Arlington death investigated as manslaughter

ARLINGTON — Detectives believe the death of an Everett-area man in Arlington last month could be a potential case of manslaughter.

Martin Pickett, 48, died after some kind of altercation in a parking lot in the 16800 block of Smokey Point Boulevard, police said.

A passerby spotted Pickett’s body about 5:30 a.m. June 30.

He was lying in a pool of blood, and appeared to have a serious head wound, according to a search warrant filed recently in Cascade District Court.

Pickett and two other homeless men had been hanging out in the lot the night before he was found, court papers show.

Police dispatchers received a 911 call for a noise complaint in the area about 11 p.m., Arlington city spokeswoman Kristin Banfield said Wednesday.

A patrol officer responded and told the men they could not drink in public and that they needed to quiet down. The men agreed to do so, and the officer left.

Detectives have interviewed the two other men who were there that night, Banfield said.

They believe Pickett had been involved in some sort of struggle with one of them, Nial G. Harris, 52, shortly before Pickett died.

No arrests have been made in the case. Investigators are awaiting autopsy and toxicology reports from the Snohomish County Medical Examiner’s Office. Those reports likely will shed light on the circumstances surrounding Pickett’s death.

Pickett had significant criminal history in Snohomish County dating back to 1982.

As an adult, he had seven felony and 27 misdemeanor convictions. Most of the misdemeanors were for unlawful camping, trespassing and possessing drug paraphernalia.

He also was supposed to register as a sex offender for a first-degree rape conviction in 1987.

Pickett had been arrested in Marysville as recently as April, when prosecutors alleged that he assaulted a woman after they were drinking together underneath a bridge.

They alleged that Pickett struck the woman in the head with a rock after she declined his sexual advances.

Rikki King: 425-339-3449; rking@heraldnet.com

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