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Drug robbery may have led to hotel shooting

Members of the Spokane County Emergency Operations Team search the Spokane River near the 1800 block of East Upriver Drive for a weapon reported to have been tossed into the water. The gun is believed to have been used in the Days Inn homicide on Sept. 13. (Dan Pelle)
Members of the Spokane County Emergency Operations Team search the Spokane River near the 1800 block of East Upriver Drive for a weapon reported to have been tossed into the water. The gun is believed to have been used in the Days Inn homicide on Sept. 13. (Dan Pelle)

Dealer fired on group at hotel, witness says

A shooting that left a man dead outside a downtown Spokane hotel last month appears to have been the result of an attempted drug robbery, according to newly filed court records.

Spokane Police officials previously named Kevin M. Heaton, 35, as the person suspected of shooting 33-year-old Paul A. Haney, who was found dead Sept. 13 outside the Days Inn, 120 W. Third Ave.

Heaton was arrested Sept. 28 in Metaline Falls, Wash., but has not been charged in connection with Haney’s killing. Heaton, a convicted felon, appeared before Spokane County Superior Court Judge Annette Plese on Monday on two drug charges.

Plese kept Heaton’s bond at $15,000 on those charges, but he’s being held on a separate $30,000 bond for the charge of felon in possession of a firearm, according to court records.

In a search warrant filed Thursday, Detective Jeff Barrington said witnesses told police that Heaton had rented three rooms on the second floor of the Days Inn.

Witness Marc Martinez, who was arrested Sept. 13 in Yakima on a state Department of Corrections hold, told Spokane detectives that he had gone to the Days Inn with Haley A. Smith, Paul Haney and Lindsey Haney “to rob a drug dealer in room #203.”

Martinez and Paul Haney went into the room, and Haney “pointed a gun at the drug dealer while Martinez took a pillowcase and placed some methamphetamine and other miscellaneous clothing items” inside, Barrington said. Martinez and Haney then left the hotel room and ran downstairs.

As they fled the scene, “the drug dealer started shooting at them,” Barrington wrote.

One of the bullets struck Haney in the back and killed him. Detectives found a pillowcase in the parking lot near Haney’s body with items similar to those Martinez described. Martinez later said he fled the scene with Lindsey Haney in Paul Haney’s green Honda, which they abandoned in East Wenatchee.

After detectives arrested Heaton in Metaline Falls, he agreed to be interviewed and said he had been robbed and pistol whipped on Sept. 13 at the Days Inn.

Heaton “further admitted that after being robbed and pistol whipped, he exited the motel room during which time Heaton fired approximately two or three gunshots from a 9 mm pistol that Heaton later threw into the Spokane River,” Barrington wrote.



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