Police blotter: mystery boat drifts back to BI

A 36-foot boat is abandoned, drifts for days, is checked but left by the Coast Guard and finally comes to rest in Murden Cove. City leaders say the vessel may have been scuttled on purpose. Read the full blotter, including a few drunken incidents, below.


Mar. 30
Drunk driving: A Bainbridge male was arrested for driving under the influence of alcohol just before 10 p.m. at the intersection of State Route 305 and Day Road. Police initially pulled the man over for speeding but noticed the strong odor of alcohol when an officer approached the suspect’s vehicle. The suspect admitted to recently consuming two beers and agreed to take a series of field sobriety tests. He was released to a taxi cab shortly after his arrest.

Mar. 28
Death: An elderly man was reported dead at a Seaborn Road home shortly after 5 a.m. The man, who had heart problems and was ill, appeared to have died of natural causes, according to police.

Drunk: Police were called to a barn on Mandus Olson Road shortly after 10 p.m. to assist with a highly intoxicated Bainbridge girl. Police found the girl lying face down in the barn and screaming for her father. She would not answer questions of police or an aid crew. Her face appeared very muddy “from burying her face in the ground,” according to police. The girl’s father told police that he was informed of his daughter’s whereabouts by an unknown male who called earlier that evening. The father also mentioned that the girl had been out on a date that night. The girl was loaded into an ambulance while an aid crew assisted her with breathing. Police found no evidence of injuries or sexual violation before the girl was transported to a hospital.

Mar. 27
Threatened: A Harborcrest Drive resident called police shortly after 6 p.m. to report that a neighbor had threatened to kill her dogs. The neighbor reportedly yelled at the woman when she returned home from work, demanding that she do something to silence her dogs. After apologizing to her neighbor and mentioning that she’d received only two other complaints about the dogs’ barking, the man said that he should have poisoned the dogs long ago “to be done with it.” Police contacted the neighbor and are attempting to mediate an alternative solution to poisoning.

Vandalized: A small building’s window was smashed and doors kicked in at a city-owned property on Weaver Road. An island resident found the damage during a routine check of the waterfront parcel commonly called the Strawberry Plant Property, which is in the process of becoming a public park. Police found damage to the empty building’s doors and door frames and one broken window. Two pairs of shoe prints were found on the doors and were taken as evidence.

Mar. 26
Sunk: A 36-foot Chris Craft sank and ran aground at Murden Cove. According to police, the vessel’s operator left Eagle Harbor on Mar. 21 and was en route to Seattle. During the crossing, the vessel began taking on water and sank to its gunwales. The U.S. Coast Guard found the vessel unoccupied and left it to drift. After drifting into Murden Cove, someone anchored the vessel before it broke up on the beach. An investigation by the city harbormaster found that the operator had rowed away from the vessel in a dinghy and was picked up by another boater. He never called 911 or reported the incident. Members of the city Harbor Commission told police they believe the vessel may have been intentionally scuttled, based on the actions of the operator, the fact that he left the state and because the vessel was for sale. Police are investigating whether the vessel sank in Bainbridge’s jurisdiction.

Mar. 25
Death: A 94-year-old woman reportedly died of natural causes in her Harborview Drive home. A caregiver told police that the woman had suffered from labored breathing before she died.

Suicidal: A Bainbridge mother reported that her 20-year-old daughter had sent her a cell phone text message saying she was going to harm herself and that she “wanted to die.” Police searched various locations around the island but did not find the woman. She is described as 5’2 and 100 lbs. She has waist length black hair, blue eyes and several body piercings.