Alleged series of crimes leads to arrest of Lynnwood man

  • Mon Aug 20th, 2012 8:56pm
  • News

By Rikki King Herald Writer

EDMONDS — A Lynnwood man is accused of robbery, burglary, kidnapping, driving a stolen car and attempting to steal another car.

There was a naked bicycle ride, too.

It all happened in about 90 minutes Saturday morning in Edmonds.

Investigators allege that James E. Kirk, 50, terrorized a woman after breaking into her house while on the run from the law.

Police were after him in connection with a string of thefts at an Edmonds athletic club.

“He was willing to do just about anything to get away,” Sgt. Mike Blackburn said Monday.

About 7:30 a.m. Saturday, an employee at the gym called 911 to report “someone was stealing people’s shoes,” according to court papers.

As officers neared the gym along W. Dayton Street, one of them saw a green Ford Mustang blow a red light and speed away.

The car matched the description of a vehicle reported stolen last week by Kirk’s ex-wife, court papers say.

The officer turned on his lights and siren, and followed the Mustang to an area near the Third Avenue S. overpass.

Kirk reportedly then got out of the car, jumped a guard rail and took off.

At some point, his shorts fell off, and he kept running in a “yellow neon no sleeve shirt,” police wrote.

Another office soon spotted him along Elm Street.

By then, Kirk reportedly was climbing onto a bicycle, naked. He had the helmet on but it fell off, police wrote.

Kirk then allegedly broke into a stranger’s Second Avenue home, smashing through a basement window, police said. A woman, in her mid 40s, was asleep inside.

“She woke up to this naked, bloody man barging into her bedroom door,” Blackburn said.

Kirk allegedly grabbed the woman, told her he had a gun and a knife and threatened multiple times to kill her.

He searched the house for clothes, demanded her car keys, rummaged through her purse and took money from her as well, police reported.

At one point, when the woman thought he was gone, she left her bedroom. He then reportedly forced her into another room, made her lie down and hit her with a pillow. The woman also said he made gestures she took as threats to suffocate her, police reported.

Kirk reportedly then went into the garage and tried to steal the woman’s car but couldn’t figure how to start it.

Police were outside the home, trying to get him to surrender. He refused to obey their commands and ran back into the house, locking himself in the basement.

The standoff ended about 9 a.m. after officers shot cans of pepper spray into the basement.

They had rescued the woman about a half-hour earlier, once they could get her out safely.

Kirk appeared Monday in Everett District Court. Bail was set at $105,000.

Rikki King: 425-339-3449;