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Spokane, Washington  Est. May 19, 1883
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Charges added against men involved in fatal nightclub shooting

Attorneys for two men involved in a fatal shooting outside the Palomino nightclub in north Spokane last month presented nearly identical arguments Tuesday in an effort to get the charges against their clients dismissed, arguing that the men were acting in self-defense and did not fire the shot that killed Eastern Washington University student Eduardo Villagomez.

Lashawn D. Jameison and Kwame D. Bates were both charged last month with a single count of drive-by shooting in Spokane County District Court. Tuesday they appeared in Spokane County Superior Court on a charge of first-degree murder and 14 counts of drive-by shooting.

Defense attorney Christian Phelps argued that his client, Bates, shouldn’t be charged with drive-by shooting because he wasn’t next to his own car when it happened. “The statute is clear,” he said. “The elements of drive-by shooting are not met.”

He also said Bates should not have been charged with murder, but the prosecuting attorney argued both men showed “extreme indifference to human life” by engaging in a gunbattle in a crowded area.

Spokane County Superior Court Judge Greg Sypolt ruled that the prosecutor met the probable cause requirement and upheld the charges.

The two men allegedly got in an argument with a third man inside the club, which led to the shooting in the street. Police have identified the third man as Anthony G. Williams. Williams was originally charged with second-degree murder and a single count of drive-by shooting but is now facing the same charges as Jameison and Bates.

Villagomez was a bystander and police believe he was killed by a bullet from Williams’ gun, according to court documents.

Bates’ bond remains at $100,000 while the bond for Jameison was lowered to $75,000. Williams’ bond remains unchanged at $250,000.

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