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The Today File

Your guide to the latest news from around the Northwest

December 8, 2014 at 12:46 PM

Prosecution questions defendant’s memory of wine steward’s slaying

Thomasdinh “Dinh” Bowman resumed his testimony Monday morning in his trial for the August 2012 slaying of Seattle wine steward Yancy Noll.

Dinh Bowman, 31, is accused of fatally shooting motorist Yancy Noll four times in the head at a North Seattle intersection on Aug. 31, 2012. He is taking the stand in his own defense. (Greg Gilbert / The Seattle Times)

Dinh Bowman, 31, is accused of fatally shooting motorist Yancy Noll four times in the head at a North Seattle intersection on Aug. 31, 2012. He is taking the stand in his own defense. (Greg Gilbert / The Seattle Times)

King County prosecutors claim Bowman, 31, shot Noll in his car in a thrill killing, saying he wanted to know what it would feel like to kill someone and had studied information on killing people.

Bowman, who took the stand on Thursday, claimed he shot Noll in self-defense following a road-rage incident on Aug. 31, 2012. He told jurors Noll began chasing his silver BMW Z4 after Bowman cut off Noll’s Subaru on Interstate 5.

Bowman said Noll first chucked a water bottle into his convertible and then a wine bottle that struck Bowman on the head. Bowman testified he saw Noll rifling for something on the passenger side of his car and that’s when he reached for his gun. But Bowman said he doesn’t actually remember firing the weapon or what route he drove home.

During cross-examination on Monday, Bowman claimed he couldn’t remember reading files on his computer related to gunshot residue, ballistics, or ways to avoid arrest. He said many of the files on his computer were downloaded in bulk.

He also said he couldn’t remember whether he wiped down the interior of his BMW to get rid of gunshot residue.

In one exchange, Senior Deputy Prosecutor Kristen Richardson said, “Mr. Bowman, the things that you forget you’ve done are the things that are most damaging to you, do you realize that?”

Bowman said he didn’t understand the question.

“You don’t remember pulling the trigger and killing Yancy Noll?”

He responded: “I know what I was intending to do and know I was trying to stop him. I don’t remember the gunshots going off.”

During questioning about whether he’d ever become so angry at another driver that he “flipped” someone off with a hand gesture, Bowman recalled doing so after a truck had almost run him off the road.

“You know that could get you killed in Seattle?” Richardson asked.

The first part of Bowman’s response wasn’t audible, but then he said, “People are crazy.”

“Yes they are,” Richardson replied.

Bowman is charged with first-degree murder.

Comments | More in The Blotter | Topics: driveby-shooting, homicide, King County Prosecuting Attorney's Office

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