SPOKANE, Wash—Spokane Police Major Crimes detectives said witnesses to the shooting on N. Astor Street Friday are not cooperating, making it difficult to determine motive for the homicide.
Officers responded to reports of shots fired on the 2200 block of N. Astor Street just before 10:00 Friday night. When they arrived, police said they found 48-year-old Arnold Allen Lommasson dead in an apartment. A gunshot to the head killed Lommasson according to the medical examiner’s office.
Spokane police said many witnesses refused to cooperate, but described the ten time convicted felon, Brandon Mellon, and at least one other person fleeing the scene. Police said Mellon drove to Pasco in a stolen car.
Police said they had probable cause to arrest Mellon for 1st Degree Murder, but he accidently shot himself in the leg when officers confronted him in a motel parking lot. Mellon allegedly hit an artery and was transported to Portland, OR for medical treatment under supervision according to The Spokane Police Department. Police said Mellon was still recovering Monday and police were trying to minimize the medical expenses incurred by the city after Mellon is arrested.
Detectives interviewed a woman who was with Mellon in Pasco. She allegedly said Mellon intended to partake in a shoot-out with police.
The shooting was not random according to police. A longtime friend of the victim, Bill Day, described the incident in which Lommasson was allegedly shot at close range.
“He was in the backroom playing on the computer,” Day said. “The killer walked up and, ‘Pew!’ Shot him. Just once.”
Lommasson’s girlfriend Julia, who was afraid to be identified by last name, was in the apartment the night of the murder. Julia said Lommasson, who was the love of her life, did nothing to deserve the shooting.
Spokane Police said Mellon’s previous convictions included Riot with a Deadly Weapon, Possession of a Stolen Vehicle, First Degree Criminal Impersonation, Theft and Eluding.