Man arrested after driving through barricades of Santa parade in Tacoma

TACOMA, Wash. — A man was arrested Sunday after driving through barricades during a Santa parade in Tacoma, the Tacoma Police Department said.

According to the Pierce County jail roster and documents filed in Tacoma Municipal Court, James William Klingbeil, 74, faces gross misdemeanor charges of driving while intoxicated and reckless driving.

According to police, he drove around the barricades at the intersection of South 56th Street and South Tacoma Way just after 4:30 p.m. The parade stretched from South 47th Street and South Tacoma Way to South 56th Street and South Tacoma Way.

No one was hit by the car, police said. Community members at the parade surrounded the car until police arrived and arrested the man for investigation of DUI.

The incident rattled hundreds of people who gathered for the parade.

“I heard a lot of shouting, telling someone to stop and I just saw this car coming through and I could tell it was coming pretty fast,” said Anna Dayton, a witness.

“I cannot believe he didn’t hit anybody. The whole thing was insane, scary,” said Kortney O’Neill, another witness.

Video and photos posted online show paradegoers chasing the SUV down the street.

The incident happened just before the start of the parade, as people were milling about finding spots to watch the event.

The SUV traveled several blocks before people were able to stop it and detain the driver until police arrived, stopping him short of a marching band that opened the parade.