AP

Man pleads guilty to stalking Washington state lawmaker

Mar 14, 2023, 7:15 AM

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(Photo courtesy of Getty Images)

(Photo courtesy of Getty Images)

A man has pleaded guilty to stalking a lawmaker in Washington state.

Isaiah Long, 34, of Bremerton, pleaded guilty to two counts of felony stalking in Kitsap County Superior Court earlier this month, the Kitsap Sun reported Sunday.

Starting in 2021, Long harassed Republican Rep. Michelle Caldier, of Port Orchard, and the harassment continued after he was warned and then ordered to stop contacting her, according to court documents.

Kitsap County prosecutors have recommended a sentence of 17 months in prison. Long’s sentencing is set for March 24.

Caldier told the Kitsap Sun she feels safe with Long in jail, but noted that he will be released from custody eventually and said she’s considering ways to defend herself.

“It has been awful,” she said of the situation last week. “And for the first time ever in my life, I am thinking about owning a gun to protect myself. … He showed up at my father’s house not once, not twice, but three times. That’s scary. I’ve never met the guy, it’s just because I have this position.”

Long was initially charged with one count of stalking last October, and prosecutors added a second count as the case went to trial in late February. Long pleaded guilty to both charges as part of a plea agreement shortly after jury selection began.

Caldier told a sheriff’s deputy that she had been receiving concerning phone calls from Long for a “significant” amount of time and said she sought a protection order after Long went to her father’s home and asked for pictures of her.

“She said that she was getting so many calls that she completely stopped answering the phone if she didn’t recognize the phone number,” the deputy wrote in a report. “During the calls, Isaiah’s behavior was erratic and unpredictable. Sometimes he would sing to her and appear happy, confessing his love to her. Others, he would become angry and yell wanting to know why she didn’t meet him or why she hasn’t moved in with him.”

In an interview with Long at his parents’ home in Bremerton, Long told State Patrol investigators that he saw his relationship with the lawmaker as “pen pals and he considers her a good friend.”

A detective noted in January 2022 that two other protection orders were on file against Long involving other people.

AP

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Man pleads guilty to stalking Washington state lawmaker