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Monday, January 11, 2016

Tribal Member Sentenced in Washington State to Two Years in Prison for Purchasing Firearms While Subject to Domestic Violence Protection Order

One of Weapons Purchased Illegally Later Used in Marysville-Pilchuck School Shooting

The father of a teen who killed four students, severely injured a fifth student and killed himself in October 2014 at Marysville-Pilchuck High School in Washington State was sentenced today in U.S. District Court in Seattle to two years in prison for six counts of illegal firearms possession, announced U.S. Attorney Annette L. Hayes of the Western District of Washington.  Raymond Lee Fryberg Jr., 42, was convicted in September 2015 following a four day jury trial.  U.S. District Judge James L. Robart imposed three years of supervised release to follow the prison term.

“Guns in the wrong hands are just plain wrong and will not be tolerated,” said U.S. Attorney Hayes.  “The Department of Justice has an ongoing commitment to prosecuting firearms crimes.  The goal is to enforce our gun laws against those who pose a threat to public safety.  Here the illegal possession of a firearm played a devastating role in a community tragedy.”

“This case underscores our commitment to keep our federally recognized Tribal communities safe,” said Special Agent in Charge Frank Montoya Jr. of the FBI’s Seattle’s Division.  “So much tragedy stemmed from the actions of one person.  I commend the resilience of the victim families and the community that are working to move forward.”

According to records filed in the case and testimony at trial, in 2002, Fryberg’s then-girlfriend asked the Tulalip Tribal Court for an order of protection.  The protection order was made permanent in September 2002 and had no expiration date.  In September 2012, Fryberg was back in tribal court and pleaded “no contest” to violating the protection order.  Fryberg was fined and placed on probation for one year.  Less than four months later, Fryberg went to Cabela’s Sporting Goods store on the Tulalip reservation and purchased a handgun, and, over subsequent months, four other firearms.  Fryberg filled out forms for the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms & Explosives stating that he was not the subject of any court order restraining him from harassing, stalking, or threatening an intimate partner or the child of a partner.  The form states that anyone subject to such an order is prohibited from purchasing a firearm.

According to testimony at trial, Fryberg purchased a Beretta, Model PX4 Storm, in January, 2013.  On Oct. 24, 2014, Fryberg’s son, Jaylen Fryberg, 15, used the illegally purchased Beretta to kill four students and himself at Marysville-Pilchuck High School in Marysville, Washington.  Fryberg’s cousin was critically injured but survived.  Jurors were not told of the connection between Fryberg’s weapons and the school shooting.

The case was investigated by the FBI, and the Tulalip Tribal Police Department.  The case was prosecuted by Assistant U.S.  Attorneys Ye-Ting Woo and Bruce Miyake.

Updated January 13, 2016