EDMONDS, Wash. - A man is facing charges, including murder, after shooting his estranged wife and two others. Investigators with the Edmonds Police Department said the man turned himself into police the same evening he fired several rounds outside of Boo Han Oriental Market on Tuesday.
The market is located at a shopping plaza in Edmonds. The community surrounding the market spent the day Wednesday trying to get back to business as usual. However, many were still shaken after police said a case of domestic violence turned deadly right in front of the grocery store.
“When a victim wants to leave a relationship, that’s most volatile time for something like this to occur,” said Sgt. Josh McClure with the Edmonds Police Department.
McClure said the shooter’s 24-year-old estranged wife left him days prior to the incident. The woman was working inside the market, Tuesday. Her roommate, who is also a coworker, was already off from her shift. The roommate came back to the market with her boyfriend to console the woman. During that time, police said the shooter arrived, going in and out of the market three times. Finally, all four people walked out of the market, just outside of the store’s south entrance.
“The suspect exits behind the victims, goes beyond them, turns around and very intentionally uses gunfire to harm the victims,” said McClure.
Police said the estranged husband, 27, shot his wife in the face. He shot the roommate in the abdomen and torso and the roommate’s boyfriend, 23, in the legs and abdomen. The roommate, a 20-year-old, died from her injuries. Just before her surgery from gunfire, investigators said the estranged wife told detectives her husband had previously threatened her and a friend saying, "I'll shoot you.”
“She had only been separated from him for a matter of days. His words towards her escalated quickly, threatening to shoot her and her friend in that 48 hour window,” said McClure.
After shots were fired, the suspect ran to his car and drove away from the scene to Everett. His mother called detectives that same evening saying she had her son in her car. They were parked at the Everett Police Department’s south precinct ready to turn himself and the gun in.
The shooting occurred in the middle of the day while businesses were open with customers. City of Edmonds’ mayor said what happened at the market is a chilling reminder of the dangers abusers can pose to an entire community.
“I am sickened by the abusers who torment and prey on their family members and the innocent,” said Mike Nelson, mayor of the City of Edmonds.
Data from the Snohomish County Prosecutor’s office shows there were 287 domestic violence cases filed in 2019. So far in the year 2020 there are 236.
October is recognized as Domestic Violence Awareness Month. McClure saids those who are in situations like this or know someone in trouble should get help right away. Domestic Violence Services of Snohomish County is available for assistance.
“If you are in one of these situations continue to use resources, trust your gut. If you believe you’re in danger seek out help, contact law enforcement. There is no perfect solution, there is no perfect answer, but law enforcement will be able to assist you,” said McClure.
Kelly Starr works for the Washington State Coalition Against Domestic Violence. Starr provided research from the Washington State Domestic Violence Fatality Review to give perspective on domestic violence in the state. The review shows. Native women, women of color, and immigrant and refugee women experience the highest rates of lethal violence. The review also mentions there is a racial disproportionate rate of death.
Starr said nationally, homicide is one of the leading causes of death for women age 44 or younger, almost half are killed by a current or former male partner, and Black and Native women experience the highest rates of homicide.
McClure said the shooter lawfully purchased a gun a few weeks ago. The 27-year-old had a virtual hearing in court Wednesday. However, he will have another virtual hearing Thursday with an interpreter to confirm bail and learn more on how this case will move forward.