Sheriff: Blaine man opens fire at wife, attacks relatives in wild rampage

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BLAINE, Wash. - A Blaine man is under arrest after sheriff's officials say he assaulted and fired a gun at his wife, and attacked his 71-year-old father and a 68-year-old female relative during a violent rampage the day after Christmas.

The drama unfolded at around 7 p.m. Tuesday when deputies responded to a report of a husband and wife fighting at their home in the 9600 block of Ronald Drive near Blaine.

As the deputies neared the scene, dispatchers told them that the 43-year-old husband had fired a weapon and was leaving in his vehicle. The deputies then spotted the husband's vehicle fleeing the scene and crashing into a ditch. They then saw the husband jump out of the vehicle and run off. He was later found and arrested by a state trooper.

A preliminary investigation determined that the violent incident had all started when the husband and wife had an argument at their home, Whatcom County sheriff's officials said.

The husband tried to take away his wife's phone by smashing her face down onto a bench, then biting her thumb, punching her and trying to choke her when she called for help, officials said.

The husband finally got hold of the wife's phone, took it outside, threw it on the ground and destroyed it.

Meanwhile, the wife locked herself inside the bathroom in an effort to hide from her husband. The husband went back into the house and tried to kick down the door to the bathroom, sheriff's officials said.

When a 68-year-old female relative tried to stop him, he smashed her into the wall and she fell to the floor. The husband then shoved his 71-year-old father as he tried to stop him, according to sheriff's officials.

The wife then was able to flee from the house and call 911. As she was speaking with dispatchers, the husband began chasing her as she ran away from him. The husband then opened fire at his wife with a gun as she ran to a neighbor's yard to hide, sheriff's officials said.

The husband then fired more shots at his wife's car, which was parked near the house. The husband smashed his own vehicle into his wife's car and into his father's vehicle, causing about $7,000 in damage, before he drove off in his vehicle, according to officials.

Further investigation revealed that the husband had set fire to clothing belonging to his wife on Christmas Eve, officials said.

After the husband's arrest, more than three grams of methamphetamine were found on his person. A search warrant was executed, which turned up nearly four more grams of meth at his home, according to sheriff's officials.

The husband was ultimately booked into the Whatcom County Jail for investigation of attempted second-degree murder, three counts of fourth-degree assault, hit and run, malicious mischief and possession of a controlled substance.

Whatcom County Sheriff Bill Elfo said the incident threatened not only the wife but also other family members and neighbors in the densely populated neighborhood where it took place.

"We are very fortunate that no one was killed during this episode," Elfo said.

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