Melissa Koenig, Daily Mail, February 8, 2022
A homeless man with a 16-year violent criminal history has been charged with first-degree assault after taking ‘full body swing’ with a baseball bat at a woman in the back of the head, leaving her bleeding with a fractured skull, before going for a slice of pizza.
Wantez Tulloss, 31, has been arrested 11 times going back to 2006 and was wanted by police in Washington for third degree theft.
On Monday January 31, he was filmed taking a swing at Emma Shengnan Wang, who was named by prosecutors in court documents. He knocked Wang to the ground, hitting her on her skull and back, then fled, taking his bags with him.
She lay helpless on the ground with blood pouring from her ear while bystanders rushed to help her. Wang is an engineer at Amazon Web Services who lives in Seattle. She is now recovering and will need to undergo surgery.
Wantez Tulloss, a prolific offender, is accused of hitting this random woman in the head with a bat. He takes a full swing. She’s now suffering skull fractures that require significant surgery. He got a slice of pizza after the attack.
This is what Seattle has become. pic.twitter.com/dc8yJ8TAqP
— Jason Rantz on KTTH Radio (@jasonrantz) February 8, 2022
Police reports obtained by DailyMail.com describe how Tulloss had been spotted by others moments earlier, swinging the bat in an alleyway. One witness said they heard him smashing Wang’s skull and thought he’d taken a hit at a concrete wall because of the sound it made.
The attack was random, and police have not yet been able to determine if there was a motive. Wang did not see her attacker and it’s unclear if he said anything to her. After hitting her, he went for a slice of pizza and then was arrested.
The tattooed criminal’s rap sheet includes charges for fourth degree assault, theft and reckless driving. It’s unclear when he was last in jail – or why he was on the streets when he poses such a clear risk.
Prosecutors begged a judge to deny him bail, saying he should not be allowed to walk the city’s streets.
The officer who interviewed the victim afterwards said she ‘cannot figure out why anyone would do this to her’.
‘She stated that her family is in China, and it was very hard for her family to hear about this.’
‘Since 2012, courts in Washington State have issued 11 warrants for the defendant’s arrest. The defendant currently has an outstanding warrant from Kirkland Municipal court for theft 3rd degree.
‘The defendant is unlikely to appear for court out of custody.
‘The defendant is a significant danger to the community and very likely to commit a violent offense if he remains out of custody,’ prosecutor Brynn N. H. Jacobson said.
The video shows Wang walking down the street in the city’s Belltown neighborhood wearing a black jacket and a KN95 face mask, with a shopping bag in hand, when Tulloss approached from behind.
He then dropped the bags he was carrying and whacked her from behind with both hands on a baseball bat.
The woman immediately fell face-down as the man walked away.
Authorities say Tulloss had not known the woman prior to the attack just before 6.30pm last Monday.
Medics on the scene last Monday found the woman, whose family is all overseas, lying on her back on the sidewalk with blood coming from her right ear.
They said they heard a sound that made them turn back, and watched Tulloss pick up his bags and walk away with a bat in his hand next to the woman, who had collapsed on the ground.
The witnesses rushed to the woman’s aid and promptly called 911. The victim is now being treated for a fractured skull and a possible concussion at Harborview Medical Center, and is set to undergo surgery.
Seattle police circulated the video of the incident with a photo of the suspect and received a response from a fellow officer who identified the suspect as Tulloss the next day.
The officer said he remembered seeing the man downtown on January 28 because of his distinctive checkered facial tattoos and used a police database to look for individuals with them.
During the course of the investigation, police learned Tulloss lives at the AL Humphrey House, a transient housing facility run by Plymouth Housing as part of the city’s Housing First strategy – in which the homeless are given shelter with no conditions before being provided with services to address the underlying causes of their homelessness, KTTH reports.
According to its website, Plymouth Housing creates a ‘non-judgmental space’ for its residents to ‘make changes if, and when they are ready.’
Tulloss lives at the AL Humphrey House (pictured), a transient housing facility run by Plymouth Housing as part of the city’s Housing First strategy. It is located less than 500 feet from where the woman was hit
The AL Humphrey House is located less than 500 feet from where the woman was hit.
Following Tulloss’s arrest, Seattle police officers obtained a search warrant for his apartment at the facility and found the clothes he was wearing in the video footage hidden in the oven.
And while the bags he was seen carrying were also recovered, police did not find a baseball bat.
The attack comes amid an increase in violent crimes within the city.
According to the Seattle Police Department’s 2021 Crime Report, robberies were up 18 percent over the year before and aggravated assaults were up a whopping 24 percent, leading to a 10 percent increase in violent crimes.
In total, the city reached a 14-year high in violent crimes.
Shootings, meanwhile, increased by 40 percent over 2020, with 143 resulting in a non-fatal injury and 31 resulting in a fatal injury.
To address the growing problem Mayor Bruce Harrell unveiled a proposal to hire more officers on Friday night to respond to crimes in the city as the police force remains below staffing levels.
Last year, Interim Police Chief Adrian Diaz said the Seattle police force needed a minimum of 1,400 officers to deal with the city’s crime rate, but there are now fewer than 1,000 deployable officers and the department has only budgeted for 1,350 officers, KOMO reports.
And following the mayor’s announcement, Seattle police ended up investigating a string of shootings over the weekend, including a gun battle in Capitol Hill in which more than 40 bullets were fired and a shooting in the Seattle Chinatown-International District.
Critics say more needs to be done to address the increasing crime rate, but when Seattle City Attorney Ann Davison announced she was changing policy to make charging decisions against all of the accused within five days, she was met with opposition, specifically by City Councilmember Andrew Lewis, who argued that repeat offenders who are habitually prosecuted for minor crimes will continue to offend.
Victoria Beach, a member o the African American Community Advisory Council to Seattle Police, also suggested the department bring in outside help.
‘With all respects to our mayor, the problem is way bigger bigger than I think a lot of people imagined,’ she said, adding: ‘I’m so tired of hearing this plan and their broken promises. We have to be real with each other: We’re in a mess.’