PO man arrested after stealing Camels, assaulting officer

A 27-year-old Port Orchard man didn’t walk a mile for a Camel, but he assaulted an officer and got arrested for one.

The man stole some cigarettes from a gas station Nov. 12. Bremerton police Cpl. Trevor Donnelly saw a man matching the suspect’s description at about 9:40 p.m. at Wheaton Way and Callahan Drive.

The man fled, but Donnelly was able to corner him at a guard rail and a steep embankment. Donnelly feared being assaulted because of the busy traffic on Wheaton Way behind him. He went in for the arrest, but the suspect resisted, fell to the ground, then scrambled to his feet and took a swing at the officer.

In his police report, Donnelly says he hit the suspect twice in the head, then both fell to the ground, and the man put the officer in a headlock. “I felt great pressure against both sides of my neck as I twisted against, punched, pulled and fought to get out of the chokehold for approximately 14 seconds,” the officer wrote.

He said he got lightheaded, his body weakened, and he feared he would go unconscious. He wrote he thought about going for his weapon, but was worried the suspect might obtain it instead. Finally, Donnelly freed himself, and the suspect again fled on foot. The man was taken into custody quickly after by Donnelly and other officers after he tried to scale a fence at a nearby property.

The suspect was booked into Kitsap County Jail on suspicion of assault 2, assault 3, resisting arrest, theft 3 and obstruction. Bail was set at $165,000. Maximum penalty is a $20,000 fine and/or 10 years in prison.