Fife Police searching for dangerous stabbing suspect

Karl Brownell


Fife Police are asking for your help to find Karl Brownell, who everybody knows as “Wesley,” after detectives say he stabbed a man – almost killing him. Crime Stoppers of Tacoma-Pierce County is offering a cash reward of up to $1,000 for information leading to Brownell’s arrest. The victim, Richard Pederson, was just trying to be a Good Samaritan after detectives say Brownell stole money from a woman in a wheelchair. “Why stab him anyway? You did wrong!” said his mom Peggielee Pederson.

The stabbing occurred on Nov. 29 at the bus stop outside the Emerald Queen Casino in Fife. Police say Brownell, who is 6-feet, 5-inches tall and weighs 240 pounds, is known to frequent casinos in Fife and the Tacoma area. He should be considered armed and dangerous.

Richard Pederson

“Obviously, his behavior is unpredictable and very violent so we’d like to get him into custody as quickly as possible,” said Fife Police Chief Pete Fisher.

The victim had asked Brownell, who she knew, for help to get money out of an ATM. “She provided him with her bank card and her PIN,” said Chief Pete Fisher. “He retrieved money from the machine, gave her back her card and then left the casino with the cash he had taken out on her behalf.”

Detectives say Pederson heard what happened and went outside to confront Brownell to get the money back. “They got into an argument, which turned physical, and at some point during that scuffle our victim was stabbed at least once and had multiple injuries as a result of that altercation,” said Chief Fisher.

Pederson spent a week in the hospital. His mom says he almost died for being a hero to that disabled woman.

Pierce County Prosecutor Mark Lindquist has charged Brownell with assault in the second degree and theft in the third degree. He’s been arrested six times and convicted most recently of domestic violence assault, but has also been busted for car prowling in King County. Detectives think he could be in Tacoma or surrounding areas and is living transient.

Call 911 or 1 (800) 222-TIPS or submit a tip at if you know where police can find Karl “Wesley” Brownell.

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