Man Charged With Murder in Fatal Shooting of Innocent Bystander at Spanaway Gas Station


A 40-year-old man was charged Friday in the stray-bullet killing of a woman at a Spanaway gas station. The murder suspect was arrested four days after the shooting on unrelated felony charges.

Jerrmell Warren was charged in Pierce County Superior Court with second-degree murder, three counts of first-degree assault and second-degree unlawful possession of a firearm, according to court records.

Superior Court Commissioner Craig Adams set bail at $3 million during Warren's arraignment Friday afternoon. A plea of not guilty was entered on the defendant's behalf.

In setting bail, Adams cited Warren's "horrific" criminal history and said community safety was at issue. Prosecutors said the defendant has been booked into Pierce County Jail 18 times and has had more than 30 cases referred to the Pierce County Prosecuting Attorney's Office. The man was on community custody when the shooting occurred and has multiple pending cases in Superior Court, including charges of first-degree assault, second-degree domestic violence assault and DUI.

Pierce County Sheriff's Department said Warren was identified as a suspect in the killing of Angelina Lee, 39, through detectives' investigation and tips from deputies in the field. Relatives of the victim, who referred to her as Angelina Palmer, have said she went to a gas station the evening of May 26 to buy snacks. As she was leaving, a bullet fired from one car toward another struck the woman.

The victim was transported to a local hospital, where she later died. The Pierce County medical examiner later ruled she died of a gunshot wound to the chest.

Deputies said two cars sped away from the scene of the shooting in the 17400 block of Pacific Avenue South. Another bullet fired during the incident struck a car at one of the station's pumps.

According to charging documents, the murder suspect was arrested by Tacoma Police Department officers May 30 on the unrelated charges.

The victim's brother, Willard Palmer, addressed the court during arraignment Friday. Palmer called Warren's actions "careless" and said the man had no sense of life.

"You took someone who had nothing to do, absolutely nothing to do with whatever you had going on in that parking lot that day," Palmer said. "And now you ruined so many people's lives over it. And it's not fair."