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Safeco Field assault suspect is Santa photographer with long list of arrests

One of two men suspected in a brutal assault at Safeco Field owns a studio in Everett where he takes photos of children with Santa. A Marysville woman provided this photo of her son, which was taken by Mark A. Hawkins at his business in Everett. She said she would not have taken her child there had she known about his run-ins with police, which include arrests for driving under the influence, disorderly conduct, assault and contempt of court. (PHOTO/Courtesy)

Mark A. Hawkins, 47, of Everett, is suspected of fourth-degree assault and disorderly conduct in connection with the April 13 attack inside The ‘Pen that left one man with five fractures to his face. Another suspect, Richard, D. Shaver, 52, of Everett, was arrested for felony assault in the case.

Both turned themselves in on May 24 after their photos were featured on Washington’s Most Wanted.

Hawkins is a freelance photographer who takes photos of children with Santa out of a storefront on Broadway Avenue. Police records indicate that he has been arrested or contacted by the Everett Police Department for driving under the influence, disorderly conduct, assault and contempt of court. According to the records, he is “well known” to officers in the area.

On May 7, just three weeks after the Safeco Field assault, Hawkins was arrested at the Port of Everett for obstructing a law enforcement officer who was at the Marina to contact a man who was suicidal.

Officers arrived at 1720 West Marine Drive around 9:00 p.m. on a report of a man who was threatening to kill himself with a butcher knife. A short time later, according to a police report, officers heard a loud explosion and the boat the man was on burst into flames.

Around the same time a man later identified as Hawkins ran down the dock toward the boat and began taking pictures, according to documents.

“I told the male several times to step back. He kept taking pictures of the boat on fire and yelling at me,” an officer wrote in his report. “The boat was still burning, the officers were detaining the suicidal man and a propane tank had already exploded. The scene was still very chaotic and dangerous. The fire department was just arriving and I was concerned about (Hawkins) blocking their access to reach the boat.”

The officer said Hawkins was asked several times to leave the scene and refused. He was arrested and booked into the Snohomish County Jail.

Hawkins was suspected of assault in a separate incident that occurred in March 2011.

According to a police report, he punched a security guard in the face at Scrubs Sports Grille on Hewitt Avenue.
The victim told police in a statement that Hawkins was drunk and caused a scene at the bar. He believed Hawkins was about to assault another patron so he stepped in front of him.

“I took him outside and he punched me in the face,” the victim’s statement read. “He then kept trying to get back in so we called the police.”

A Marysville woman who hired Hawkins to take photos of her infant son with Santa in December 2009 said he acted inappropriately toward her.

“He was (too) comfortable with the way that he talked to me and it bordered on sometimes sexually-inappropriate, to vulgar, to rude,” said the woman, who provided photos that Hawkins took of her son. She asked not to be named.

She said she learned about his arrests on the news and said she would not have taken her child to the business had she known about his contacts with police.

“What happens if a kid is crying? What if he gets upset? What if he’s been drinking that day?” she said.

Hawkins told KIRO Radio Tuesday that the Everett Police Department has a history of harassing him because he “sticks up for himself” and “speaks his mind.”

He said he is innocent of wrongdoing in the Safeco Field assault.

“I was trying to break up the fight when I got hit,” Hawkins said.

A defense attorney for the other suspect in that incident, Richard Shaver, said his client committed no crime that day at the ballpark.

“I think that when the facts are known, it will establish that the man who was injured threw a beer at some people, threw a punch,” attorney Robert Leen said outside a courtroom at the King County Jail. “This was a brawl; he is not guilty of any offense.”

Surveillance video showed hundreds of people were inside The ‘Pen, a quasi-beer garden behind left-center field, at the time the assault. According to court documents, Hawkins argued with the victim over a table and a fight ensued. Shaver is accused of punching the victim several times in the face.

Charges against the men are pending.

Shaver has no criminal history.

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