VANCOUVER, Wash. – A Vancouver murder suspect shot another man several times when he began to walk away after a physical fight, a witness told police according to court documents.
Sean H. Doucette, 27, appeared in Clark County Superior Court Wednesday on a second-degree murder charge. His attorney said Doucette confronted the man in the street when he came home from work early Tuesday morning and saw the man breaking into his car.
Doucette's attorney said his client got into a physical fight with the man, took out his gun, and shot him in self-defense.
Friends and family told KATU News Tuesday night the person who was shot and killed was 19-year-old Iosif Dumitrash. Police confirmed that on Wednesday morning.
An independent witness told detectives that he or she saw both men fall to the ground during the fight. The two men separated and Dumitrash got up and began to walk away, which is when Doucette shot him, according to court documents obtained by KATU News.
The Clark County Medical Examiner's Office listed gunshot wounds to the chest as Dumitrash's cause of death.
KATU News called the office to clarify because court documents said the witness told police Dumitrash was shot while "walking away." A spokewoman with the medical examiner's office said if the cause of death was gunshot wounds to the back, it would have been listed that way.
The prosecution argued that Dumitrash was trying to get away and that deadly force was not justifiable.
Doucette’s wife called 911 and told the call-taker that her husband shot another man, court documents said. She told police that her husband got into a physical fight with the man, later identified as Dumitrash, and shot him with a pistol.
Neighbors told KATU they heard four shots fired. Court documents said "numerous" shell casings were found at the scene. The medical examiner's officer did not list a specific number of gunshot wounds.
At first police said it was a homeowner who shot a prowler near 150th Avenue and Northeast 33rd Street at 4 a.m., but by Tuesday afternoon, that homeowner, identified as Doucette, was taken to the Clark County Jail on suspicion of second-degree murder.
A law enforcement source told KATU News Dumitrash was hanging out in a house with friends nearby, and that he left to "cool off." That's the last time they saw him.
When police showed up around the corner, friends and family waited and were worried it was the young man they called honest and trustworthy.
Doucette is a former Marine who worked as an armed security guard at First Response Inc., according to the company's president, Dave Foglio, who said Doucette had a clean record and was a good employee of at least four years.
Foglio said Doucette is licensed in Oregon to be an armed officer, has his own weapon and carries it home.
Doucette's bail was reduced from $500,000 to $250,000. His next scheduled court appearance is Feb. 12.
The Associated Press contributed to this story.