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Tips coming in on deadly Edgewood home-invasion but no arrests yet

Post by Stacey Mulick / The News Tribune on April 30, 2010 at 12:40 pm with 14 Comments »
April 30, 2010 2:02 pm

Pierce County investigators are sorting through tips today in this week’s deadly home-invasion robbery in Edgewood.

James Sanders, 43, was killed, his wife tied up and his 14-year-old son pistol-whipped during the robbery Wednesday night. A 10-year-old boy, who also was home at the time, was not injured. The suspects – three men and a woman – contacted the family because he was selling a diamond ring on Craigslist.org, the popular classified advertising website.

Sheriff’s spokesman Ed Troyer said Friday that tips are coming in from the public through the Tacoma-Pierce County Crime Stoppers line and dispatchers. A team of investigators is sorting through the tips and prioritizing them for follow-up, Troyer said.

“We believe this case will be made by a tip,” he said.

Other investigators are working through the forensic evidence and using technology to try to identify the suspects. So far, no arrests have been made.

“There really isn’t anything that is not being done,” Troyer said.

Sanders’ 14-year-old son, who was hospitalized after the robbery, has since been released. The family is staying with relatives and is surrounded by friends and family members, family friend Sheila Riggs said Friday.

They don’t want to see this happen to anyone else.

“Jim Sanders would not want this to happen to anyone else,” Riggs said. “He would not want anyone else’s family to be destroyed.”

The four suspects responded to James Saunders’ Craigslist ad by phone. A woman contacted Sanders and told him she was interested in buying the diamond ring for her mother for Mother’s Day and wanted to see it, Riggs siad.

“All the communication was done with the woman,” she said.

Sanders gave her his address. The woman and a man showed up at Sanders’  Edgewood home in the 3600 block of 106th Avenue Court East on Wednesday night and showed their money.

The two – and two others – entered the home. They wore bandanas and wielding guns. They immediately tied up Sanders’ wife, Charlene. They threatened to kill her if she did not tell them where the hidden safe was. The robbers started counting down from five but did not shoot.

Troyer said Friday the family did not have a hidden safe. And the suspects had no previous knowledge that there would be one.

Investigators have said James Sanders was shot while trying to protect his 14-year-old son, who was being pistol-whipped.

Troyer said investigators conducted interviews with the Sanders’ family Thursday, then returned to their house to process it for more evidence based on what they said.

Troyer described what happened as brutal.

“Everybody is really traumatized,” he said.

“It’s a nightmare,” Riggs said.

Investigators have only released scant descriptions of the suspects – two of the men are described as in their 20s and either black or Hispanic. The woman is described as dark-skinned and in her late teens.

Lake Stevens investigators believe the same suspects are responsible for a similar home-invasion style robbery Sunday in their jurisdiction. Composite sketches of two of the suspects were released Thursday in that case.

One of the men was described as black, 18 to 24 years old, 5 feet 6 and 160 pounds. He had a thin build and goatee. The second man was described as a mixed-race man, also 18 to 24 years old, 5 feet 10 and 170 pounds. He had a thin build and tattoo on his neck.

Composite sketches of two suspects in Lake Stevens robbery/Courtesy of Lake Stevens PD
Leave a comment Comments → 14
  1. wonderwhy85 says:

    Craigslist is the cause of several deaths. Something needs to be done about this site, FAST!!. God bless this family.

  2. martiangel says:

    It does make one wonder. How did they know to look at the 277th street off ramp in the bushes no less for part of the stolen property. Accident? Hmmmmm

  3. I hope the police catch these low life scumbags!!! Just as sure as they should burn in hell they should rot in a jail cell first!

  4. ValleyTarts says:

    When these scumbags do get arrested, dont be surprised when some PC TV press CNN, MSNBC or KING5 claim them to be “victims of a racial society”. You can smell that one coming. A fast track to Walla Walla’s needle would be most appropriate as a deterrant for the next set of gang-bangers.

  5. NoodleSalad says:

    Craigslist did not cause this awful crime any more than the phones used to communicate between the “buyers” and sellers. This could just as easily occur via a LittleNickle or SouthSound Classifieds ad. People don’t invite strangers to your home; simply meet them in a public location when possible.

  6. ktcmairman says:

    A few more for our State operated Cemetery?

  7. wonderwhy85: i agree! my husband used to use craigslist to sell items and he never let anyone come to our house. this is the reason why! you never who is going to have bad intentions and who is honestly wanting the product on sale. this is all the more reason to have someone meet you in a public place. god bless the family and friends of the victims, and may the killers get what they deserve.

  8. DrHawk89 says:

    You must be completely ignorant to think that craigslist caused this death to happen wonderwhy85. What if this was an ad on the Tacoma News Tribune Classified section, would it then be the fault of TNT? Or if they were selling a car in autotrader, is this autotraders fault?
    You cant honestly think that craigslist is at fault here. This is just a criminal finding a way to find an item of value and it didnt matter how they found it, they were going to cause harm to anybody that stood in the way of them getting that ring.
    Craigslist is not the criminal here, the guys that killed the father in front of his family because he was protecting them, those guys are the criminals. Get it right.

  9. This could have easily happended if they put an ad in the paper so to solely blame craigslist is not right. Even if there met them at Safeway these PUNKS could have followed them to thier home. Just a sad sad situation. My prayers are with this family and the deserve justice at the least.

  10. You pistol whip a child in front of their parents and then kill a parent in front of their child? What parent wouldnt try and stop someone from assaulting their child? I hope you pieces of garbage are found. You dont deserve a trial, you deserve to be gutted like a fish and thrown in the garbage. I hope that those who helped you with the crime, eventhough they did not pull the trigger, understand that they will be charged as if they were the ones pulling the trigger. You 4 have ruined the rest of your lives over a ring. If thats not a clue as to what morons you are, I dont know what else would be. Rot in hell!

  11. fatburk57 says:

    Wake up people!!! Craigslist is not to blame for this, the cowards who committed the crime are. I know the two cases are not related, but this should just reinforce the importance of the gang bust on the hilltop crips. This is exactly the kind of activity gangs are involved with, and these punks should be put away at every opportunity. I just hope they are caught soon, and justice is swift and harsh. But the sad reality is, that in our state the law will be way too lenient. These punks should be strung up and put on display for other gangsters to see.

    I pray for this family and am truly sorry for their loss.

  12. chevellelvr says:

    Once again drugs or the need for drugs most likely played a part in this terrible tragedy. It seems people are getting more desparate for money for drugs and will go to any lengths to get it.
    These animals should get a swift trial and be put where they belong, if not in a cemetary then in prison for the rest of their worthless lives. These kind of pieces of crap do not deserve to walk among us, they are scum and this family deserves justice.
    These are not even people they are cowards who kill and run like chicken #%*#s
    and then act like they are bad asses. They should be slowly executed.

  13. joehancock says:

    We are forced to live with people who prey on us, the only answer i see is to have the punishment be so severe if captured that these anaimals would commit suicide rather than face the justice system. Will it ever happen? Hell no. Woman will continue to be raped, innocent men murdered, good people robbed and children stolden, and the leaders still will not say eneough is enough. We need to hang these monsters after we beat them half to death if their caught. Protect the people for God’s sake.

  14. buddiage says:

    Pull the phone records. The female made several calls to set this up and get an address. They need to check the caller ID and follow through. The phone numbers belong to someone. maybe thats how they found stuff off of 277th.

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