Here is the latest update from Lakewood Police:
Lakewood Police Detectives, with assistance from the Cooperative Cities Crime Response Unit and the Pierce County Sheriff’s Department Search and Rescue Unit, located the murder weapon at a wooded location in Tillicum late this afternoon.
An organized search was conducted and the weapon was located in the area where it was reported to have been discarded.
The weapon was recovered and booked into the Lakewood Police Department as evidence.
UPDATE, 9:47 a.m.
Lakewood Police have arrested three of the five men involved in Saturday's fatal stabbing, and it appears all of the men involved are active-duty soldiers at Joint Base Lewis-McChord.
Here is the full Lakewood Police press release:
On Oct. 6, at approximately 3:40 p.m., Lakewood Detectives were contacted by a military sergeant who told them he had information on the stabbing deaththat had occurred early Saturday morning. The sergeant told us that another soldier had come forward with very good information on who may have been responsible for the stabbing death of JBLM Soldier Tevin Geike.
The soldier had told his sergeant that another soldier in his unit, Jeremiah Hill, had asked for first aid for a knife wound on his right hand on Saturday afternoon. The soldier stated that Hill told him he cut his hand when he stabbed a guy to death over the weekend. The soldier didn’t believe him initially, but told his sergeant about what happened. The sergeant confronted Hill about this information, but Hill said he cut it while chopping vegetables. The soldier ended up taking Hill to Madigan Hospital for treatment, where Hill told hospital staff he cut his hand cutting parachute cord.
Information is then obtained on another person involved in the crime and he is brought in for an interview. The 21 year old soldier is cooperative and admits that he was at the scene. He tells detectives that he was in a vehicle with four of his friends driving on Pacific Highway when words are exchanged between the males walking on the street and his friends in the car. He said they stopped to talk to the victims, but nothing happened once they discovered they were all active duty soldiers. As the suspects were walking back to their car, Hill appeared to “bear hug” the victim and pushed him to the ground. The soldier told us that Hill was covered in blood when he got into the car and they discovered he had stabbed the victim and cut himself. They fled the scene and disposed of the knife. Another cooperative suspect (19 year old) is brought in as well and he corroborates the accounts given up to that point.
Detectives then attempt to interview Hill, but he does not make a statement and asks for a lawyer. The other 3 suspects are brought in for interviews and they give statements. The suspect vehicle is located and seized by detectives. Barracks rooms are searched and multiple items of evidence are located. Three suspects are arrested and booked for Murder. Jeremiah Hill (23 year old), Cedarium Johnson (21 year old) and Ajoni Runnion-Bareford (21 year old) were booked into the Pierce County Jail this morning.
It appears from interviewing everyone involved that race was not a motivating factor in this homicide. The main suspect, Jeremiah Hill, did not make a statement; so it’s unknown exactly why he did this.
The five suspects are all active duty JBLM soldiers assigned to a combat infantry unit. The victim was an active duty JBLM soldier assigned to a combat aviation unit.
This case will be presented to the Pierce County Prosecutor for charging.
ORIGINAL, 6:27 a.m.
On October 5, 2013 at approximately 2:38 AM, Lakewood Police responded to a 911 call for a man down in a parking lot at the 12500 block of Pacific Highway Southwest in Lakewood.
When officers arrived, they found a 20-year-old male suffering from multiple stab wounds. WPFR responded, but the victim died from his injuries at the scene.
Major Crimes Detectives responded to the scene to conduct an investigation. It was discovered that the victim was walking southbound on Pacific Highway with two of his friends. All three males are active duty soldiers from JBLM. A vehicle passed the subjects and yelled at them, something about being “white”.
One of the soldiers yelled back something about the suspects treating combat soldiers with disrespect. The car turned around and stopped next to the soldiers. Five black males got out of the car and surrounded the soldiers. A verbal confrontation started, but the driver of the suspect vehicle called his friends off when he discovered the soldiers were actually combat veterans. As the suspects were going back to their car, one of the suspects appeared to bump into the victim.
The two soldiers saw their friend fall to the ground as the suspect vehicle sped away. It was then that they discovered the victim had been stabbed and was bleeding profusely. The victim died at the scene.
The suspect vehicle is described as a midnight blue BMW type sedan or VW Jetta type car with four doors, tinted windows and stock rims/low profile tires. The suspects are described as five black males in their mid-twenties
- Suspect #1 - Main suspect, early 20’s B/M (black male) about 6’1”, medium build, wearing a blue zip up hoodie
- Suspect #2 - Driver, B/M 5’7”, short cropped hair, wearing a blue and white horizontal striped shirt
- Suspect #3 - B/M 5’7”, short hair, wearing a gray tank top
- Suspect #4 - B/M 5’6”-5’7”, wearing camouflage pants (not true camo, described as paint ball splat type design).
- Suspect #5 - B/M 5’6, no description.
If anyone has any information on the suspect vehicle, the suspects or saw anything around the time of this incident; the Lakewood Police Department needs your information.