Unzipped assailant gets four years


Herald Writer

A Spokane man with a history of rape and robbery was sentenced to four years in prison Thursday for forcing his way into an Everett woman’s apartment with his pants unzipped.

Vincent Wayne Falla, 40, apologized for the April 29 break-in and said he hadn’t intended to hurt anyone.

Snohomish County Superior Court Judge Larry McKeeman said the crime was an "extremely serious incident" and sentenced Falla to double the top punishment outlined under state sentencing guidelines.

Falla had spoken to the woman, 25, a few minutes before the incident while she was at her mailbox. The woman told police she went upstairs to her apartment, expecting that the next knock at the door would be her father, who had planned to take her to dinner. Instead, when she opened the door, Falla was there, and he pushed his way inside and locked the door, according to court papers.

The woman struggled with Falla, who left the apartment when the woman’s father arrived. The man captured Falla and held him until police arrived.

The woman’s father spoke Thursday in court, saying his daughter has been traumatized by the incident. He urged McKeeman to send Falla away for as long as possible.

"Something has to be done to protect my daughter and other people like her," he said.

Falla had pleaded guilty to one count of first-degree burglary, but withdrew the plea last week because he had not previously been advised that the conviction would have sent him to prison for life under the state’s three-strikes law.

Instead, Falla entered a so-called Alford plea to residential burglary, in which he said he didn’t believe he’d committed the offense but acknowledged that he likely would have been convicted if the case went before a jury. The residential burglary conviction does not count as a "strike" under the state’s persistent offender law.

Falla’s attorney, public defender Natalie Tarrantino, said the crime occurred on a day when Falla had begun using drugs and alcohol after a period of treatment and sobriety, and that he became suddenly paranoid and forced his way into the apartment looking for a place to hide from police.

At the time of his arrest, Falla was wanted on two warrants, including one for failing to register as a sex offender. He has convictions for robbery (1979), escape (1982), rape (1988) and harassment (1995).

You can call Herald Writer Scott North at 425-339-3431or send e-mail to


Talk to us

More in Local News

Mel Jennings sits in his structure during a point-in-time count of people facing homelessness in Everett, Washington on Tuesday, Jan. 24, 2023. Mel has had a brain and spinal surgery, and currently has been homeless for a year. (Annie Barker / The Herald)
Annual homeless count aims to give snapshot of housing crisis

Volunteers set out into the rain Tuesday to count all the people facing homelessness in central Everett.

Catherine Berwicks loads ballots into a tray after scanning them at the Snohomish County Elections Ballot Processing Center on Tuesday, Aug. 4, 2020 in Everett, Wa.  (Andy Bronson / The Herald)
Lawmakers push to boost voting in county jails across the state

A House bill envisions an approach similar to what’s been happening in the Snohomish County Jail for several years.

Vandalism at Seaview Park on Jan. 21, 2023 in Edmonds, Washington. (Edmonds Police Department)
Police seek suspects in repeated vandalism at Edmonds parks

Vandals have done over $10,000 of damage to parks across the city, including suspected arson and graffiti with hate speech.

One worker looks up from the cargo area as another works in what will be the passenger compartment on one of the first Boeing 787 jets as it stands near completion at the front of the assembly line, Monday, May 19, 2008, in Everett, Wash. The plane, the first new Boeing jet in 14 years, is targeted for power on in June followed by an anticipated first flight sometime late in 2008.  (AP Photo/Elaine Thompson)
Boeing workers long-exposed to carcinogen far above legal limits

The company confirmed in depositions that parts of its Everett plant still don’t meet 2010 standards.

CarlaRae Arneson, of Lynnwood, grabs a tea press full of fresh tea from Peanut the server robot while dining with her 12-year-old son Levi at Sushi Hana on Thursday, Jan. 5, 2023, in Lynnwood, Washington. CarlaRae said she and her son used to visit the previous restaurant at Sushi Hana’s location and were excited to try the new business’s food. (Ryan Berry / The Herald)
Peanut the robot waitress is on a roll at Lynnwood’s Sushi Hana

She’s less RoboCop and more Rosey as she patrols the restaurant, making sure everyone has a drink and good time.

A big head Buddha turns to the crowd during a celebration of the Lunar New Year on Saturday, Jan. 21, 2023, in downtown Edmonds, Washington. (Ryan Berry / The Herald)
Lunar New Year celebrates the Year of the Rabbit

A celebration in Edmonds ushered in the Lunar New Year.

Rep. Kim Schrier speaks with Regional Manager Susan Rushing about a room designated for serving homeless veterans during a visit to the new VA Puget Sound Health Care System Everett Clinic on Friday, Jan. 20, 2023, in Everett, Washington. (Ryan Berry / The Herald)
New VA clinic in Everett already has 5,300 patients

U.S. Rep. Kim Schrier toured the new center Friday, where veterans can get primary care and a growing list of specialty services close to home.

A white lane line juts out of place along I-5 northbound through Everett on Tuesday, Jan. 17, 2023. (Olivia Vanni / The Herald)
Wonky I-5 lane striping in Everett to get temporary refresh

During weekend work, contractor crews are slated to try to repaint northbound temporary lane striping past 41st Street.

Senator Patty Murray listens to students share their experiences with financial aid during a roundtable meeting to discuss access to higher education and Pell Grant increases Thursday, Jan. 19, 2023, at Everett Community College in Everett, Washington. (Ryan Berry / The Herald)
Everett college students press Murray to boost financial aid funding

In a sitdown with the senator, they shared how Pell grants and other aid made it possible for them to attend college.

Most Read