The Belfair man who shot three family members, a neighbor and then himself on Friday had an extensive criminal history.
A man who shot three family members, a neighbor and then himself in a rural area near Belfair, Mason County, had an extensive criminal history, including felony charges that would have made it illegal for him to possess firearms.
David Wayne Campbell, 51, had misdemeanor and felony convictions in Pennsylvania dating to 1996, according to an Associated Press review of court records. He was charged with multiple crimes, mostly related to bad checks, stolen property and forgery.
He served time in prison starting in 2000 on a charge of theft by deception. It was not immediately clear when he moved from the East Coast to Washington state.
Mason County sheriff’s Chief Deputy Ryan Spurling said Monday that he heard about Campbell’s criminal history but had not yet seen the records.
Most Read Stories
- Swedish double-booked its surgeries, and the patients didn't know | Quantity of Care
- Democrats are supposed to be fighting back, but they just keep losing | Danny Westneat
- Submarines dismantled in Puget Sound are symbols of nation’s defense dilemma | Jon Talton
- Spike Lee posts, then deletes photo thanking Seahawks' Pete Carroll for signing Colin Kaepernick
- Singer John Legend donates $5K to help cover Seattle’s school-lunch debt
Agents with the federal Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives went to the home in a remote, wooded area where Campbell lived with his wife and her adopted children and were conducting an investigation into Campbell’s firearms, Spurling said.
Campbell had a handgun and a “long gun,” but Spurling didn’t know the model and didn’t know how he acquired the firearms, given his previous convictions.
Authorities are focusing on “taking care of the living victim,” Spurling said. A 12-year-old girl found Friday on the property was taken to the hospital for an evaluation and is now in the custody of child welfare officials, he said. Her relation to the other victims has not been released.
“She may or may not be able to tell us what happened,” Spurling said.
Campbell called a sheriff’s office supervisor Friday to say he had shot four people and was suicidal. After hours of negotiations, police tried to flush Campbell out of the house with tear gas, but when he stepped outside, he shot himself in the head, officials said.
Authorities searched the buildings on the property and found the bodies of Campbell’s wife, Lana J. Carlson, 49, and her two adopted sons, Quinn, 16, and Tory, 18. Carlson adopted the boys from Kazakhstan during a previous marriage, authorities said Monday.
Also killed and found in a chicken coop was neighbor Donna Reed, 68, the coroner said.
Reed was a widow who lived alone “with her cats,” another neighbor, Jack Pigott, told The Associated Press. Pigott said Campbell used to keep her supplied with cigarettes.
Pigott said he heard the sound of gunshots coming from the direction of the Campbell house Thursday night, but he wasn’t concerned because they often practiced target shooting.
Autopsies are under way so authorities don’t yet have the time of death for the victims, Spurling said.
Campbell’s most recent conviction was nearly 16 years ago. On Aug. 15, 2000, he was charged with 18 counts: six counts each of theft by deception, receiving stolen property and bad checks. He pleaded guilty to one theft charge and the other counts were dismissed. He was sentenced to two to five years in prison, records show.
Campbell also faced similar charges in 1996 and 1997. In one 1996 case, he was charged with 31 counts, including 12 felony forgery charges. He pleaded guilty to six of those charges, and the others were dismissed.
Messages seeking comment from the prosecutor and lawyer involved in those cases were not immediately returned.