Mental evaluation requested for suspect in murder of Seattle father, business owner

The man suspected of shooting and killing a 32-year-old Seattle father, and business owner is also suspected of several other violent incidents days before the deadly attack.

On Monday, 31-year-old Ashton Christopher Lefall appeared in court. He is the suspect in the murder of 32-year-old D'Vonne Pickett Jr.

During the hearing, Lefall’s attorney asked the judge for a mental competency evaluation. 

The attorney said their reason for the request is due to court documents, and communication with him and his family.

According to court documents, Lefall had previously harassed Pickett and his family for several years, and they said he is a former childhood friend of Pickett.

The documents say Pickett’s wife saw her husband get shot and fall to the ground. She reported to police that Lefall would want to hurt her husband.

According to documents, Lefall is the suspect in several other shootings that happened in the days before the Oct. 19 deadly shooting of Pickett.


Community honors legacy of beloved business owner killed in Seattle's Central District

More than just a successful businessman—Pickett was a devoted father, husband, youth sports coach student-athlete at Seattle University and played professional basketball internationally. Thursday, cries from his mother echoed through the streets as she stood at the memorial in disbelief that her son and all of his accomplishments will be a memory.

On Oct. 17, surveillance video captured footage of a man, who police believe is Lefall, entering a business located on the 4400 block of Rainier Avenue South.

The man held the business owner at gunpoint and demanded his debt card and pin. Documents say the suspect shot the store owner after he gave him what he wanted.

Surveillance footage later captured the man trying to use the stolen card at an ATM.

Due to the car Lefall drives, and other evidence found at the scenes, police also believe Lefall is the suspect in two random traffic shootings.

The first shooting happened on Oct. 17 on Aurora Avenue North. The victim was driving a Tesla, which captured video of the incident. The driver said he heard a gunshot and then noticed he was bleeding. 

The second shooting happened on Oct.18 around 4:30 pm.

Police say the suspect, who they believe is Lefall, fired a round through a woman’s window. The driver, who had three of her children in the car, was hit with shrapnel from the broken glass.

The documents say on Oct. 19, the day of the deadly shooting, one of Lefall’s relatives called 911 and reported he was having an episode, and may be traveling around Seattle shooting people. 

Lefall has three prior felony convictions in King County, according to documents. He is not legally allowed to possess a gun.

He remains in custody, with no bail and is expected back in court by the end of the month. 

On Thursday, there will be a memorial service held for Pickett at Climate Pledge Arena at 11 a.m. For more information click here