Crime

Police: Man punches Bellingham bike cop, gets tased

Video: Man treated after Bellingham police use Taser on him

A man who police say punched a Bellingham officer is put in restraints and given medical treatment after an officer used a Taser on him in response to the attack.
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A man who police say punched a Bellingham officer is put in restraints and given medical treatment after an officer used a Taser on him in response to the attack.

A screaming man climbed into the back of a delivery truck in downtown Bellingham Monday afternoon, June 22, before punching a policeman in the head and getting shot with a Taser, according to police.

A UPS delivery driver heard the man “screaming and hollering” as he clambered into the back of the truck around 1:45 p.m. near the intersection of Cornwall Avenue and East Magnolia Street, said Lt. Rick Sucee.

The driver kicked him out, Sucee said, just as Officer Mike Shannon rode up to the scene on a police bicycle. The man, identified as Marcus Davis Kaptinski, 22, of Bellingham, ran at Shannon “full-bore” and punched the officer in the head, breaking his glasses, police said.

“Definitely there was something wrong with him,” Sucee said. “He was (either) high on drugs or having a mental episode.”

Shannon shot Kaptinski with a Taser, detained him, and radioed for backup. At least 10 officers responded to the scene.

Police held the man face-down on the sidewalk while onlookers gathered and watched Kaptinski, who is deaf, moaning on the ground. Officers hogtied his arms and legs before he was lifted onto a gurney and rolled to an ambulance. He was taken to St. Joseph hospital to be checked over.

Kaptinski faces charges of felony assault in the third degree and resisting arrest. Police weren’t sure if he will be charged with a crime for climbing into the truck.

Officer Shannon suffered no serious injuries.

Kaptinski has been convicted of five non-violent felonies — related to forgery, drugs, and alcohol theft — in the past four years. He’s had many run-ins with Bellingham police.

Last September police loaded a bike worth $1,800 into the bed of a pickup truck in the 1500 block of Railroad Avenue, north of the downtown bus station. Officers watched while Kaptinski took the bike and rode off with it. He saw police chasing him and, as he looked back, he crashed.

Once police caught up to him he claimed he’d been “peer-pressured into stealing the bike,” according to charging papers. He pleaded guilty to theft in the second degree, and a county judge sentenced him to three months in jail.

Reach Caleb Hutton at 360-715-2276 or caleb.hutton@bellinghamherald.com. Read the Dispatcher blog at bellinghamherald.com/dispatcher-blog and follow him on Twitter at @bhamcaleb.

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