A Pasco man is in jail on drug and assault charges after police investigated a pistol whipping incident early Friday morning.

The incident began shortly after 11pm Thursday  when officers responded to a house in the 1000 Block of south 5th. They found a victim who had wounds consistent with being whipped, or struck, by a handgun.

The suspect was said to have left the residence. The victim told police the suspect also pointed the gun directly as his face, and made a death threat. Officers located and arrested the suspect, 37-year-old Rafael Alverez-Meraz, around 12:44am Friday morning. He didn't have a gun on him, but police did find traces of cocaine, which he later tested positive for.

During the search of the home and investigation, police did find a fully loaded 9mm Baretta pistol, with a round in the chamber, and the safety was OFF. Considering there were others in the home, including children, this could have been a very tragic situation.

Suspect's firearm found by Pasco police (Pasco police)

Meraz is now facing drug and assault charges, he's being detained on an investigative hold in the Franklin County jail.