Magnolia Pepper-Spray Guard Pleads “Complete Fear for My Life” from Sleeping Victim

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Pepper-spray victim Andrew Harris’ car, whose front window security guard James Toomey said was “so tinted that I couldn’t see inside” without stopping to approach the vehicle

A couple of updates about the Central Protection security guard, hired by the private Magnolia Patrol Association, who pepper-sprayed, handcuffed, and detained Andrew Harris, a neighborhood employee and resident who is currently living in his car. Magnolia homeowners pay the MPA to hire security to patrol the neighborhood, which some believe has become a hotbed of drug and property crime.

 

First, the following is a letter posted on NextDoor that is described as Toomey’s report to his supervisor at Central Protection. The letter differs in numerous key ways from both Harris’ description of events and what Toomey himself told police at the time.

Toomey, as I first reported, pled guilty to forgery (a felony) and violating a no-contact order (a gross misdemeanor) in a case related to domestic violence charges by his ex-wife in 2004. As part of his sentencing, he was required to complete treatment for domestic violence and anger management. As a felon, Toomey had his gun privileges revoked but managed to get a court to restore them in 2011. In 2014, KIRO 7 has since reported, Toomey was  arrested and charged with two counts of fourth-degree assault for pepper-spraying two teenagers and slamming one of the teens’ head on the ground in Tacoma. In that case, as with Harris’, Toomey claimed he thought his victims were “doing drugs,” according to KIRO. He was sent back to anger management classes and the charges were supposed to be dropped in 2017 as long as he didn’t break the law.

Here’s that account (sic throughout):

While beginning patrol through 27th street I was flagged down by two males in a car with reflective vests on (Assuming workers from one of the Companies back here off of 27th ) They pointed down and informed me of an Old Silver Toyota had been parked on the side by Commodore for several hours and a white male inside possibly smoking some sort of drugs out of a glass bubble pipe

I thanked them for the information and told them I would check it out. i immediately saw the vehicle when i turned on 27th side of the street “27th ” before hitting Commodore. I drove past it several times attempting to see who was inside and what they were doing.

The vehicle unfortunately had tinted windows – So tinted that I couldn’t see inside while driving past. So I ended up driving behind the vehicle and took pictures of the license plate and make of vehicle.

It was a Silver Toyota Celica License plate # …

After taking the pictures I got out to investigate who was inside the vehicle and what they were doing. I got out and walked up to the driver’s side window, I immediately saw a white male with blankets over him and what looked like some sort of glass pipe.

I knocked on the window and said, “Sir Hello, Sir are you okay? At first the male didn’t move at all, and I thought to myself hopefully he didn’t overdose or something. So I continued to knock and yell out, t’ Hello sir, are you okay, hello?”

I then got worried about the male because no matter how many times I knocked or called out to him he never even moved. So now I was worried if he was even alive. So I figured to try to see if his driver’s side door was unlocked and attempting to do a Health & Welfare check on the male but right as I grabbed the door handle he jumped up and came to and gave me the finger and told me to ” FUCK OFF and told me to leave him alone!” I then informed him that the people from the businesses had reported you and want you to leave because they stated that they saw you doing drugs and you’ve been here for several hours. That’s the only reason I am even checking on you, because the City of Magnolia has contracted security to patrol the entire City and to investigate any suspicious RV’s or vehicles. Plus I was very concerned about your welfare because you didn’t move at all.

He didn’t care nor listen to me he just continued to give me the “finger” while cussing me out. So I left and walked back to my patrol vehicle and called 911.

911 Operator asked if I would be waiting or in the area when Officers arrive. I said, Yes I’m patrolling but will still be in the area if needed.

I then left and drove up 27th a couple blocks and parked on the side while updating my report. I continued to watch the Silver Toyota from my Rear view mirror.

All of a sudden the male started pulling around and raced up directly behind me. I immediately got scared about what he was about to do. As he was walking up to my driver’s side door he was yelling and cursing saying, ” MOTHER FUCKERS IVE FUCKING HAD IT YOU MOTHER FUCKERS HARASSING ME!” As he was yelling this he grabbed my door and ripped it open and started to grab me pulling me out while cursing me I then knocked his hands away from me and pulled out my pepper spray and started to spray his face. I was in complete fear for my life at this moment. He then stumbled towards his vehicle and then turned towards me yelling and screaming again attempting to grab me. I pepper sprayed him again and turned him around to handcuff him.

I handcuffed him and called 911 again. This time to update them that now the suspicious male that I had just reported to police just several minutes ago drove up behind me and ripped open my door and attacked me. I informed them that I had pepper sprayed him and currently have him in handcuffs.

911 operator sent Fire Department to clean the pepper spray off the males face and sent Police officers. Fire Department arrived on scene and asked what had happened. They washed the males face off and then we all waited for police officers to arrive.

Police officers finally arrived after about a 35 min wait. They asked me as to what happened, after I explained they walked over and interviewed the male. The Police officers then explained to me that they have called their supervisor to come down, because it was my word against his word, and the male in question was3atinE completely different things. Officers said, “It was a He said/She said incident.
Officer Norton # 7436
Case # 16-74839

The Police Supervisor stated to the male and I that we were free to go and they are not arresting anyone and they were just going to tum this report into the King County prosecutor to see if anything would be filed. Before leaving scene I was informed that the male is homeless and lives in his vehicle and currently works at the Shell Gas Station in Magnolia directly across from the Starbucks off of McGraw.

I left scene and made contact with Executive Director of Magnolia Patrol Joe Villarino & Central Protection Security Manager Denis.

This account differs in a few key ways from Harris’ description of events. First, Harris says Toomey attempted to open his door, not the other way around. Second, Harris said he was sleeping in his car, not smoking unspecified drugs. No pipe was recovered from Harris’ car, and Toomey did not mention anything about drugs or a pipe in his official account to the Seattle Police Department. In that version of events, Toomey said he saw Harris sleeping, knocked on the door, got into a “verbal argument” with Harris, then “drove up the street.” Toomey told SPD Harris then pulled up behind him, walked to the door and tried to open it, then tried to “grab” Toomey but Toomey easily “‘slapped'” [Harris’] arms away. At this point, Toomey’s account to SPD says, Toomey followed Harris to his car and “the two continued verbally arguing,” Harris “again tried to grab” Toomey, and Toomey shoved him onto the hood of Harris’ car and cuffed him.

For the other discrepancies, both between Toomey’s account and Harris’ and between Toomey’s account in this memo attributed to him and the account he gave to police immediately after the incident, see my original post.

MPA board member Christian Binkley sent this letter out to Magnolia Patrol Association subscribers last week. MPA executive director Joe Villarino had no comment when I asked him about the incident, except that it was under investigation.

Dear Friends and Neighbors,

I am writing this letter to you today to share our stance on the incident that occurred recently between one of our contracted neighborhood security staff and a member of the community. We at the association are fully aware of the incident and we remain sensitive to the concerns of the neighborhood we organized to protect, as well as that of the involved community member.

As you can expect, there are two wildly differing accounts of what happened and rest assured we are working closely with local law enforcement and Central Protection to establish the facts of the incident. We owe our supporters and the rest of the community full transparency of the situation once those facts are revealed. We ask that you remain neutral and free from preconceived judgment until that time, regardless of what you may see in the media.

We also owe our supporters continued patrols despite the ongoing investigation into the claims. Part of establishing a community service dedicated to providing the neighborhood with an extra set of eyes on the lookout for nefarious activity is anticipating that these kinds of allegations, whether proven to be true or fabricated, would most likely surface. Prior to the launch, we had evaluated these risks and took the necessary steps to safeguard the service we promised to our contributors and non-contributors within the neighborhood. It would be foolhardy of us to stall the service now leaving the area vulnerable to recidivism and undue criticism, especially since the service has received such widespread news coverage and support from other neighborhoods around the city who are eager to take a stand against criminal activity and victimization with their own patrol programs.

Again, we want to assure all of you that we take this incident very seriously and the neighborhood’s supportive trust is tremendously important to us. Newly released statistics have shown that you and your property are safer now than you have been in in recent years and it is my belief that it is due to the ongoing presence of this service. So many of your neighbors have shared their overwhelming appreciation for the consistent professionalism of our contracted security staff that I feel this association, partnered with that continued supportive trust that I mentioned, can grow into a model of communal solidarity and protection. The association makes you and your property’s safety our foremost priority and we will continue to offer everyone in the neighborhood the added security you asked us to provide.

Your Thankful Neighbor,

Christian Binkley
Board Member
Magnolia Patrol Association NPO

5 thoughts on “Magnolia Pepper-Spray Guard Pleads “Complete Fear for My Life” from Sleeping Victim

  1. Pingback: Pepper-Spray Victim Sues Security Guard, Companies That Hired Him | The C Is for crank

  2. Scary conservative rich white Magnolia elites with private security? Not a big surprise. It doesn’t sound like the guy in his car was hurting anyone? Homeless, with a job that doesn’t pay a living wage, what is he supposed to do? What crime did he commit? Is existing, sleeping now a crime in Magnolia? What if instead of pepper spraying the homeless, we actually found them housing? Let’s decriminalize and destigmatize existing and sleeping. It’s inhumane.

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