Stanwood duck hunter likely shot from shore

STANWOOD — Detectives have recovered bullet fragments, supporting a theory that someone from shore used a rifle to shoot a Stanwood duck hunter Jan. 1.

The man was hit in the leg while he and his brother were in a 14-foot aluminum boat about 500 yards from land. The men reported that they were carrying 12-gauge shotguns.

A Washington State Patrol crime lab forensic scientist this week inspected the fired bullet fragments recovered from the boat and the victim. He concluded that the fragments came from a hunting rifle, potentially a Remington, Ruger or Browning, according to a ballistics report filed in court.

A detective who inspected the damaged boat also concluded that the bullet came from outside the vessel.

Detectives have been tracking down leads to identify the shooter. One of those potential leads caused a detective to serve a search warrant at The Daily Herald’s office in Everett this week.

The detective was seeking the identity of a person who posted a comment Jan. 3 under the newspaper’s online story about the New Year’s Day shooting.

The victim’s girlfriend called the comment to the detective’s attention, according to the search warrant. Someone had written that the shooting “was an accident, he wasn’t intending to fire he was looking through the scope, fired by accident.”

The newspaper agreed to remove the online post when contacted by a detective. The paper, however, declined to immediately provide the person’s contact information, absent a court order.

People who post to HeraldNet are required to provide the newspaper an email address. The paper’s software also captures the person’s computer Internet protocol address.

“When people register with HeraldNet, we tell them their comments will be anonymous. Unless we receive a subpoena or warrant, we stick to that policy,” Executive Editor Neal Pattison said.

The paper agreed to send the poster an email, requesting that he or she contact investigators.

The detective, however, said that if he wasn’t contacted, he would seek a judge’s order, granting him permission to seize the information.

The warrant was served Thursday.

The paper turned over the poster’s information, as ordered by Everett District Court Judge Roger Fischer.

“In this case, law enforcement told us it was an active criminal case and we generally don’t try to impede law enforcement,” Pattison said. “This is a different standard than we would follow if a source like this had been working directly with a reporter.”

It appeared that the person who left the post offered information that directly concerned an ongoing criminal investigation, Pattison said.

“I’d rather never have to give anything up. You have to judge the circumstances on a case-by-case basis,” he said.

Police aren’t saying if they’ve been able to contact the person.

Investigators also received a potential tip from a neighbor in the area. He told police he was out walking on Soundview Drive that day when he heard a single gunshot around 4:30 p.m. He said he had heard shotguns being fired about 10 to 15 minutes before hearing the rifle shot.

He said the sounds of gunshots in the area were “pretty normal” because of the hunting going on.

The duck-hunting brothers told police the incident happened around 3:40 p.m. It was reported to police around 5 p.m. when the men returned home.

The brothers said they first heard what they thought was an explosion. The man who wasn’t hit said he examined the shotguns and determined they were “safe” and neither had discharged.

The men had been seated under a camouflage tent, known as a duck blind, at the time. They said their heads were protruding through the top of the tent. The duck blind frame and tent both were damaged.

The victim told police that after the loud noise he felt pain in both of his legs and noticed that one of his duck decoys located in the stern was “blown apart.” He realized he had been shot. The men reported that they collected their decoys and headed back to the boat launch.

The next day the victim had surgery to remove a bullet fragment from his leg. Detectives collected it and also fragments from the boat. The were sent to the crime lab for examination.

The brothers also provided detectives GPS coordinates from their boat that, they say, pinpoint where they were at the time of the shooting.

The boat reportedly was facing the 20300 block to 20400 block of Beach Drive.

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

Talk to us

> Give us your news tips.

> Send us a letter to the editor.

> More Herald contact information.

More in Local News

People look out onto Mountain Loop Mine from the second floor hallway of Fairmount Elementary on Wednesday, Jan. 10, 2024 in Everett, Washington. (Olivia Vanni / The Herald)
Mining company ordered to stop work next to school south of Everett

After operating months without the right paperwork, OMA Construction applied for permits last week. The county found it still violates code.

Snohomish County Jail. (Sue Misao / Herald file)
Arlington woman arrested in 2005 case of killed baby in Arizona airport

Annie Sue Anderson, 51, has been held in the Snohomish County Jail since December. She’s facing extradition.

A Cessna 150 crashed north of Paine Field on Friday evening, Feb. 16, 2024, in Mukilteo, Washington. The pilot survived without serious injury. (Courtesy of Richard Newman.)
‘I’m stuck in the trees’: 911 call recounts plane crash near Paine Field

Asad Ali was coming in for a landing in a Cessna 150 when he crashed into woods south of Mukilteo. Then he called 911 — for 48 minutes.

The Nimbus Apartments are pictured on Wednesday, March 1, 2023, in downtown Everett, Washington. (Ryan Berry / The Herald)
Snohomish County has the highest rent in the state. Could this bill help?

In one year, rent for the average two-bedroom apartment in Snohomish County went up 20%. A bill seeks to cap any increases at 7%.

A child gets some assistance dancing during Narrow Tarot’s set on the opening night of Fisherman’s Village on Thursday, May 18, 2023, at Lucky Dime in downtown Everett, Washington. (Ryan Berry / The Herald)
Drive-By Truckers, Allen Stone headline 2024 Fisherman’s Village lineup

Big names and local legends alike are coming to downtown Everett for the music festival from May 16 to 18.

Sen. Patty Murray attends a meeting at the Everett Fire Department’s Station 1 on Thursday, Feb. 22, 2024, in Everett, Washington. (Ryan Berry / The Herald)
Sen. Murray seeks aid for Snohomish County’s fentanyl, child care crises

The U.S. senator visited Everett to talk with local leaders on Thursday, making stops at the YMCA and a roundtable with the mayor.

Anthony Boggess
Arlington man sentenced for killing roommate who offered shelter

Anthony Boggess, 33, reported hearing the voices of “demons” the night he strangled James Thrower, 65.

Lake Serene in Mount Baker-Snoqualmie National Forest. (U.S. Forest Service)
How will climate change affect you? New tool gives an educated guess

The Climate Vulnerability Tool outlines climate hazards in Snohomish County — and it may help direct resources.

A cliff above the Pilchuck River shows signs of erosion Friday, Feb. 9, 2024, in Lake Stevens, Washington. Lake Connor Park sits atop the cliff. (Ryan Berry / The Herald)
Hill erodes in Lake Connor Park, forcing residents of 8 lots to vacate

The park has just under 1,500 members east of Lake Stevens. The riverside hill usually loses 18 inches a year. But it was more this year.

Ken Florczak, president of the five-member board at Sherwood Village Mobile Home community on Tuesday, Feb. 13, 2024 in Mill Creek, Washington. (Olivia Vanni / The Herald)
How Mill Creek mobile home residents bought the land under their feet

At Sherwood Village, residents are now homeowners. They pay a bit more each month to keep developers from buying their property.

The I-5, Highway 529 and the BNSF railroad bridges cross over Union Slough as the main roadways for north and southbound traffic between Everett and Marysville. (Olivia Vanni / The Herald)
As 4-month closure looms, Highway 529 bridge to briefly close Sunday

The northbound section of the Snohomish River Bridge will be closed 7 a.m. to 5 p.m. The monthslong closure is slated for mid-May.

Ninth-grade program gets money, initiatives to get hearings

It’s day 47, here is what’s happening in the Legislature.

Support local journalism

If you value local news, make a gift now to support the trusted journalism you get in The Daily Herald. Donations processed in this system are not tax deductible.