Bail set at $1 million for Yakima man accused of fatally shooting his 74-year-old mother

18th Ave Homicide Yakima

YAKIMA, Wash. — Bail has been set at $1 million for a 40-year-old man accused of fatally shooting his mother in Yakima over the weekend.

The man was arrested on suspicion of first-degree murder Sunday after police say he shot and killed his mother, 74-year-old Mary Pickens.

According to court documents, Pickens and her son were living in an apartment near South 18th Avenue and Greenway Avenue, where police responded to about 12:40 a.m. after multiple callers told 911 dispatchers they’d heard gunshots.

Witnesses reportedly told dispatchers they saw a man shooting an AR-style rifle inside the apartment and heard him shouting “Die!”, followed by an obscenity.

“The suspect then came outside and continued shooting at parked vehicles while saying, ‘Everyone die,'” court documents said.

Witnesses told police they recognized the man as a resident of that apartment and saw him drop the rifle, go back in the apartment, come back out briefly again and then go back inside, according to court documents.

Arriving officers heard about 10 to 15 additional gunshots at the scene, saw the man running from the area and detained him for questioning, court documents said.

Officers said when they entered the apartment, they found Pickens dead with multiple gunshot wounds, along with multiple guns, spent bullet casings and damage throughout the home consistent with being struck by bullets.

The suspect was taken to the Yakima Police Department, where he, “began to act erratically and was not making sense,” which is why he was taken to Virginia Mason Memorial hospital for evaluation, court documents said.

The man was subsequently booked into the Yakima County jail on suspicion of first-degree murder and unlawful possession of a firearm.

According to court documents, the man has seven previous felony convictions in Washington state and additional criminal history in Colorado, both of which prevent him from legally having firearms. He also has previous domestic violence history with his mother, including getting arrested for assault in 2018.

An autopsy is scheduled for Wednesday.

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