Man arrested with AK-47 claims self-defense - Spokane, North Idaho News & Weather KHQ.com

Man arrested with AK-47 claims self-defense

Posted: Updated:
SPOKANE, Wash. -

Update: 

In an interview from the Spokane County Jail Saturday, Nicholas McRae explained why he ran from police after they tried to pull him over, and why he was so heavily armed. 

"I thought I might have been able to get away and get rid of the gun," said McRae speaking exclusively to KHQ.

McRae says he got the AK-47 off the streets right here in Spokane and police say he was pointing it out of the window of his Chrysler 300. That's when the police performed a PIT maneuver to disable McRae's car. It took several officers to take McRae into custody. According to police he said he wanted to "clean up the streets" but McRae is denying that he said that.

"I think they misconstrued what I was saying," McRae said.

He is claiming that he was carrying the guns in self-defense after he was stabbed back in January even though he knows he is not supposed to carry any firearms

"So I just thought it would be a smart idea to protect myself."

McRae is facing more serious felony charges.. He is currently in the Spokane County Jail with a $200,000 bond and he doesn't plan on making bail. 

Previous coverage:

Police in an unmarked vehicle arrested a man Friday afternoon after they saw him point a rifle out a window of his car near the Union Gospel Mission Shelter.

It happened around 3:12 p.m. when Police Anti-Crime Team officers driving an unmarked police vehicle saw Nicholas McRae point a rife out the window of his vehicle in the area of Union Gospel Mission near 1224 E. Trent Ave. This location is known for having several people inside and outside the building.

Officers assigned to the Anti-Crime Team then attempted to prevent a shooting by conducting a stop on the suspect using their emergency lights. McRae didn't stop and officers gave chase. McRae hit two cars near Trent and Hamilton causing minor injuries to one driver while he was attempting to get away.

Officers eventually used a PIT maneuver on McRae's car, causing it to stop. McRae then took off on foot at Spokane Falls Blvd and Riverpoint Blvd. toward the Riverpoint Campus. Several officers took the man into custody. McRae told officers he was carrying a gun to clean up the streets.

A search warrant was served on McRae's car. The search found an AK-47 with a drum magazine, loaded with 63 rounds of live 7.62 ammo. There was also a loaded handgun in the vehicle. Both the AK-47 and handgun were within reach of McRae.

McRae is a convicted felon and police say more serious felony charges are pending.

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