TACOMA, Wash. – Now that the man accused of shooting and killing four Lakewood police officers is dead, the criminal case shifts to all the people who helped him elude capture.
Four men and two women, accused of helping Maurice Clemmons flee from police, are now under arrest. Three have appeared before a Pierce County Superior Court judge.
The latest arrests were confirmed Tuesday night by Pierce County Sheriff's Office spokesman Ed Troyer. Clemmons' aunt, Letrecia Nelson, was picked up in Pacific. Clemmons' friend, Quiana Williams, was arrested in Des Moines. It's not immediately clear what role they played in helping Clemmons, but both were charged with four counts of rendering criminal assistance in the first degree.
Eddie Davis and Douglas Davis both pleaded not guilty Tuesday to charges of first-degree rendering criminal assistance. Judge Bryan Chushcoff set bail for Eddie Davis at $700,000 and bail for Douglas Davis at $500,000.
Clemmons' half brother, Rickey Hinton, has not been charged yet, but has been booked into jail for investigation of rendering criminal assistance. Chushcoff set his bail at $2 million.
According to investigators, Douglas Davis helped Clemmons clean and treat the gunshot wound he suffered in a struggle with one of the officers. Douglas and his brother, Eddie Davis, apparently drove Clemmons around after the shooting while he was on the run. Police say Clemmons told them he had "taken care of business" and they knew that meant he had killed police officers.
Hinton is accused of letting Clemmons use his car while he was hiding, knowing full well what his half-brother had done.
Detectives say the fourth person they arrested, Darcus Allen, drove the getaway truck for Clemmons after the shooting. Police believe Allen was waiting for Clemmons at a car wash near the coffee shop. He could be charged with murder.
"If he knew that he was driving there for the murder, absolutely. If he knew that this was going to happen and was waiting there, absolutely we will arrest him for murder," said Troyer.
Officers also detained a sister of Clemmons who they think also helped treat the suspect's gunshot wound.
"We believe she drove him up to Seattle and bandaged him up," said Troyer.
Allen is a former prison mate of Clemmons from his days in Arkansas. Allen was sentenced in 1990 to 25 years in prison for a 1990 double murder at Little Rock liquor store, but was released on parole in 2004.
Arkansas prison spokeswoman Dina Tyler says Allen and Clemmons never shared a cell, but lived in the same barracks -- along with 50-100 other inmates -- at various times during their imprisonment.
KING 5 has learned Washington State Department of Corrections urged Arkansas officials to keep a "no bail" warrant for Clemmons so he would stay locked up in Pierce County. The DOC claims Arkansas let Clemmons fall through the cracks.
"The written record is clear. We repeatedly asked them to take this guy back to their state and what they told us is that they are recinding the nationwide warrent. Let us know when he finishes his criminal charges in your state," said Eldon Vail, Secretary, Wash. Department of Corrections.
Arkansas says it later issued a second warrant for Clemmons, but Washington DOC claims that warrant was only valid in the state of Arkansas.
Authorities say Clemmons, 37, killed four Lakewood officers at a coffee shop Sunday morning in Parkland. After a massive manhunt for two days, police tracked him down using possible hiding spots supplied by Pierce County investigators, said Troyer.
Authorities said the gunman singled out the Lakewood officers and spared employees and other customers at the coffee shop. He then fled, but not before he was apparently shot in the torso by one of the dying officers.
Killed were Sgt. Mark Renninger, 39, and Officers Ronald Owens, 37, Tina Griswold, 40, and Greg Richards, 42.
Family members of Ofc. Richards were in court as the accused accomplices faced the judge.
"I know we're trying to bring them to justice but no amount of justice is going to be enough in the world," said Melanie Burwell, Richards' sister-in-law. "I don't even see how we can call them people."
"Unfortunately, what we've all seen is these people have the same history. Same type of thug lifestyle. Same type of culture and, to us, it's not going to make sense," said Troyer.
Clemmons had stayed on the run for nearly two days with help from a network of friends and family who gave him places to stay, medical aid, rides and money, police said. People close to Clemmons misled officers, said Troyer, and anyone helping him could face charges.
Clemmons was shot and killed early Tuesday by a lone Seattle police officer investigating a stolen car in Seattle's Rainier Valley neighborhood.
Police said they aren't sure what prompted Clemmons to shoot the four officers, who were in uniform and working on paperwork at the Parkland coffee shop just two blocks outside their jurisdiction. Police believe Clemmons chose the coffee shop because it was frequented by police officers from various agencies.
Why would anyone help a man who has just murdered four police officers in cold blood? Many of those accused of helping Clemmons worked for his landscaping and towing business.
"The whole time I knew him, I never saw a Jekyl and Hyde personality, unless you go from happy to happier," said Clemmons' neighbor Jeff Horning.
KING 5 News interviewed Horning with Clemmons last year after a fire on Clemmons' rental property. Horning says Clemmons was charismatic and congenial.
"Very generous person. He helped everybody. I know he's helped several people financially, including our family," said Horning.
Officers Memorial next Tuesday at Tacoma Dome
A memorial to honor slain Lakewood Police Officers Mark Renninger, Ronald Owens, Tina Griswold and Greg Richards will be held Tuesday, Dec. 8 at 1 p.m. in the Tacoma Dome.
More than 20,000 members of the law enforcement community, emergency response agencies and the public are anticipated to attend. More information will follow regarding the procession and the ceremony.
The City of Lakewood has received numerous calls from generous residents, agencies and businesses wanting to help. Anyone interested in making a donation, volunteering or just wanting more information should email email@example.com.
Donations for the officers' families are being accepted by the Lakewood Police Independent Guild Fund at P.O. Box 99579, Lakewood, WA, 98499 or you can visit http://www.lpig.us for more information or to donate online.
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