Suspect arrested in Lakefair assault in Olympia

Police arrested a 31-year-old man at Olympia’s Capital Lakefair on Thursday afternoon after he allegedly choked another man.

The male victim had parked his car at Marathon Park at about 3:30 p.m. and crossed the Capitol Lake pedestrian bridge heading toward Lakefair, said Olympia Police Lt. Paul Lower. When he reached the other side, he encountered the suspect, whom he had never met before.

The suspect asked the victim repeatedly whether he had fought for the Union or the Confederacy in the American Civil War, Lower said. The victim tried to walk away, but the suspect followed him, asking the question repeatedly.

The victim told the suspect, “I’m just an American,” and the suspect allegedly grabbed him by the neck, choking him.

The victim was eventually able to break free, and reached Lakefair. He located two police officers, who found and arrested the suspect.

Lower said the suspect had recently moved to Olympia from Delaware, and officers have had several encounters with him over the past few days.

The suspect was booked into the Thurston County Jail on suspicion of second-degree assault.

Amelia Dickson: 360-754-5445