Court Security

Calls from Lawyer and Mom Lead to Arrest of Suspect in Wash. Courthouse Attack on Judge, Deputy


A suspect was arrested on Saturday following an attack Friday in a Washington state courthouse on a judge and a Grays Harbor County sheriff’s deputy.

Steven Daniel Kravetz, 34, was turned in to authorities by his own mother after she realized he was wanted in the attack on Superior Court Judge David Edwards, 63, and Deputy Polly Davin, 45, reports the Seattle Times. Kravetz was arrested at his mother’s home in Olympia after she called to 911 report his whereabouts.

He is being held at the Mason County Jail for investigation of felony assault.

Authorities said the suspect gave a false name when Davin approached him in response to a call about a suspicious person at a courthouse. Additionally, a lack of security cameras in the historic courthouse in Montesano, where the deputy was stabbed and shot with her own handgun and Edwards was stabbed after coming to Davin’s aid, also made it difficult to identify the suspect initially.

However, a tip from a lawyer, Robert Ehrhardt, pointed them in the direction of Kravetz. Grays Harbor County Undersheriff Rick Scott said Ehrhardt called authorities to report that Kravetz used the phone in his office shortly after the attack. Scott said the suspect called his mom to get a ride home.

It isn’t clear from the article whether Ehrhardt and Kravetz had any prior relationship, and the lawyer declined to comment when contacted by the newspaper.

In an interview with KIRO 7 after Kravetz was arrested, the judge said he saw Davin being stabbed repeatedly by the stairs on the first floor of the courthouse on Friday as he was on the third floor.

“He was swinging at her, it appeared to me that he was trying to kill her,” said Edwards in a video clip linked to the article. After he intervened, “We struggled, and he was able to pull his arm free and started swinging at me.”

Stabbed in the back of the neck, the judge saw Davin pull her gun only to have it wrestled away by the suspect, who fired two shots, hitting the deputy in the shoulder. Then “he turned and looked at me, and for an instant I thought, you know, I thought that I was going to be next,” Edwards said.

Instead, the suspect turned away and the judge saw Davin attempt to get to her feet. That, he said, “was a relief, because I thought she was dead.”

Authorities said the deputy’s missing handgun was found during the arrest of Kravetz.

Earlier coverage:

ABAJournal.com: “Judge Stabbed, Deputy Shot at Wash. State Courthouse; Judges’ Recent Suit Alleged Security Issues”

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