Two police officers used bean bag rounds and a Taser to detain a man who had a knife Tuesday, July 7, in northeast Bellingham.
Michael Wayne Zick, 42, was throwing around a kitchen knife Tuesday afternoon outside a McDonald’s, 2433 E. Bakerview Road, said Bellingham Police Lt. Bob Vander Yacht.
Two officers who reached the scene around 1:30 p.m. saw Zick with the knife in his waistband, according to police. They convinced him to put it down. Once he walked far enough away, the officers tried to get between him and the knife, but Zick ran back and tried to pick it up, Vander Yacht said.
One of the officers hit Zick with several bean-bag rounds fired from a shotgun, while the other officer shot his Taser three times but couldn’t get the prongs to stick. On the fourth try the prongs stuck and the shock incapacitated Zick.
“This could’ve easily led to a shooting,” Vander Yacht said. “Instead you’ve got some officers who made some fantastic split-second decisions.”
Vander Yacht declined to identify the officers Tuesday.
Police believe Zick, who doesn’t have a permanent address, was despondent and feeling like he was “at the end of his rope” because he’d recently lost his car, Vander Yacht said. Over the weekend he’d been issued a trespassing warning for causing trouble at the tow yard where the car was impounded. The tow yard is about a quarter-mile from the McDonald’s.
On Tuesday police said Zick was taken to St. Joseph hospital for a mental health evaluation. He also faces possible charges of brandishing a weapon and resisting arrest.