Man, 25, charged with assault by blow torch

An Oak Harbor man with a history of mental illness and substance abuse problems is facing a felony charge for allegedly menacing his father with a blow torch last month, according to court records.

Prosecutors charged Andrew P. Shumate, 25, in Island County Superior Court Feb. 20 with second-degree assault and malicious mischief in the third degree. Both were charged as domestic-violence related crimes.

Shumate’s mother reported to 911 on Feb. 15 that her son “was threatening to blow up the house and had a blow torch,” according to the report by Officer William Wilke with the Oak Harbor Police Department.

Shumate had been arguing with his mother about his drug use; he got angry and threw a phone, a TV remote and a glass bottle of gravy on the floor, according to the report.

Shumate’s father intervenes and Shumate went into the garage. He emerged a short time later with a lit blow torch in one hand and a propane cylinder in the other.

After his father tried to grab the blow torch, Shumate pointed the flame at his father’s face, bringing the flame within inches of his skin, Wilke wrote. The two men wrestled for the lit blow torch until the older man finally disarmed Shumate.


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