A Kennewick man is being held on $75,000 bail on charges he broke into his former girlfriend’s home and twice within 12 hours beat up a man now living with her.
Sean D. Sanders, 42, pleaded innocent last week in Benton County Superior Court to second-degree assault and first-degree burglary.
His trial is scheduled Sept. 14.
Dispatch received a 911 call at 9:35 a.m. July 19 from a woman who said her ex-boyfriend had come to her Richland home and “beat up multiple people,” according to court documents.
The caller said the suspect had since left. She gave a description of his vehicle and said where he likely was headed, but did not give her own name before hanging up.
Police were able to track the number to a Duportail Street home and, after several attempts, got Tina McElroy to answer the front door, documents said. Officers already had noticed a pool of dried blood and a broken pool cue in the open carport.
McElroy gave what prosecutors described as a “convoluted story,” saying her roommate had brought friends home the night before and they got into a fight with Sanders when he showed up. She said Sanders returned that morning and, even though she tried to block the door with her foot, he pushed his way inside and searched the home for “people” before leaving, court documents said.
McElroy had blood on her hands and claimed it was from cleaning up.
Police spoke to a neighbor, who reported hearing a disturbance around midnight and seeing Sanders’ vehicle the night before and that morning. She was asked to call police if Sanders again returned, and at 11:05 a.m. she told dispatch he was next door using a hose to spray the driveway area, documents said.
Sanders left before police arrived, but an officer spotted his vehicle heading toward Highway 240 and stopped him. He admitted that he was just at McElroy’s house, saying he wanted to wash blood out of the carport that had been there for a month.
An officer noticed that Sanders allegedly had blood on one of his shoes.
After he was taken into custody, Sanders said he used to live at the Duportail home and that he had been engaged to McElroy, but things didn’t go well, so he moved out in January, court documents said. He said he took his two kids over the night before to visit with McElroy and her grandchild.
Sanders claimed that Phillip Leblanc, who is now living in the house, had made a threatening comment to his daughter at one point, so he left with his kids, documents said. He denied any altercation, and said he was back at the home earlier that morning only because he had left behind a pair of eyeglasses.
McElroy’s roommate then told police she had left the house at 8 p.m. July 18, but said McElroy left her a voicemail at midnight, alleging Sanders had beat up Leblanc. The voicemail further stated that Leblanc needed medical care, but he did not want McElroy to call police, documents said.
Police discovered that Leblanc reportedly had outstanding arrest warrants.
An officer returned to the house, said he knew what really happened and that an injured Leblanc was inside.
While waiting for paramedics to arrive, McElroy explained that Sanders had arrived uninvited the night before with his kids. She told him the kids could stay, but he had to be on “good behavior,” court documents said. Sanders got angry when Leblanc made a comment to him about McElroy, so he grabbed a pool stick outside and rushed Leblanc, hitting him numerous times on the head, documents said.
Sanders then allegedly kicked Leblanc in the ribs and the head after he fell to the ground.
Sanders came back that morning, forced his way into the home and again punched Leblanc numerous times, court documents said. He also allegedly pushed his fingers into Leblanc’s existing injuries to cause more pain.
Leblanc was taken to a Tri-City hospital, where doctors determined he had three broken ribs, documents said.
Sanders has been ordered to have no contact with the victims while his case is pending.