A Kent man has been charged by the King County Prosecuting Attorney’s Office with the shooting death of Jimmy R. Joe, 26 on April 27, 2023.
Prosecutors rush filed a Murder In The Second Degree with a Firearm charge against Johnston Fernandez-Edwin.
The Court granted the State’s request for bail to be set at $2 million.
The defendant remains in custody.
In this case, King County Prosecutors say that the defendant, per his own brother, became so “enraged” over hand gesture made by the victim that the defendant made a U-turn with his car, followed the victim’s vehicle for multiple city blocks, confronted the victim who was simply returning to his home, and shot the victim in the chest, killing him.
Clearly, the defendant is one to hold grudges and had extreme difficulty controlling his anger, in addition to having access to firearms. To kill someone with such minimal provocation reveals the defendant to be a person of extreme capacity to inflict violence and injury on others. Based on the extremely violent nature ofthe crime, the defendant clearly poses a danger to the public.
The defendant’s standard range if convicted as currently charged is, at least, 183 months (just over 15 years) to 280 months (just under 24 years).
Facing this amount of incarceration, the defendant definitely poses a significant flight risk.
Bail was requested at $2 million dollars.
Charging documents allege that at approximately 6:34 p.m. on April 27, 2023, Kent Police were called to the Dockside Apartments located at 23222 61S Ave in Kent, on the report of that someone had been shot near the GG Building and that a tan colored vehicle had fled the scene.
Here are more details from the charging documents:
Officers arrived at 6:37 p.m. to find Jimmy R. Joe, DOB: 7/14/96 lying on his back with blood coming from his mouth and chest. After all efforts to revive the victim had failed, King County Medics pronounced Joe deceased at 7:09 p.m.. Near Joe’s body officers located a single 40 caliber shell. The King County Medical Examiner’s Office found Joe had bullet wounds to his hand and his chest. They recovered a single bullet from his body that puncturedhis heart and esophagus and was responsible for Joe’s death.
Surveillance video footage showed a tan/gold, full size 90’s model sedan consistent with an Oldsmobile or Buick pull into the parking lot between the GG and HH buildings a short time after victim Jimmy Joe and his passenger arrived in Joe’s family’s silver Durango. In the footage, Jimmy enters from off frame right holding what appears to be a baseball bat on his shoulder and walking over to the driver’s side of the sedan. A moment later, a gunshot is heard and Jimmy drops to the ground. As this portion of the parking lot is a dead end, the sedan then backs out and drives southbound out of the frame.
On April 28 2023, the Kent PD investigative team determined that the make and model of the tan/gold suspect’s vehicle was most likely a 1991-96 Buick Park Avenue. A Detective began researching notations of tan/gold Buick Park Avenues in Kent PD incident records. The most recent case that came up involving a Buick Park Avenue was burglary case reported on May 6, 2022. In that case, Johnston Fernandez-Edwin, dob: 8/27/1993, accused his prior roommate of burglarizing Fernandez-Edwin’s apartment. The prior roommate was the victim in this homicide: Jimmy R. Joe. A Detective did a DAPS (Driver and Plate Search) search and discovered Fernandez-Edwin is the registered owner of a gold 1991 Buick Park Avenue.
Simultaneous to those efforts, Detectives were also canvassing businesses near the major intersections near and around the crime scene where Jimmy Joe’s Durango and/or the suspect’s Park Avenue would or could have passed through to and away from the crime scene in hopes of locating surveillance footage. A Detective located surveillance footage of a tan/gold Park Avenue arriving at the Circle K Store at 1809 W. Meeker Street, which is south of the Dockside apartments, at 6:11 p.m.. From Circle K’s in and out-of-store surveillance footage, investigators identified the driver of the Park Avenue as Johnston Fernandez-Edwin as his brother. Detectives then located subsequent surveillance footage showing the victim’s Durango, followed by Fernandez-Edwin’s Park Avenue, traveling the same route from the area of James Street and Russell Road until arriving at the Dockside Apartments at approximately 6:32 p.m. and 6:33 p.m., respectively. The shot is fired approximately 20 seconds after the Park Avenue arrives. Police camera footage captured an image of a Park Avenue traveling eastbound on S. 212th Street from 64th Avenue S, driving away from the murder scene at 6:40 p.m. This location is approximately 2 miles or 6-7 minutes of drive time from the Dockside Apartments. The license plate on Park Avenue in this footage matches the license plate of the Park Avenue registered to Johnston Fernandez-Edwin.
On 5/2/23, at approximately 1:10 p.m., Kent Police Detectives located and arrested Johnston Fernandez-Edwin at the Jiffy Lube. Fernandez-Edwin was advised he was under arrest and of his Miranda rights, which he verbally understood and waived. Post Miranda, Fernandez- Edwin admitted to knowing and having prior conflict with victim “Jimmy” Joe, over the past year and a half. This reportedly was over prior thefts and both dating the same woman. On the day of the shooting, Fernandez-Edwin said he was driving his “1991 Buick Park Avenue” sedan west on W. Meeker Street from a Kent Circle K gas station. Fernandez-Edwin’s brother was the only other occupant in the Park Avenue and was seated in the passenger seat. A block later, they drove past and recognized victim Joe driving his gray “Durango,” who was traveling the opposite way. Fernandez-Edwin said that his younger brother said he thought he saw Joe make his hand into the shape of a gun and point it at them. Fernandez-Edwin admitted this upset him, so he turned around and followed victim Joe to Joe’s Kent apartment. Fernandez-Edwin told Detectives his intent was to fight Joe, but he and his brother stayed in the car when they saw Joe approach the Park Avenue with a baseball bat. Fernandez-Edwin said he rolled down his window to talk with Joe while Joe still carried the bat on his shoulder. When Fernandez-Edwin and Joe argued through the open driver’s door window, Fernandez- Edwin admitted to grabbing his “Glock 22” pistol from under his seat and shooting Joe “one time.” Fernandez-Edwin said he and his brother then fled to 851 4th Ave S. in Kent where they left the car and gun before returning to their Kent Apartment.
Kent Detectives interviewed Fernandez-Edwin’s brother at the same Jiffy Lube. He confirmed being with his brother Johnston Fernandez-Edwin when they spotted and passed victim “Jimmy” Joe on W Meeker Street. He confirmed that victim Joe made the shape of a gun with his hand and pointed it at them that day. Per his knowledge of this gesture “enraged” Johnston Fernandez-Edwin who turned his car around and followed victim “Jimmy” Joe home. Per the brother, as they followed Joe, Johnston said “this beef ends today!” When they arrived to confront Joe, Joe walked up with a bat and the brother heard a single gunshot. He was reluctant to provide much information as to what happened after the shot.