By Scott North Herald Writer
EVERETT — Ryan Kugel allegedly told detectives that the Machias woman he tied to a toilet during an April 16 robbery was a “nice old lady.”
Picking on somebody twice his age now could net the Everett man, 35, extra time behind bars if he is convicted as charged.
The woman, 70, came home from a Bible study class at her church to find a stranger ransacking her home, deputy prosecutor Chris Dickinson said in Snohomish County Superior Court papers filed this week.
The intruder told the woman he wouldn’t hurt her. He restrained her, first by rolling her up in bedding, later making her kneel in front of the toilet and binding her wrists behind the bowl with neckties and purse straps.
The robber loaded up the woman’s sport utility vehicle with loot and drove away. “Among the items stolen were family jewelry, coin collections, cash, keys, silverware, laptop computers, a large TV set, cameras, fishing gear, liquor, tools, credit cards, food and financial documents,” court papers said.
The woman freed herself about an hour later and called police and her husband. She was bruised from the ordeal.
About 12 hours later, police got a tip that a man named “Ryan” was bragging about having tied up and robbed a woman. Police confronted Kugel.
“The defendant was found to be in possession of a large number of coins, which was an item stolen” in the robbery, Dickinson noted.
When interviewed by a detective, Kugel allegedly confessed. He referred to the woman “as a nice old lady,” the prosecutor said.
Dickinson charged Kugel with one count each of first-degree robbery, first-degree burglary and unlawful imprisonment. The prosecutor filed the charges so that each carries a special allegation of victim vulnerability. The aggravating factor could expose Kugel to a prison term longer than called for under state sentencing guidelines.
For now, the Dickinson is citing the defendant’s “violence towards a vulnerable victim” as grounds to keep his bail at $50,000.
The woman’s vehicle was found near Granite Falls. A 22-year-old man is under investigation for possessing a stolen rig and stealing the woman’s identity.
Scott North: 425-339-3431, firstname.lastname@example.org