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15-year-old wanted for alleged involvement in deadly Tacoma pot shop robbery arrested

A 16-year-old remains at large and is considered to be armed and dangerous.

TACOMA, Wash. — A 15-year-old considered a prime suspect in a shooting and robbery at a Tacoma marijuana store was arrested in Kent by Seattle police on Monday.

The suspect was arrested outside of the Regional Justice Center. He was booked into Remann Hall Juvenile Detention Center for first-degree murder.

The Pierce County Prosecutor's Office told KING 5 they are seeking to charge the teenager as an adult once he makes his first court appearance. A juvenile court judge will determine whether to grant that request.

Meanwhile, Montrell Hatfield, 16, remains at large and is considered to be armed and dangerous for his alleged involvement in the March 19 incident at World of Weed Cannabis Dispensary.

According to charging documents, Hatfield got into a physical altercation with Jordan Brown, an employee of the marijuana dispensary. Brown was allegedly shot and killed by Hatfield's 15-year-old accomplice. 

When officers arrived on scene, they found 29-year-old Brown of Gig Harbor with a gunshot wound. Police tried to give Brown first aid but he died at the scene.

The 15-year-old arrested Monday faces charges of first-degree murder and unlawful possession of a firearm in the second degree.

A bench warrant was issued for Hatfield, who has also been charged with first-degree murder.

The teens were previously arrested and charged in connection with a robbery at a pawn shop in Federal Way on Feb. 22. Both teens were charged with robbery in the first degree and unlawful possession of a firearm in the second degree.

The teens are also suspected of a robbery at Bellevue Rare Coins in West Seattle. 

The incident at World of Weed was the third fatal shooting in connection to a marijuana store robbery within one week. A suspect in a pot shop robbery in Bellevue and a suspect in a pot shop robbery in Covington were both killed earlier in the week. 

Dozens of marijuana dispensaries have been robbed in western Washington over the last several months. 

Pot shops are forced to operate mostly in cash due to federal banking regulations, making them an appealing target for robbers.

Private security firms have reported an increase in requests for armed guards to help stave off robberies. 

On a federal level, state officials are lobbying congress to pass the Secured and Fair Enforcement Banking (SAFE) Act, which would allow banks to get into the pot business.

 

 

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