A fight over rented furniture in an apartment complex in Grand Mound Monday resulted in a dangerous game of "chicken" that ended with a pedestrian smashing face-first through the windshield of a car trying to leave the scene, court papers state.
The victim suffered "deep substantial cuts to his face, which may result in long-term disfigurement by scarring," according to court papers. He also suffered a deep wound to his arm.
The driver, Isaac Powell, 23, was being held Wednesday at the Thurston County Jail after a judge found probable cause to support an allegation of felony vehicular assault. Powell's bail is set at $75,000.
The victim's injuries are consistent with being run down intentionally by a moving vehicle, Thurston County Sheriff's Lt. Greg Elwin said Wednesday. The evidence at the scene also suggests that Powell's car accelerated rapidly over a short distance, he said.
Powell is accused in court papers of driving away from the apartment complex in the 20000 block of Old Highway 99 while the victim stood in his path, trying to block him from leaving. The victim told a sheriff's deputy that he assumed Powell "would slow down and stop before reaching him." But Powell didn't slow down, and the victim jumped up as Powell's car approached him, causing his head and torso to smash through the windshield of Powell's car, court papers state.
Elwin said Wednesday that it's not uncommon for deputies to investigate disputes that result in someone trying to stand in front of a vehicle to prevent it from leaving. But those incidents hardly ever result in someone being struck by a moving vehicle, he added.
Also according to court papers:
When deputies interviewed Powell, he said he was sorry for what had happened. He said he was moving out of the residence, and was afraid of the man who was standing in front of his car to prevent him from leaving. He also "insisted that the vehicle started to accelerate on its own without his putting his foot on the accelerator." He added that he did not see the man standing there, and did not intentionally strike him with his vehicle.
The mother of the man who was struck by Powell's car was a neighbor of Powell's at the apartment complex on Old Highway 99. She believed that Powell was moving out of the apartment with rented furniture that he had not paid for. The woman told sheriff's deputies that she was on the phone with Rent-A-Center, and a representative there asked her to stop Powell from leaving the apartment. The verbal argument between the woman and Powell and his group of friends moving out escalated to the victim standing outside, trying to prevent Powell and his group from leaving in their vehicles.
Elwin said there no evidence that Powell was trying to steal the furniture.
Jeremy Pawloski: 360-754-5445 firstname.lastname@example.org