Michael Sean Stanley is shown in an RCMP handout photo. Stanley

Fugitive is suspect in sex assault

Authorities say they believe a high-risk sex offender who fled Canada may be the suspect in the sexual assault of a 16-year-old boy. In a news release Tuesday, Seattle police said they were told that Michael Stanley met the teen at a grocery store and walked with him to an alley.

SEATTLE — Authorities say they believe a high-risk sex offender who fled Canada may be the suspect in the sexual assault of a 16-year-old boy.

In a news release Tuesday, Seattle police said they were told that Michael Stanley met the teen at a grocery store and walked with him to an alley.

“Stanley plied the teen with alcohol, grabbed the teen and sexually assaulted him,” police alleged.

“The 16-year-old pulled a knife on Stanley and was able to run to another location and contact police.”

Soon after, police said, they received several reports of a man yelling in an alley.

They said Stanley threatened to assault a person who told him to be quiet.

“When police arrived at the scene, they found Stanley, who became combative with officers and claimed he had a knife.”

Police said officers found a small knife on Stanley, who appeared to be drunk. They arrested him for harassment and later learned about the alleged sex assault. They expected to re-book Stanley on additional charges.

“Authorities are now working to determine how this will impact his offender status.”

Seattle police did not immediately return phone calls for further comment.

Stanley entered the United States earlier this month as Canadian police were searching for the 48-year-old. On Oct. 1, the electronic monitoring bracelet he had been wearing was cut off and found on the roof of a business in Lloydminster on the Alberta-Saskatchewan boundary.

He was being monitored by police under a peace bond with conditions, including one ordering him to stay away from children.

His criminal record in Canada dates back to 1987 and includes sex offences against an elderly woman and two mentally challenged boys.

When Canadian police discovered he was missing, they issued a public alert, which described the Edmonton man as an untreated, violent sex offender. Soon after, several schools in Saskatchewan locked their doors after unconfirmed sightings of Stanley.

A few days later, he crossed into Blaine, Wash., south of Vancouver.

Edmonton police said they had warned U.S. authorities that he might try to cross the border, but officials allowed him in after determining he was an American citizen and not the subject of an extraditable arrest warrant.

Alberta Justice had started the extradition process, then announced it would not seek to have Stanley returned to Canada because the charges he was facing at the time — breach of recognizance, mischief and driving charges — didn’t involve violence.

A Canadian extradition expert had publicly suggested Canada should say “good riddance” and leave Stanley south of the border because extradition would be costly and he would face little time behind bars if convicted of the minor crimes. But Alberta’s official Opposition Wildrose party called the government’s decision “morally reprehensible” and demanded justice officials try to get the sex offender back.

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