Man, 32, killed at tavern

A suspect in the stabbing death was chased by witnesses, Tased by police

jpawloski@theolympian.comDecember 5, 2012 

A man was being held Tuesday on suspicion of second-degree murder in connection with the fatal stabbing of Casey J. Heath, 32, on the smoking patio at McCoy’s Tavern in downtown Olympia early Tuesday morning.

The suspect stabbed Heath multiple times, Olympia Police Lt. Jim Costa said. Heath’s autopsy is scheduled for this morning, according to Thurston County Coroner Gary Warnock.

The suspect was identified late Tuesday as David M. Henkleman, 34. He was being booked into the Thurston County Jail on suspicion of second-degree murder.

Henkleman is also accused of injuring two witnesses who were on the smoking patio when the stabbing occurred and who tried to intervene, Costa said.

Their injuries are not considered life-threatening, he said.

Police were sent to the tavern, in the 400 block of Fourth Avenue E., about 1:30 a.m. after a report of a stabbing. Several patrons chased the suspect for several blocks after he fled McCoy’s with a knife, and the group was met by responding police outside the bar. Police used a Taser to subdue and apprehend the suspect, who refused to comply with police commands, Costa said.

Police have yet to determine a motive for the stabbing, Costa said. Henkleman has refused to answer questions or cooperate with police, he said. Police took Henkleman to a hospital Tuesday after he complained of an injury, Costa added.

Costa requested that anyone who was at McCoy’s early Tuesday morning and may have witnessed the stabbing contact Detective Chris Johnstone at 360-709-2793.

“Witnesses are going to be imperative at this point,” Costa said. “He’s giving us nothing.”

Henkleman has a police record, Costa said. Police recovered a knife that was in Henkleman’s possession at the time of his arrest, Johnstone said.

Friends of Heath’s gathered outside McCoy’s Tuesday, hugging one another and crying over their loss. McCoy’s was closed Tuesday as police investigated. Karin Wheeler, owner of Olympia Glass, confirmed that Heath worked part-time at her business and was learning the trade of glass installation.

She said that her employees were hurting on Tuesday after learning of Heath’s death.

Heath also worked at the Falls Terrace Restaurant in Tumwater as a dishwasher, she said. Officials at the Falls Terrace Restaurant could not be reached for comment.

“He was trying to get his life turned around,” Wheeler said. “He was a hard worker.”

Heath also was an avid skateboarder, who competed at amateur events and was sponsored by Northwest Snowboards, an employee there said.

“He was a super-humble dude,” the sales associate at Northwest Snowboards said. “A nice guy. He definitely had a lot of friends.”

Jeremy Pawloski: 360-754-5445

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