Man Arrested for trying to cut down flags in Hoquiam and Aberdeen

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On Wednesday, January 29, 2020 at 1230 hours, Hoquiam officers were in the 400 block of J Street investigating an interrupted burglary when employees at Hoquiam City Hall reported a man out front with a knife.

The man arrived in a white car and pulled up onto the sidewalk at the corner in front of the flag pole and bell at City Hall. He exited the vehicle, opened both car doors and turned up the radio volume very loud.

The suspect, a 39-year old Elma man was then observed on the front grass of City Hall throwing a double-bladed knife into the ground.


Animal Control/ Parking Officer Tom Taylor happened upon the car on the sidewalk before the call was dispatched by E911. He requested back-up as the man with knife call was dispatched to our other officers.

Hoquiam officers responded to the scene whereby the suspect dropped the knife and surrendered without incident. The knife was secured at the scene by Officer Taylor.

The suspect explained he was only attempting to cut down the flag to provide it to the family of Officer High. During the course of the investigation, Aberdeen PD advised they had probable cause for the suspect for earlier attempting to cut down the American flag at the Aberdeen Post Office.


The suspect was transported to Aberdeen where he was taken into custody on their charges. The suspect is well known to law enforcement and has an extensive history of drug abuse and mental illness. The suspect will likely be evaluated by a mental health professional while in custody in Aberdeen.

The vehicle was released to the owner at the scene after she was cited for allowing the vehicle to be unlawfully operated by the suspect as he does not have a valid driver's license.

The suspect will be submitted for charges to the City Attorney for unlawful display of a knife.