Police: Man breaks into King County Courthouse, woman attacked nearby in separate incidents

A repeat felon was charged with burglary after police say he forced his way into the King County Courthouse and fought with security guards.

The incident happened shortly before 4 a.m. on December 26. The suspect, Jacob Lilton Jackson, pulled on the doors at 516 3rd Avenue hard enough to de-latch the locked doors, investigators said. Once inside the lobby, police said Jackson grabbed a fire extinguisher and threw it onto security equipment.

He was approached by uniformed security and allegedly said, “Unless you kill me, I’ll keep coming in.” When security tried to stop Jackson, who is 6 feet tall and 330 pounds, police said he kept pushing and swearing. A security guard used a sign as protection.

Another security officer sprayed Jackson with pepper spray, which caused him to leave out the same Third Avenue entrance he entered, investigators said. Police responded and arrested Jackson near Second Avenue and James Street.

Prosecutors said the burglary and confrontation with the security guards was recorded on surveillance video.

Police report threats

Jackson told police they’d have to shoot him to make him stop, according to prosecutors. As he was arrested, police said Jackson kept saying “I kill, kill kill” and spit in the direction of officers.

Jackson has a long criminal history including seven burglary convictions. Court documents, which give those details, say he also has multiple open cases in Seattle Municipal Court, and convictions including theft, assault, escape, violation of a no-contact order and four DUIs.

Prosecutors described the incident as frightening and said Jackson’s criminal history reflects not only his inability but an actual refusal to follow court orders. He’s described as both an extreme danger and a flight risk. Jackson, 46, remains in King County Jail.

Safety concerns on Third Avenue

The Third Avenue entrance where prosecutors say Jackson overpowered the locks was closed on December 3 after multiple attacks outside the courthouse.

"The safety conditions at the Third Avenue entrance to the Courthouse have deteriorated, jeopardizing the public safety of any attempting to enter or leave," an emergency amendment read. "This Court receives constant reports of assaults committed against litigants, jurors, attorneys, members of the public and employees.

"These safety conditions have the effect of discouraging and denying access and therefore justice to all who would seek it from our Court. It discourages jury service."

The incident for which Jackson is charged happened 10 days after the Third Avenue entrance reopened.

Woman assaulted in separate incident

In a separate incident on December 23, a woman who was standing on Third Avenue across the street from the courthouse was assaulted after she wouldn’t give a man a cigarette.

Police said the suspect in that case attacked the woman who was standing with a friend, called her a racial slur and “assaulted her with such violence her tongue was severely lacerated and her nose was broken,” according to charging documents. Police found her lying face down in a pool of her own blood.”

The suspect, Michael McEnery, has a history of assaulting police officers. McEnery, who lives at the Morrison Hotel – a housing unit and emergency shelter run by the Downtown Emergency Service Center – was charged with second-degree assault. The 26-year-old remains in King County Jail.

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