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Justice News

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

Friday, October 25, 2013

Pierce County Man who Killed Two While Protecting his Marijuana Grow Pleads Guilty to Drug and Gun Crimes

Plea Triggers Mandatory Minimum Five Year Prison Term

            A Puyallup, Washington man who shot and killed two men who had entered the garage where he was growing marijuana, pleaded guilty today in U.S. District Court in Tacoma to manufacturing marijuana and possession of a firearm in relation to a drug trafficking crime, announced U.S. Attorney Jenny A. Durkan.  JEREMY PETER CAPODANNO, 36, was arrested in April 2013.  Use of a firearm in relation to drug trafficking carries a five year mandatory minimum term.  Under the terms of the plea agreement, CAPODANNO is forfeiting nearly $670,000 in proceeds from the sale of two properties -- his Puyallup home and a second home in Kent, Washington.  CAPODANO is also forfeiting a 2008 Mercedes, a 2008 Toyota pickup truck and five firearms seized at the crime scene.  Sentencing is scheduled before U.S. District Judge Ronald B. Leighton on January 17, 2014.

            “The defendant’s conduct put the safety of our community and his family at risk.  He armed himself expecting trouble, and unfortunately he got it,” said U. S. Attorney Jenny A. Durkan.  “Consistent with our enforcement priorities, we continue to focus on those who bring violence and use firearms to protect illegal drug businesses.”

            On December 6, 2012, CAPODANNO shot two people who had broken into the garage of his Puyallup residence – killing both of them.  In the garage loft was a marijuana grow with nearly 200 plants.  When police officers arrived, they found CAPODANNO in possession of a Glock 17, 9mm semiautomatic pistol, which is the gun that CAPODANNO used to kill the two men.  While searching CAPODANNO’S truck, police found additional marijuana as well as other weapons including a Bushmaster XM-15 assault rifle; an Intratec Tec-9 9mm pistol; a Benelli 12 gauge shotgun; and a Professional Ordinance MDL Carbon 15.

The case is being investigated by the Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA), the Pierce County Sheriff’s Department and the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (ATF).  The case is being prosecuted by Assistant United States Attorneys Vince Lombardi and Matthew Thomas.

Updated March 23, 2015