SEATTLE – Police hope cell phones could hold clues to help them track down two gunmen tied to a deadly shooting at a South Seattle house party.
Hundreds of people attended the weekend party at the home in the 9700 block of Rainier Ave. S. and throughout the night, many of them used their phones to take pictures and video. Police want to talk to those people and see those images to track down the men who murdered Sherry Soth (right).
In all, six people were shot, including the 21-year-old Soth, who took a bullet to her abdomen, and one of the party hosts tried to help her as she was bleeding in his driveway.
“She kept saying ‘I don’t want to die, I don’t want to die,’ ” said John Jones, the homeowner’s son.
Witnesses say at least two men fired dozens of rounds into the crowd as people got ready to leave the party. The homeowner and his son believe the gunmen tried to get into the private event earlier that evening, but were turned away by people checking for RSVPs and identification in an attempt to keep out gang members and minors.
“I am certain that they were turned away,” Jones said. “And I’m just speculating that maybe they took it as a sort of disrespect that we had something against them.”
Friends say Soth put herself through college at the University of Washington and most recently worked downtown. A single rose lay outside her Queen Anne apartment.
“My heart is broken because somebody lost a child, and people lost a friend,” said Drew Jones, the homeowner.
Drew Jones says hundreds of people were at the party, and many used their cell phones to take pictures and video.
Seattle police are now asking those people to come forward with those images, so detectives can begin sorting through the faces to try and identify the gunmen.
“They’re getting ideas of who it may have been to do this, but the search is still on though,” John Jones said.
Dozens of neighbors, community members and even police officers gathered for a vigil on Monday night to honor the slain woman. Among those present was Lt. John Hayes, a well-known figure in the community.
“Inside, it’s really hard, you know. We have put so much forward; we can’t stop now. We know there is an answer,” he said.
“We will keep fighting. We will help people believe in each other, help people believe that they do have an answer and (be) a part in making things go in the right direction.”