Suspect pleads not guilty in shooting death

EVERETT — A Marysville man pleaded not guilty Friday to allegations that he spent much of a June night driving around Snohomish County, firing handguns at cars, houses filled with sleeping people and a group of teenage girls walking along a road in Lake Stevens.

Molly Conley, 15, of Seattle, was fatally shot in what Snohomish County prosecutors believe was the start of a violent spree they allege has been linked by forensic evidence to Erick N. Walker.

On Thursday, they charged Walker, 27, with first-degree murder in the girl’s June 1 death. He also faces four counts of drive-by shooting for bullets fired into homes in Marysville and Lake Stevens before daybreak June 2.

Walker, a Boeing employee with no criminal history, was arraigned on the charges during a brief hearing Friday in Snohomish County Superior Court.

Appearing via video link to the county jail, he pleaded not guilty to all the charges.

The defendant “exhibited extreme indifference to human life” when he shot from a passing car at Molly and her girlfriends as they walked along a road, Snohomish County deputy prosecutor Ed Stemler said in court papers.

Molly was struck in the neck. She died at the scene. The bullet that hit her has not been found.

Investigators believe her killing is connected to other drive-by shootings in Lake Stevens and Marysville in the hours afterward. Tests on five bullets recovered from those shootings have been matched to two .30-caliber handguns that were seized from Walker’s house, according to court papers.

Walker denied involvement when he was arrested June 28, although he acknowledged driving in Lake Stevens the night Molly was shot. One of the homes hit by gunfire is just blocks from his house, documents show.

Walker became a suspect in Molly’s killing after detectives determined he owned the same type of weapon forensic tests suggested was used in the drive-bys. Damage on his black Pontiac G6 coupe also reportedly was consistent it with having struck a car at one of the shooting scenes.

The investigation continues. Detectives obtained search warrants for cellphone data that they hope to use to track Walker’s movements the night of the shootings.

Walker is represented by Mark Mestel, a longtime defense attorney from Everett. In court Friday he asked Stemler for access to police reports and other investigative materials.

Stemler said the case file already is more than 2,000 pages. He made arrangements to provide it to Mestel.

The defense attorney reserved argument Friday about the $5 million bail set shortly after Walker’s arrest. He told Judge Janice Ellis he wants to examine the case file first.

She scheduled trial for Sept. 13.

Molly was a freshman at Seattle’s Bishop Blanchet High School and nicknamed “4.0” because of her good grades. Her family and friends attended Friday’s hearing, some wearing stickers bearing her name. They declined to speak with reporters.

Scott North: 425-339-3431, north@heraldnet.com.

More in Local News

A customer walks away after buying a hot dog from a vendor on 33rd St and Smith Street near the Everett Station on Friday. The Everett Station District Alliance pictures the area east of Broadway and south of Hewitt Avenue as a future neighborhood and transit hub that could absorb expected population growth. (Andy Bronson / The Herald)
How can Everett Station become a vibrant part of city?

A neighborhood alliance focused on long-term revitalization will update the public Tuesday.

Man arrested after police find van full of drugs, cash and guns

An officer on patrol noticed a vehicle by itself in the middle of a WinCo parking lot at 2 a.m.

After work to address issues, Lynnwood gets clean audit

The city has benefited from increased revenues from sales tax.

Bolshevik replaces BS in Eyman’s voters pamphlet statement

The initiative promoter also lost a bid to include a hyperlink to online coverage of the battle.

Man with shotgun confronts man on toilet about missing phone

Police say the victim was doing his business when the suspect barged in and threatened him.

Detectives seek suspect in woman’s homicide

Alisha Michelle Canales-McGuire was shot to death Wednesday at a home south of Paine Field.

Car crashes near Everett after State Patrol pursuit

The driver and a second person in the car suffered injuries.

Injured hiker rescued near Granite Falls

Woman fell and hit her head on a rock Saturday, and her condition worsened overnight.

Two teens struck by truck in Lynnwood

The teens, between the ages of 14 and 16, were taken to the hospital as a precaution.

Most Read