Explorer that matched the vehicle described as fleeing the shooting scene.

The multiple-time felon was convicted of burglary and theft charges in Gallatin County, Mont., in 2003 and sentenced to 20 years in prison with 12 years suspended.

Riley remains in prison in Deer Lodge, Mont.

3 arrested after downtown beating

Three men were arrested after another man was beaten unconscious in downtown Spokane Wednesday night.

Witnesses reported three men, one armed with a baseball bat, assaulting the man near West 2nd Avenue and South Jefferson Street about 8 p.m.

One of the men kicked the unconscious man in his head, a witness told police. Witnesses flagged down Officer Christopher Brasch near West 4th Avenue and South Madison Street and identified three suspects.

Clayton M. Cotter, 21; Schuyler R. Cotter, 19; and Michael W. Baesman, 34; were arrested and jailed on a second-degree assault charge. Police never found the baseball bat.

Clayton Cotter was convicted of misdemeanor assault in January 2010 and credited for 12 days served in jail. He also was given two years of probation.

Slingshot used to fire at speed camera

ELLICOTT CITY, Md. (AP) — Police in Maryland say a man has been charged with assault for using a slingshot to fire glass marbles at a speed camera van.

Authorities say Bruce Lawrence May of Ellicott City was arrested Tuesday. The 50-year-old Lawrence was also charged with destruction of property and reckless endangerment. He was released on $3,000 bond.

Howard County police say that at about 5 p.m. Tuesday, the van was near Manor Woods Elementary School when the operator heard something hit the side of the vehicle. The operator saw a minivan pass and saw the driver with a slingshot fire another projectile at the speed camera van.

Police say that May had received two speed camera violations recently.

Uptick in crime downtown a concern

Spokane City Council President Ben Stuckart is offering $10,000 from a City Council reserve fund for police overtime to help squash an uptick in crime downtown.

“After meeting with the business owners about their employees’ cars being broken into and a chef getting attacked, how can you not take action?” Stuckart said.

Read the rest of Jody Lawrence-Turner's story here.

Cops: Gun malfunction stopped murder

A Spokane man who police say would have killed a man had his gun not malfunctioned has been charged with attempted murder.

Carlos Himminez “Atlanta” Hodges, 38, was armed with a handgun when he confronted Kenneth Watkins at Watkins' home in the 1000 block of East 14th Avenue on Dec. 23, charges allege.

Hodges, who allegedly kicked in the front door about 4:38 a.m., demanded Watkins take him to his medical marijuana grow and hit Watkins with the gun when Watkins tried to disarm him, according to court documents.

Hodges stole marijuana, police say, but Watkins said he refused to take him to the basement because he feared Hodges would kill him there.

“Hodges then pointed the gun at Watkins and pulled the trigger, but the gun did not discharge,” according to court documents. “Hodges then ran away.”

Police completed their investigation in April. Hodges was charged this month with attempted first-degree murder, first-degree burglary, second-degree assault and attempted first-degree robbery. He remains in jail on $150,000 bond after appearing in Spokane County Superior Court last week.

SWAT helps arrest biker assault suspect

The Spokane police SWAT team helped arrested a domestic violence suspect on Sunday after officers learned he might be armed and have ties to a local biker gang.

Jerry W. Clark, 40, was jailed on a second-degree assault charge.

Police were investigating a report that Clark had badly assaulted his girlfriend tried to conduct a traffic stop on Clark's car early Sunday, but he sped away before ditching his car and running, according to the Spokane Police Department.

Officers lost him, so the Spokane police Patrol Anti-Crime Team watched several locations throughout the day to try to find him. They spotted him returning to his home in the 1100 block of West Providence Avenue and was arrested.

He appeared in court today on charges of second-degree assault and eluding police.

Clark's criminal history includes an arrest when he was 25 for stealing children's toys. He also was kidnapped and assaulted when he was 22.

4th suspect arrested in ‘09 home robbery

A fourth suspect has been arrested in a gunpoint home-invasion robbery that occurred nearly three years ago.

Travis J. Kulhavy, 28, is accused of robbing four people at a home in the 500 block of East Garland Avenue on Oct. 8, 2009.

Co-defendant Brian L. Gilliam, 28, was sentenced to five years in prison last week.

He and Maurice D. Lofton, 31, (pictured) who pleaded guilty in May 2010 to felony riot, helped police identify Kulhavy and Nicole A. Thompson, 21, as the final suspects in the robbery during interviews in late December and in January.

Thompson pleaded not guilty to the charges in May and is out of jail awaiting an August trial. Kulhavy had been wanted on a $150,000 warrant since May 3. He was booked into the Spokane County Jail Friday afternoon.

The incident began when a woman believed to be Thompson knocked on the front door and asked to use a telephone. Two men then appeared and one used a handgun to strike a man who exited the home and force him back inside. That man was forced to kneel down on the floor in an “execution-style position” as his wrists and ankles were bound with duct tape, according to court documents.

Three other people in the home also were restrained with duct tape and two were beaten with handguns. The robbers asked about drugs and money as they stole a duffel bag of marijuana, as well as cell phones, DVDs, a PlayStation and jewelry.

Police tracked one of the phones to the area of 200 E. Wedgewood Ave. the night of the robbery, where they arrested Gilliam and Lofton.

Gilliam described one of his accomplices as a woman named NIkki who had a tattoo that said “GD” and included a pitchfork.

Thompson showed detective Jeff Barrington that tattoo during an interview in March. “GD” is short for Gangster Disciple. Thompson told Barrington she was present during the robbery but “I did no harm. I didn't hurt no one. Travis did everything. All I did was get the door open,” according to court documents.

Kulhavy and Thompson are charged with four counts of first-degree robbery, four counts of first-degree kidnapping, three counts of second-degree assault and single counts of first-degree burglary and conspiracy to commit first-degree burglary.

Lofton was given the plea deal after the victim failed to identify him in a police lineup. He told Superior Court Judge Maryann Moreno at his sentencing that  “I was just at the wrong place at the wrong time. I was messing around with the wrong friends.” Read more here.

DOC fugitive now accused of assault

A Spokane man arrested for violating his probation on a robbery conviction also is accused of a new assault. 

Christopher M. Prusch, 35, faces a second-degree assault charge for allegedly choking a woman and striking her during an argument at a home in the 5300 block of North Martin Street June 6.

The woman said she'd asked Prusch to leave her home when he attacked her. Police photographed “fingerprint size bruises on her throat,” according to court documents.

Prusch told police he hit the woman after he was pushed but denied choking her.

Prusch was arrested last Wednesday on a Department of Corrections warrant for escape from community custody.

He appeared in Spokane County Superior Court on the new assault charge Monday. His bond was set at $25,000, but even if he pays it he won't be release because of a DOC probation hold.

Prusch's criminal history includes convictions for second-degree robbery, intimidation of a public servant and hit and run.

A national sex offender registry website lists Prusch has having a conviction for third-degree rape in 1994, but he's no longer listed in the Spokane County sex offender registry.

The picture at the top right is from the national registry. The picture at left is Prusch's most recent DOC mug shot.

Assault suspect jailed on $1 mil. bond

An assault suspect charged in connection with a murder at a Spokane motel in November has been jailed on $1 million bond after police caught him returning from an out-of-state flight.

Stafone N. “Stix” Fuentes, 27, (pictured) is prohibited from traveling out of state under conditions imposed by a judge who approved a $250,000 bail after his arrest Feb. 1. Fuentes posted that bond Feb. 29.

The Spokane gang team arrested him Thursday at the Spokane International Airport as he returned from Las Vegas on a late-night flight.

Fuentes could face life in prison without the possibility of parole if convicted of second-degree assault for a wild fight Nov. 27 fight at the Quality Inn, 110 E. Third Ave., which led to the shooting death of aspiring rapper Jose J. “Junior” Solis, 21, of Moses Lake.

Another aspiring rapper, John A. “Lil Danger” Castro, 27, (pictured) was arrested just after the homicide and remains in jail on a second-degree murder charge. Castro faces life in prison if convicted under the state's three-strikes law because of his criminal history.

Fuentes' lengthy criminal history includes two convictions for strikes: second-degree assault and first-degree robbery. He also has been convicted of unlawful possession of a firearm.

He was jailed briefly last summer after news of his uncle’s murder outside a rap concert in Montana revealed to his probation officer that he’d left the state without permission.

Final kidnapping suspect sentenced

The final of five suspects pleaded guilty Thursday to kidnapping in connection with a case where a woman was tied up in a Spokane hotel and had her head shaved before being dumped in a rock pit by her assailants.

Desiree N. Walling, 31, pleaded guilty to first-degree kidnapping as part of an Alford plea, which acknowledges prosecutors could likely prove the charge. She also agreed to plead guilty to first-degree and second-degree trafficking in stolen property as part of a separate sentence that will run at the same time as the kidnapping incarceration: 51 months.

Read the rest of Tom Clouse's story here.

Past coverage:

May 13, 2011: Five accused of kidnapping, torture

Spokane man guilty of tire-iron attack

A jury of seven men and five women found a Spokane man guilty Tuesday of attacking a refugee from Iraq with a tire iron during a gruesome attack that left the victim with severe head injuries.

Sentencing has not yet been set, but 25-year-old Grant T. McAdams faces somewhere between 17 and 22 years in prison after he was convicted of first-degree assault and first-degree robbery for the May 9, 2011, attack that nearly killed an Iraqi man who had come to the United States as a refugee after helping the U.S. military.

Read the rest of my story here.

Past coverage:

June 6: Tire iron assault trial begins

May 24, 2011: Tire iron assault, car theft leads to assault

Tipster claims reward in Cowell murder

WENATCHEE, Wash. (AP) — A man who wrote a letter pointing to Christopher Scott Wilson as the suspect in a Wenatchee slaying is claiming a reward of up to $38,000.

Theo A. Keyes wrote a letter to police telling them that Wilson (pictured) had once begun choking another girl. That led officers to take a DNA sample that linked him to the death of Mackenzie Cowell, a beauty school classmate.

The body of the 17-year-old was found along the Columbia River in February 2010 near Crescent Bar. She had been struck in the head, strangled and stabbed to death.

Wilson pleaded guilty to manslaughter in a plea deal and was sentenced May 23 to 14 years in prison.

The Wenatchee World reports (http://is.gd/xgnVFc ) the 32-year-old Keyes has already received a $2,000 reward from Cowell's mother.

Cops: Teen decks school resource officer

An 18-year-old man punched a school resource officer who confronted him for trespassing at North Central High School on Wednesday, police say.

Officer Paul Corrick said he recognized Henry Ivory Jones as a former student when he saw him inside the school at 1600 N. Howard St., about 2:25 p.m.

He said he was walking him out of the school when Jones swore at him, so Corrick told him he was under arrest for disorderly conduct. That's when Jones punched Corrick in the face and ran from the school.

A witness said Jones swore at Corrick and said that he was having a good day and not to ruin it before he decked him. Corrick found Jones outside the YMCA on Monroe Street and arrested him for third-degree assault, first-degree criminal trespass and resiting arrest.

Geiger inmate attacked while on toilet

An inmate at Geiger Corrections Center is accused of trying to strangle another inmate as she used a toilet late Wednesday.

A witness told corrections deputies the victim looked like “a deer in headlights” when Maria C. Schlienger, 23, attacked her with a pink, torn-up rag as the victim sat on a toilet in a bathroom stall at Geiger, 3507 S. Spotted Road, according to court documents.

Geiger, which is slated to close, is a minimum-security facility that houses overflow inmates from the Spokane County Jail.

The witness said Schlienger wrapped the rag around the woman's neck until she intervened. The 26-year-old victim, who is serving time for a drunken driving conviction, briefly lost consciousness, officials say.

A sheriff's deputy responded to the jail and noticed a faint red mark on the victim's neck. The rag was recovered from the bathroom floor.

Schlienger was transported to the jail on a second-degree assault charge.

Tripped-up cop gets lucky in traffic stop

A sheriff's deputy who fell while chasing a fleeing suspect last month got lucky in a traffic stop early Tuesday and located the man's roommate.

The driver alerted Deputy Ryan Truman that suspect Brandon J. Hoffman, 22, was living at his home in the 12500 block of North Freya Street. Truman and another deputy went to the home and arrested Hoffman.

Truman had been looking to arrest Hoffman since the man threw his bicycle at him and ran away after being stopped for riding without a front light and rear reflectors about 4 a.m. May 18.

Truman said Hoffman gave him a false name, but he was able to identify him through booking photos and other police records.

Truman yelled at Hoffman to stop several times as he an away, but he “fell during the foot pursuit and sustained minor injuries,” and the man got away.

Hoffman was booked into jail on charges of making a false statement, resisting arrest and third-degree assault.
  

Trial begins in brutal tire-iron assault

A Spokane County jury on Tuesday saw graphic photographs and heard descriptions of the tire-iron attack last year against a man who came to the United States as a refugee from Iraq after helping the U.S. military

 Spokane County Deputy Prosecutor Larry Steinmetz told the jury how the gruesome beating took place. But, Steinmetz did not say why Grant T. McAdams, 25, is alleged to have committed attempted first-degree murder and first-degree robbery on May 9, 2011.

Read the rest of Tom Clouse's story here.

Bevy of drugs found in felon’s truck

A longtime Spokane felon who fought with police in a Browne's Addition grocery store parking lot last week had about three ounces of heroin in his vehicle, police said today.

Stephen Patrick Link, 46, pleaded not guilty today in Spokane County Superior Court to possession of methamphetamine, attempt to elude a police vehicle and two counts of third-degree assault for the May 21 incident with Sgt. Kurt Vigesaa and Officer Ron Van Tassel at Rosauers, 1800 W. 2nd Ave.

Police are requesting prosecutors charge Link with six additional drug felonies after a search of his Ford Ranger on Friday revealed the heroin, valued at $2,400, marijuana packaged for sale and four prescription drugs packaged for sale, as well as a scale and baggies.

Police also found two syringes loaded with suspected heroin.  Those drugs were found in addition to methamphetamine, more than $7,000 and 35 suspected stolen gift cards that were found on the ground next to Link the night of his arrest.

Police began pursuing Link after a homeowner in the 4800 block of North Oak Street reported a man sitting in a truck in front of his home smoking drugs. Vigesaa attempted to stop Link near North Ash Street and West Grace Avenue, but he fled and crossed the Maple Street Bridge into downtown.

Police used a PIT maneuver to stop the truck, and Link exited the vehicle and fought with Vigesaa, who said he nearly lost consciousness and didn't know what hit him after he was attacked by Link, according to court documents. Vigesaa was treated at a hospital for cut eye and a broken blood vessel. (Police released a photo of the injury today)

Link also kicked and punched Van Tassel and broke his watch, police say Backup officers arrived and Link was shocked with a Taser and taken to the ground before being handcuffed. (View a photo from the scene here.) He was taken to a hospital before being booked into jail.

Link is well known to drug detectives “who have worked previous cases involving him,” according to a news release by police spokeswoman Officer Jennifer DeRuwe.

Vigesaa and Van Tassel have returned to work, DeRuwe said.

“This situation illustrates not only the dangers of police work, but how officers work together to effectively apprehend and remove a criminal suspect from the streets of Spokane.”

Link remains in the Spokane County Jail.

Murder suspect’s mental state questioned

A man who told detectives he murdered another methamphetamine addict in a fight over cigarettes will undergo a mental health examination. 

Acquaintances of suspect Shane Caleb Smith, 38, told investigators he is known as “Psycho Shane” and sometimes speaks of imaginary people and vivid hallucinations.

He also often accused people at gunpoint of things they did not do, witnesses told police.

Smith, who is pictured just after his arrest courtesy KHQ-TV, is accused of shooting Warren Scott Flinn on May 12.

Flinn, 44, died at a hospital May 16. 

Smith told detectives he and Flinn (right) had been out “scrapping” for metal near the railroad tracks on Lake Road when they began to argue over cigarettes.

Smith was arraigned on a second-degree murder charge Tuesday in Spokane County Superior Court. He was not given a trial date; rather, he was ordered to appear in court July 27 for an update on whether he's competent to stand trial.

Police: We saved repeat offender’s life

Spokane police say they saved the life of a career criminal and sex offender when he went into cardiac arrest after he was taken into custody Sunday.

Officer Nick Geren administered first aid on Joshua Clint Epperson, 32, while he was being transported to the jail after he was picked up the Spokane police Patrol Anti-Crime Team.

Epperson was taken to a hospital, then booked into jail on a slew of felony charges related to a home-invasion robbery and a burglary spree.

Epperson is level 3 sex offender, which is the classification considered most likely to reoffend. A woman who identified herself as his sister said in an email to The Spokesman-Review that he has “at least 10 kids that we know about.”

“He is a menace,” Melissa Epperson said in the email. “Please fight to keep him locked up for your community and his children.”

Epperson was arrested just three weeks ago for a burglary in the Country Homes area in north Spokane County.

Investigators believe he burglarized homes of guns, electronics and jewelry to help pay a $1,000 debt to his heroin dealer. Epperson's girlfriend, Chelsey M. Loe, also is suspected in the case. Investigators searched the couple's home at 51 E. Crown on May 6 and recovered meth and suspected stolen property.

Epperson told sheriff's detectives he burglarized homes with Anthony L. Haines, who was arrested May 2 with a gun stolen in one of the burglaries, according to court documents.

Epperson was out of jail awaiting arraignment in that case when police say he helped rob residents at a home in the Indian Trail area May 22. Suspects Nathan W. Day, 21, and Nathan T. McDaniels, 28, were arrested Wednesday and remain in jail.

Geren was awarded the Spokane Police Department's life-saving award in 2008 after he and Officer Brian Eckersley administered CPR on a woman who'd fallen unconscious in downtown Spokane.

Suspect in knife attack jailed in Idaho

A suspect has been identified in a May 1 attack that left a man with stab wounds to his chest and head in the West Garland District.

Fingerprints on a Coors Light can at the scene of the stabbing matched those of Joshua David Fleming, 31, who has been in jail in Kootenai County since May 18.

Fleming is accused of stabbing Eric Stensgar, 29, several times in the upper chest and head. Stensgar was found in alley in the 600 block of West Garland Avenue and treated at a local hospital. He told Spokane police he was drinking Coors Light and Goldschlager schnapps hard liquor when a man asked if he could drink with him.

They shared the alcohol, and Stensgar said his next memory was awaking in the alley with stab wounds. Stensgar underwent surgery at Providence Sacred Heart Medical Center for life threatening injuries, including a stab wound that entered his brain, according to court documents.

Prosecutors issued a $125,000 warrant for Fleming's arrest on May 21. By that time, Fleming already had been arrested on a probation violation for a grand theft conviction in Kootenai County. He waived extradition from Spokane May 18 and remains in the Kootenai County Jail.

Spokane police didn't know this when they issued a news release Tuesday calling for tips on his location.

Fleming has at least nine felony convictions in Spokane County beginning in 1996, inlcuding first-degree robbery, attempted second-degree assault, first-degree possession of stolen property, unlawful possession of a firearm and possession of a controlled substance.

Kidnapped man escapes from car trunk

A kidnapped man forced into the trunk of a car in Montana freed himself on a Pend Oreille County highway early Sunday, leading to two arrests.

A motorist said he was driving on Highway 2 near Pend Oreille Park about 7:10 a.m. when the trunk of the vehicle in front of him opened and a man started waving his arms and yelling for help, the Pend Oreille County Sheriff's Office said today.

The vehicle stopped and the man jumped from the trunk and ran toward the witness's vehicle. He said he'd been beaten, bound and forced into the trunk while in Montana.

Sheriff's deputies stopped the suspect vehicle a short time later near Newport, Wash. The driver initially refused to stop, and someone threw a firearm from the vehicle that was later recovered.

Kenny J. Morrison, 29, and John M. Davis, 39, of Columbia Falls, Mont., were arrested on charges of kidnapping, unlawful imprisonment, fourth-degree assault, possession of methadone without a prescription and unlawful possession of a firearm.

Pend Oreille County sheriff's investigators are working with detectives in Flathead County, Mont.

Sex offender arrested in home invasion

A sex offender suspected in a violent gunpoint home-invasion robbery was arrested today.

 Joshua Clint Epperson, 32, was booked into jail on felony charges related to an early-morning attack last Tuesday in the 9600 block of North Alpine Court in the Indian Trail area.

The Spokane police Patrol Anti-Crime Team located Epperson in the 4200 block of North Atlantic Street, Officer Brian Eckersley said in a news release.

Epperson was arrested just three weeks ago for a burglary in the Country Homes area in north Spokane County and is to be arraigned Wednesday on residential burglary, first-degree trafficking in stolen property and resisting arrest charges.

He was out of jail awaiting that arraignment when police allege he partook in the robbery, which involved the victims being bound with zip ties and one being pistol whipped.

Suspects Nathan W. Day, 21, and Nathan T. McDaniels, 28, were arrested Wednesday and remain in jail.

Epperson faces charges of first-degree burglary, first-degree robbery, first-degree kidnapping, possession of a stolen firearm, two counts of second-degree assault, two counts of unlawful imprisonment and two counts of possession of a controlled substance, Eckersley said. Prosecutors filed charges on Friday.

Epperson is a level 3 sex offender, which is the classification considered most likely to reoffend. He was convicted of third-degree rape of a child in 2003. He also has a conviction for indecent liberties.

2 arrested in Indian Trail home invasion

Two men have been arrested for a north Spokane home-invasion robbery in which the victims were bound with zip ties and one was pistol whipped.

Nathan W. Day, 21, and Nathan T. McDaniels, 28, are accused of entering a home in the 9600 block of North Alpine Court in the Indian Trail area about 2:45 a.m Tuesday, awaking a resident and asking him about a safe before stealing other items.

The victim said Day was armed with a handgun, and McDaniels told him to “be quiet and do what we say or you are going to get shot,” according to court documents prepared by the Spokane County Sheriff's Office.

Day struck the victim with in the eye with the butt of the gun, but the man said he was able to break free from his zip ties and jump out a window. He said his Wii gaming console and games were stolen during the robbery.

Another resident told police four men knocked on the door and he let McDaniels in to use the bathroom. One of the men asked him if he wanted to smoke meth, and the man said he walked the men downstairs to wake up his girlfriend. That's when Day displayed the gun and the man was bound with zip ties as others stole items from the home, court documents say.

But that man was able to break free, too, and he grabbed a sword and struck McDaniels in the arm with it. The robbers then fled. The man's girlfriend said the robbers also threatened her with a gun and stole her iPhone.

Detectives conducting surveillance on the suspects Wednesday spotted McDaniels in the 4700 block of North Standard and arrested him. He had with him credit cards and a driver's license belonging to one of the victims, according to the Sheriff's Office.

Day was arrested Wednesday in the 900 block of East Wabash Avenue with a stolen handgun. Police recovered the stolen Wii console from a home there, as well as baggies of methamphetamine.

The men were jailed on robbery, burglary and kidnapping charges. A third suspect, Joshua C. Epperson, is not yet in custody,