Mixed verdicts for four accused of helping shooter after police killings

  • Mon Dec 6th, 2010 5:25pm
  • News

Associated Press

TACOMA — A jury in Tacoma returned mixed verdicts Monday against four people accused of helping Maurice Clemmons after he gunned down four Lakewood police officers in a coffeeshop last year.

Two of the defendants — Clemmons’ aunt Letrecia Nelson and his cousin Eddie Davis — were found guilty of rendering criminal assistance and gun charges. Another, Doug Davis, was convicted of gun charges for handling a weapon taken from one of the slain officers, but not of helping Clemmons.

Clemmons’ half-brother, Rickey Hinton, was acquitted of all charges, and Judge Stephanie Arend signed an order authorizing his immediate release from jail.

Pierce County prosecutors alleged that the four provided medical aid, transportation and other help to Clemmons as he tried to evade a massive manhunt. Clemmons was killed by a lone Seattle patrolman two days after he shot Lakewood Sgt. Mark Renninger and officers Tina Griswold, Greg Richards and Ronald Owens on Nov. 29, 2009.

“The important thing is three of these four defendants have been held accountable,” prosecuting attorney Mark Lindquist said. “We’ll be asking for the maximum sentence on those defendants.”

Their sentencing was set for Jan. 14. Douglas Davis faces up to 25 years; Eddie Davis, 20 years; and Nelson, 15 years, Lindquist said.

Two others have already been convicted of helping Clemmons, and the man accused of driving him to and from the murder scene, Darcus Allen, is scheduled for trial next year on four counts of aggravated murder.

Hinton showed no emotion as the jury cleared him. He was accused of providing keys to a car used to drive Clemmons out of Tacoma after the shooting, deleting calls from Clemmons from his cell phone, and lying to police.

Douglas Davis was accused of helping to drive Clemmons out of Tacoma and providing other aid.

In the courtroom, Lakewood Police Chief Bret Farrar shook his head at Hinton’s acquittal but otherwise declined to comment. Griswold’s relatives also left without speaking to reporters.