Stabbing suspect arrested in downtown Bellingham

A man stabbed another man twice in downtown Bellingham this weekend during a drunken fight, according to police.

Emmanuel Jesus Figueroa, 24, had been drunkenly trying to woo a 24-year-old woman outside a food truck on Railroad Avenue around 2 a.m. Saturday, June 6, said Bellingham Police Sgt. Mike Scanlon.

Her brother, 25, took issue with that, as his sister had been drinking, too, and the two men got into an argument. Figueroa punched the man and, at some point, the woman walked away, Scanlon said. Her brother went looking for her.

After about 15 minutes of searching, with no luck, he saw Figueroa outside Fiamma Burger on Railroad. The man walked up to Figueroa, likely to go “have a chat” with him, Scanlon said, but instead the men got into a fight.

During the scuffle, the 25-year-old man was stabbed in the abdomen. He needed to be treated at St. Joseph hospital, and is expected to survive. Police recovered a kitchen knife at the scene.

Figueroa was arrested on suspicion of assault in the first degree. He’s being held in Whatcom County Jail in lieu of $100,000 bail.

Police believe both men had been drinking. They did not know each other before Saturday.

Figueroa has two felonies on his record: a robbery conviction from 2010 in Yakima; and a theft from earlier this year for trying to swipe a wallet from a woman he’d just met at the Beaver Inn tavern. The bartender saw Figueroa walking out the door with the wallet behind his back, and the woman confronted him. Figueroa dropped the wallet and ran. He was ordered to serve a month in jail for that crime.

Reach Caleb Hutton at 360-715-2276 or Read the Dispatcher blog at and follow him on Twitter at @bhamcaleb.