La Center man arrested by SWAT team after assault


A La Center man is in custody after he alleedly assaulted an elderly family member and fired shots.

At about 1:45 p.m. on Feb. 2, deputies with the Clark County Sheriff’s Office responded to a reported assault on rural property in the 34600 block of Northeast 127th Avenue in La Center, according to a sheriff’s office release. A woman called 911 to report her relative had punched an older family member in the face and knocked him to the ground. The caller believed the subject was drunk and possibly suicidal.

Deputies had been to the residence the day before on a report of a minor disturbance, the release stated. The subject “was reportedly suicidal and armed with a firearm in the basement.”

The family didn’t feel the subject was a danger to anyone and the subject spoke to deputies on the phone, the release stated. The subject declined offers by deputies to connect the subject with mental health resources or arrange a ride to go to the hospital to be evaluated.

“With the situation calmed and not wanting to provoke a confrontation the deputies disengaged,” the release stated.

The next day, while some of the family was coming out of the residence to speak with deputies, the subject came out of a detached barn and fired a round from a “revolver-style handgun” which deputies said hit a tractor in the yard, according to the release.

Deputies got the family members who exited the house to safety and went into the residence to evacuate the elderly man, the release stated. Deputies contained the residence and launched a drone, which located the subject standing outside of the barn. The subject walked around the property and fired another round, “possibly toward” the drone, then went back into the barn, according to the release.

Based on shots fired, the Southwest Washington SWAT team was activated and a search warrant was granted, the release stated. The subject broke containment set up around the barn and moved into some nearby woods, attempting to conceal himself in some brush near a creek.

The drone kept watch of the subject while the SWAT team assembled to take him into custody, the release stated. He was contained in the woods for some time before surrendering to SWAT.

The subject was later identified as David McCandless, 57, of La Center. McCandless was booked on charges of fourth-degree domestic violence, assault and reckless endangerment. 

He was scheduled for a first appearance in Clark County Superior Court on Feb. 3.