Armed suspect arrested in N. Spokane standoff

Armed suspect arrested in N. Spokane standoff
Schell Beach was arrested in a short standoff with Spokane County deputies. 

No one was injured in a one-and-a-half hour standoff in N. Spokane on Friday night.

Spokane County Sheriff’s Office deputies tried to stop a Mercury Mountaineer for a traffic violation near Lyons and Washington. When the SUV did not stop, a deputy activated his siren.

The driver, later identified as 53-year-old Schell R. Beach, reportedly looked into his mirror, threw his hands out the driver’s window and continued driving.

Beach finally pulled over, but deputies said he would not follow commands.

Deputies said Beach started yelling. He refused to answer commands and reached around the passenger compartment. He reportedly sat up in the seat and held a knife to the side of his head.

Once deputies learned his named, they discovered Beach had an active felony Washington State Department of Corrections Escape Community Custody warrant for his arrest. He also has an extensive history of law enforcement contacts and arrest. SCSO said Beach was involved in a similar incident in February and was arrested for a DOC warrant.

Deputies placed spike strips under Beach’s tires and had their weapons ready in the case they needed to use them.

Beach ignored commands and would sometimes hold a knife to his throat, deputies said.

The SWAT team was called to the scene and positioned armored tactical rescue vehicles to block escape routes as a negotiator spoke with Beach.

Just after midnight, Beach followed commands, exited the SUV unarmed and was safely taken into custody.

Beach was booked into the Spokane County Jail for the felony DOC warrant, a misdemeanor warrant and was charged with failure to stop for a law enforcement vehicle.