EVERETT — A Marysville man who once taunted his probation officer with a message saying, “Catch me if you can,” was sentenced Wednesday to over 23 years in prison.
In July, a jury found Todd Kingma guilty of an October 2021 shooting at a Marysville gas station that sent one man to the hospital. He was convicted of first-degree assault, drive-by shooting and unlawful firearm possession. Kingma was found not guilty on a second count of first-degree assault for shooting at someone else in the same incident.
Kingma had several prior felony convictions, for possession of a stolen vehicle, first-degree robbery and unlawful firearm possession.
In 2017, Kingma pleaded guilty to two counts of attempting to elude police and one count of auto theft. He called and told his community custody officer in March of that year, “Catch me if you can,” according to court documents. When officers caught up to him soon afterward, he told them: “I’ve been to prison too many times. I can’t stand it there. I’m like a bird that can’t be caged. I will do whatever it takes to try to get away.”
The latest conviction is his second strike, of three, toward a mandatory life sentence.
Under state sentencing guidelines, Kingma, 37, faced 20 to 26½ years. The defense requested a sentence at the low end of that range. Kingma asked for just 10 years. On the other side, prosecutors pushed for a prison term exceeding the range, totaling over 36 years.
Snohomish County Superior Court Judge Jon Scott decided on 23⅓ years, in the middle of the range. Scott, a former public defender, noted he had many clients like Kingma, who are proactive in their defense and show they can be productive members of society.
“You still have a chance, Mr. Kingma, you do,” the judge told the defendant, “to get out of prison and to live a productive life, to enjoy those relationships. This prison sentence is substantial, but it is not a death sentence.”
Kingma represented himself at trial. He said he shot the man to defend himself and his family. Prosecutors argued the victim was the one acting in-self defense.
“Thinking back on it, I don’t really feel even at this very moment that there’s anything I could’ve done different,” Kingma said in court Wednesday.
Around 3:45 a.m. Oct. 18, the victim was at the self-serve car wash stall on State Avenue when Kingma pulled up in a white truck. He got out, introduced himself as “Todd” and started talking about his daughter being assaulted, according to court papers.
Security footage shows the two had a short conversation, according to court documents. Kingma then reached into his truck and grabbed something. The other man goes to his gold Cadillac to get a gun. Moments later, Kingma pulled a handgun out of the pocket of his pants and started shooting.
The victim ran away, firing shots back in Kingma’s direction, surveillance video reportedly shows.
Kingma then drove away. He shot two more times out his car window at the victim, who had put his gun down, according to the charges.
It took police over a week to track the defendant to a south Everett residence, where he was arrested Oct. 27.
Judge Scott wished Kingma luck, and gave him some advice:
“What you need is to reflect on how you’ve acted and reflect on how you’re going to act.”