Homeless man arrested for attacking father, daughter; 3rd attack in Seattle in a month
SEATTLE - A 26-year-old homeless man was ordered held on $75,000 bail Tuesday after police say he assaulted a father and daughter walking to the movies on Sunday.
The man, who is not being named by KOMO because he has not been formally charged, is accused of assault.
According to Seattle police, the family was walking in the 700 block of Lenora Street toward the Cinerama in Belltown when they came upon a man “acting erratic and aggressive.”
“They were walking down the street they encounter a person who appears to be in crisis. There’s some sort of confrontation,” Sgt. Sean Whitcomb told KOMO.
When the man started following them the woman yelled at him to leave them alone, the report said. When the woman noticed what appeared to be a knife in the man’s hand she pulled out what Whitcomb describes as “an expandable baton.”
“The suspect disarmed her and shook her,” Whitcomb said.
The woman’s father intervened and was struck in the head with the baton, police said. The 26-year-old man then walked away.
Police said they spotted someone matching his description nearby; when they approached him he ran. When officers told him to stop he got on the ground, the report said.
Officers described the man as “completely delusional,” in their report. They said he asked them “what’s in your sink?”
The man, who a source said has a documented history of mental illness, is homeless. He’s the third homeless man arrested in nearly five weeks for allegedly attacking a stranger.
Last month a woman was raped in the restroom of a Ballard car dealership by a man authorities say was homeless. Earlier this month a man walking with his family toward the Space Needle was attacked by a homeless man who was apparently in mental crisis.
Seattle Mayor Jenny Durkan said there’s no reason to connect the cases.
“We have to make sure that we don’t take one or two incidents and extrapolate too broadly from them,” Durkan told KOMO in an interview Monday. “It’s a hard time in Seattle right now. We have grown so rapidly and the issue of homelessness has grown with it.”
Durkan’s office said she would not be commenting Tuesday on the most recent attack near the movie theater. On Monday Durkan said Seattle is a safe place.
“We have over 40 million tourists who come to Seattle every year, it’s a safe place. If you look throughout the country in the terms of the number of violent crimes Seattle is safe,” she said.
Seattle police said there has been a 10 percent increase in aggravated assaults citywide since June 2017.
Sgt. Sean Whitcomb says the data he had didn’t indicate if the people being arrested are homeless. He said they’re increasing patrols as tourist season begins.
“This is the height of the tourist season here in Seattle we have added resources downtown and other destination areas throughout the City of Seattle,” he said.