Burglary suspect quickly caught, bomb scare holds no hazard

Enumclaw police had a busy week last week from a Safeway robbery to a suspicious package.

Burglary suspect quickly caught, bomb scare holds no hazard

A brazen burglary from a major grocery store, followed by a suspicious package that brought a bomb squad to town, provided the bookends for a busy few days in Enumclaw.

The burglary started at 2:30 a.m. April 2, when a young man walked into Safeway. During that early morning shift, most store activity involves stocking shelves as customers are scarce. The 18-year-old suspect was counting on that; he came armed with a tool that he used to quickly pry open cash register drawers.

Scooping money from the tills, he and several associates departed without notice, according to a verbal report issued by an Enumclaw Police Department spokesman. They hopped into a vehicle and drove east on state Route 410.

Proving that it’s best to obey traffic laws, the vehicle was pulled over minutes later. An EPD patrol officer stopped the vehicle for a routine violation and that’s when all the pieces fell into place.

The officer first noticed a smell of marijuana wafting from the suspect vehicle and spotted cash scattered in the car. By that time, the empty cash registers had been discovered and city police had been notified. Standing at the suspect vehicle, the officer was alerted to the store heist, connected the dots and thwarted the ill-fated getaway.

The suspect was booked into the Enumclaw jail. During a video arraignment the following afternoon, he pleaded not guilty to charges of third-degree theft and malicious mischief.

Two days later, a citizen was making an early-morning stop at the Post Office Annex on Washington Avenue. Outside, sitting on the ground near a mailbox, was a metal canister; the look was familiar, the type of box used by the military to store ammunition.

Due to the suspicious nature of the item, city police alerted the Washington State Patrol. The WSP responded with its bomb unit, which took an X-ray of the canister before opening it.

Sgt. Jon Buss of the Enumclaw Police Department noted the box contained just “miscellaneous items, nothing dangerous.”

The incident resulted in Washington Street being closed for a time, but everything was back to normal by 9 a.m.

A third incident occurred between the Monday robbery and Wednesday scare, a relatively minor item that resulted in a noticeable police presence on Battersby Avenue.

A client at Buckley’s Rainier School had been transported to St. Elizabeth Hospital but determined she did not want to remain. She departed on foot, heading east on Battersby. Several police units responded, the woman was quickly found and a Buckley officer arrived to provide a return trip to Rainier School.

Battersby Avenue was closed for a short time but was soon open for traffic.

Talk to us

Please share your story tips by emailing editor@courierherald.com.

To share your opinion for publication, submit a letter through our website https://www.courierherald.com/submit-letter/. Include your name, address and daytime phone number. (We’ll only publish your name and hometown.) Please keep letters to 500 words or less.

More in News

Jackson's on Cole Street had to close temporarily due to staffing shortages. It was planning to open up again when Gov. Jay Inslee ordered all restaurants to stop indoor dining for four weeks. Photo by Ray Miller-Still
Enumclaw’s downtown economy threatened by restaurant closures

Will outdoor dining and take-out orders be enough to keep local restaurants open?

The current Enumclaw section of the Foothills Trail ends at the historic Boise Creek Bridge. That will be the end of the line until a bridge across the White River is added, a step not expected until perhaps 2023. Photo by Kevin Hanson
County close to opening new section of Foothills Trail to Boise Creek

Unfortunately, the construction of the pedestrian bridge that will cross the White River has been delayed to 2023.

A King County Sheriff’s Office photo of the crawlspace in which Urbano Velazquez was hiding when a K-9 unit was used. Sound Publishing file photo
King County settles $2 million dog bite lawsuit

The county agreed to pay $100,000 after being sued after a 2016 K-9 unit arrest.

Contributed by the Society for Conservation Biology 
A map showing the locations where plants have gone extinct in the U.S. and Canada since European settlers arrived.
Study: 65 plant species have gone extinct in U.S., Canada

More than 65 species of plants have gone extinct in the U.S.… Continue reading

file photo
COVID-19 continues spreading at a breakneck pace

Every person infected with COVID appears to be passing the disease along to 1.5 people on average.

Flaming Geyser is one of the several state parks in proximity to the Plateau that you can visit for free on Jan. 1 and 18. Photo courtesy Washington State Parks
Free Park Days in 2021 start in January

The first free days are Jan. 1 and 18.

After a relatively quiet October, Enumclaw's November COVID cases are quickly rising. Screenshot courtesy King County
COVID cases on the rise

Enumclaw has topped more than 250 positive cases, many of them just from November alone.

In addition to traveling through Enumclaw and Buckley, Santa will also be at the Enumclaw Expo Center's Hometown Holiday Parade Dec. 4 - 6, in place of being a part of the normal Enumclaw holiday parade. File photo
Santa to visit Buckley, Enumclaw neighborhoods

Make sure you know when Old Saint Nick is traveling through your area Dec. 7 - 12.

Feel free to use this image, just link to www.SeniorLiving.Org
Buckley budget includes money for streets, recreation projects

Residents can look forward to work being done on River Avenue and a new athletic court.

Most Read