A Richland man shot in the leg this week by a Franklin County sheriff’s deputy had just gotten out of jail after posting bail on a child sex case.
Michael L. Long, 31, is accused of inappropriately touching a young girl who was riding in his car last month.
Court documents also show that Long pulled into the parking lot of a hotel and asked the girl if she wanted to go inside. She said no and asked Long to take her home, documents said.
He pleaded innocent April 5 in Benton County Superior Court to one count of first-degree child molestation. His trial is May 22.
He posted bond on $10,000 bail shortly after his court hearing and was released from the Benton County jail.
Less than a week later, at 7 p.m. Tuesday, Franklin County deputies responded to a domestic dispute in a car driving near Scooteney Park off Highway 17. Deputies were able to stop the vehicle at Angeline Street and Caldona Avenue in Mesa.
Long allegedly abandoned his car and ran off, but deputies quickly caught up to him.
He was handcuffed and put in the back of the patrol car.
Sheriff Jim Raymond has said preliminary information indicates Long was alone in the patrol car when he climbed through the divider from the back seat into the driver’s seat and tried to pull away.
The patrol car reportedly was moving when Deputy Scott Wright jumped into the passenger side to stop Long. During the struggle, Wright fired his gun.
Franklin County Sheriff Jim Raymond said preliminary information indicates the suspect was alone in the patrol car when he climbed through the divider from the back seat and tried to drive away before a deputy jumped in the passenger side and they struggled.
Long was shot in the leg. He was treated at Kadlec Regional Medical Center in Richland, and released Thursday, hospital spokesman Jim Hall said.
It is not clear if Long was going to be arrested and booked into the jail once he was medically cleared. A Franklin County corrections officer said Long was not in custody as of Thursday evening.
Wright, who has been with the sheriff’s office for less than a year, was not hurt Tuesday. He has been placed on administrative leave, which is standard practice in deputy-involved shootings.
More details about what led up to the incident Tuesday night were not available.
Kennewick police Commander Craig Littrell, who is heading up the investigation by the Tri-City Special Investigations Unit, was out of the office Thursday. He told his staff to direct all media calls to the Franklin County Sheriff’s Office.
Raymond could not be reached, but previously told the Herald in an email that he “will not be discussing particulars of the incident” until the formal investigation is finished.
The original news release said Long was arrested on suspicion of domestic violence crimes and drug possession, along with court order violations. No charges had been filed in Franklin County as of Thursday.