CRIME WATCH FOLLOWUP: Arbor Heights man charged with felony stalking and sought on $500,000 warrant for incident outside U.S. Rep. Pramila Jayapal’s home

5:47 PM: The man arrested July 9th outside the Arbor Heights home of U.S. Rep. Pramila Jayapal is now charged with felony stalking. The King County Prosecuting Attorney’s Office filed the charge today against 48-year-old Brett A. Forsell, who also lives in Arbor Heights. He was released from jail four days after his arrest because he hadn’t yet been charged, but as prosecutors said at the time, that didn’t mean he wouldn’t ever be charged. And now, he is. A KCPAO spokesperson says, “Additional evidence was gathered by police investigators and referred to prosecutors prior to this charging decision. As part of the felony charge, we note that the defendant was armed with a deadly weapon and that the victim was stalked in connection with her elected position.” That night, he was found with a holstered .40-caliber Glock handgun; the charging documents say nearby security-video cameras recorded him yelling vulgarities and suggesting Jayapal should kill herself. Today, prosecutors argued for a $500,000 warrant, and a judge agreed, though the county jail roster does not currently show Forsell in custody. The KCPAO says the Extreme Risk Protection Order to keep him from possessing guns – for which a hearing was scheduled yesterday but was postponed – remains in effect. The charging documents say in part:

After the defendant was arrested, and while still in police custody, he continued to mark remarks picked up by the police audio and video recording. Those remarks demonstrate that he is focused on getting his Glock .40 caliber semiautomatic handgun back as quickly as possible and that he also plans to obtain an AR-15 semi-automatic assault rifle. He also stated that that he intends to continue his pattern of returning to Representative Jayapal’s house until, in his words, she “goes back to India.”

The documents also say Forsell told FBI agents that in the week and a half before the July 9th incident, he had driven past Jayapal’s home three to seven times as a “protest” of Jayapal and her politics. Also noted, an email she received from him in January, described as not threatening but expressing dislike of her politics, and other possible incidents as far back as April. Forsell is scheduled to be arraigned – to enter a plea to the charge – on August 10th.

ADDED 8:05 PM: Rep. Jayapal’s office sent this statement from her:

The news today from the King County Prosecuting Attorney’s office that they have charged Mr. Forsell with felony stalking demonstrates that the justice system is doing its work. I am grateful to the King County Prosecutor’s Office for holding this man accountable for his dangerous actions, to the victim’s advocate for her assistance throughout the process, and to the Seattle Police Department, U.S. Capitol Police, and the House Sergeant at Arms for continuing to keep my family, me, and my staff safe. Now, the Prosecutor’s Office and the courts will do their important work to protect all of us.

6 Replies to "CRIME WATCH FOLLOWUP: Arbor Heights man charged with felony stalking and sought on $500,000 warrant for incident outside U.S. Rep. Pramila Jayapal's home"

  • HD July 27, 2022 (8:08 pm)

    Good reporting WSB….a lot of fact-checking req’d, but if all verified, it’s horrifying this person isn’t in custody yet.  Yet he’s still focused on on getting an AR-15!!!  Where’s enforcement?  Where’s the intervention?  Let’s not be the next statistic.  May not agree with 100% of Rep Jayapal’s perspectives, but definitely agree with most…and most importantly, she has a seat of the table!  This rests on Enforcement’s/Justice’ doorstep.  Do something!!  Please keep up this his reporting….our voice at the table must be protected.  HD

  • HS July 27, 2022 (8:59 pm)

    I’m thankful to read this. As a victim of stalking, I feel like it’s of tremendous importance that this kind of crime is prosecuted. It creates important legal precedent.

  • 1994 July 27, 2022 (9:46 pm)

    If you don’t like your local elected official you can always vote !! Primary ballots are due Aug 2.  I dropped mine at the White Center library and surveilled the parking lot for any of those pesky ballot box ‘observers’ – but to my relief did not see any! Vote in peace :)

  • anonyme July 28, 2022 (5:53 am)

    I live two blocks from Ms. Jayapal and know of several similar nut jobs in the vicinity.  I’ve noticed an interesting ‘coincidence’: those who scream the most about their second amendment rights are the same people who exhibit exactly the kind of unstable behavior that should prohibit them from owning firearms at all.  Wish we had a photo of this guy so we could keep a look-out.

  • Dan July 28, 2022 (7:30 am)

    As always.   Excellent Reporting WSB. 

  • Char July 28, 2022 (12:46 pm)

    Thanks for the thorough reporting. A very dangerous situation which, according to the article, started months ago. How did this person obtain the weapon? Pls continue updating. Thank you.

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