Auburn man pleads not guilty in Kent fatal shooting

Renton man shot Jan. 3 near Hawthorn Suites

  • Wednesday, January 24, 2018 9:29am
  • News

Reporter staff

A 22-year-old Auburn man pleaded not guilty to second-degree murder for allegedly shooting a man Jan. 3 in Kent near the Hawthorn Suites hotel.

Jacob Thiel entered his plea Monday in King County Superior Court at the Maleng Regional Justice Center in Kent. Thiel has a court hearing Feb. 5 when a trial date could be set or attorneys could ask for more time to prepare the case. Thiel remains in the county jail in Kent with bail set at $1 million.

Prosecutors allege that Thiel shot Geoffrey Ronald Sherrard, 48, of Renton, because he believed the man had stolen his cellphone and other items from his apartment. Sherrard died from a single gunshot wound to the chest, according to the King County Medical Examiner’s Office.

The 28-year-old girlfriend of Sherrard was at the shooting scene and told police that she and Sherrard had spent the night at Thiel’s apartment in Auburn. When she woke up, Sherrard was gone. He had left in his black Toyota Solara. She called him and discovered he was at the Hawthorn Suites, 6329 S. 212th St. The girlfriend and Thiel took a bus to the hotel to find Sherrard.

They found Sherrard sitting in the driver’s seat of the two-door vehicle parked in front of the hotel. The girlfriend got into the car and Thiel came in right after her and sat on top of her, according to the police report. Sherrard yelled at Thiel to get out of the vehicle, according to the girlfriend. She said the two men also yelled at each other, something about a cellphone.

Sherrard and the girlfriend shoved Thiel out of the car. As soon as Thiel was out of the vehicle, he pulled out a handgun and shot Sherrard once in the chest, according to the police report.

Thiel told police he ran toward Sherrard’s vehicle and saw him with his cellphone. He said he exchanged words with Sherrard, who then began to reverse the car with Thiel partially inside. He said Sherrard and the girlfriend pushed him out of the car. He said he was afraid his leg might get run over, so he pulled out his gun and fired at Sherrard.

More in News

‘Messy Church’

Life’s crazy, so Auburn congregation offers a ‘come as you are’ approach to all

Inaugural Auburn Adventure Film Festival announces lineup | Update

Effort takes unique approach to combining film themes with adventure packages; tickets, film passes on sale now

Nexus Youth and Families postpones annual Valentine’s breakfast

Agency working on major projects; charitable fundraiser to resume soon

Water works

Girl Scout, school district install water bottle refilling stations at Auburn Mountainview High School.

Das sworn in as senator for 47th District

‘I am truly honored that the voters … have put their trust in me’

Sen. Claire Wilson, D-Auburn, at a Senate Higher Education & Workforce Development Committee meeting last November. COURTESY PHOTO, Washington State Legislature
Wilson sworn into Senate, brings career experience in student needs

Sen. Claire Wilson, D-Auburn, a career educator, was sworn into office Monday… Continue reading

Downtown ice rink to remain open until Jan. 21, with new hours

Auburn’s ice skating rink on Main Street Plaza will remain open through… Continue reading

Dinosaurs invade Auburn

Jurassic Tour comes to the mall for weekend encounter with families, children

Exit poll indicates Washington voters still support climate change action

State environmental organizations’ poll points to continuing support for carbon-reducing measures.

Most Read