Three Arrested in Drug Deal Turned Robbery That Killed One and Injured Another
Tacoma, WA: On Thursday Pierce County Prosecutors Charged Tabby Lynne Thomas, Mitchell Tyler Nichols, and Douglas William Dunlap with first degree murder and first degree assault in relation to the shooting that killed Kelsea Michelle Carlson and critically injured her Fiance.
In the probably cause affidavit it stating that on the night of April 3rd the fiance was sleeping on the couch when he was awakened by gunshots. He said he saw a female and two males in the house, but he did not know any of them. The victim gave police descriptions of the three people. Stating that one was a female with strawberry blonde hair, and said one male had a facial piercing similar to one the victim had. The victim also stated that they had surveillance video on their front door which was turned over as evidence.
Detectives state a confidential witness told them that they knew the victim, Carlson, and stated that she recently obtained a half pound of methamphetamine that she was planning on selling out of the home where the shooting occurred.
During the investigation detectives checked text messages on Carlson's phone and found one of the defendants, Thomas, had agreed to come to the house to purchase meth.
According to the probable cause affidavit the victim, Carlson, obtain the narcotics with the confidential witness and then onto her father's social media account to find people needing drugs. Carlson was able to received contact information for the Defendant Thomas through her dad's social media account. Carlson's dad is currently in jail on drug charges.
During the drug deal defendant Nichols stated that something was up or not right. That's when defendant Dunlap produced a pistol and started shooting.
Both Carlson and the victim were struck twice before the defendants were seen on surveillance fleeing the scene in a dark colored vehicle. The victim attempted to tackle Dunlap after the shooting but was unsuccessful
Defendant Thomas was ultimately identified by Carlson's Father when detectives were interviewing him about the homicide of his daughter.
All three defendants are currently sitting in Pierce County Jail.