Man arrested for weapons offenses

PORT ANGELES — A Port Angeles man was arrested on investigation of first-degree unlawful possession of a firearm and felony harassment after a crisis response team was called to the Deer Park Rest area.

John W. Spradlin, 58, was arrested about 6:30 p.m. Tuesday and Clallam County Sheriff’s deputies recovered a flare gun in a shoulder holster inside a toilet vault in a restroom at the park and ride.

Spradlin remained in the Clallam County jail on Thursday.

A citizen called police earlier Tuesday evening to report a man pointed a gun at him. The citizen told deputies he often feeds a homeless man at the park, and when he approached what he thought was the homeless man’s tent, another man stepped out and allegedly threatened him.

Deputies and officers from the Port Angeles Police Department approached the campsite, but Spradlin was not compliant, stated a press release from the sheriff’s office.

Deputies evacuated the rest area and the State Patrol evacuated the parking area.

The Crisis Response Team (CRT) responded with an armored vehicle as it became apparent Spradlin was not willing to allow deputies to approach him in a safe manner, the sheriff’s office said.

While waiting for the Crisis Response Team to arrive, Spradlin stayed several yards away from the deputies. At one point, he walked out of sight and went into one of the bathrooms at the park and ride, the sheriff’s office said.

Spradlin was taken into custody as the CRT team arrived.

Deputies then recovered the flare gun, which was equipped with a .22 caliber adapter that was loaded, the sheriff’s office said.

After they obtained a search warrant for Spradlin’s tent, deputies recovered a box of 100 .22 caliber ammunition. There were two rounds missing from the box of ammo, the sheriff’s office said, and the rounds in the box had the same markings as the rounds found in the flare gun adapter.

Spradlin has three felony convictions, including a 2003 conviction for unlawful possession of a firearm.

The sheriff’s office was assisted by the Port Angeles Police Department, State Patrol, Jefferson County Sheriff’s Office and Sequim Police Department.

“All available sheriff’s deputies were on this scene as well as two PAPD officers who responded at the end of their shift to provide cover for our deputies,” the sheriff’s office stated in a press release. “PAPD and Sequim PD had to cover calls in the county, WSP arrived to assist with evacuation and Jefferson County Sheriff’s CRT arrived with their armored vehicle in response to our call.

“This case is a great example of our interagency cooperation and how a volatile situation was resolved without using force due to the mere presence of the arrival of the CRT with their armored vehicle.”