TACOMA, WA – Today Andrew James Boyd, 19, pleaded guilty to murder in the first degree for the 2013 robbery and murder of Stadium District resident Lawrence Howse, 54. Boyd is scheduled to be sentenced on May 13, 2015 at 9:00 a.m. in room 2-B of the County-City Building in Tacoma.
“This guilty plea provides justice and closure for the community,” said Prosecutor Mark Lindquist. “Mr. Howse is missed by his many friends and his neighbors in the Stadium District, as well as his family.”
Mr. Howse’s two sons, ex-wife and brother were present for the defendant’s plea of guilty.
On Sept. 5, 2013, Howse was robbed and killed in his condominium parking garage. Just before the robbery, a witness on a balcony above the entrance to the garage heard Boyd or his accomplice say, “Let’s go get him.”
Based on surveillance video and witness statements, police put together descriptions of the two suspects. A recent robbery of a Tacoma Walgreens involved a suspect wearing a distinctive jacket similar to one worn by Boyd. Jeremy Bennett was identified as the second suspect in the murder.
Circumstantial evidence indicated that Boyd and Bennett followed Howse into the garage when Howse was parking. One of the defendants pulled a gun on Howse and robbed him of his wallet, car keys and watch. Howse was shot twice in the chest, once in the heart. Under Washington accomplice liability law, both defendants were legally responsible for the murder.
In November 2014, Bennett pleaded guilty to felony murder in the first degree as an accomplice and was sentenced to 28 years in prison.
Jheri Flood was charged with rendering criminal assistance in the first degree for helping Boyd and Bennett hide and destroying evidence after the murder. Flood pleaded guilty and was sentenced to 17 months in prison.
Communications and Public Information Coordinator
Pierce County Prosecuting Attorney’s Office