Couple arrested in SeaTac suspects in California slaying

HERCULES, Calif. — A husband and wife arrested this week near Seattle have been named as suspects in the killing of a retired schoolteacher in the San Francisco suburb of Hercules, police said.

After traveling to Washington and interviewing Darnell Washington, 24, and his wife, Tania, 25, in a King County Jail, Wash., jail, detectives believe the two are responsible for the death of Susie Ko, Hercules police spokeswoman Connie Van Putten said in a statement Friday.

Ko, 55, was found dead on the floor of her home by neighbors on Oct. 5. An autopsy report showed that she died of stab wounds and blunt force trauma to the head, Van Putten said.

The Washingtons were arrested Wednesday after a brief police pursuit in SeaTac, while driving a Subaru station wagon taken from Ko’s home.

The couple are also wanted in a Southern California crime spree that included Darnell Washington escaping from San Bernardino County jail in August, the shooting of a Los Angeles County sheriff’s deputy in El Monte and a series of carjackings.

The deputy was wounded in a shootout, but was treated and released from a hospital.

The killing of Ko was the first in Hercules since 2010, and the city has seen only seen five homicides in the past 12 years, Van Putten said.

Charges of murder and auto theft will be presented to the Contra Costa District Attorney’s Office late next week, Van Putten said.

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