A 24-year-old Seattle man convicted of shooting three people outside a South Lake Union nightclub two years ago was sentenced today to just over 76 years in prison.
A King County jury in November convicted Kevin Hubbard of three counts of attempted first-degree murder. Each count carried a firearms enhancement, which combined added 15 years to his sentence.
The shootings followed a fight that erupted on Jan. 28, 2012, inside the Citrus Lounge in Seattle’s South Lake Union neighborhood. According to testimony during Hubbard’s trial, the melee began after a group of men began flashing money around while Hubbard was at the club with James Henderson.
As bottles and chairs began flying, bouncers began pushing people outside and an unidentified man in a red leather jacket, believed to be a friend of the men who had been flashing money, took a swing at Hubbard, Senior Deputy Prosecutor Julie Kline told jurors.
Once outside, jurors were told, Hubbard retrieved a semi-automatic assault rifle from the trunk of his car, drove across the street and waited for the other men to return to their vehicle in the parking lot of the Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center. Hubbard opened fire, wounding three men.
During closing arguments, Hubbard’s defense attorney, George Sjursen, told jurors the state was desperate to link the shooting to his client. He said the case was based on weak forensic evidence and a key witness with a personal interest in shifting blame away from himself.
“The evidence the state has presented to you … is very weak forensically and it’s very weak when it comes to motive. It’s so weak,” Sjursen said.
In addition to the Citrus shooting, the sentence reflects Hubbard’s involvement in a nonfatal shooting in Skyway in May 2012. Today he entered Alford pleas to second-degree assault and first-degree unlawful possession of a firearm for the Skyway shooting. In an Alford plea, a defendant concedes there is sufficient evidence to support a conviction, but doesn’t directly acknowledge guilt.
He was sentenced to just over 7 years for the Skyway shooting, which is to run concurrently with his sentence for the Citrus shooting.