Invalidated convictions send 14 cases back to court

Fifteen people convicted of second-degree murder have had their convictions invalidated by controversial state Supreme Court decisions. Fourteen of the cases have been returned to Snohomish County Superior Court for further action. Scores of others around the state also were affected.

In all the cases, the legal theory underlying the original charge was that the death was unintentional and occurred during an assault. New charges, with different theories, have been filed in some cases.

Here’s what has happened so far in Snohomish County.

David Crane: Convicted of beating his 3-year-old nephew to death in 1986. On Jan. 14, he pleaded guilty to first-degree manslaughter, got credit for time served and was released the same day.

Noreen Erlandson: Convicted in 1992 of beating to death her 21/2-year-old adopted daughter. The former Bothell nurse pleaded guilty to first-degree manslaughter Dec. 8. She was given credit for time served in prison and released the same day.

Terrence Wetmore: Convicted by jury of stabbing to death a fellow inmate in the dining room of the reformatory at Monroe in 1984. He pleaded guilty to a reduced charge of first-degree manslaughter July 1 and was freed because he had already served his 10-year prison term.

Dale Schwab: Convicted in 1998 of helping someone else beat a man unconscious and place him on railroad tracks. The men allegedly watched as a train ran over the victim. Schwab was sentenced to 16 years in prison for manslaughter April 29, meaning he will have about three years to serve. He shaved four years off his original term.

Robert Kuchan: Pleaded guilty in 1997 to shooting his girlfriend in the head. He pleaded guilty June 17 to intentional second-degree murder and got a 15-year prison sentence, about two years less than the original term.

Huy Vu Dang: Fired three shots into a car full of young people, killing one. A jury convicted him of second-degree murder in 1992. Prosecutors have filed a new first-degree murder charge against Dang, alleging that he exhibited extreme indifference to human life. The case is pending.

Jason Delano: Pleaded guilty to beating a 1-year-old child to death in 1999. Prosecutors filed a new first-degree manslaughter charge, and Delano pleaded guilty. He was sentenced to eight years in prison, six less than the original sentence for murder.

Marygrace Fajarillo: Told a judge she doesn’t want to challenge her conviction and will remain in prison serving a 15-year term for shooting her boyfriend’s roommate in 1999.

Michael Fraser: Pleaded guilty to shooting a man during a bar fight in 1992. He pleaded guilty April 18 to first-degree manslaughter, was sentenced to less than six years, got credit for time served and was released from prison.

Thomas Humphries: Pleaded guilty to killing and dismembering his pregnant ex-girlfriend in 1992. Prosecutors are arguing that his case is not covered by the decisions.

Kenneth Jensen: Convicted of shooting a neighbor in 2001 after a long-standing dispute. Prosecutors filed a new intentional murder charge, and his case is pending.

Dwight McGunnigle: A jury convicted him of shooting his wife in the head in 1986. His case is pending.

Paris Perrantes: Convicted of threatening three women with a shotgun during an argument in 1997. A jury convicted him of both manslaughter and second-degree murder. An appeals court later ruled he could not be convicted of both charges for the same crime, and threw out the manslaughter conviction. Now, prosecutors have asked a judge to reinstate that conviction.

Raymond Frost: Pleaded guilty to the stabbing death of a fellow inmate at an Everett work-release facility in 1978. Prosecutors argue that the Supreme Court decisions don’t apply to his case.

Robert Tolbert: A jury convicted him of killing one man and wounding another during an argument in 1990. Tolbert Thursday pleaded guilty to intentionally killing a man and is scheduled for sentencing Aug. 23. He could cut his original prison term by two years.D

Talk to us

More in Local News

Emergency responders surround an ultralight airplane that crashed Friday, Sept. 22, 2023, at the Arlington Municipal Airport in Arlington, Washington, resulting in the pilot's death. (Ryan Berry / The Herald)
Pilot dead in ultralight plane crash at Arlington Municipal Airport

There were no other injuries or fatalities reported, a city spokesperson said.

An example of the Malicious Women Co. products (left) vs. the Malicious Mermaid's products (right). (U.S. District Court in Florida)
Judge: Cheeky candle copycat must pay Snohomish company over $800K

The owner of the Malicious Women Co. doesn’t expect to receive any money from the Malicious Mermaid, a Florida-based copycat.

A grave marker for Blaze the horse. (Photo provided)
After Darrington woman’s horse died, she didn’t know what to do

Sidney Montooth boarded her horse Blaze. When he died, she was “a wreck” — and at a loss as to what to do with his remains.

A fatal accident the afternoon of Dec. 18 near Clinton ended with one of the cars involved bursting into flames. The driver of the fully engulfed car was outside of the vehicle by the time first responders arrived at the scene. (Whidbey News-Times/Submitted photo)
Driver sentenced in 2021 crash that killed Everett couple

Danielle Cruz, formerly of Lynnwood, gets 17½ years in prison. She was impaired by drugs when she caused the crash that killed Sharon Gamble and Kenneth Weikle.

A person walks out of the Everett Clinic on Thursday, Sept. 7, 2023 in Everett, Washington. (Olivia Vanni / The Herald)
The Everett Clinic changing name to parent company Optum in 2024

The parent company says the name change will not affect quality of care for patients in Snohomish County.

Tirhas Tesfatsion (GoFundMe) 20210727
Lynnwood settles for $1.7 million after 2021 suicide at city jail

Jail staff reportedly committed 16 safety check violations before they found Tirhas Tesfatsion, 47, unresponsive in her cell.

William Gore, left, holds the hand of Skylar, 9, in a Baby Yoda sweatshirt as they go for a walk in the rain at Forest Park on Monday, Sept. 25, 2023 in Everett, Washington. (Olivia Vanni / The Herald)
Keep your umbrellas, rain gear handy this week in Snohomish County

The National Weather Service says up to 1½ inches are possible through Wednesday.

The city of Mukilteo is having a naming contest for its new $75,000 RC Mowers R-52, a remote-operated robotic mower. (Submitted photo)
Mukilteo muncher: Name the $75,000 robot mower

The city is having a naming contest for its new sod-slaying, hedge-hogging, forest-clumping, Mr-mow-it-all.

In this photo posted to the Washington state Department of Ecology website and taken by the U.S. Coast Guard, people watch as emergency crews respond to the Walla Walla passenger ferry, which ran aground near Bainbridge Island west of Seattle, Saturday, April 15, 2023. (Lt. Cmdr. Brian Dykens/U.S. Coast Guard via AP)
Edmonds-Kingston shuffle: 64-car ferry replaces 202-car boat, for now

The system-wide boat swap stems from the vessel Walla Walla out of service for four weeks for repairs.

Most Read