The King County Prosecutor’s Office today charged 33-year-old Michael William Bienhoff with second degree murder in the shooting death of Precious Reed on Feb. 20 in Woodland Park.
If convicted as charged, Bienhoff faces a sentence of life in prison under the state’s “Three Strikes” law for repeat offenders.
Bienhoff is being held without bail at the King County Jail. His arraignment is scheduled for 8:30 a.m. on March 15 at the King County Courthouse.
According to charging documents, after the shooting, Reed’s family members told detectives that Reed had planned to purchase two pounds of marijuana from someone associated with the Rolling 90’s street gang.
On February 21st detectives interviewed DB, Reed’s friend who was present during the shooting. DB told detectives that he and Reed drove in separate vehicles to the shooting location with the plan of purchasing several pounds of marijuana from someone Reed knew. DB said that Reed had been arranging this meeting via communications on his cell phone. DB said that both he and Reed had over $1000 on their person to purchase the marijuana. DB drove his while Cadillac and Reed drove in the Nissan mini-van. DB said that when they arrived a large light skinned male approached on foot, shook their hands, and introduced himself as “Casper”. DB said that he believed that “Casper” was associated with the Rolling 90’s gang. DB said that he and Reed walked into the grassy area of the park and urinated. As they were walking back to the cars, DB thought he saw and heard an individual crouching down in the bushes. DB said that Reed asked “Casper” who was in the bushes and that “Casper” “played stupid” and claimed he didn’t know. DB said he got into his Cadillac while Reed and “Casper” got into the Nissan to do the marijuana deal. DB said that a minute or two later a male emerged from the park area, walked in between their cars into the parking lot, and started firing rounds. Believing he was taking fire, DB drove away southbound at a high rate of speed.
While researching records, detectives identified an individual who used the moniker “Casper” and shared physical similarities (6’02/260) with the individual described by DB as Michael W. Bienhoff (DOB: 7-5-78). Bienhoff was associated with the Rolling 90’s gang. Bienhoff was under active DOC supervision.
Detectives showed DB a montage with Bienhoff. DB identified Bienhoff as “Casper” and the individual who had set up the marijuana deal with reed.
Detectives processed Reed’s cell phone and determined that the last number he was in contact with prior to the shooting was xxx-xxx-xxxx. This number was associated with Bienhoff through his DOC records.
The charging documents state that Bienhoff was arrested on Feb. 28 while meeting with his Department of Corrections officer. He denied that another person was present at the park hiding in the bushes. Bienhoff said he and Reed argued over the price of the marijuana, Reed pulled a gun out of his waistband and the two struggled over it, and Reed was shot in the shoulder.
Bienhoff said he ran away, leaving the gun behind, and that about 45 seconds later he heard a single shot. He also said he gave the backpack full of marijuana to someone at a nearby bus stop, because he wanted to get rid of it.
Bienhoff has prior convictions for first-degree robbery, second-degree robbery, violation of the Uniformed Controlled Substances Act, second-degree escape, first-degree theft, and second-degree theft.