A woman thought to be hiding a man wanted on a warrant in her motel room, reportedly made fake 911 calls reporting a bomb and an officer down across town in an attempt to help the man escape capture.
Bellingham Police booked Kasandra De Marie Cruz, 32, into Whatcom County Jail on suspicion of second-degree rendering criminal assistance, false reporting and obstructing Tuesday, Nov. 5. Jail records show she is being held in lieu of $10,000 bail.
Brandon Maurice Thompson, 25, also was booked on suspicion of obstructing, as well as an outstanding Department of Corrections warrant and an additional outstanding obstructing warrant. He is being held in lieu of $3,000 bail.
Also booked in the incident was Javier Esparza, 22, on suspicion of obstructing, possession of a controlled substance and an outstanding failure-to-appear warrant for third-degree driving while license suspended. He is being held in lieu of $5,000 bail.
Antjuan T. Davis, 30, also was cited on suspicion of obstructing in the incident, Lt. Claudia Murphy told The Bellingham Herald.
At approximately 12:45 a.m. Tuesday, Nov. 5, an officer on patrol saw a large group of people disperse in the parking lot of the Bellingham Lodge at 101 N. Samish Way, Murphy said. Among the group, Murphy said the officer saw Thompson, who had an outstanding Department of Corrections and misdemeanor warrants.
Thompson was seen running from one motel room to another, Murphy said, and the officer’s calls to have Thompson come out of the room he ended up in were unsuccessful.
Officers called the room and spoke to a woman, later identified as Cruz, Murphy said, but she told police that she was the only one in the room.
While waiting for a warrant for the room, Murphy said Cruz twice called 911 with fake calls, once at 1:07 a.m. reporting a bomb in a dumpster of a hotel across town and a second at 1:47 a.m. alleging an officer down and shots fired, Murphy said.
Other officers determined the calls were hoaxes intended to “be diversions in an attempt to get officers to leave the Samish Way hotel to allow Thompson to escape,” Murphy said.
Once the warrant arrived, police called for the occupants of the room to come out and tried a key, but when those attempts were unsuccessful, Murphy said police broke down the door to the room.
Inside officers found Cruz, Thompson, Esparza and Davis, who were either arrested or cited at approximately 4:32 a.m. — nearly four hours after the incident began, “tying officers up needlessly for those hours,” Murphy said.
While he was being booked into jail, Esparza was found to have heroin in his mouth, Murphy said.