Charges: Seattlecrime Reader Posed As Cop, Tried to Coerce Escort Into Sex

A Seattle man previously convicted of setting fires and attempting to derail trains has been charged with kidnapping, impersonating a police officer, and attempted extortion after he allegedly called an escort to his apartment, told her he was a cop, and tried to coerce her into having sex with him.

Julian Tarver, 25, allegedly contacted an escort on August 21st through an ad on Craigslist and asked her to come to his apartment in the 700 block of N 95th in North Seattle.

When the 18-year-old woman showed up and asked for money, Tarver—an apparent Seattlecrime.com fan (lots more on that in a minute) on Department of Corrections supervision for a child pornography conviction—allegedly went into his bedroom, returned, flashed a badge, and told the woman he was an undercover Seattle police officer working with the US Marshals on a sting operation.

Tarver allegedly told the woman the marshals were waiting outside the room and would “fire or take [her] down” if she tried to leave.

The woman later told police she saw an empty gun holster sitting on a counter, and had heard Tarver talk about how much he liked guns.

The woman tried to get Tarver to explain why she was under arrest, but hold her he needed to go lay down on his bed. “He started touching himself and told her he would let her go if she had sex with him or would perform sex acts on him, but she refused,” police records say.

Over the next six hours, Tarver repeatedly tried to coerce the woman into having sex—at one point demanding she undress so he could make sure she didn’t have any weapons—telling her she couldn’t leave him with “blue balls.”

Police sources also tell us that while Tarver held the woman in his apartment, he spent some time on his computer, repeatedly checking Seattlecrime.com. It appears Tarver is a regular reader, and has previously sent us tips and photos (again, more on that in just a sec).

Finally, court records say, Tarver told the woman she could leave, but made her agree to come back and have sex with him, and if she didn’t, he would find her. He then followed the woman to her car, took her ID and $600 cash, according to police records.

Two days later, Tarver began text messaging the woman, demanding that she return to his apartment. The woman contacted police, and Tarver happened to call the woman while she was meeting with officers, who had the woman put the call on speakerphone.

After meeting with the woman, Anti-Crime Team and Vice detectives served a search warrant at Tarver’s apartment and arrested him.

When detectives interviewed Tarver about the incident, he allegedly told them “The last time I told the truth about something I did, I spent four years in prison. I have to be careful about what I say, so I need to know all you got.” Tarver then asked for an attorney.

According to court records, Tarver has a long, colorful criminal history.

In 2005, he was convicted on two counts of arson, one count of damaging rail road property, and “sabotaging rolling stock.”

In December 2004, police were called to a train yard in Sodo after a train “derailer”—typically used as a safety device at construction sites—was found on the tracks.

Tarver was also at the scene, where he identified himself as a security officer for a fake security company. Tarver “sounded excited and out of breath,” court records say.

Several months later, police received a report that someone had set a mattress on fire on the train tracks near Golden Gardens. A man, later identified as Tarver, called police, claiming to be an officer, and said he’d overheard someone talking about derailing a train.

In February 2005, police served a search warrant on Tarver’s home and found “numerous train magazines, a toy train, and pictures of trains.”

During an interview with detectives, Tarver told police “that he would like to see a train derail” and admitted to setting fire to a mattress on train tracks near Golden Gardens.

Police also connected Tarver with an January 2004 arson at 102nd st and Linden Ave N, near Tarver’s home. Tarver took a mattress out of his home, set it on fire, and then videotaped or took pictures of fire trucks arriving.

Tarver was also accused of setting a string of fires in the University District between April and June 2004, and for calling in a bomb threat to Summit K-12 in September 2004.

It would seem that Tarver is a bit obsessed with fire and trains. Which makes it slightly disturbing that Tarver has sent Seattlecrime.com photos or video from the scenes of a major fire near the West Precinct on 8th and Virginia, a car and bus collision at 2nd and Pike, and a light rail crash in South Seattle.

Tarver sent video of the fire, which was linked here on Seattlecrime.com, and also sent us photos of the train accident and car crash, which we did not publish.

We have confirmed that the Julian Tarver who sent us photos and video, is the same man charged for kidnapping and impersonating an officer.

As far as we know, the train accident and fire were the result of vehicle accidents. Tarver just happened to be on scene, camera at the ready.

Tarver is being held in the King County Jail for investigation of rape, kidnapping, robbery, and for violating the terms of his parole.