Sex offender who fled from Canada pleads not guilty to harassment

Michael S Stanley - sex offender
Michael Sean Stanley, a sex offender who fled Canada, has pleaded not guilty to misdemeanor harassment. (King County Sex Offender Registry) | Zoom
Michael Sean Stanley, a sex offender who fled Canada and is now suspected of sexually assaulting a Seattle teen, has pleaded not guilty to misdemeanor harassment.

The judge set bail at $100,000.

Authorities say Stanley is also being investigated for assault after Seattle police said he met a boy at a West Seattle grocery store, struck up a conversation and walked with him to an alley where he plied the teen with alcohol and attacked him. The boy pulled a knife and was able to escape, police said.

Detectives believe the attack on the teen happened before police received several calls reporting noise in an alley and Stanley threatening someone who asked him to be quiet. When police arrived, Stanley became combative and said he had a knife. He appeared intoxicated, according to authorities. He was arrested and jailed for investigation of harassment.

Stanley had registered as a sex offender with the King County sheriff's office and listed his address as an intersection just a block away from Seattle's Pike Place Market, a scenic destination for both tourists and locals. It's also near a preschool, even though he had been ordered to stay away from children in Canada.

Ilene Stark, executive director at Pike Market Child Care and Preschool, said the community felt threatened by Stanley's arrival in the area. The preschool reviewed its lockdown plan, kept in constant contact with security in the area, and provided images and descriptions of Stanley to teachers and parents.

"It's been intense," Stark said. "It felt like there was a threat in our community and that we needed to be much more vigilant _ more than in everyday life. It was disconcerting."

Stark said she was saddened that something horrible apparently had to happen before Stanley was collected by U.S. law enforcement. At the same time, she said her sadness was coupled with relief knowing that there is more legal control over Stanley's whereabouts.

Stanley most recently served a 32-month prison term after what parole documents describe as a case in which he lured two mentally challenged boys into an apartment, lit a crack pipe and blew smoke in their faces and then sexually assaulted them. Parole documents also describe another case in which Stanley broke into an elderly woman's apartment while she was sleeping and sexually assaulted her.

He was being monitored by police under a peace bond, which Canadian authorities can get to impose conditions on individuals in the community. Stanley's peace bond has 20 conditions, including one ordering him to stay away from children.

Police in Canada issued a public alert earlier this month after Stanley cut off his electronic-monitoring bracelet. Officials described him as an untreated, violent offender who posed a significant risk.

An American citizen, Stanley crossed the border and was located in the Seattle area last week. Canadian officials decided not to seek extradition.

Before Tuesday, there was no reason to arrest Stanley since Canada hadn't pursued an extraditable warrant and he wasn't wanted for any crimes in the United States, authorities said.

Edmonton, Alberta, police spokesman Chad Orydzuk told The Associated Press that Stanley's arrest in Seattle was "unfortunate but we can't provide comment. It's not our file."

"If he continues to break the law down south you can imagine how difficult it would be for us to comment if he broke the law in different jurisdictions in the States. For us to comment on that, we couldn't keep up with that, if this was to continue," he said.

Orydzuk said when Stanley breached the monitoring conditions in Edmonton, officials searched for him and notified the public and other agencies. Unconfirmed sightings of Stanley led schools in several west-central Saskatchewan communities to lock their doors and keep children inside.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.


MyNorthwest.com, Staff report
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