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Bainbridge police hunt for attempted murder suspect

Edward Mark Olsen remains at large. - Courtesy Bainbridge Police Department
Edward Mark Olsen remains at large.
— image credit: Courtesy Bainbridge Police Department

As of Thursday evening, authorities are still searching for a California man who is charged with attempted murder and burglary after he entered the Bainbridge home of an ex-girlfriend early Sunday morning and attempted to light her and their 12-year-old son on fire.

Edward Mark Olsen, 49, was recently released from prison in California for assaulting the victim, said Bainbridge Police Lt. Sue Shultz.

Olsen tracked the family to Washington and threatened to take the son away from his mother, the police report said.

According to the police, the victim awoke at 4:45 a.m. Sunday morning and smelled gasoline. Olsen then began pouring gasoline on the bed and threatening the victim and her son, who was sharing the bed with his mother at the time, the report said.

The victim screamed and jumped out of the bed, which distracted Olsen briefly. When the victim screamed, her son also woke up and grabbed Olsen, allowing them to escape.

The son told police that he went into his mother’s room at 12:30 a.m. because he heard noises outside that frightened him.

“This young man has lived with violence his whole life,” Shultz said.

The investigation concluded that Olsen used a rock to break the passenger side window of the victim’s car, which was parked in the driveway and used the garage door opener to enter the house.

Shultz said the woman and her son were treated for minor injuries at a local hospital and have been moved to an undisclosed location.

According to the police report, Olsen and the victim dated for nearly 10 years.

The victim told police that Olsen showed up unannounced on Halloween, and that was the first time she’d seen him since he went to prison for assaulting her. The victim told police that Olsen was jealous because she had a new boyfriend.

Olsen was sent to prison for two years in 2000 for “threaten crime with intent to terrorize,” according to the police report. After serving his time, Olsen was in and out of prison for parole violations until being sentence in 2008 to prison. Five days after his Oct. 24 release, an arrest warrant was issued in California for Olsen as a result of a parole violation.

The victim told police she is fearful of Olsen’s threats. On Nov. 18, Olsen stole her car and crashed it in Poulsbo. Because of the past history of violence, the victim chose not to argue with Olsen about it.

Approximately a week ago, Olsen punched the victim in the face several times after an argument about the car. Following the incident, the victim decided not to call police because she was afraid of Olsen’s reaction, the report said.

The victim said Olsen has been depressed recently and talked about “suicide by cop.”

Police were unable to find an address for Olsen, and his only known family, two sisters, one of which lives in Tacoma, and parents in Kitsap County, said they hadn’t seen him since Nov. 28.

Olsen is described as 5 feet 11 inches tall, 210 pounds, with short gray hair and a mustache.

Shultz said Olsen should be considered a threat to the community and anyone knowing of his whereabouts should call 9-1-1 immediately.

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