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Federal charges: Man threatened Kirkland mayor, prosecutor Expanding on earlier allegations, federal authorities say Redmond man’s supporters threatened King County Prosecutor By LEVI PULKKINEN
SEATTLEPI.COM STAFF A Redmond man previously charged in state court with threatening to arrest the Kirkland mayor and city attorney is now facing federal prosecution. Filing charges earlier this month, federal prosecutors at Seattle reiterated claims that David Russell Myrland threatened to come to the homes of the Kirkland officials and went on to allege that Myrland’s supporters have made threats against the King County prosecutor and others.
In September, King County prosecutors filed felony charges against Myrland, a traffic offender who was apparently upset that his car was impounded following a traffic stop and sent a threatening e-mail to Kirkland Mayor Joan McBride. In the letter, Myrland, 52, of Redmond, suggested the mayor leave her home unlocked to facilitate a citizen’s arrest, according to charging documents. He went on to claim to have issued a “writ of probable cause” and said he would be arriving at the mayor’s home with 50 armed concerned citizens, police said. “DO NOT RESIST as these Citizens will be heavily armed and will meet all resistance with all necessary force, as provided by law,” Myrland continued, according to charging documents. “If you default or otherwise do not appear, and if my application is granted, I would advise you to keep your front and back doors to your home UNLOCKED to better facilitate your lawful arrest.”
Four days after the e-mail, police contend Myrland left a short threatening message on the home phone of an assistant city attorney who’d been involved in a civil case filed by Myrland. “Keep your doors unlocked,” Myrland said, according to police. “Don’t resist. You’re going to be meeting people.” Myrland was arrested and his vehicle impounded by Kirkland police on Aug. 10, 20 days before the e-mails arrived. According to charging documents, Myrland was suspected of driving with a suspended license and an expired temporary license plate. At the time, police contend Myrland had an unloaded pistol and a loaded ammunition magazine on the passenger’s seat.
During the stop, Myrland repeatedly told officers he was “not subject to Washington state laws” and offered to provide Kirkland officers with a legal brief, a Federal Protective Service senior special agent said in charges filed Jan. 21 in U.S. District Court. He is alleged to have claimed he would be “constitutionally authorized” to come to an officer’s home and arrest him or her. Officers ultimately removed Myrland from the car and found he was carrying a loaded pistol in a shoulder holster. Asked why he was carrying the gun, the agent said, Myrland claimed he owned it to “shoot pit bulls.”
Contacted by a Kirkland detective, Myrland reiterated his threat and expressed his concerns about police conduct during the traffic stop. “He stated that the Kirkland Police Department illegally arrested and kidnapped him, stole his motor vehicle, disarmed him by taking his handgun, and allowed fines to be incurred against him in both tow impound fees and illegal traffic citations,” Detective Joseph Indahl told the court. “Myrland stated to me that he has every right to ‘arrest’ both the Mayor and Assistant City Attorney for ‘felonies’ that they have committed and he is going to carry out those arrests.” Myrland offered to not pursue those “arrests” if the city dropped the charges against him and paid his impound fees, the detective added.
King County prosecutors filed charges against Myrland in September. Months later, according to the federal agent, threatening letters related to Myrland’s case began arriving. A letter sent from Little Elm, Texas, and received by the City of Kirkland on Dec. 27 faulted King County Prosecutor Dan Satterberg for engaging in ”malicious prosecution” of people who think like Myrland, the federal agent told the court. The letter’s author claimed that it is “lawful for a private citizen to use deadly force in attempting to apprehend a fleeing felon,” and that “an assault is lawful when necessary by a person arresting one who has committed a felony,” then went on to claim that the Kirkland mayor and city attorney are criminals. “If (Satterberg) knows what’s good for him he’ll either prosecute them instead, or he can expect the use of force against his person if he intervenes on behalf of any criminal victimizing anyone I know,” the letter’s author wrote, according to charging documents.
“The same is true of the Kirkland police and city officials.” The agent added that similar letters were sent to the King County Superior Court and the state Bar Association. The letter prompted the agent to call Myrland and ask whether he knew the letter’s author. According to the agent’s account, Myrland said he was aware of letters but had not written them himself. Instead, he allegedly said he’d provided information to the senders so they could draft their own letters of support. At Myrland’s direction, the officer reviewed an audio program recorded by Myrland. “During the recording, Myrland tells people to go to a website, print out a letter and describes how to mail them in, and to whom,” the federal officer told the court. “In return, anyone who presents proof of this will receive copies of Myrland’s audio teachings.” Court records show Myrland had previously, unsuccessfully, argued that police lack the legal authority to issue traffic tickets and conduct law enforcement activities. In a 2009 case handled by the assistant city attorney, Myrland — who is identified as a tax avoidance expert on various websites apparently created by him — contended he had the authority to arrest city employees. “(The City of Kirkland) is scheming in private and in secrecy to damage (me) by malicious prosecution and other pains to cover up the crimes of which (Kirkland) employees and officials stand accused from coming to light of day for examination,” Myrland wrote. Myrland went on to claim that the city was attempting to force him into “an armed confrontation so they can kill him.” He asked a King County judge to order the Kirkland police to turn in all of the firearms and ammunition owned by the city.
King County prosecutors had charged Myrland with two counts of intimidating a public servant. Myrland, who was free, was arrested Tuesday and was ordered detained at the SeaTac Federal Detention Center pending a hearing scheduled for Wednesday afternoon. Myrland has been charged with transmission of threatening interstate communications, a felony. Visit seattlepi.com‘s home page for more Seattle news.