KIRO 7 uncovered evidence Thursday that revealed Ian Stawicki, the gunman in the May 30 Seattle shootings, was no stranger to violence, guns or the law.
When Seattle police arrested him in 2008, officers filled out a form for the court objecting to his release. According to those documents, officers said releasing him would threaten public safety.
Instead of keeping him locked up, the Seattle City Attorney dismissed all the charges, and it wasn’t the first time.
In February 2008, Stawicki’s girlfriend at the time was granted a no-contact order against him after “he broke the rear window of the victim’s vehicle, prevented the victim from calling 911 and assaulted her, giving her a bloody nose in the process,” according to court documents. “Stawicki (then) armed himself with a (.45 caliber) handgun and led police on a K9 track through Discovery Park.”
Stawicki was charged with assault, interfering with reporting domestic violence and coercion.
Despite police concerns about his weapon use and a witness that told officers “over the past month, the suspect has grown violent,” according to court documents, all charges were dismissed. The City Attorney said Thursday that was because his girlfriend stopped cooperating in the case.
“He definitely had that propensity for anger and was often tied up in knots with his nervous energy,” said Sandra Roulette, Stawicki’s ex-girlfriend’s mother.
Roulette told KIRO 7 her daughter left town after seeing what her former live-in boyfriend did on Wednesday.
“What Ian did is unthinkable and horrific, but the Ian that I saw on occasion was also – had this other dimension to him,” Roulette said. “He was a kind and thoughtful person. I didn’t see this potential for violence, although I certainly knew that he was angry and had a particular world view that not many people could agree with.”
She said her daughter lived with Stawicki for years, but the day he punched her in the face with a phone book in 2008 was the last day they were together.
“I was so angry with him and supported her for not wanting to be around him,” Roulette said. “I helped her move away. I’m very thankful he didn’t hurt her. I am so grateful he did not hurt her yesterday.”
KIRO Team 7 Investigators learned Stawicki’s run-ins with police started well before the domestic assault on Roulette’s daughter.
In 1989, he was arrested in Seattle for carrying a “slide-out locking blade,” according to court documents. Charges of carrying a concealed weapon were dropped.
In Kittitas County in 2010, Stawicki was charged with assaulting his brother. Charges were dropped then, too.
Despite those arrests for violence and weapons issues, without any convictions, Stawicki was allowed to keep his concealed weapons permit. Records show that at the time he opened fire inside the Racer Café on Wednesday, he legally held permits for three .45 caliber handguns and three more 9 millimeter handguns.
Roulette said he was always armed.
“He saw the world as a potentially dangerous place -- an unfriendly place where bad things happened -- and he felt like he needed to be protected, so he was armed and ready to take care of things himself, protect himself if need be,” she said.
Another common theme that ran through all the police reports: Stawicki constantly listed himself as homeless or unemployed.