Lakewood barbershop owner’s suspected killer gets $5 million bail at arraignment

A man accused of killing a Lakewood barbershop owner during a crime spree last week is being held in jail in lieu of $5 million bail.

Angel Manuel Martinez pleaded not guilty at arraignment Monday to first-degree aggravated murder in connection to the death of 57-year-old Pyong Sun Ryan at her business in the 9100 block of Highland Avenue Southwest.

He also pleaded not guilty to first-degree robbery, motor vehicle theft, two counts of attempted first-degree robbery and two counts of second-degree assault for the rest of his alleged crime spree Thursday.

Pierce County Superior Court Commissioner Craig Adams set the bail.

Defense attorney Dino Sepe represented Martinez at the hearing.

He said in a statement to The News Tribune: “The case is very new and is highly complex. We also must not forget that Mr. Martinez is presumed innocent under the law.”

Steven Anthony, 54, told reporters outside court that he lives in the area and had been one of Ryan’s customers for a couple years.

“I don’t have any remorse for someone who does what he did,” Anthony said.

He said he saw Ryan last month when he visited the shop.

She was trying to learn the words to “The Battle Hymn of the Republic” for church. Anthony said he wrote out the lyrics and played a video of the song for Ryan — who he described as sweet and kind.

He said he learned her name from the news reports last week.

“Senseless acts, that’s probably one of my pet peeves,” Anthony said.

Charging papers give this account of what happened:

Officers got a report about someone with a knife assaulting people. They investigated and ultimately found Ryan with blunt force injuries and stab wounds in a back room of her shop. She died at the scene.

Detectives found a ladder and scissors that appeared to have been used to injure her.

Police took Martinez into custody nearby. He had barricaded himself inside a vehicle but ultimately surrendered.

A 38-year-old woman who identified herself as Martinez’s girlfriend allegedly told police that she and Martinez took public transit to Lakewood and went to a park near the barbershop. They talked and used methamphetamine, she said.

She went to use a restroom at a laundromat near the barbershop. She came out to find Martinez covered in blood.

The woman allegedly told someone else that Martinez said he was going to the barbershop because they needed a car to return to Tacoma.

Others said Martinez had been trying to take vehicles in the area.

He demanded a car from a 76-year-old man doing yard work. The victim used a golf club to fight Martinez off after Martinez used an air compressor and a can of WD/40 from the man’s garage to assault him.

A woman said Martinez charged her with a handsaw in her mother-in-law’s garage and that he left when she grabbed a gun and pointed it at him.

A delivery truck driver said he returned from a delivery to find a man trying to start the truck before fleeing with a woman.

Police found Martinez barricaded in a different truck, which was taken from a man who said he fled when he saw Martinez was holding a large knife.

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Alexis Krell covers local, state and federal court cases that affect Pierce County. She started covering courts in 2016. Before that she wrote about crime and breaking news for almost four years as The News Tribune’s night reporter.