OLYMPIA, Wash. – Dugan Lawton, 24, is now behind bars in Thurston County. Police accuse him of a gruesome shooting that killed three people and injured a fourth in Lacey last week.
Prosecutors said Lawton has an extensive criminal history, with at least five felony convictions.
On Wednesday, some of the shooting victims' families got a chance to see the man accused of pulling the trigger.
“I’m pretty much numb right now,” said Steely Lynn-McGrath, sister to shooting victim Terron McGrath.
McGrath’s family watched the hearing inside the courtroom on Wednesday when Lawton made his first appearance before a judge. Prosecutors said he murdered Terron and two men last week inside a camper trailer parked behind a Lacey home.
“I wanted to look at him in the face and I wanted him to see the hurt he’s caused our family,” Steely said.
Neighbors said they heard the gunfire last week. Police said the surviving victim called 911 telling dispatchers that he had been shot.
When police arrived, they found three people inside the trailer shot to death.
The medical examiner said the three slain victims were 28-year-old Jackson Edens, 31-year-old Terron McGrath and 28-year-old Gerald Berkey.
Investigators said they believe at least one of the killings may have been premeditated.
“I think the preliminary evidence is that there was a plan to this shooting,” said Thurston County prosecutor Jon Tunheim. “That’s the element of murder one.”
Lawton could be facing multiple charges, including both murder in the first and second degrees and attempted murder.
Police are now asking for help finding the person who they believe picked up a witness and gave that witness a ride away from the scene last Wednesday, June 22.
“The person we are looking for is a person that we can help solidify this case and just bring more information to this unfortunate incident,” said Thurston County Sheriff John Snaza.
Police also discovered a half-dozen firearms, a half-pound of meth, heroin, and thousands of dollars in cash inside the trailer.
McGrath’s sister, Steely, said Terron was a mother to two children – and she hopes Lawton pays for what police say he did.
“He looks evil, he looks like he don’t care,” she said. “If he had any kind of care in him, I’d have seen some emotion. I saw absolutely nothing.”
Lawton is being held on $5 million bail; his arraignment is scheduled for later in July.