Police roundup: Man gets jail time for knife threats

A 27-year-old man will spend a year in jail for threatening to kill a Kennewick family while walking around in a neighborhood with a knife.

Tyrone Llawson Hopstad of Kennewick pleaded guilty in Benton County Superior Court to felony harassment.

Judge Craig Matheson allowed Hopstad to do the time either on jail work release or a work crew.

Court documents say Michael Berg, 40, was at home Nov. 20 when he heard someone yelling outside. He found Hopstad, whom he did not know, in front of his neighbor's house.

When Hopstad saw Berg, he started walking toward him while holding a knife and pointing it at Berg, documents said.

Berg's wife then came outside and Hopstad threatened to return with some friends and kill the family if they called the police.

Hopstad fled when a car drove by.

Kennewick officers found Hopstad, and police said he was belligerent and had to be shocked with a Taser gun, court documents said.

Hopstad admitted to officers that he had a knife when confronting "the guy that came out," that he told him "if he didn't get back inside his house I would beat the (expletive) out of him" and that he dropped the knife along the railroad tracks, documents said.

Hopstad's criminal history includes car theft, malicious mischief, possession of drugs, assault and residential burglary. The crimes started when he was a juvenile in 2000.

Deputy Prosecutor Megan Whitmire and defense attorney Sam Swanberg in plea negotiations agreed to an exceptional sentence for Hopstad, which was one day less than the standard sentence so he would not go to prison.

Whitmire, in court documents, said she agreed to that based in part on Hopstad's "willingness to resolve this case by pleading as charged within the first trial setting."

He was ordered to have no contact with Berg for the next five years.

Kennewick man denies truck crash was a DUI

A Kennewick man who took his mother's pickup without her permission claims he crashed it into a tree outside Walmart while trying to drive and smoke.

Cody Allen Blackwell's driving privileges were suspended at the time of the early-morning Oct. 31 incident.

Blackwell, 23, pleaded guilty to second-degree taking a vehicle without permission, a felony, and hit-and-run with damage, a misdemeanor.

He was sentenced to two months in jail.

Kennewick police were dispatched to a hit-and-run at Kennewick's Walmart, with the caller saying a license plate had been left at the scene where a tree was damaged.

A 2008 Ford truck was found at Blackwell's home. Pieces of the tree were in the truck's undercarriage, tree bark was embedded in the front bumper and the front plate was missing, court documents said.

Blackwell admitted taking his mother's truck without her permission, court documents said.

She reportedly had not allowed Blackwell to drive her vehicle since his DUI conviction.

Police observed that Blackwell had "the odor of intoxicants coming from his person," but he told officers he only had consumed alcohol after getting home and didn't have a drink before driving.

The restitution amount that Blackwell must pay to his mother and to Walmart will be determined at another hearing.