Felony DUI suspect hits light pole at Tumwater Walmart

Staff writerApril 3, 2014 

Tumwater police arrested a man on suspicion of felony DUI early Wednesday morning after the SUV he was driving struck a light pole in the Walmart parking lot, court papers state.

Employees at the Tumwater Walmart in the 5900 block of Littlerock Road had earlier refused to sell the allegedly intoxicated driver beer because he was so drunk, according to court papers.

The alleged driver, Nicholas John Knox Knowles, 33, of Olympia, was being held at the Thurston County Jail Thursday on suspicion of felony driving under the influence and third-degree malicious mischief - for allegedly damaging a camera in the back seat of a Tumwater police patrol car, according to court papers.

Thurston County Superior Court Judge James Dixon set Knowles' bail at $50,000 during a court hearing Wednesday.

Knowles has four or more prior DUI convictions in the last 10 years, so he is now accused of felony DUI, court papers state. Knowles also has an outstanding warrant for his arrest for a pending charge of felony harassment, domestic violence.

According to court papers:

A driver in the nearby Tumwater Costco parking lot on Littlerock Road called police after midnight Wednesday to report an SUV driving "all over the roadway." The caller also reported that the suspect's vehicle had just attempted to "ram" his own car.

A Tumwater officer pulled Knowles' SUV over on Trosper Road. When the officer noticed that Knowles was moving his hands around in the glovebox, he told Knowles to show his hands. Knowles responded, "No, you're going to have to shoot me."

Two officers attempted to administer field sobriety tests after Knowles exited the vehicle, and Knowles began shouting that he himself is a police officer. Officers tried to arrest Knowles because he would not obey verbal commands, and he tried to evade the officers as they tried to place him in handcuffs.

Officers smelled a strong odor of alcohol emanating from Knowles as they placed him under arrest. An officer looked inside Knowles' SUV and saw a six-pack of Pabst Blue Ribbon in between the front seats.

There was fresh damage to the SUV from where it has struck the pole. Officers obtained a search warrant to draw Knowles' blood to test his blood-alcohol content.

While en route to a local hospital for the blood draw, Knowles disabled a camera affixed to the rear of the patrol car. When the officer asked Knowles why he damaged the camera, Knowles responded, "This is my car, so it's my camera."

At the hospital, Knowles began yelling that he would not allow anyone to put a needle in his arm. Staff at a local hospital had to handcuff Knowles to a bed in order to take his blood. After the blood was drawn, Knowles was booked at the Thurston County Jail.






Jeremy Pawloski: 360-754-5445; jpawloski@theolympian.com

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