LYNNWOOD — A Bothell man was arrested Tuesday, accused of shooting at two Black people at a Lynnwood-area apartment complex in October because of their race.
Early morning on Oct. 8, a man parked next to a white truck he hadn’t seen before. He later told police he thought the person inside, later identified as a 36-year-old Bothell man, was suspicious, according to a Snohomish County sheriff’s deputy’s report.
After parking next to the truck, the first man got out of his car to meet up with his nephew. As they walked back to his car, the man in the truck, described by police as white, got out, according to the deputy’s report.
“What are you Black guys doing here,” he reportedly said.
Then, from about 10 feet away, he drew a pistol, pointed and fired once, police believe. The bullet missed the two men, who ducked behind the car.
The Bothell man reportedly got back in his truck and drove north on Highway 99.
Around this time, a deputy was driving nearby on Highway 99 when he heard the shot ring out. The two victims were still in the parking lot. They told the deputy what happened, according to the report.
Police looked unsuccessfully for a shell casing. In the police report, the deputy noted the casing could have fallen into the Bothell man’s truck bed based on where he allegedly fired. Police also couldn’t find any property damage. The bullet may have gone into a greenbelt south of the parking lot.
Almost two weeks later, deputies obtained security footage from the apartment complex showing the shooting. A deputy reached out to colleagues to ask if they recognized the white truck in the video, according to court documents.
One responded that the truck appeared to be the same one impounded a couple weeks prior in the Edmonds area. The suspect in that case, the same 36-year-old Bothell man, was “driving it until it broke down,” the deputy reported. Police reportedly found a rifle in the truck and a snub-nosed pistol on the man.
On Oct. 10, he was arrested for investigation of unlawful firearm possession. A few days later, he posted $5,000 bail and was released from the Snohomish County Jail.
On Nov. 11, police showed a photo line-up to one of the victims to see if he could identify the suspect. The victim said he was 70% sure the suspect in the unlawful firearm case was the same one who shot at him, according to the police report.
On Tuesday, the Pacific Northwest Violent Offender Task Force was conducting unrelated surveillance in the 19900 block of Filbert Road. An officer saw the suspect approaching a black car.
After trailing the Bothell man for a while, officers pinned a van he was driving with multiple cars at the entrance to the Brown Bear Car Wash on 164th Street SW.
They arrested the 36-year-old man for investigation of first-degree assault and commission of a hate crime in connection with the October incident in the Lynnwood-area parking lot.
On Wednesday, the suspect remained in the Snohomish County Jail.
Jake Goldstein-Street: 425-339-3439; firstname.lastname@example.org; Twitter: @GoldsteinStreet.
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