Crime

Man reportedly attacked while picking up a piece of trash at Waypoint Park

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After years of cleanup and preparation, Bellingham is ready to open its new downtown waterfront park, called Waypoint Park.
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After years of cleanup and preparation, Bellingham is ready to open its new downtown waterfront park, called Waypoint Park.

A man who bent down to pick up a piece of trash at Waypoint Park on Monday afternoon, July 15, reportedly was hit by a 32-year-old man he did not know. The 32-year-old man later kicked a Bellingham Police officer at the jail.

Silas D. Mattson was booked into Whatcom County Jail on suspicion of third-degree assault and fourth-degree assault.

According to information provided to The Bellingham Herald by Lt. Claudia Murphy, officers responded to Waypoint Park at approximately 3 p.m. Monday to investigate a report of an attack. When they arrived, a group of citizens pointed Mattson out to officers.

Further investigation showed that the victim and his friends were at the park when the victim bent down to pick up a piece of garbage. Murphy said it was then that Mattson, who was not known to the victim, hit the victim in the side of the head and began shouting.

The victim did not suffer any serious injuries, Murphy said.

An officer arrested Mattson on suspicion of fourth-degree assault, Murphy said, and when the officer opened the door to the patrol vehicle to book him into jail, Mattson leaned back and kicked him in the right upper leg. The officer also was not seriously injured, and with the help of Whatcom County Sheriff’s Office corrections deputies, he was able to get Mattson safely out of the car without any further assault.

According to the Bellingham Police Department’s incident log, this was the ninth incident police have had reported in either the 1100 or 1200 block of Granary Avenue so far in 2019, and one was notice of a liquor license application on June 25. The other incidents in the area of Waypoint Park were: litter pickup on July 5, a harassment report for a dispute on June 29, a request for an extra patrol on June 10, an illegal camp notification on April 4, a lost property report on March 9, a trouble with a person report on Jan. 18 and a suspicious circumstance report on Jan. 13.

For comparison, the log shows 21 incidents reported between the 400 and 600 blocks of West Holly Street, which is along the western edge of nearby Maritime Heritage Park, so far in the month of July.

David Rasbach joined The Bellingham Herald in 2005 and now covers breaking news. He has been an editor and writer in several western states since 1994.
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