Man sentenced to 45 years for shooting death

EVERETT — Brian Jones was executed and left to die in a cluttered south Everett apartment.

His methamphetamine addiction led him to the apartment that morning on Jan. 2, 2011. It also put him in the path of Joshua Monson, an armed and violent meth addict.

Jones, 30, was shot in the back of the head while he was talking on a cell phone. His blood spilled onto a filthy carpet, as four other people scrambled to protect themselves from the trouble that the gunfire was about to bring.

“He didn’t deserve this,” said the mother of his child, Amanda Sears, in court Friday.

His addiction may have led to his death, but it doesn’t define who he was in life, his family said. He will be remembered as a generous son and the proud father of a beautiful girl.

“She adored her daddy and he adored her,” Sears said.

The tearful woman begged Snohomish County Superior Court Judge Larry McKeeman to send Monson, 28, to prison for the maximum term allowed by the law. She wants to be able to tell her little girl one day that the man who killed her father is locked up for a long time.

The judge sentenced Monson to 45 years in prison — a mid-range sentence.

Snohomish County deputy prosecutor Laura Twitchell had asked for five more years.

“This is a case that cries out for the high-end,” she said.

She told McKeeman that after the murder, Monson began talking about killing witnesses in an effort to escape justice. He showed no remorse and didn’t have any qualms about murdering someone else, Twitchell said.

“He wasn’t going to stop,” she said.

Monson on Friday maintained his innocence. He told the judge that he’s not admitting that he shot Jones, but he wanted to offer his condolences to the victim’s family. The defense had argued that there was no proof that Monson fired the fatal shot.

The defendant also apologized to his own family, asking them not to give up. Monson is expected to appeal.

His defense attorney, Walter Peale of Shoreline, asked for a new trial, arguing that the evidence didn’t support a conviction. He also argued for a sentence below the standard range, again urging the judge to throw out the jury’s decision.

“A different jury might have reached a different verdict,” Peale said.

McKeeman found no fault with the jury’s conclusion, saying that there was sufficient evidence to support a first-degree murder conviction.

On Friday, Monson, eager to leave the Snohomish County Jail, also agreed to resolve all the assault charges against him. He was accused of attacking two attorneys with pencils and one with a pen, and assaulting a handful of corrections officers. He was forced to defend himself in a felony drug trial last year after he stabbed his third attorney with the man’s own pen.

Monson wore hidden restraints throughout the murder trial.

He pleaded guilty Friday to four counts of custodial assault. Prosecutors agreed to drop charges in the lawyer stabbings. Monson was sentenced to five years for each assault. He’ll serve that time concurrently with his murder sentence.

Diana Hefley: 425-339-3463; hefley@heraldnet.com.

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