By Eric Stevick Herald Writer
EVERETT — Bail was set at $500,000 Monday for a Lake Stevens man accused of choking his former girlfriend Friday before allegedly using his SUV to crush her new boyfriend.
The suspect, 33, was booked into the Snohomish County Jail for investigation of first-degree assault, second-degree assault and kidnapping.
Prosecutors said it could have been a deadly confrontation.
“Frankly, had I been submitting this, I would have characterized it as attempted murder,” deputy prosecutor Walt Sowa told a judge at a bail hearing Monday afternoon.
The man hit by the SUV was in critical condition Monday at Harborview Medical Center in Seattle. He suffered severe abdominal and pelvic injuries. He remained in intensive care, but no longer needs a respirator to breathe, Lake Stevens Police Chief Randy Celori said.
The suspect reportedly was upset that the woman, 28, had become engaged to the other man.
On Friday morning, he went to the woman’s home in the 8900 block 14th St. SE and picked up children to take them to school.
When he returned a short time later, he allegedly asked her to come back to him, according to a police affidavit. She told him she was in love with the other man.
The woman told police that the suspect then locked the front door and began mumbling to himself. He took the battery out of her phone and allegedly asked her: “Are you ready to take the plunge?” At that point, she said the man began to choke her until her fingertips began to go numb, her “temples bulged,” and her eyes went blurry.
When he went outside, she locked the door but he forced the door open and locked himself inside with her. He then choked her to the point that she lost consciousness, she told police. When a child came down the hallway, he got off her.
The woman convinced the man to let her use a cell phone to call her mom to have one of her children picked up from school. She switched lines and called her boyfriend to say that the suspect was at her house and she thought he was going to kill her, according to court papers.
The suspect then allegedly broke the phone into two pieces and dragged her to the bathroom where he began choking her in the tub until she blacked out.
She eventually convinced him that they should check on their child who was at home. She reportedly ran from the house and the suspect followed.
Her new boyfriend arrived and parked his pickup on the street. So did the woman’s mother and a friend of the suspect who had received a text message from the man threatening to kill himself. The friend convinced the man to leave.
As he drove off, he allegedly veered his red GMC Yukon toward the new boyfriend and pinned him between the vehicles.
The woman and others ran to the man’s aid. As they were tending to him and calling 911, the suspect allegedly drove toward them at a high rate of speed before swerving at the last second. They estimate that he missed them by less than two feet.
They feared the suspect was trying to run the man over so they dragged him to the house and barricaded cars around him, according to court papers.
The suspect was in contact with police much of Friday afternoon, Celori said. His vehicle was found in north Seattle and he turned himself in at a parking lot in Smokey Point.
After his arrest, the suspect allegedly tried to choke himself with his handcuffs.
He allegedly told a Lake Stevens police officer that he intentionally struck the man with his SUV.
Eric Stevick: 425-339-3446, email@example.com