A woman was brutally murdered by a man who allegedly called the police himself to report the murder.
Randee Leeann Rios, 32, was found dead at the home of Tyrone Bernard Wells Jr., 41, in Shoreline, north of Seattle, Washington.
Mr Wells was charged with first-degree murder in King County Superior Court on Wednesday. Prosecutors asked for $5 million bail to be posted because of the “extreme danger” he poses to the community, blaming the indictment.
Mr Wells called 911 at around 7.21am on Sunday March 27 and said he wanted to “report a murder”, according to court documents.
“The murder was on my account … I murdered her,” he is said to have said. He added that he used a hatchet and bolt cutters to kill the woman.
Shoreline Police Chief Ryan Abbot said Mr Wells was waiting for law enforcement with blood on his clothes when they arrived at the apartment complex, adding that he was taken into custody without incident.
Court documents show police found Ms Rios face down in Mr Wells’ apartment with “major trauma to the head”. Court records say the area was “extremely bloody” and that a hatchet and bolt cutters were discovered near the body.
Mr Wells told police he has known Ms Rios since he moved to Washington from California in 2017, adding that they had had a relationship and that she would stay with him at times.
He told law enforcement that he had used methamphetamine and had not slept since Wednesday. He said his last meth use was on Saturday, the day before her death. He invited her to stay the night.
Court documents say Mr Wells told police he had “intent” to commit the murder when he invited them to stay with him.
Prior to Ms Rios’ arrival, Mr Wells told law enforcement that he had read the Qur’an and that “these verses in the Qur’an seemed to him to indicate that it would be necessary for him to kill Rios”.
“For the record … I’m not trying to throw this religion thing in as a defense,” he added to officers, court documents said.
Mr Wells said he decided to use a hatchet he received from Ms Rio’s mother as a weapon. He said that after her arrival, he “struggled with the thought of whether or not he was actually going to murder her.”
Mr Wells reportedly tapped Ms Rios on the side of her head with a battery charger in the morning because, according to court documents, he “wanted her to be fully aware of what he was going to do to her”.
Then he is said to have hit her several times with the ax on the head. He continued to beat her with a set of bongo drums and bolt cutters when he saw that she was alive, court records say.
Mr Wells was reportedly asked by police if he had “heard voices”, to which Mr Wells said he had not. He noted that Ms. Rios’ mother would be traumatized by the murder and that Ms. Rios had been through “significant medical problems in her life,” such as having to learn to walk again after an accident.
Mr Wells is said to have asked what charges he was facing. He was told he would be charged with “first degree murder” including “wilful intent”. The suspect reportedly smiled and noted he had said “that word” earlier.
He then agreed to write a letter of apology to Ms. Rios’ mother. “Before anyone else, I wanted nothing more than to be a good husband to Randee, as bad as it sounds or seems. Please excuse me for the extra heartache (sic) and sadness I have caused in (sic) your heart,” his statement said.
In the apartment, the investigators secured the murder weapons, including the bolt cutters and the bloody and broken bongo drums.
Ms Rios’ autopsy found her injuries matched Mr Wells’ description. Court documents say an assistant coroner said she sustained “at least eleven sharp wounds” and “fifteen blows to the head.”
The coroner said Ms Rios sustained serious wounds protecting herself and that all of her injuries were inflicted while she was alive.
King County Attorney General Casey McNerthney told King 5: “Generally speaking, if you have people who are confessing, it’s beneficial to the investigation. But we will treat this case the same as the others and handle it very carefully.”
On the page for a GoFundMe fundraiser for Ms Rios’ family, Crisy Clisham wrote that she “was a happy and kind friend and sister to everyone with a bright future. She was one of the most uplifting people we have had the privilege of knowing.”