(COLIN HAFFNER/Chewelah Independent)
Officer facing fourth degree assault charges after incident…
An officer with the Colville Police Department was involved in an altercation at a downtown Colville bar Nov. 1, according to reports.
Officer Michael Shane Welch faces charges of fourth degree assault following the altercation at Burdick’s Nightclub, where he was with a woman.
According to a report filed by Stevens County Deputy Mark Coon and Colville Police Officer Adam Kowal, video footage showed the woman being approached by another man, identified as Clayton Burch, who tapped her on the shoulder before having a brief conversation. Burch then left and reappeared with a cell phone, which he later said was to prove he and the woman had held a previous conversation by text message.
The woman involved later told officers she had no relationship with Burch, and that he was obsessed with her.
According to Coon’s report, Welch later got up after the initial verbal argument and engaged Burch before the video showed him putting him “in a cuffing type hold before he appears to grab the back of the man’s head and push it towards a wall.”
Welch is also reported to have identified himself as an officer with the Colville Police Department during the altercation and threatened Burch with arrest for disorderly conduct.
Coon’s report stated that Burch claimed to not have known Welch was an officer prior to him announcing it, though Welch claimed Burch did in fact know this to be the case.
Witness reports also state that Welch threatened the bartender and other patrons with arrest when they attempted to intervene, and both Coon’s and Kowal’s reports state that video showed Welch attempting to follow Burch out the door as he was leaving before being pulled back by the woman and others.
Coon’s report noted that Welch appeared highly intoxicated, slurring his speech and swaying back and forth while standing.
Kowal’s report also noted that Welch and the woman later attempted to leave in Welch’s vehicle and were advised not to by another officer.
They were given a courtesy ride home.