AIRWAY HEIGHTS, Wash. – A man is facing manslaughter charges after police said he shoved a man who fell, hit his head and later died.
Court documents said Thomas Carey, 57, got into an argument with Michael Vercruysee, 66 around 4:30 p.m. Friday. An officer arrived on scene and found Vercruysee being treated by Northern Quest medical staff.
Carey told a Kalispel Tribal Police officer that Vercruysee has been bothering his mother, swearing at her and shaking tickets in her face because he thought his mother was playing two machines at the same time.
Court documents state that the two had words and Carey got up and followed Vercruysee. According to court records, Carey said Vercruysee cursed at him and flipped him off. That is when Carey shoved him and he fell to the ground, according to documents.
The officer reviewed surveillance video and court documents said it showed Carey pushing the victim. Then, the officer arrested Carey for second degree assault and booked him into the Spokane County Jail.
Court documents said on Monday the officer checked a different surveillance camera and it showed a different angle of what happened. Court records state that after the victim was pushed he hit his head on a chair before falling to the ground. The officer later learned from the victim’s step-son that he had broken his neck and he probably wasn’t going to make it. Later that day, Vercruysee died.
Court documents said Carey’s charges where then upgraded to first degree manslaughter. On Tuesday, Carey was released from jail on his own recognizance. His arraignment is scheduled for April 17 at 1:30 p.m.