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Cencere Saunders: 16 year old shooting suspect with slew of convictions accused of setting-up robbery through online buy

Surveillance video shows the moment an armed robber shoots a delivery man in West Seattle.

Seattle Police have identified the suspect as 16-year-old Cencere Saunders and are asking for your help to find him.

King County prosecutors have charged him as an adult with 1st degree Attempted Robbery and 1st degree Assault.

For barely being able to drive, Saunders already has several robbery-related convictions in King County.

  • 2018: November: 4th Degree Assault, 1st Degree Theft and Resisting Arrest that was reduced from a Robbery charge: Saunders robbed a classmate by putting a gun to his stomach. When the classmate tried to run, Saunders assaulted him by punching him in the face, taking him to the ground and kicking him in the mouth. Saunders stole his shoes and tried to take his classmate’s coat. Saunders resisted arrest when police took him into custody. The weapon he had was a realistic-looking BB gun.
  • 2018: July: 4th Degree Assault that was reduced from a 2nd Degree Attempted Robbery charge: Saunders jumped a man walking to a train station, tackling him to the ground, hitting and kicking him, and attempting to steal a portable charger the victim had in his hand.
  • 2018: July: 4th Degree Assault: Saunders followed a man from the Bellevue Library and punched him for no reason. When the victim ran, Saunders chased him.
  • 2018: January: 4th Degree Assault: Saunders attacked a classmate in January, punching him in the face, because the victim had asked him to be quiet during class.
  • 2017: 2 convictions for 2nd Degree Attempted Robbery that were both reduced from a 2nd Degree Robbery charge: Saunders robbed a victim after a pick-up basketball game, beating him up and stealing the victim’s phone and items from his wallet. That was in June. Later in November, Saunders robbed the same victim at a bus stop and, again, stole his phone. Saunders threatened to have a gun, reaching into his waistband, then punched the victim in the face, chipping the victim’s tooth.
Data pix.

Saunders was released from the Juvenile Rehabilitation Administration in August. He was placed on Electronic Home Monitoring, but cut off his GPS-tracking ankle bracelet. He was arrested during an eluding and hit and run incident, was released from jail – and is now the suspect in last week’s shooting and attempted robbery that Saunders is accused of setting-up to happen at an apartment complex on 18th Ave. SW, near the Delridge neighborhood. The victim was selling a MacBook Pro through the Letgo App. Detectives say when the victim refused to hand over the computer -- Saunders shot him in the back. The victim survived.

"If you know anything about this guy, who he's running with, where he's at, that's the kind of information we need,” said Ret. Det. Myrle Carner with Crime Stoppers of Puget Sound. “He is dangerous and he certainly doesn't have any compulsion about not using the weapon.”

This case is a good reminder to everyone buying or selling something through an app to always meet in a busy public place, like a law enforcement parking lot, a grocery store parking lot, or a bank lobby, because crooks know there are cameras in those locations. If the buyer is legitimate, this won't be a problem. If you can, bring a friend with you so you are not alone and trust your gut. If someone insists you come alone or changes the meeting place suddenly, then do not meet them -- this is all to ensure that you buy or sell your item without harm.

Cencere Saunders is 16 years old, 6 feet tall, weighs 156 pounds and was last living in Renton.

That 9mm handgun he's accused of shooting the victim with has not been found.

If you know where he's hiding, submit the information to Crime Stoppers anonymously through the P3 Tips App that you can download to your cell phone for free, or call the hot line at 1-800-222-TIPS(8477). It’s anonymous – you never have to give your name – and you’ll get a cash reward of up to $1,000 if your tip helps lead to his arrest.



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