EVERETT — A Marysville man is now charged with second-degree murder for allegedly running over his stepmother and leaving her for dead on Valentine’s Day.
Tyler William Nelson, 31, was charged Wednesday in Everett District Court. He made a first appearance Thursday where he was ordered held on $1 million bail.
The defendant caused the death of his stepmother, Debra Sue Nelson, 53, Snohomish County deputy prosecutor Matt Hunter said in court papers.
It was murder because the woman was fatally injured while the defendant was taking his parents’ car without their permission, court papers say. Hunter also filed charges of auto theft and hit-and-run.
Debra Nelson was found in the road early Feb. 14, screaming and unable to speak, according to court papers. She had multiple broken bones and severe head injuries. She died later at the hospital.
Tyler Nelson allegedly had been using methamphetamine in the hours before his stepmother was fatally injured. He’d been to his parents’ home early that morning, saying he needed gas for his car. He was aggressive and was asked to leave. Not long after, Nelson is believed to have crashed his own vehicle near I-5 in Marysville, and fled.
Later, Tyler Nelson was seen driving the Honda that his stepmother typically used. He was still driving the car when detectives tracked him down late the following day. He allegedly tried to drive away but was stopped when deputies rammed the vehicle.
Nelson told friends that he had been arguing with his stepmother while she was driving. He is said to have offered differing stories to explain how she got injured, why he didn’t report what happened, and the reason he was driving his parents’ car, according to court papers.
At the hospital after his arrest, the defendant allegedly used a derogatory term for his stepmother, and claimed that she “did it to herself,” sheriff’s detectives said in an affidavit.
The defendant has been jailed since his arrest Feb. 15.
Scott North: 425-339-3431; north@herald net.com. Twitter: @snorthnews.