Tuesday, January 03, 2012

Belltown Murder: Still Raceless and Faceless in Seattle


[This is a follow-up to:

“Seattle: Nameless, Faceless, Raceless Suspect Arrested for Murder of Faceless, Raceless Victim in Belltown.”]

Originally published February 28, 2011 at 4:45 PM | Page modified March 1, 2011 at 11:37 AM
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[How could there possibly be no comments to a juicy murder story involving crack, rape, and Belltown? There must have been comments at some time, that the Times’ censors killed.]

Suspected crack dealer held in Belltown slaying

A suspected crack dealer was ordered held on $1 million bail on Monday in connection with the slaying of a 43-year-old woman who was found dead in the closet of her Belltown apartment in January.
By Sara Jean Green
Seattle Times

A suspected crack dealer was ordered held on $1 million bail Monday in connection with the slaying of a 43-year-old woman who was found dead in the closet of her Belltown apartment in January.

Seattle police arrested Gary "G" Anthony Wade just after 1 a.m. Saturday in an apartment building on Third Avenue, nine blocks from where victim Michelle Thornton lived, according to a probable-cause statement filed in the case.

Footage from surveillance cameras in Thornton's building, fingerprints and DNA evidence led police to Wade, a 40-year-old felon from Utah who allegedly began selling crack cocaine to Thornton in November, according to the statement.

Thornton was last seen alive on Dec. 30, and her body was discovered Jan. 6.

Dan Donohoe, a spokesman for the King County Prosecuting Attorney's Office, said formal charges are expected to be filed Wednesday. A judge ordered Wade held during a hearing Saturday.

According to the statement, Thornton was sexually assaulted and strangled.

On Dec. 29, Thornton was seen on surveillance video entering her secured building with an unknown male, according to the statement. The same man was seen entering and exiting the building at least twice more that evening, the statement says. Thornton buzzed the man in each time, the last time at 2:27 a.m. Dec. 30, it says.

Thornton failed to show up to work at the Queen Anne Safeway store on Dec. 30, according to the statement. Just after 1:30 p.m. that day, the same man was seen on video leaving Thornton's building, carrying a duffel bag and a shopping bag — nearly 11 hours after he was last seen entering the building, the statement says.

Four hours later, the man was seen on video returning to the building and using a key to get inside, the statement says.

"This same male exited the apartment building front door 11 minutes later and was never observed on any additional video footage after that time," it says.

Thornton's purse, wallet and identification were found hidden in her apartment; the door key and her phone were the only items missing, the statement says.

Two fingerprints left on Thornton's glass-top coffee table were matched to Wade on Jan. 14, the statement says. DNA swabs and biological samples from Thornton's body were sent to the State Patrol Crime Lab, where officials confirmed last Tuesday that the DNA profile from the samples matched Wade's DNA profile, according to the statement.

Wade has a felony conviction in Utah, and his DNA profile is held by the Utah Bureau of Forensic Services, the statement says.

Thornton's father, Bill Thornton, said Monday that news of Wade's arrest has given him "some measure of relief." But he was disheartened to learn his daughter was suspected of using crack — something he suspected but his daughter had long denied.

"She had a serious problem with alcohol, but she maintained she didn't mess around with the hard stuff," Thornton said.

On Saturday, Thornton went to his daughter's apartment and spent "quite a while" standing in her closet. It wasn't the emotionally wrenching experience he had expected: "I've come to grips with what happened," he said. "All these revelations have just kind of numbed me."

Sara Jean Green: 206-515-5654 or sgreen@seattletimes.com


[Previously, at WEJB/NSU, on Seattle:

“De-Policing in America’s Cities: Erasing the ‘Thin Blue Line’” ;

“Why is James Paroline Dead?” ;

“Three Race Murders in Seattle” ;

“Race Hustler Alert at Wikipedia! Someone Has been Making Mischief Regarding Maurice Clemmons’ Lakewood Massacre”;

“Seattle: Diversity Trainers Wage War on Policing”;

“Ex-Cons May Gain Affirmative Action Status in Madhouse Seattle”;

“Seattle's Meanest Streets (Updated!) ”;

“Seattle Cop Rails Against Affirmative Action Policing”;

“Seattle: Baby-Faced ‘Tuba Man’ Killer, Billy Chambers, Strikes Again”;

“Stone Killer Billy Chambers, Who Murdered Seattle’s Beloved ‘Tuba Man,’ Edward McMichael, is Undercharged Yet Again in His Newest Alleged Crime”;

“War on Competent, White, Male, King County, WA Prosecutor James Konat Continues Apace: NAACP Demands His Dismissal, and He is Removed from Two Murder Cases”;

“Is It Possible for Blacks to Have a Good Time Without Bloodshed? Seattle Reader Asks if ‘Bite of Seattle’ Festival Could Become Blood of Seattle”;

“A Riot in San Francisco, with More to Come! Cop Shoots Innocent Black Honor Student (from Seattle), Kenneth Wade Harding, 19, in the Back; the Brothers are (as Always) on War Footing”;

“Seattle Blacks Believe That They Can Resist Arrest, and Aid and Abet Those Resisting Arrest with Impunity Against White Policemen…”;

“Billy Chambers, Racist Killer of Seattle’s Beloved ‘Tuba Man,’ Edward McMichael, Pleads Guilty, Gets Minimal Sentence, in Attempted Murder of Witness”;

“One of Tuba Man’s Killers Goes to the Big House, but for a Mere 22 Months for Attempted Murder”;

“For Alleged Reporter Levi Pulkinnen at the Seattle Post-Intelligencer, There are No Black Murderers of Whites, Only ‘Accused’ Ones”;

“AOL/Huffington Post and AP Manage the Black Air Jordan Riots Story”; and

“Seattle: Since Blacks Support Black Criminals, City Needs Surveillance Cameras Everywhere.”]

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