Auburn man faces assault charge for Kent attack of rival gang member in King County jail

A 20-year-old Auburn gang member faces a first-degree assault charge after he reportedly attacked a rival gang member in the King County jail at the Norm Maleng Regional Justice Center in Kent.

King County prosecutors charged Anthony Archuleta Sept. 8 with first-degree assault in connection with an Aug. 31 fist attack against another inmate, according to charging papers.

Archuleta is scheduled to be arraigned Sept. 22 at the Regional Justice Center on the first-degree assault charge, according to the King County Prosecuting Attorney's Office. He remains in jail with bail set at $350,000.

Prosecutors described Archuleta as a well-documented member of the Rancho San Pedro Pee Wee Sureno criminal street gang and the victim of the attack as a Playboy Surenos Associate, a rival South King County Latino gang.

Archuleta allegedly attacked the other man as that man was being processed in a jail unit that included Archuleta and other inmates in the day room area for a morning break. Without warning or provocation, Archuleta punched the man repeatedly in the face with closed fists.

At one point, a punch from Archuleta caused the man to lose his balance and fall forward. The man hit his head on a sink countertop and was knocked unconscious before he hit the floor. Archuleta continued to punch the man before a corrections officer physically pulled Archuleta away.

Paramedics transported the injured man to Harborview Medical Center in Seattle. After several days in the hospital, the man was discharged and taken to the county jail in Seattle.

"By all accounts this was a bold, vicious and unprovoked attack in the confines of the jail," wrote senior deputy prosecutor Julie Kline in charging documents.

Archuleta reportedly told jail staff after the attack that it was "something he had to do" and that he had problems on the street with the man.

Archuleta said at a disciplinary hearing that the man had accused him in July of keying his car and that he has charges out of Auburn for malicious mischief because of the incident.

Auburn Police arrested Archuleta Aug. 27 for investigation of burglary. He was booked into the county jail in Seattle and transferred Aug. 28 to Kent. He was charged with first-degree burglary Aug. 31.

The inmate who was attacked was being housed in Kent on a transport order from the new South Correctional Entity (SCORE) Multijurisdictional Misdemeanant Jail in Des Moines for violation of uniformed firearms act, attempted robbery and assault, attempting to elude, residential burglary and failure to appear for obstruction of law enforcement.

Archuleta has pending charges for first-degree burglary and third-degree malicious mischief. He also has a criminal history of second-degree robbery in 2009 and fourth-degree assault in 2008.

Anthony Archuleta is the older brother of Andrew Archuleta, according to the Prosecuting Attorney's Office. Andrew Archuete, 17, was sentenced in January to 35 years in prison for shooting and injuring two brothers in July 2009 in Auburn.

A jury found Andrew Archuleta, who was 15 at the time of the shooting, guilty of attempted first-degree murder with a firearm, first-degree assault and unlawful possession of a firearm. The sentence included a 24-month gang enhancement.

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