Gov. Jay Inslee today announced the appointments of two new Superior Court judges, one for King County and one for Pierce County. Seattle attorney John Ruhl will join the King County Superior Court bench, and Deputy Prosecutor Phil Sorensen the Pierce County Superior Court bench. Both appointments become effective April 1. Ruhl, a past president of the King…More
Topic: King County Superior Court
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A former Seattle Public Utilities employee who embezzled $1.1 million from the utility was ordered today to repay more than $500,000 to the city’s insurance company to fully cover what he stole from taxpayers. Joseph Phan, 47, pleaded guilty last year to 67 counts of first-degree theft for depositing into his own personal account checks that had…More
A King County Superior Court judge sentenced Jorge Lizarraga to 38 years in prison this afternoon for the shooting death of Devin Topps, a popular 18-year-old Kentridge High School football star, outside a house party in Kent on Halloween 2010. Lizarraga, now 23, was found guilty of second-degree murder in December for Topps’ death, a charge that also carried a firearms enhancement. Topps was killed…More
Gov. Jay Inslee has appointed Assistant U.S. Attorney Roger Rogoff and John Chun, a civil lawyer, to the King County Superior Court bench.
Rogoff spent the past six years with the U.S. Attorney’s Office, 12 years with the King County Prosecutor’s Office and two years in private practice. As an assistant U.S. attorney, Rogoff prosecuted Weldon Marc Gilbert, the millionaire Lake Tapps pilot convicted of luring boys and more than a dozen others into sadistic sexual abuse with offers of flying lessons, trips, alcohol help with homework.
As a deputy prosecutor, Rogoff pursued the case against Dr. Charles Momah, the former obstetrician-gynecologist found guilty of sexual crimes against four patients.
Chun, a labor and employment litigation specialist at Summit Law Group, previously worked at Preston Gates & Ellis (now K&L Gates). According to his profile on the Summit Law Group site, Chun’s practice ”focuses on complex employment, commercial, and international cases. He also provides services as an investigator, arbitrator, and mediator in various types of matters.”More
Nearly 10 years after a former Seattle firefighter was injured in a fall while on duty, the Washington Supreme Court has upheld a King County jury verdict awarding the man $12.75 million On Dec. 23, 2003, Mark Jones awoke in a dark bunk room at the Seattle Fire Department’s Station 33, according to court paperwork. He walked through the…More
An unemployed electrician who killed an Indiana couple and severely injured their daughter-in-law and her newborn son in an auto-pedestrian accident in March has been sentenced to 18 1/2 years in prison. The family members were out for an afternoon walk in the Wedgwood neighborhood on March 25 when an intoxicated Mark W. Mullan drove into them in a…More
A 14-year-old boy accused of raping an 8-year-old girl in Kent on Thursday waived his appearance in court Friday, when King County Superior Court Judge Helen Halpert found probable cause to hold the boy in secure detention on investigation of first-degree rape and first-degree rape of a child. The girl, who was sexually assaulted and beaten…More
A King County judge this morning sentenced Martin “David” Pietz to just over 18 years in prison for the 2006 murder of his wife, Nicole. Jurors had deliberated for about a day and a half before finding Pietz guilty of second-degree murder on Oct. 14. Pietz had long been considered a suspect after Nicole disappeared from the couple’s Lynnwood home…More
A King County Superior Court judge has denied a defense motion that he recuse himself from tomorrow’s sentencing of Martin “David” Pietz, who was convicted last month of second-degree murder for killing his wife in January 2006.
The defense motion, filed by attorney David Allen on Oct. 24, argued that Judge Michael Hayden violated a rule of judicial conduct by meeting privately with jurors Oct. 14 soon after they found Pietz guilty of strangling his wife, Nicole Pietz, and leaving her naked body in a wooded area in Burien.
The state objected to the defense motion, calling it baseless. Hayden denied the motion last week.
Pietz, 36, is to be sentenced by Hayden on Thursday morning and faces a standard-range sentence of roughly 10 to 18 years. The state is recommending Pietz be sentenced to a top-of-the-range sentence, arguing that Pietz violated his wife’s trust by attacking her in their home and also caused her family undue anguish by misleading them about her whereabouts for 16 months.
Pietz was arrested and charged in connection with his wife’s death in March 2012, more than six years after he killed her, all the while telling her friends and family she had relapsed into drug addiction and had simply disappeared.
The defense’s sentencing memo was not publicly available today, so it is unknown what sentence Pietz’s defense team will recommend during Thursday’s sentencing hearing.More
Andrew Patterson, the 21-year-old man who killed a Madrona dad with errant gunfire in May 2012, was sentenced this morning to 23 years in prison. Justin Ferrari, a 43-year-old software engineer was the victim of a gunshot fired by Patterson while driving through the Central Area on May 24, 2012. Ferrari was with his children, ages…More