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Prosecutor charges man and woman with south end drug deal shooting
The King County Prosector on Tuesday charged Dustin J. Chase, 24, and Tauna Elaine Johnson, 38, each with one count of first-degree robbery for their roles in a drug deal turned robbery turned shooting last Friday morning in a south Auburn parking lot.
Medics transported the shooting victim, Joleen Villamor, to Harborview Medical Center in Seattle with gunshots wound to the neck. According to medical staff, Villamor, in her mid-30s, suffered a severed spinal cord and is paralyzed from the neck down. As of Tuesday morning, she was still in critical condition.
Prosecutors say Chase, a Lakewood resident, was the shooter. He is also charged with second-degree assault.
Both suspects are to be arraigned at 9 a.m., May 22 at the Maleng Regional Justice Center in Kent. Chase is in jail on $2 million bail, and Johnson is in on $100,000 bail.
Here is what happened, according to the Auburn Police affidavit of probable cause, which is large part based on what Johnson told police.
According to the affidavit, Johnson said she had met Chase only that morning through a friend. She told police Chase had asked her to help him buy an ounce of methamphetamine from Villamor, whom he knew. According to the affidavit, however, further investigation showed that Johnson had had prior contacts with Chase about methamphetamine use.
According to the affidavit, Chase had arranged to have Villamor meet him in a vehicle in the parking lot near Eagle Leather in the 1400 block of Auburn Way South.
According to the affidavit, when Villamor met with Chase and Johnson at 9:40 a.m., Villamor asked Chase, then sitting in the front seat on the passenger's side, to show her the money. At that point, according to the affidavit, Chase whipped out a handgun and demanded Villamor give him the drug.
When Villamor refused, according to the affidavit, Chase shot at least two rounds into the floor and began pistol whipping her in the face. During the struggle, according to the affidavit, Johnson jumped from the car and began to run as Chase grabbed the woman's purse and began to leave the vehicle.
According to the affidavit, Villamor then drove toward Chase in the parking lot, and as she closed in on him, he, Chase, standing near the front driver side of the vehicle, turned and fired at least two rounds at her. At least one of the rounds entered the left side of her neck and exited out the right side.
According to the affidavit, Chase and Johnson tried to flee, but police caught up with them several blocks away.
During a second interview with Johnson, she allegedly admitted that she had taken Villamor's purse, run off with it and rifled it for methamphetamines and money before throwing it away one block from the shooting scene.
Also, according to the affidavit, Johson and Villamoor knew each other. According to the affidavit, several years earlier Villamor had a romantic interest with Johnson's wife when all three were jailed together.
Chase's criminal history includes convictions for possession of stolen property, vehicle theft, controlled substances, custodial assault, possession of a stolen vehicle, and 32 misdemeanor or gross misdemeanor convictions, among them multiple convictions for domestic violence assault.