Crime

Suspected home-invasion robber charged with 2nd violent break-in just after he posts bail

If you witness a crime, here’s what to do

Witnessing a crime and reporting it can be just as frightening as being the victim of a crime. Here’s what you should do if you witness illegal activity.
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Witnessing a crime and reporting it can be just as frightening as being the victim of a crime. Here’s what you should do if you witness illegal activity.

Less than two months after being released from jail, a man forced his way into two Pierce County houses and held victims at gunpoint while rummaging through their homes, records show.

The 24-year-old was charged Friday with first-degree robbery, first-degree burglary, second-degree assault, theft of a firearm, second-degree theft and first-degree unlawful possession of a firearm.

A warrant was issued for his arrest.

Also on Friday, the man posted $25,000 bail on an unrelated case and was released after pleading not guilty to attempted first-degree robbery and first-degree unlawful possession of a firearm for a Lakewood home invasion.

Pierce County prosecutors say the suspect has 11 prior felonies, is on community custody and was released from jail in September after serving time for bringing cocaine into a Tacoma hospital and causing the hospital to go on lockdown because of threats.

He was there to visit a shooting victim and got into an argument, court documents show.

Charging papers give this account of the most recent home invasion:

A Fircrest man heard a knock about 10 p.m. Nov. 14 and answered the door.

The defendant told him he’d run out of gas and pointed to a car on the street.

When the victim looked at the car, the man who had knocked pulled out a handgun and forced his way into the house.

At least two other men came inside as well and forced the victim to the ground and put a jacket over his head.

“The defendant pointed the gun against the victim’s head, and once between his legs, and he was pulling the trigger saying ‘Russian Roulette’ and laughing,” prosecutors wrote in charging papers.

The intruders were there about 20 minutes.

After ensuring they were gone, the victim got up and walked to a nearby police station to report the break-in.

The robbers took several items, including a rifle, knives, electronics, photography gear, clothing and cash.

Records show the robbers tried to use the victim’s bank card at gas stations and fast food restaurants within an hour of the home invasions.

Fircrest police recently learned about a similar home invasion in Lakewood Nov. 29 and determined it was the same suspect.

Detectives used surveillance footage and a photo lineup to link the defendant to the Fircrest robbery.

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