Good Samaritan beaten by six-time felon on West Seattle street

Good Samaritan beaten by six-time felon on West Seattle street
James Michael Johns (Washington Dept. of Corrections)

SEATTLE — A man with multiple felonies was charged with assault in a New Year’s Day attack on another man for simply telling the suspect to leave a woman alone, police say.

Seattle police said officers were called at 3:24 p.m. on Jan. 1 for a report of a man beating a woman on the street. Officers arriving at California Avenue Southwest and Southwest Edmonds Street were told by witnesses that the suspect was leaving in a white Audi, according to court documents. Responding officers followed the car.

Meanwhile, other officers spoke to the victim of an attack who said he had been walking on California Ave. with his wife and two daughters, carrying groceries, when he saw a man in the 4700 block grab a woman by the hair, place his hands around her head, and push her onto the ground, a police report said.

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The victim said the suspect was then pulled off the woman by another man who appeared to be the suspect’s friend. As the two men were crossing the street, the man who was with his family said he told the suspect to leave the woman alone. The suspect then turned back to the man and asked, “You have a problem with me?”

The victim replied no, but the suspect walked over and punched the man in his face and the back of his head multiple times, probable cause documents said.

“The level of violence inflicted was sufficient to cause fractured cheek bones

as well as a laceration that required multiple sutures to close,” charging documents stated.

Officers said they found three witnesses, including the victim’s wife, who gave a description of the suspect.

Police said they found the suspect, later identified as 39-year-old James Michael Johns, in a white Audi in the area. Johns was identified by one of the witnesses as being the man who attacked the victim, court papers said.

In the car with Johns were two other men and a woman, who denied seeing anything. Police said the woman who was with Johns in the car denied that he attacked her.

Johns was arrested. A background check by authorities showed he has six felony convictions, 10 gross misdemeanors, 2 misdemeanors and a no-contact order.

He was charged with assault on Monday.