Phillip Arnold Paul Captured
Posted by shadmia on September 21, 2009
3 days after disappearing from the Spokane County Fair, Phillip Arnold Paul, 47, was captured nearly 200 miles away in Goldendale, in south-central Washington state. The mentally-ill killer had been the target of one the largest manhunts in the state’s history. 50 to 60 federal, state and Spokane-area law enforcement personnel had been involved in the search.
“He came out of the brush, onto the roadway, as law enforcement officers were going by,” Klickitat County Sheriff Rick McComas said. “His intent was to voluntarily give himself up because he knew we were going to find him.”
As it turns out, Paul had unwitting help in his plot to escape from the mental hospital where he had been incarcerated on and off for the better part of 20 years. He had obviously been planning his escape for a long time.
47-year-old Phillip Arnold Paul had been telling a friend in Spokane for months that he was going to be released from the Eastern State Hospital. Paul went to the friend’s house after slipping away from the hospital staff.
According to Spokane County Sheriff Ozzie Knezovich, the friend gave Paul a guitar and a sleeping bag and drove him out of town, not knowing at the time that Paul was actually running away. Paul also had $50 on him from his Social Security check.
After learning, on Saturday, that Paul was the target of a massive manhunt, the friend went to the authorities and explained to them what had happened. He took them to where he had dropped Paul off, in Goldendale, approximately 180 miles away. Knezovich says authorities used that information to narrow their search.
On Sunday, shortly after 4 pm, with a helicopter overhead and dozens of federal, state and local law enforcement officers swarming around Goldendale, Phillip Arnold Paul, 47, gave up. He walked out to the Goldendale-Bickleton road from the brush where he had been hiding, into the arms of the law.
“This has been one of the largest manhunts in this region for many years,” Knezovich said. “A great deal of teamwork went into the capture of Mr. Paul.”
“There was a lot of fear in the community, people locking their windows,” he said. “I want people in Spokane County to know that tonight they can sleep in peace.
Paul was arrested by Spokane County sheriff’s detective Roger W. Knight. He was the same detective that had arrested Paul after his first escape attempt in 1991. Following that arrest, Paul knocked Knight unconscious in the jail booking area, separating his shoulder, and was convicted of first-degree escape and second-degree assault. This time however, there were no further incidents.
McComas said Paul would be taken to Yakima following a brief checkup by medics in Goldendale. He is expected to appear in Yakima County Superior Court on a warrant stemming from the initial murder case before being returned to Eastern State Hospital. It is unlikely that Phillip Arnold Paul will be going on any more field trips.