Attempted murder charge in alleged tattoo war

North Bend, Ore. (AP) — David Wonnacott qualified for a tattoo license on July 5 and wasted little time establishing a business in a small, coastal Oregon community. Problem is, police said, he did it with a gun.

“You’re in the wrong town,” Wonnacott told the only other tattoo parlor owner in North Bend on July 31, while pointing a gun at his competitor’s torso, according to a police report.

Police say Wonnacott’s gun jammed when he attempted to shoot the other parlor owner, named Brian Graham, so he resorted to striking Graham on the head with the butt of the gun, The World newspaper reported (http://bit.ly/11M8eO8 ).

Wonnacott fled and was arrested at the Eugene, Ore., airport on Aug. 1. He is a felon and is not permitted to possess a firearm.

A former employee of Wannacott’s told police in an affidavit that his former boss didn’t like the competition, and Wonnacott’s probation officer said Wonnacott’s business had been suffering because of Graham’s parlor, Flying Chicken Tattoo.

The former employee, Simon Edd, told police that Wonnacott was territorial and threatened to burn down Graham’s shop.

Graham arrived at work on July 31 and a car pulled in behind him, he told police in an affidavit. Graham noticed a man emerge from the car wearing rubber gloves, with a pistol in one hand.

Graham told police he tried wresting the gun from Wonnacott’s hand, but Wonnacott maintained control and struck him in the head.

Wonnacott was arraigned Monday in Coos County court on charges of attempted murder, assault and being a felon in possession of a gun. He was being held on a $250,000 bond and it was unclear Tuesday morning whether he had hired or been assigned an attorney.

Graham declined to comment to The Associated Press through the co-owner of his tattoo parlor, Rachel Dunn.

“There’s been so much said,” Dunn said before hanging up. “It’s a lot.”

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Information from: The World, http://www.theworldlink.com

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