TACOMA — Tony James Barrett, 41, of Spanaway, who allegedly called a Seattle TV station and said he had killed his wife, was charged Monday with first-degree murder after his wife’s body was found in a Tacoma hotel room last week.
A not-guilty plea was entered on Barrett’s behalf in Pierce County Superior Court Monday. Bail was set at $2 million.
According to Lindquist, Barrett arrived at his wife’s workplace in DuPont last Wednesday and the two left together in a van. Surveillance video shows the two checking into a Tacoma motel later.
At about 6:50 p.m. Wednesday, the defendant called KOMO-TV in Seattle to report that he killed his wife and asked that they post it on the station’s Facebook page, Lindquist said. Police were alerted.
The next morning, at about 2:50 a.m., the defendant’s truck was seen driving in the wrong direction on I-705 in Tacoma. Police began a high-speed pursuit. The defendant was eventually stopped in Gig Harbor and a K-9 unit took him down. At Tacoma General Hospital, he was treated for injuries and an over-the-counter drug overdose.
The defendant told officers that his wife was at a local motel, and stated that, “She was still breathing when I left her.” At about 6 a.m. Thursday, deputies found her body at Motel 6 in Tacoma. She was pronounced dead at the scene. She suffered superficial lacerations to her neck, but the Pierce County Medical Examiner’s Office said she died of asphyxiation.
The defendant was booked into the Pierce County Jail on Sunday.
The couple have three children.