A violent sex offender who ended up in Seattle after fleeing Canada has registered as a sex offender with the King County Sheriff’s Office one day after he was ordered to do so or face arrest.
Michael Sean Stanley, 48, was tracked down Thursday by Seattle police and U.S. marshals at an undisclosed location in the “downtown core,” said SPD spokesman Sgt. Sean Whitcomb. He was told about the state’s sex-offender registration requirements and ordered to register within three days or face arrest, Whitcomb said.
On Friday, the sheriff’s office said he had registered.
Sgt. Cindi West, sheriff’s office spokeswoman, said Stanley gave a Seattle address which they’re working to verify.
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She also said the sheriff’s office is awaiting paperwork from Canada to verify that he does have to register by law.
When that happens, and it’s confirmed Stanley is required to register as a sex offender, he will be classified as a Level 1, 2 or 3 offender based on his criminal record, West said.
Despite what Canadian authorities call a “horrendous” history of sex offenses there, police in the U.S. say they have no reason to arrest Stanley. He has not committed any recent crimes in the U.S., and Canada has opted not to seek his extradition for cutting off a GPS monitor and fleeing Edmonton, Alberta.
“Having him register is the most we can do at this point,” said Deputy U.S. Marshal Jack Williams, who described Stanley as being on the streets and “considered transient at this time.”
Williams, however, said Stanley told police that “he believes he has an arrangement” that will get him off the streets soon. Williams did not elaborate.
The King County Prosecuting Attorney’s Office and the state Attorney General’s Office said Stanley would likely not be a candidate for a civil-commitment proceedings at this point. Since he is not in custody, the law says that a commitment proceeding could begin only if he had committed a “recent overt act” toward reoffending, said Dan Donohoe, spokesman for King County Prosecuting Attorney Dan Satterberg.
Stanley, a U.S. citizen, has a criminal record in Washington, including in King County, but none of his convictions involves a sex crime, according to court records.
After his April 2011 release from prison in Canada, Stanley was being monitored by police behavioral specialists in Edmonton and required to wear an ankle bracelet that electronically monitored his whereabouts at all times, said Edmonton Police Services spokesman Chad Orydzuk.
On Oct. 1, Stanley cut the bracelet from his ankle and fled, causing a provincewide warning and a number of school lockdowns after his vehicle was found and unconfirmed sightings were reported.
On Oct. 7, according to law-enforcement officials, Stanley crossed legally into the U.S. at the Blaine border crossing.
U.S. Customs and Border Protection officials said Friday that Stanley’s right to privacy prohibits the agency from discussing why he wasn’t turned over to Canadian authorities before being allowed into the U.S., or how it is that someone with what Canadian police say is a long and “horrendous record” of sex crimes was allowed to cross into the U.S. without further scrutiny.
Customs spokesman Mike Milne explained generally that someone who can establish their identification as a U.S. citizen and isn’t wanted in this country or named in a “provisional warrant” filed by another country with the U.S. Department of Justice can cross into the U.S.
While Stanley could have been arrested before entering the U.S. on a warrant out of Edmonton, once he came into the U.S. that warrant could not be served unless Canada sought his extradition.
Canada has said it does not want Stanley back.
At the time he entered the U.S., Stanley was wanted on a nationwide arrest warrant in Canada. Canadian officials said bulletins about Stanley’s disappearance had been widely distributed to law-enforcement agencies.
Whitcomb said that “law-enforcement officials on both sides of the U.S. border are working to resolve this very complicated situation.”
Stanley’s home release in Canada came after he served a 32-month sentence for assault and forcible confinement of two boys, ages 9 and 13, in 2004.
In a community warning issued when he was released in April 2011, Edmonton Police Services described Stanley as an “untreated violent and sexual offender who poses a risk of significant harm to the community.” It notes he has a “27-year history of committing nighttime break and enters.”
Two weeks ago, the Royal Canadian Mounted Police locked down schools in several west-central Saskatchewan communities after Stanley’s vehicle was found in the area.
Stanley has targeted adults and children, according to Canadian parole documents obtained by the Canadian Broadcasting Corp. (CBC).
In 1987, he broke into the apartment of an 82-year-old Lethbridge, Alberta, woman who used a wheelchair and raped her. The same night, he was discovered in another apartment with two young girls, including a 15-month-old child who had been undressed, the CBC reported Monday.
In 2000, Stanley was charged with exposing himself to some children, the CBC reported. He also was charged with sexually assaulting a young girl in 2004, but according to the CBC the girl delayed reporting the incident and eventually refused to testify because she was afraid of Stanley.
He went to prison again in 2006 after luring two mentally impaired boys to an Edmonton apartment, where he held them and blew crack smoke in their faces. Parole documents indicate he initially had been charged with sexual abuse in that case.
Stanley also has a long criminal history in Washington state and has been named in cases in Okanogan, Chelan, Grant, Lincoln, Clark and King counties, according to court records.
He served more than three years in prison after a King County 1984 burglary conviction with a deadly-weapon enhancement involving a knife, according to court records.
Mike Carter: firstname.lastname@example.org or 206-464-3706
Information from Seattle Times archives is included in this report.