Arcan Cetin, 20, the suspected shooter in Friday's attack on a mall north of Seattle, was charged with five counts of murder in the first degree on Monday. He was arraigned in Skagit County Court and is being held on $2 million bail.
After his arraignment, Cetin's parents gave a brief, emotional statement while leaving the courtroom.
"The only thing that we would like to say at this time is that we are both totally devastated by what happened," Cetin's father said, choking up. "We're torn up; we're hurt."
He added that Certin "had mental health issues that we have been trying to work on with him." When reporters asked Cetin's mother if she had anything to say, she cried into her arm.
"Please, no more," Cetin's father said, leading Cetin's mother away. The couple are divorced.
An arrest warrant written by Mount Vernon police officer Dave Shackleton was distributed to reporters shortly before Cetin's arraignment. The warrant listed the murder charges, detailed Cetin's relationships and employment, and outlined the occurrences of Friday night.
Cetin recently had a falling-out with his father and was closer to his mother, lawyers said at the arraignment. Cetin and his father had eaten dinner together on Friday around 4:30 p.m. before Cetin was supposed to work at a gym in town. Instead, Cetin took his father's rifle — without his father's knowledge — and went to the mall.
At around 6:55 p.m. witnesses called 911, according to the warrant, reporting a "possibly Hispanic male dressed in grayish clothing" entering the Macy's Women's store in Cascade Mall in Burlington. Callers said he had a long rifle and "fired multiple shots."
According to police, but not included in the warrant, Cetin is a "legal, permanent resident" of the US. He was born in Turkey and immigrated to the US with his parents as a young child.
Cetin’s criminal history shows that he has three domestic violence assault charges against him, the Seattle Times reported. In each case, Cetin’s stepfather was identified as the victim. The newspaper also reported that Cetin has been previously arrested for drunk driving.
When first responders arrived on the scene, they found four women dead, the youngest of whom was 16, and one injured man. The man was taken to the hospital, where he later died.
In surveillance footage obtained by Washington state detectives, Cetin could be seen walking through the mall for some time before going back to his car and moving it closer to the Macy's entrance. He then removed a rifle from his trunk and walked into the store, shot five people, left the rifle on the counter, and drove away.
Police found Cetin the following day in his car, one block from an apartment his parents helped him pay rent for. Cetin confessed to killing the five people in the mall, the warrant states.
Ema O'Connor is a politics reporter for BuzzFeed News and is based in Washington, DC.
Contact Ema O'Connor at email@example.com.
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