On Wednesday, November 16, 2022, the Anacortes Police Department received notification that James Kiesel Jr. was in an apartment within the City of Anacortes. Kiesel Jr., who had active arrest warrants for multiple serious felonies, including First Degree Arson, Residential Burglary, and Unlawful Possess of a Stolen Firearm, also had multiple officer safety alerts.
Law enforcement obtained a search warrant for the apartment to arrest Kiesel, Jr. in Anacortes. Due to his violent history, multiple agencies were involved in the attempt to take Kiesel Jr. into custody, including Skagit County Sheriff’s Office, Mount Vernon Police Department, Anacortes Police Department, Burlington Police Department, Sedro Woolley Police Department, and the Oak Harbor Police Department. Prior to the warrant being served, Kiesel Jr. fled the apartment on foot to avoid apprehension. A few minutes later, Kiesel Jr. suffered a self-inflicted gunshot injury. No law enforcement physical force was used during this incident, and medical aid was immediately provided. Kiesel Jr. was pronounced deceased on the scene, and an investigation has begun with the Anacortes Police Department.
Kiesel Jr. was involved in a law enforcement incident on November 3, 2022, in the City of Oak Harbor, where he was armed with a firearm and fled an arrest team by using a vehicle to recklessly ram into several police and civilian vehicles and drove through a fence to avoid being arrested.
Press release by – Captain Tony Slowik