Pierce County prosecutors have charged a 38-year-old man with second-degree murder, saying he shot a man to death during a drug deal gone wrong in Tacoma early Sunday.
Donald William Bango was supposed to be arraigned in Superior Court on Monday, but he refused to leave his jail cell. His arraignment was rescheduled for Tuesday (Dec. 15).
The Medical Examiner’s Office identified the victim as 33-year-old Jeffrey Shaw of University Place.
According to charging documents, Bango arranged to buy heroin from Shaw and met him in the parking lot of a convenience store in the 3700 block of North Pearl Street about 2:15 a.m.
Shaw was sitting in the passenger seat of a car driven by another man when Bango walked up, court records show.
At one point, Bango pulled out a fake police badge, prompting Shaw to yell, “Go! Go! Go!,” to the driver. A gunshot then was fired, hitting Shaw in the chest. He died later at a local hospital.
Tacoma police developed Bango as a suspect and later arrested him at a motel near South 96th and South Hosmer streets.
He allegedly admitted he shot Shaw during a heroin deal but claimed self-defense.
Bango said Shaw grabbed a handgun lying inside the car, put it in his lap pointing toward Bango and pulled the trigger, court records show.
“Bango said he saw the hammer pulled back and he heard the gun click, but it didn’t fire,” charge documents state.
Bango said that’s when he fired, the records state.
The driver of the car later told police he took a handgun from Shaw’s waistband and put it under the driver’s seat after the shooting.