Camano Island shooting leaves father dead; son arrested

Dominic Wagstaff, 21, was taken into custody late Sunday for investigation of the murder of Dean Wagstaff, 41.

CAMANO ISLAND — A Camano Island man living with a mental illness shot and killed his father, shot a woman in the head and nearly shot his brother, according to a police report filed Monday in Island County Superior Court.

Gunfire was reported shortly before 8:40 p.m. Sunday at a home in the 1400 block of Lakewood Drive, in the central part of the island near Lost Lake. Outside in the driveway, the suspect’s brother, 23, told deputies that Dominic Wagstaff shot their father, as well as the older brother’s girlfriend, 23.

Wagstaff, 21, was diagnosed with paranoid schizophrenia, according to his family. He had been drinking heavily at dinner that night when he grew angry at his family, according to the brother’s report. Usually, relatives could find a way to calm him, “but this time it wasn’t working,” wrote Island County sheriff’s detective Ed Wallace.

Wagstaff got into his father’s face, and his father pushed him away, the detective wrote. Wagstaff pulled a gun from his waistband. According to court papers, the father, 41, said something like, “That better be an airsoft pistol.” The son fired a shot, police wrote. It was a 9 mm Glock.

Wagstaff’s brother tackled him and the two fought over the pistol as Wagstaff put the gun to his brother’s head, the detective wrote. The gun fired again. It missed. The brother wrestled away the weapon. Wagstaff rushed to his room, where deputies later found him barricaded inside.

The older brother’s girlfriend had been standing behind the father. She suffered a head wound that required medical aid. She was treated at Skagit Valley Hospital and released, the sheriff’s office reported. Wagstaff’s brother wasn’t sure if she was hit by the first or second gunshot.

The father, Dean Wagstaff, died while being airlifted to a hospital, according to the detective’s report.

A woman who had left the room to watch a movie as the argument escalated confirmed she heard a man say something like, “That better be a BB gun.” She heard a gunshot, then another, according to her report.

Prosecutors noted that the younger Wagstaff had a history of firearm theft and burglary from a vehicle in Texas, as well as convictions for trespassing, malicious mischief and disorderly conduct in Washington.

The suspect was arrested for investigation of second-degree murder, second-degree attempted murder and first-degree assault. Each allegation is considered a domestic violence offense. The suspect, the father, the brother and the wounded woman all lived in the same house.

Property records show Dean Wagstaff had just purchased the home in 2020.

A girl, 2, was asleep in another room. She was unhurt.

Dominic Wagstaff was being held Monday at the Island County Jail.

Caleb Hutton: 425-339-3454; chutton@heraldnet.com. Twitter: @snocaleb.

Need help?

Anyone in Island, Snohomish, Skagit or Snohomish can call a 24-hour mental and behavioral health hotline at 800-584-3578.

You can also call, chat or text the National Domestic Violence Hotline at 1-800-799-7233. Island County has a domestic violence 24-hour crisis line at 360-675-2232 or 800-215-5669. Domestic Violence Services of Snohomish County has another 24-hour hotline at 425-252-2873.

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