Woman who pinned killing on others gets hefty prison term

Tammie Peterson, who stabbed her roommate 40 times, was sentenced Wednesday to 31 years.

EVERETT — When Christopher Jeanneret came home from vacation in May 2017, he tried calling his mother, but got her voicemail.

Later, he received a text from her phone number. She was fine, it said. She was in Reno, Nevada.

His mother, Deborah Jeanneret, was dead when the message was written.

The person who apparently sent it, Tammie Peterson, 55, was sentenced Wednesday to 31 years for first-degree murder. She pleaded guilty earlier this month.

Leading up to the crime, she had grown extremely jealous of her ex-boyfriend, threatening to kill anyone she believed was involved with him, court documents say.

Snohomish County Superior Court Judge Millie Judge rejected the defense attorney’s request for a shorter sentence. The judge said the actions Peterson took to cover up the crime, including texting Jeanneret’s son, was “a level of depravity the court hasn’t seen, frankly.”

Deborah Jeanneret, 50, was found dead May 30, 2017, in the bedroom of her apartment in south Everett, according to charging papers. She was buried under her own belongings, and had suffered about 40 stab wounds, many of them to her face and neck. Her hands and arms had also been slashed, indicating that she tried to fend off her attacker. The tip of a blade was embedded in her skull. She likely bled to death, about five days before her body was discovered, according to an autopsy.

Jeanneret’s credit cards, cell phone and car had been taken, and someone apparently cleaned up the scene. Peterson, who had lived there just a week, was gone.

Detectives met up with Peterson. She said her ex-boyfriend killed Jeanneret. Police arrested him, but discovered that he wasn’t in the area at the time and he was released.

Peterson then blamed the murder on someone else. Again, she lied, prosecutors said.

An acquaintance of Peterson told police that he helped get rid of the knife. He said Peterson wrapped the weapon in a plastic grocery bag and threw it into the Snohomish River.

He took officers to the location. They recovered the knife from the water. It had blood stains, and its tip was missing. Long dark hair was wrapped around it — the same type that was clutched in Jeanneret’s fingers.

Later, detectives identified a possible motive. Cell phone records showed that Peterson grew violently jealous of her ex-boyfriend. Three days before Jeanneret’s death, Peterson left him a voicemail saying, “I will find you. I will kill her. And I’m going to kill you.”

After killing Jeanneret, Peterson texted him: “why do u have to have affairs with everyone i no.. why deb.”

On Wednesday, Snohomish County deputy prosecutor Elise Deschenes described Peterson’s actions as callous.

“With each stab of the knife, the defendant could have chosen to stop and not take the life of Deborah Jeanneret,” she wrote in a sentencing memorandum. No single wound was the cause of the victim’s death.

Deschenes said that the defendant showed no remorse throughout the court proceedings, even toward the end. When Peterson pleaded guilty on the second day of trial, she didn’t admit to the homicide, but acknowledged that a jury would likely convict her.

Peterson chose not to say anything at the sentencing.

Speaking to the court, Jeanneret’s children talked about her love of animals and her plans to start a dog grooming business.

When her daughter, Amber Gomez, was younger and performing at public events, Jeanneret would always be the loudest, most boisterous person in the audience.

“What I wouldn’t give to be embarrassed like that again,” Gomez said.

Zachariah Bryan: 425-339-3431; zbryan@heraldnet.com. Twitter: @zachariahtb.

Talk to us

More in Local News

Paul McElhany points out how far the new building will extend past the current building at Northwest Fisheries Science Center's Mukilteo Research Station on Tuesday, April 23, 2019 in Mukilteo, Wash. (Olivia Vanni / The Herald)
Oh, crab! NOAA’s Mukilteo waterfront fish lab won’t be rebuilt

Bids for a new Northwest Fisheries Science Center research station are too high. Are condos next?

Austin Johnson, 26 years-old, trains on the Centennial Trail in Lake Stevens and is planning to do a 24-hour run to raise money for the American Foundation for Suicide Prevention.  (Kevin Clark / The Herald)
24 hours, 80 miles, $23k raised for mental health

Austin Johnson completes a 24-hour run along the Centennial Trail to raise money for suicide prevention.

Samantha Lake
Missing girl, 12, found safely

Seattle FBI located Samantha Lake on Friday.

A pre-loaded syringe with the Pfizer COVID-19 vaccine sits on the table for the next person in line during a vaccine clinic as South Pointe Assisted Living on Friday, Feb. 12, 2021 in Everett, Wa. (Olivia Vanni / The Herald)
Snohomish County to receive its largest shipment of vaccines

Even as case counts drop, researchers are finding a growing number of COVID variants in the state.

Snohomish County Sheriff Adam Fortney during an interview at the sheriff’s department June 17, 2020. (Sue Misao / The Herald)
Auditor denies Fortney recall group the extra time it seeks

He said he could extend the deadline for signature gathering if ordered by a court or the Governor.

Everett man identified after being found dead in creek

The cause of death for Renee Baltazar Romero remained under investigation Thursday.

Everett man found dead in creek near Lake Stevens

The man, 28, was reported missing Thursday. A neighbor found his body in Little Pilchuck Creek.

Autopsy shows Lake Stevens woman, 20, drowned Saturday

Anna M. Lopez was swimming when witnesses noticed she was not responsive, according to officials.

Joe Hempel swims off of the shore of Seawall Park on Friday, Jan. 29, 2021 in Langley, Wa. (Olivia Vanni / The Herald)
Scantily clad is the dress code for these cold rush swimmers

Immersed for 30 minutes in frigid water would kill most of us. It energizes these swimmers.

Most Read