Kent man charged in barista attack has lengthy criminal history

Just released five months ago from state prison

A Kent man – charged with first-degree burglary and attempted indecent liberties for allegedly attacking a Kent bikini barista stand employee Feb. 20 – had just been released from state prison five months ago.

Michael Scott Reynolds, 33, was under active supervision by the state Department of Corrections (DOC) and living in DOC transitional housing in Kent at the time of the reported attack, according to charging papers. He was released from state prison in September after serving 12 years for first-degree robbery and burglary convictions for incidents in Benton County in Eastern Washington.

Reynolds is scheduled to be arraigned Thursday, March 8 in King County Superior Court at the Maleng Regional Justice Center in Kent. He remains in custody at the county jail in Kent with bail set at $2 million, according to King County jail records.

Kent Police arrested Reynolds on Feb. 21 at his workplace in the 6800 block of South 190th Street. Police received multiple tips identifying the suspect after the release to media outlets of a video from the espresso stand as well as a description of the man. Officers responded at about 4:45 a.m. Feb. 20 to Hottie Shots Espresso stand, 21237 84th Ave. S., after a report of an assault and attempted rape.

“The facts of this case clearly demonstrate that the defendant is dangerous and likely to commit another violent offense,” wrote Deputy Prosecuting Attorney Brandy L. Gevers in the charging papers. “As the defendant jumped in the window of the coffee stand, he was armed with a large knife, clearly visible in the surveillance video, that he used to confront the victim and threaten to kill her before forcing her out of the coffee shop window.

“The defendant then drug the victim to a wooded area about 25 yards from the coffee stand, threw her on the ground, straddled her and began to rip her bikini top and bottom away as he held the knife to her throat.”

The barista, a 30-year-old Bonney Lake resident, reported that the assailant came to the coffee stand window on foot and ordered a drink, according to court documents. She said while she was distracted making his drink, he climbed in through the window and held her at knifepoint prior to forcing her out of the stand.

The woman told police she screamed at Reynolds to stop and that he dropped the knife when she tried to wiggle away from him. Reynolds found the knife and was later reportedly spooked by a vehicle’s headlights that pulled into the drive through coffee stand and walked away from the woman. He fled the area in a dark sedan.

Paramedics treated the woman for abrasions on her body which were sustained during the incident. She was said to be shook up, but otherwise in good condition.

Reynolds told detectives he had no recollection of driving to the coffee stand or attacking the barista. He said his memory had been “glitching” out. He added he was under stress at work and frequently gets hit in the head with appliances. He then requested an attorney, so detectives stopped their questioning. Police searched the area of the attack and the car used by Reynolds but did not find a knife.

Prosecutors said the case could lead to the third strike against Reynolds and subject him to a potential life sentence as a persistent offender. Prior to the burglary and robbery convictions, he was convicted of attempted robbery in Benton County. Other convictions include reckless burning (1999), residential burglary (1999), third-degree assault (2000), first-degree escape (2001), harassment (2001), forgery (1999) and three convictions for taking a motor vehicle without permission (1999, 2000).

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