Prosecutors believe the 22-year-old man assaulted a homeless man with a hammer in May. The victim never regained consciousness and later died due to his injuries.
A 22-year-old Bellingham man is facing charges of second-degree murder after prosecutors say he bludgeoned a 62-year-old homeless man to death in Everett.
Samuel David Axlund was booked into Snohomish County Jail on Wednesday immediately following his release from Whatcom County Jail, where he had been serving time for third-degree assault, according to a statement from Everett Police Department and court records. A warrant for Axlund’s arrest was issued in November.
Jay D. Agostinelli, 62, was assaulted May 24 in the 1200 block of Broadway Avenue, according to police, who identified the victim as homeless. Witnesses said they observed Agostinelli standing near a bus stop yelling to himself around midnight, according to a probable cause statement. They told detectives they also heard a scream, then saw a man beating Agostinelli before fleeing.
Officers found Agostinelli unresponsive and lying in bushes, bleeding heavily from multiple head wounds, according to the probable cause statement. The victim was taken to Providence Hospital and underwent surgery, but he never regained consciousness and died on June 3.
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The Snohomish County Medical Examiner’s Office found that Agostinelli died from pneumonia due to multiple blunt force injuries to the head. The doctor who performed the autopsy found that the injuries appeared to have been inflicted with a circular, flat surface like a hammer face, according to the probable cause statement.
Detectives with the Everett Police Department located a hammer on top of a mobile home in a mobile home park the suspect had been seen running into, according to the probable cause statement.
Detectives obtained surveillance video from nearby businesses and identified a suspect, who they determined from the video had purchased something from a nearby 7-11. Axlund was identified from surveillance video from inside the store.
Detectives traveled to Bellingham to interview Axlund, who was in Whatcom County Jail pending trial in a separate case. Axlund told detectives he was in the 7-11 on the date of the crime, but originally denied witnessing a fight, according to the probable cause statement. When pressed, he told detectives he saw the attack and witnessed an assailant hit the man multiple times with an object like a small stick or club, according to the statement.
While monitoring Axlund’s jail calls, detectives overheard the person he was talking to recall that Axlund mentioned seeing a bloody hammer in a tree, according to the probable cause statement. At that point, detectives had not released information believing a hammer was used in the attack.
Axlund is being held in lieu of a $500,000 bail, according to Snohomish County Jail records. Prosecutors requested that amount because they believed he was at risk of committing a future violent act, according to court documents.