'Explosion' of violence: Seattle woman brutally killed in Wallingford - seattlepi.com
The 29-year-old man accused of killing 24-year-old Biftu Hussein Dadi and then driving the Seattle woman’s body to a state mental hospital has been charged with second-degree murder.
King County prosecutors claim Attila Richards admitted to killing Dadi on Sunday morning after spending the night with her in her SUV. Richards, 29, is alleged to have then driven Dadi’s Jeep Cherokee to a state mental hospital in Lakewood, where he directed staff to her body in the Jeep’s rear seat.
According to charging papers, Richards killed Dadi hours after an argument outside a male strip club in Seattle’s Crown Hill neighborhood. Prosecutors say he stabbed Dadi to death that morning in Wallingford inside the parked SUV.
“While under the self-professed effects of illegal drug consumption and mental illness, he repeatedly stabbed (Dadi) with a skinner’s knife with a gut hook,” Senior Deputy Prosecutor Donald Raz said in charging papers. Raz noted that Richards then spent hours driving to Western State Hospital in Lakewood, rather than seek help for the mortally wounded woman.
Richards described himself as Dadi’s boyfriend, a claim disputed by several people who knew Dadi. Police claim Richards said they had been dating for a week. Dadi had a longtime boyfriend whose last name she’d been using shortly before her death.
In court papers, Seattle Police Detective Russ Weklych said Richards arrived at Western State shortly before 11 a.m., parked the Jeep Cherokee and walked into the secure, state-run mental institution. Inside, Richards told staff he’d killed Dadi, the detective said, and directed them to her body and asked to be committed.
Hospital security officers found Dadi dead in the SUV’s backseat. Richards was arrested and taken to the Lakwood Police Department, where he was interviewed by detectives before they came to believe he’d killed Dadi in Seattle.
Speaking with police, Richards said he’d stabbed Dadi to death after an argument earlier at Stallions, a strip club located at 8517 15th Ave. N.W. in Seattle’s Crown Hill neighborhood, Weklych said. According to the detective, Richards said they then drove to Wallingford, where he killed Dadi.
Investigators with the King County Medical Examiner’s Office subsequently determined Dadi had been stabbed at least seven times. She bled to death.
The evening before the killing, Dadi drove Richards to Stallions so they could earn money for drugs and rent, the man told police, according to court papers.
“The attempts to perform did not materialize and (he) states he and Dadi argued over money and what they were going to do,” Weklych said in court papers.
Richards told police he was high on mushrooms and painkillers, and blacked out after leaving the strip club, the detective continued.
Police recovered a .45 cal. pistol from Richards’ backpack. He is alleged to have claimed that Dadi threatened to kill him and attempted to grab the pistol to shoot him during the argument.
Richards admitted to stabbing Dadi repeatedly with a skinning knife, according to the detective’s report. He explained he then drove to Kent, stopped by a storage locker there and continued south. He is alleged to have said he stopped at Federal Way, where he realized Dadi was dead, and then continued on to Western State for reasons unclear.
Western State is one of two secure, state-run mental hospitals in Washington and specializes in the treatment of mentally ill people who have committed crimes. Raz, the prosecutor, said Richards asked staff there to commit him. It wasn’t clear whether Richards was previously a patient there, though he has no known criminal history.
Richards' relationship to Dadi is also unclear.
Raz described Dadi as Richards’ “fiancée” – an assertion at odds with accounts given by friends, coworkers and family members who spoke with seattlepi.com.
Four women concerned about initial reports that Dadi’s “boyfriend” was suspected in her death questioned whether Dadi and Richards were even dating. On her Facebook page, Dadi identified herself using the last name of a longtime boyfriend. That man has not been linked to her death in any way.
"Regardless of the true cause of the defendant's actions, he possesses a capacity for extreme violence," Raz said in court papers. "The community should not have to risk another explosion of such violence."
Richards is expected to be arraigned March 25 at the King County Courthouse. He is currently being held at King County Jail on $2 million bail.