Prosecutors question self-defense claim in fatal Bothell shooting

A Seattle man’s repeated claims that he acted in self-defense during a fatal shooting last month near Bothell haven’t persuaded Snohomish County prosecutors.

They’ve charged Jesse Randall Ackerman, 22, with second-degree murder in the Dec. 9 killing of Ryan Osborne.

Osborne, 36, died outside his home along 198th Place SE, in unincorporated Bothell. Ackerman had spent several hours before the shooting parked outside in his green Mustang.

Osborne’s family said he went out to tap on the window of Ackerman’s car to ask him to leave. He was shot and died in the street. When deputies arrived, he was cradled in his mother’s arms, deputy prosecutors Elise Deschenes and Matt Hunter said in court papers.

Ackerman left the scene and surrendered to authorities hours later. He claimed he’d been robbed and pistol-whipped.

Investigators found no marks or injuries on Ackerman consistent with being assaulted, prosecutors wrote. An autopsy, meanwhile, determined that Osborne died from a single gunshot wound that entered his back and exited his chest.

It is a case that mixes heroin and homicide but exactly how is in dispute.

Ackerman was in the neighborhood because of his connection to a young woman who lives there. She reportedly told detectives the two recently began using drugs together and he was there that day to sell her $20 worth of heroin.

Osborne also allegedly trafficked in heroin, and his neighbor told detectives she regularly bought from him to support her habit.

The woman said she’d gone shopping after using drugs with Ackerman and that he remained in his car.

Osborne sent her a text about the guy in the green Mustang. She replied that he should just tap on the window and ask him to leave. Not long after, she reported hearing from Ackerman.

“Dude pulled a gun got robbed $1000 not shooter,” Ackerman wrote in a text message.

Ackerman then called to report that her neighbor had hit him in the head, taking his drugs and money. He asked for help getting his stuff back but reportedly didn’t mention shooting anybody, prosecutors wrote.

She learned of the killing from the victim’s mom and others and then helped detectives reach Ackerman on his cellphone.

He allegedly spoke about being awakened in the car and being hit in the face. Detectives said he described being physically unharmed but “mentally injured” in the reported attack, court papers said.

Ackerman said he was planning to surrender to police but was trying to meet with a lawyer first.

“The defendant stated nothing about firearms, drugs, shooting or self-defense during this call,” prosecutors wrote. “He had slurred speech was sobbing and hard to understand.”

The man said he would call the detective later when ready to talk.

Hours passed before Ackerman again spoke with police. He claimed to be about 10 minutes away, heading to surrender, and agreed to comply with directions to disarm.

“I’ve done nothing wrong. I own the gun legally and I acted legally tonight,” he reportedly said.

Ackerman didn’t show up as promised, detectives said. Instead, he was stopped at the wheel of the Mustang about 90 minutes later after being spotted by Bothell police.

He reportedly claimed that he had a concussion from being hit in the head with a pistol. Police said they saw no sign of injuries.

“The guy had a gun on me. It was either me or him. That’s why I killed him,” he reportedly told officers.

Ackerman’s trial is scheduled for late February. He’s been jailed with bail set at $1 million.


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