EVERETT — Justin Allan last texted his nephew, Jonathan, at 7:30 a.m. Aug. 24, 2021.
“I love you,” Allan wrote. “Why don’t you answer? I just want to see how you’re doing. I’m proud of you.”
Allan would last be seen four days later.
An elderly Everett landlord will likely spend the rest of his life in prison for Allan’s killing, a judge ruled Friday.
After a trial in Snohomish County Superior Court, a jury convicted Lloyd Richmond in November of second-degree murder and unlawful firearm possession for the fatal shooting of Allan, 49. Richmond, 85, also faces two assault charges in Snohomish County over allegations he attacked other tenants.
Under state sentencing guidelines, the defendant faced between just over 11 and 19½ years. Deputy prosecutor Bob Hendrix pushed for the high end of that range.
Noting Richmond’s age and urgent medical concerns, his attorney Samantha Sommerman requested a sentence far below the standard range, of 17 months.
Superior Court Judge Cindy Larsen sentenced the defendant to 15¼ years in prison, in the middle of the range.
“Obviously, those near the end of their lives cannot simply be excused for killing people,” Larsen said Friday. “There has to be justice.”
Suffering from a disease that caused lifelong pain, Justin Allan long struggled with addiction, according to court papers. By August 2021, he was living at 8802 Del Campo Drive in Everett with a few other tenants.
Richmond operated the building as a boarding house for tenants with addiction. Prosecutors alleged Richmond used this to take advantage of the people who lived at the home.
Another tenant told investigators Allan and Richmond had argued over rent and other issues.
In one argument on Aug. 26, 2021, Allan’s girlfriend overheard the landlord tell her boyfriend “people are going to start dying, and you’d better watch yourself, or I’m going to kill you,” according to court documents.
In the afternoon of Aug. 28, Richmond’s neighbor was sitting on his patio when he heard three gunshots, he told police. He ran to the property line and saw Richmond in the driveway.
The landlord, 84 at the time, moved quicker than usual, the neighbor noticed. Richmond hurried to his shed in the backyard, where he retrieved a tarp. He reportedly went back to the shed a few more times to get zipties and more tarps.
Eventually, the neighbor saw a winch in Richmond’s truck lift a human-sized mound into the truck bed, according to court records. Later in the day, Richmond moved the mound into the back of a Chevy Trailblazer and drove it away.
Richmond returned that night. Later, the neighbor reportedly saw him using some kind of absorbent onto the driveway to cover red stains later found to be consistent with blood.
On Aug. 30, the neighbor called the cops.
When a friend told Richmond that police were at the Del Campo Drive house, he told her he and Allan “had it out.” He claimed self-defense and added “no one would believe him,” the deputy prosecutor, Hendrix, wrote in court documents.
On Sept. 3, Everett police found Richmond driving the Trailblazer. He had blood on his shoes, officers found. A search also revealed a trail of blood in the driveway and in the SUV. Blood samples matched Allan, court papers say.
Allan’s body wouldn’t be found for almost a month.
On Oct. 1, 2021, a Kirkland resident was hunting for mushrooms near I-90 in Kittitas County, in an area accessed by logging roads and dirt trails. The mushroom hunter smelled something. He found a pile of clothes. Concerned, he drove away and called authorities.
Kittitas County sheriff’s deputies found a decomposed body missing several parts. A DNA analysis showed the remains were Allan’s. An autopsy revealed a .22-caliber bullet in his body, matching a pistol Richmond had when police arrested him, according to court records.
In court Friday, Jonathan Allan said his uncle was a huge part of his childhood.
“He had his mistakes and issues, but all I ever remembered about Justin is just the biggest smile and how caring and kind of a person he was,” the nephew said..
The defendant had no prior felony history, but a fourth-degree assault from 20 years ago barred him from owning a gun.
Due to a pending appeal and an ongoing civil lawsuit brought by the Allan family, Richmond declined to speak Friday.