September 6, 2008 in Nation/World

Suspect tells judge: ‘I kill for God’

Zamora charged with six counts of murder
By Peyton Whitely Seattle Times
Associated Press photo

Skagit County sheriff’s Deputy Anne Jackson, shown in an undated family photo, was among those killed Tuesday in Alger, Wash.
(Full-size photo)

MOUNT VERNON, Wash. – Isaac Zamora, the man accused of killing six people during a shooting rampage this week in Skagit County, told a judge Friday afternoon, “I kill for God. I listen to God.”

Zamora, 28, was charged with six counts of first-degree murder and four counts of first-degree assault with a firearm or deadly weapon in Skagit County District Court. He was ordered held in lieu of $5 million bail.

District Court Judge Warren Gilbert read each charge and possible penalties, which include up to life in prison.

At the end of his arraignment, Zamora was presented with court documents and was asked to sign them to acknowledge he had been charged.

“I’ll sign,” Zamora told Gilbert. Then he said, “I kill for God. I listen to God.”

It was the first time Zamora has spoken during two court appearances; the first was Wednesday when he was ordered held for the slayings of six people, including Skagit County sheriff’s Deputy Anne Jackson.

Charges were filed in District Court, which defense and prosecutors said will give them 30 more days to continue developing the case before moving to Superior Court, where Zamora will be prosecuted.

Skagit County Prosecuting Attorney Richard Weyrich said he expects the charges will be refiled in Skagit County Superior Court before the 30 days expire. In addition, the District Court agreed to seal for 10 days a statement of probable cause prepared by a police detective that describes the crimes.

According to a motion signed by Senior Deputy Prosecutor Erik Pedersen, “delay in the release of extensive information regarding the multiple scenes is necessary for the effectiveness of an ongoing investigation and to maintain the privacy of individuals involved in the investigation.”

A complaint filed against Zamora that was made public, however, suggested for the first time that motives such as robbery, rape, burglary, arson and kidnapping may have been part of the crime. It also indicates the slaying of one victim, neighbor Julie Binschus, 48, may have been premeditated.

In the two murder counts involving the slayings of Jackson and Chester Rose, prosecutors allege Zamora “did commit or attempt to commit the crime of either (1) robbery in the first or second degree, (2) rape in the first or second degree, (3) burglary in the first degree, (4) arson in the first or second degree, or (5) kidnapping in the first or second degree.” The bodies of both victims were found in Rose’s home.

Weyrich declined to elaborate on any of the circumstances of the deaths or to explain the language used in the filings.

Zamora is accused of killing five people, including Jackson, and injuring two others in in his Alger neighborhood on Tuesday. He also is accused of killing another man and wounding two other people, including a state trooper, as he drove from Alger to Mount Vernon, where he was taken into custody.

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