Man accidentally shoots, kills cousin during attempted robbery, prosecutors say
TACOMA — A man faces manslaughter and attempted robbery charges after prosecutors say he accidentally shot and killed his cousin.
According to court papers, Tacoma police responded to the report of a shooting victim around 9:15 p.m. at a downtown Jack In The Box Restaurant. When they arrived, officers said they found two people, Denzel Thompson and a 16-year-old, waiting in the parking lot. They directed officers to a nearby car where they found a man covered in blood.
Police said the gunshot victim, Douglas Medlock II, had been shot in the leg and was bleeding profusely. Medlock died at the scene.
Detectives spoke with Thompson who said Medlock was his cousin. Thompson initially said they were speaking with some women a few blocks away when an “unknown assailant” shot at them and then fled, according to court papers.
Officers said the teenager told a different story — claiming that they stopped to ask a man for a cigarette, others went to speak with him and then he heard a gunshot.
Thompson eventually led officers to the scene of the shooting near South 23rd Street and South Yakima Avenue where they spoke with neighbors.
According to court documents, the teenager told detectives that Thompson, Medlock and two others planned to rob a man for marijuana.
Thompson allegedly starting pistol-whipping the marijuana dealer until “on the final blow, the gun discharged, shooting Medlock in the leg.”
Police said the teen told investigators they were unfamiliar with the area and drove to the restaurant in downtown Tacoma seeking help.
The medical examiner determined Medlock died from blood loss after the bullet struck the artery in his leg.
Prosecutors have charged Thomspon with 1st degree manslaughter and 1st degree attempted robbery.
The 16-year-old has not been charged.
Police are still searching for the other two men who were allegedly involved in the robbery plot.