MARYSVILLE — The assault-style rifle Hans Hansen used in 2014 to shoot up police stations in two cities and to seriously injure a Marysville police officer won’t be returned to his wife.
The state Court of Appeals last week rebuffed Hansen’s efforts to challenge his 71-year prison sentence.
The court also rejected his request that his wife be provided the firearms he was ordered to forfeit upon conviction. Those included the AK-47 he used to fire dozens of rounds at police, an AR-15 rifle, and other weapons.
Hansen, 45, challenged his conviction and sentence. The former Lake Stevens man contended his trial was flawed by multiple errors, including the judge’s decision to allow jurors to see a video of bullets fired by an AK-47 slicing through a car door and a bullet-resistant vest of the type worn by police.
He also said the judge didn’t properly consider his unstable mental health when she decided his sentence.
A jury convicted Hansen after nearly three weeks of trial that included testimony from police officers and neighbors who found themselves targeted. The gunman fired on buildings, homes and vehicles on a drive that brought him from Granite Falls to Lake Stevens and into Marysville.
Police by then were on the lookout for the pickup truck and the driver who was blasting away in the night. When Marysville officers moved in on the vehicle, Hansen opened fire. Marysville police Sgt. Jim Maples was shot in the leg during the attack.
Hansen ultimately was shot, too, but not until after he drove through parts of town, firing out the window at pursuing police cars.
At trial, jurors heard that the wounded Hansen told police he had wanted to die, but not by his own hand. He was struggling with alcoholism, facing foreclosure on his home and depressed over news that he likely was going to lose his leg to a vascular condition.
Jurors convicted Hansen of multiple counts of first-degree assault and drive-by shooting but could not reach a unanimous decision on whether Hansen committed attempted first-degree murder when he opened fire on police.
Snohomish County Superior Court Judge Ellen Fair sentenced Hansen to the maximum punishment allowed under state guidelines. Hansen’s attorney had argued that he should receive mercy and a sentence well below the standard range.
The judge noted the man’s mental health crisis, but said that didn’t excuse what he did.
“The actions were simply too egregious,” the judge said at the time.
The appeals court judges said there was no legal reason to question Fair’s ruling.
The panel also ruled that the judge was correct in allowing prosecutors to show a video that depicted what AK-47 rifle fire does to a car door and a police vest draped over a plastic jug filled with water.
“The point of the demonstrative video was to ensure the jury understood that a police officer is not necessarily shielded from harm by wearing a ballistics vest or crouching behind the door of a police car,” the judges ruled.
The court also ruled that the judge had authority to order forfeiture of the firearms and ammunition that were found in and around Hansen’s truck. They said the defendant can’t argue the weapons should go to his wife because she was not a party in the trial or the appeal.
Scott North: 425-339-3431; firstname.lastname@example.org. Twitter: @snorthnews.