Firas Al-Zayady allegedly told the man, who was on his way to work, that he wanted to see his ailing father. He really was in search of heroin, court papers said.
Prosecutors allege that Al-Zayady, 31, pointed a handgun at the man while they were traveling north on Highway 529. He also is accused of firing the gun through windshield, demanding money and stealing the pickup truck.
Al-Zayady, a convicted felon, was charged earlier this week with first-degree armed robbery for the Feb. 24 incident. He was being held on $250,000 bail.
The Good Samaritan, 61, was warming up his pickup outside his home on a Monday morning when Al-Zayady reportedly asked the man for a lift to Marysville. The man agreed and the pair headed north. During the trip, Al-Zayady called a woman, saying he was on his way. He passed the phone to the Good Samaritan, presumably so she could give him directions. The man told the woman that he was going to take his passenger as far as a gas station on Fourth Street because he needed to get to work.
A short time later, Al-Zayady asked the driver if he got high. The man said he didn’t and a few minutes later Al-Zayady pointed a gun concealed in a bag or dark cloth at the man’s head, Snohomish County deputy prosecutor Edirin Okoloko wrote in court papers.
Al-Zayady claimed he was holding a revolver and reportedly fired a shot through the windshield to back up his claim. He ordered the man to stop the pickup truck and then demanded money. Al-Zayady called the man a liar when he said he only had $10. While Al-Zayady was trying to reach for the driver’s lunch bag in the back seat, the man ran from the pickup.
Al-Zayady reportedly drove off. A Marysville police officer later located the empty truck outside an apartment building. A police dog picked up a trail from the truck to an apartment.
Police spoke with the resident, a woman who told them that a man she knew as “Chris” had come to her apartment in search of heroin. She said he looked dope sick. She later gave him a ride.
She showed police Chris’ Facebook page, helping police identify the suspect as Al-Zayady.
The woman gave police his phone number. A search of police records, showed that the number matched the one provided by a man who reported an arson outside his home to Everett officers in early February.
Armed with his address, police officers arrested Al-Zayady the next day as he was leaving his residence.
Al-Zayady racked up five felony convictions between 2006 and 2009.
Diana Hefley: 425-339-3463, firstname.lastname@example.org
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