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Justice News

Department of Justice
U.S. Attorney’s Office
Western District of Washington

Friday, November 9, 2018

Cowlitz County Man Convicted of Illegal Weapons Possession

Felon Illegally Possessed Firearms; Following State Arrest and Release on Bail he Killed Three People in Vancouver, Washington

A Longview, Washington man who was convicted last year of a triple homicide in Vancouver, was convicted today in U.S. District Court in Tacoma of federal felonies for illegal weapons possession, announced U.S. Attorney Annette L. Hayes.  BRENT LUYSTER, 37, was convicted following a three day trial of being a felon in possession of a firearm and being a felon in possession of ammunition.   When sentenced by U.S. District Judge Benjamin H. Settle on February 25, 2019, LUYSTER faces up to twenty years in federal prison.  LUYSTER is currently serving a state sentence of life in prison with no chance of parole.

According to the evidence at trial in the case, Cowlitz County Sheriff’s deputies were called to a Longview home in May 2016, after a woman fled to a neighbor’s home saying she had been assaulted and her child was missing.  The woman told responding officers that LUYSTER had hit her in the head with a gun.  Another neighbor reported hearing gunshots.  Ultimately, officers located LUYSTER on a hillside behind the house and convinced him to surrender.  He had ammunition in his pockets and  at the location where he had been concealed on the hillside, officers recovered three firearms: a Bushmaster rifle, a Glock .40 caliber handgun and a Keltec .12 gauge shotgun.  Additional ammunition was also discovered on the hillside.  Inside the house where LUYSTER lived, law enforcement found five additional rifles and a handgun.  The investigation revealed that LUYSTER’s live-in girlfriend had purchased the weapons for LUYSTER.  LUYSTER was prohibited from possessing firearms due to multiple felony convictions including convictions for assault, burglary, theft, malicious harassment and riot with a deadly weapon.

Following the May 16 assault, while charges were pending, LUYSTER shot and killed three people and critically injured a fourth on July 15, 2016 at a home near Woodland, Washington.  He was convicted of three counts of aggravated first degree murder in November 2017. 

The case was investigated by the Cowlitz County Sheriff’s Office, Longview Police Department, the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms & Explosives (ATF), and the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI).  The case is being prosecuted by Assistant United States Attorneys Bruce Miyake and Ye-Ting Woo.

Firearms Offenses
Violent Crime
Press contact for the U.S. Attorney’s Office is Public Affairs Officer Emily Langlie at (206) 553-4110 or
Updated November 9, 2018