A 20-year-old Renton man was charged last week with second-degree murder, accused of arranging to buy oxycodone pills from another man in January and then shooting him when the victim showed up to conduct the drug deal, according to King County prosecutors.
Darius Jackson was arrested outside his mother’s house March 15 after his girlfriend called 911 and reported that Jackson had punched her in the face and chest and threatened her with a handgun, court records say. He later was charged with felony harassment domestic violence and second-degree unlawful possession of a firearm, according to the charges.
The next day, a Federal Way police detective contacted the Renton police detective investigating the domestic-violence incident and said he would be serving a search warrant on Jackson’s house, the felony harassment charges say.
According to charges filed in the murder case, Federal Way police found a loaded, .22-caliber handgun with the serial number filed off inside the house. It is the same caliber of weapon that was used to fatally shoot Donovan McDonald, 19, on Jan. 6, the charges say.
Jackson remains jailed in lieu of $1 million bail on the second-degree murder charge and $75,000 bail in the domestic-violence case, jail records show.
According to the charges:
Just before 10 a.m. on Jan. 6, Federal Way police responded to a report of gunfire at the Silver Shadow Apartments in the 27600 block of Pacific Highway South, where they found a man later identified as McDonald unresponsive in the driver’s seat of his car, which had come to rest against a fire hydrant outside the complex’s L building.
Officers pulled McDonald out of the vehicle and performed CPR, but he died at the scene from a gunshot wound to the abdomen. Two .22-caliber shell casings were found underneath the car. No drugs or weapons were found inside the vehicle.
Video-surveillance footage from the apartment complex and a nearby business showed a man in a distinctive down jacket clutching his arms to his body as if he was carrying something as he sprinted to another apartment complex to the south, the charges say.
During the investigation, detectives learned McDonald had posted a message on Facebook on Jan. 5 advertising that he had oxycodone pills for sale. After he was killed, police searched his car and found his phone, which contained several Facebook Messenger chat threads with potential customers, the charges say.
One of those customers indicated he wanted to buy 20 pills for $80, asked McDonald if he was alone and directed him to the L building of the Silver Shadow Apartments, according to charging papers. Police later traced the Facebook account back to Jackson, who matched the description of the man seen fleeing the shooting scene.
Detectives also obtained Jackson’s cellphone records, which showed that he was in the area of the shooting when McDonald was killed and that he repeatedly called an acquaintance who lived at the apartment complex to the south of the Silver Shadow Apartments. The acquaintance later told police he was sleeping and saw the missed calls when he woke up.
The charges say Jackson’s mother picked him up in Federal Way, and cellphone data showed him traveling north and returning to his residence in Renton.
In addition to the handgun, which was found in a shoebox inside a closet, police also found a down jacket similar to the one the suspect was wearing in the surveillance footage during a search of Jackson’s house, the charges say.