Gang rivalry among teens fuels shootings in South Everett

EVERETT — More gunfire is being blamed on a gang beef that has plagued south Everett, inside and outside city limits, for months and is the suspected motive behind a deadly shooting in December.

Earlier this month, bullets riddled a car leaving an apartment building near 1500 W Casino Road. A 17-year-old girl was behind the wheel and escaped injury despite multiple rounds hitting her car.

The teen eventually admitted that she was visiting a friend who is in a gang. She told police as she was leaving two people ran toward her car, firing handguns.

“It appears that this is another retaliation shooting in the ongoing gang violence,” Snohomish County deputy prosecutor Craig Matheson said.

The girl recognized one of the alleged shooters as Seth Friendly and told police the boy attended Mariner High School, according to court papers. His mother withdrew him from the school in March, district officials said Monday.

Friendly’s reported gang allegiance is tattooed on his neck. He turned 16 a week before the June 6 gunfire.

Prosecutors last week charged Friendly as an adult with first-degree assault with a weapon. He was being held on $500,000 bail.

Court papers don’t say if a second shooter has been identified.

Friendly is a suspect in another shooting in the same neighborhood just five days later. Officers received reports of gunfire June 11 and allegedly spotted Friendly and other purported gang members running from the area, Matheson wrote in court papers.

Police found .45-caliber shell casings at the scene. The casings appeared to match those recovered at the scene of the earlier shooting, Matheson wrote. Police seized two handguns at that crime scene. Investigators believe Friendly and the others were again targeting rival gang members.

“All the victims are uncooperative,” Matheson said. “They want to handle it themselves.”

Police were told that the W Casino gunfire may be an attempt at retaliation for the shooting death of 17-year-old Anthony Camacho.

Camacho was gunned down Dec. 12 as he attended a house party in the 12000 block of Fourth Place W. His friends said Camacho wasn’t in a gang but others at the house were.

Three teens were charged in connection with the killing. The suspected shooter, Diego Tavares, reportedly was seeking revenge because rival gang members shot at him the day before.

Tavares, now 20, and Edgar Calixto, 16, are scheduled to go to trial later this year. The third defendant, Guillermo Padilla, 16, pleaded guilty in March to second-degree murder. He faces up to 18 years in prison.

A judge was told in March that the beef goes back before Camacho’s death.

A drive-by shooting last summer involving rival gangs may have been the catalyst for the ongoing retaliation attempts, Snohomish County deputy prosecutor Bob Langbehn explained at the sentencing for a man who opened fire on a pickup truck full of teenagers.

Juan Beteran Monrroy was sentenced to 14 years in prison for shooting a 15-year-old in the chest. The two belonged to rival gangs.

The Aug. 16 shooting “keeps coming up as the motivating factor for retaliation, among which, in my opinion, may have led to one death,” Langbehn said in March.

After Camacho’s killing, Snohomish County sheriff’s deputies stepped up patrols in the area, particularly around Mariner High School. The county’s drug and gang task force also planned to monitor activity.

Everett detectives are working closely with sheriff’s deputies, Everett police officer Aaron Snell said. The violence often crosses jurisdictions and both agencies are sharing information about the various players.

“We are aware of what’s going on. We’re assessing it and looking at what resources are needed,” Snell said.

Diana Hefley: 425-339-3463; hefley@heraldnet.com. Twitter: @dianahefley.

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