United States Attorney Jenny A. Durkan
Western District of Washington
Felon Who Chased And Fired Gun At Car Full Of Strangers Indicted As Armed Career Criminal
Defendant Also Indicted for April 1, 2012 Firebombing of Vehicle
A repeat offender with a history of assault and drug crimes was indicted today by a federal grand jury in Seattle for incidents in early April 2012 involving guns and explosives. SHANE STEPHEN ANELLO, 36, is charged with unlawful possession of a firearm by an armed career criminal, unlawful possession of ammunition by an armed career criminal and unlawful possession of a destructive device. The first two charges stem from a car chase on April 3, 2012 where ANELLO started following and then shot at a car that had stopped next to him on a freeway off-ramp. The third charge relates to the April 1, 2012, firebombing of a vehicle in Seattle.
“Federal law enforcement and state and local authorities are unified in our efforts to stop gun crime on our streets,” said U.S. Attorney Jenny A. Durkan. “We will hold these violent criminals responsible and remove them from our community.”
According to documents filed in the case, just after midnight on April 3, 2012, three people were stopped at a red light at the Columbian Way exit from southbound Interstate 5. A man, later identified as ANELLO, pulled up next to the victim’s car at the light. ANELLO was driving a white Ford Escort. ANELLO made eye contact with the victims in the car. The victims had never encountered ANELLO before. When the light turned green, ANELLO began following the victim’s car. ANELLO turned off his car’s headlights and followed the victims at a high rate of speed. ANELLO allegedly shot at the victim car as he chased it. The victims saw the muzzle flash and heard the sound of a gunshot. Fortunately, they were able to get away from ANELLO. Seattle Police responded to their 9-1-1 call, and started canvassing the Georgetown area for the car. Police spotted the vehicle driving with its lights out, and cornered it in a parking lot. ANELLO was arrested and a Colt Python .38 caliber revolver and ammunition were found in the car.
ANELLO is prohibited from possession firearms or ammunition because of these prior felony convictions in King County Superior Court: assault 2003; delivery of cocaine 2004; conspiracy to deliver cocaine, 2006; possession of cocaine, 2006, 2007, 2010; and assault and attempting to elude a police vehicle, 2008.
Further investigation tied ANELLO to an April 1, 2012 incident where a car in South Seattle was damaged by a homemade explosive device.
If convicted, ANELLO faces a mandatory minimum15 years in prison.
The charges contained in the indictment are only allegations. A person is presumed innocent unless and until he or she is proven guilty beyond a reasonable doubt in a court of law.
The case was investigated by the Seattle Police Department and Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms & Explosives (ATF) with assistance from the Seattle Fire Department.The case is being prosecuted by Assistant United States Attorney Todd Greenberg.