Tannehill admits to first-degree robbery charge
A Winthrop man involved in an attempted robbery in Everett that ended in the murder of a 19-year-old man pleaded guilty to attempted first-degree robbery in Snohomish County Superior Court on July 18.
Raymond Tannehill, age 28, admitted to driving two other men to a Jack in the Box restaurant in Everett and then picking them up after the incident turned deadly. Raul Cuadros, age 19, died at the scene after being shot in the chest.
The Jack in the Box rendezvous that ended in Cuadros’ death was the culmination of a complex series of events involving set-ups for robbery, drug deals and revenge. When they met at the Jack in the Box, both Cuadros and David Wright, the alleged shooter, were reportedly armed.
In addition to Tannehill, Wright, age 31, and Christopher Phelps, age 28, were charged in Snohomish County Superior Court with murder. Kodi Anderson, age 27, was charged with first-degree robbery; and Brianna Reynolds, age 27, was arrested for tampering with physical evidence in Snohomish County District Court. Wright, Phelps and Anderson pleaded not guilty and their cases are still in court. Reynolds failed to appear for a pre-trial hearing on July 3 and there is a warrant for her arrest, according to the district court.
Tannehill wasn’t at the Jack in the Box when the murder occurred just before 4 a.m. on February 17, 2019, but was waiting in his car down the street. After the shooting, Tannehill drove Wright and Anderson to a house in Silver Lake where another man, Christopher Phelps, was waiting. Phelps disposed of the men’s clothes, according to the court documents.
Tannehill was initially charged with first-degree murder in April. The charges against Tannehill were amended to attempted robbery in July.
Police interviewed defendants and witnesses and reviewed video from a Jack in the Box security camera. In an interview with the police, Sierra Cotter said Tannehill had told her they planned to rob Reynolds in retaliation for the robbery of Anderson earlier in the week. Tannehill had also driven Anderson to meet Reynolds at the earlier incident, Cotter said in the affidavit of probable cause filed in April.
“Following the murder, Tannehill had made statement to her [Cotter] in which he was ‘freaked out’ and scared what the law would do to him for a ‘murder that was only supposed to be a robbery,’” according to the account of the interview with Cotter. Tannehill refused to be interviewed during that part of the investigation. It wasn’t clear from court records if he subsequently provided an interview.
In his guilty plea, Tannehill agreed to testify truthfully in the trials of the others and to have no contact with them. He also agreed not to possess or consume controlled substances without a prescription. According to court documents, police found less than 2 grams of heroin, an undisclosed amount of methamphetamine, and a commercial-grade explosive (the type used in quarries) in his car when they arrested him two days after the murder.
The guilty plea includes a description of the incident in Tannehill’s own words. “On or about February 17, 2019, in Snohomish County, Washington I took a substantial step toward committing a First Degree Robbery by driving co-Defendants/accomplices to the scene of that robbery,” wrote Tannehill. “The plan was to unlawfully and intentionally take personal property (an electronic tablet or similar) from the person of R. Cuadros against his will by threat of bodily injury. Bodily injury did result.”
Tannehill said that chemical dependency had contributed to the crime. He will undergo evaluation and treatment. The prosecutor agreed to dismiss the charges for possession of heroin and of the explosive.
Tannehill is in custody and will be sentenced in November. He agreed to waive his right to speedy sentencing so he can provide testimony in the trials of the co-defendants.
The standard sentencing range, based on Tannehill’s criminal history, is 30.75 to 40.5 months (toward the low end of the scale), plus 18 months of community custody. The state is recommending 30.75 months in prison. The judge has sentencing discretion.
Tannehill previously served two months in a 2013 case for unlawful possession of a firearm in Okanogan County. He also has nine misdemeanor violations in Okanogan County for fourth-degree assault and malicious mischief (both connected with a domestic-violence incident), for having a loaded pistol in his vehicle, and for several instances of driving while his license was suspended.