Knife-wielding man arrested after failed carjacking attempts in Bellingham


BELLINGHAM - Police arrested an armed man accused of holding a knife to a man's throat during the second of two failed carjackings Monday morning, June 9, in north Bellingham.

The young man - in a black hoodie, black shoes and black pants - came up to a 26-year-old employee of the Wendy's on Meridian Street and demanded the keys to her car around 10:30 a.m., said Bellingham Police Sgt. Shawn Aiumu. He threatened to cut her with a knife. She told him "No!" and yelled for help, then locked herself in the car. The man ran north one block and ducked into a forested area behind BevMo, Aiumu said.

Police dogs and a U.S. border helicopter were called in to help search for the armed man.

Meanwhile, Whatcom Community College sent out a warning to students: "The suspect is described as a white male in his 20s with blue eyes, light beard and brown hair. ... He should be considered armed and dangerous."

About an hour later someone spotted a man acting shifty and running toward an Arby's on the other side of Meridian. Once he reached the back of the restaurant, he held a knife to the throat of a city public works employee and demanded the keys to his city of Bellingham utility truck, Aiumu said. The victim, 43, was shaken up but unharmed.

Police arrived and chased the suspect, Nicholas Mackenzie Bailey, 22, of the Custer area. They fired a Taser at him but the prongs didn't get latch on, Aiumu said. Officers managed to subdue Bailey nonetheless. He still had a knife on him.

Earlier this year Bailey served a 20-day sentence in Whatcom County Jail for possessing methamphetamine. He has never been convicted of a violent felony in Washington state.

Now he faces two counts of attempted robbery in the first degree, one count of second-degree assault and illegal possession of a dangerous weapon.

Reach Caleb Hutton at 360-715-2276 or Read his Dispatcher Blog at or follow him on Twitter at @bhamcrime.

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