September 4, 2008 in City

West Side shooting suspect held on $5 million bail

Alger man faces six murder counts
By Jennifer Sullivan, Warren Cornwall and Jim Brunner Seattle Times
 
Associated Press photos photo

A bouquet of flowers with a card that reads “God Bless the Alger/Skagit innocent victims” was placed near the neighborhood near Alger, Wash., where five of Tuesday’s six killings took place. Associated Press photos
(Full-size photo)(All photos)

ALGER, Wash. – The man arrested in the deaths of six people and the wounding of three others in a shooting and stabbing rampage here is being held on six counts of murder and two counts of attempted second-degree murder.

The suspect, 28-year-old Isaac Zamora, of Alger, made his first court appearance Wednesday afternoon in District Court and is being held on $5 million bail.

During the brief hearing, Zamora refused to answer several questions from Judge David Svaren.

Pam Springer, the district court administrator, said Zamora is likely to be charged Friday in Skagit County Superior Court.

Zamora ended Tuesday’s violent rampage and an ensuing high-speed chase along Interstate 5 when he drove a pickup to the Skagit County Sheriff’s Office and was arrested.

Two of the dead have been identified: Anne Jackson, a 40-year-old Skagit County sheriff’s deputy; and a motorist identified as Leroy Lange, 64, of Methow, who was shot and killed along I-5 near a rest stop, Everett police Sgt. Robert Goetz told the Associated Press.

Police on Wednesday morning laid out a timeline of Zamora’s rampage.

The initial 911 call came in at 2:19 p.m. Tuesday.

At 2:50 p.m., Jackson arrived at the scene in the 19300 block of Bridle Place near Alger, a town of fewer than 100 people in north Skagit County.

The rampage came to light when Jackson didn’t check in with dispatchers, said Washington State Patrol spokesman Keith Leary. Other deputies went to the scene and found her dead. A man was also found dead at the same address, Leary said.

At 4:10 p.m., police got a call that deputies were “under fire.”

Police then learned about another gunshot victim, a motorcyclist, who was wounded at a Shell service station.

Officers chased Zamora south on I-5, with Zamora still shooting. State Patrol Trooper Troy Giddings, 42, was shot, and he drove himself to the hospital, where he was treated and released.

Police said the driver of an SUV on I-5 was also shot and killed near exit 238, his car coming to rest in the median near Bow Hill Road, Leary said.

At 5 p.m., a woman returned to her home near Alger and found two construction workers dead.

In addition, a 61-year-old Alger man was injured and was taken to St. Joseph Hospital in Bellingham. A woman in the house reportedly was killed while the man went to a neighbor’s house seeking help.

Goetz said more than 100 detectives are working the case.

He said police don’t know if Zamora had any relationship to any of the victims, nor did Goetz have any information on Zamora’s mental health issues.

“We don’t know a motive for the crime. It will develop as we go through the investigation,” he said.

Dennise Zamora, the suspect’s mother, said Tuesday that Jackson, the slain deputy, was aware of her son’s illness and told the Zamora family to call her anytime for help.

After watching Isaac Zamora walk in and out of neighbors’ homes, his mother called deputies Tuesday. She said her son had struggled with mental illness since their family’s house burned down more than a decade ago. She said that he was “agreeable” and “placid” Tuesday morning and that she didn’t know what made him snap. She said she didn’t know where he got the gun used in the shootings.

Barbara Crossen, who lives across the street from the Zamora family, said Dennise Zamora came to Crossen’s home Tuesday afternoon and asked her to look after a young boy.

“She said, ‘Keep him here; Isaac has gone crazy,’ ” said Crossen, who added she’d known Isaac Zamora since he was born and never saw any signs of trouble.

“He was always quiet and never demanded a lot of attention or anything. That’s why I think we’re so shocked,” said Crossen.


Thoughts and opinions on this story? Click here to comment >>

Get stories like this in a free daily email