Sirens & Gavels

Torture video leads to murder arrest

A video provided to the Spokane County Sheriff's Office helped detectives in Western Washington identify suspects in a torture and murder case.

Someone notified the sheriff's office "a while ago" about the video, and a detective picked it up, said Sgt. Dave Reagan.

"We observed what appeared to be somebody being tortured or tormented on the video" and contacted law enforcement in the Tacoma area on the advice of the person who provided the video,  Reagan said.

The video led Lakewood police to arrest Michael E. Crosman, 25, on Wednesday. He was arraigned Thursday on an aggravated first-degree murder charge and is being held on $5 million bail.

If convicted, the charge carries the death penalty or life in prison without parole.

The Tacoma News Tribune says a warrant has been issued for the arrest of 30-year-old Maalo Samaota.

Prosecutors allege Crosman videotaped a young man who'd been bound and gagged with duct tape and was tortured with a knife. Court documents allege that Samaota is the attacker on the video, according to the Associated Press.

According to court papers, Crosman told detectives the victim had stolen a vehicle that contained drugs and the attack was payback.

Pierce County Prosecutor Mark Lindquist says detectives believe human remains found March 10 near Harts Lake in Pierce County are those of the still-unidentified victim.

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