TACOMA, Wash. – A Tacoma man who shot and killed a woman who broke into his car pleaded guilty to second-degree manslaughter Wednesday and could get 10 years in prison when he’s sentenced later this month.
James Reha killed 23-year-old Morgan Deines last November.
According to court documents:
Reha was sleeping in his car in Tacoma at the intersection of N. 7th and N. Junett St. on Nov. 11 after a night of drinking when Deines and an unnamed man broke in and stole his phone. The man then went back to Reha’s car and tried to steal a speaker box, but Reha woke up and confronted him.
The man said Reha reached into his glovebox as if reaching for a gun, so he ran away but heard several gunshots.
Deines was in the driver’s seat of her SUV with a gunshot wound to the back of her head.
Prosecutor Mark Lindquist said Reha did not have the right to use deadly force to retrieve his stolen cellphone.
“If you are the victim of a property crime, call law enforcement,” he said. “Let the professionals catch the criminals.”