UPDATE, Thursday, Dec. 1, 2:10 p.m.: Kirkland Police are now investigating the stabbing death of a 19-year-old woman in Juanita Wednesday as a homicide, and have identified the victim as Scarlett Paxton.
The Kirkland Police Department issued a press release Thursday afternoon saying that the King County Medical Examiner had ruled the death a homicide, and that it came from a “sharp injury” to the neck.
Police also say they recovered a knife at the scene after obtaining a search warrant, but it is not known yet if the knife was used in the murder.
Kirkland Police Lt. Mike Murray said Thursday that Paxton’s 19-year-old boyfriend, who lived with her at the Juanita apartment complex where she was found and called 911, is still not considered a suspect.
“He is still a witness,” Murray said. “Our detectives are following up on other leads, but the boyfriend has been nothing but cooperative from the get-go.”
No suspects have yet emerged, Murray said, but added, “We do have some promising leads we are following up.”
Murray would not release many details of events at the scene before the 911 call at about 2:50 a.m. Wednesday. But he said Paxton was found on the steps to the apartment, at a complex called Hidden Firs in the 13300 block of 100th Avenue NE in north Juanita.
“The only thing I can share at this time is that we know she and her boyfriend went for a walk,” Murray said. “They separated at some point and she went back to the apartment. When he returned he found here there.”
The Kirkland Police are conducting the investigation with the Washington State Patrol.
Kirkland Police and a State Patrol crime scene investigations team combed the area around the Hidden Firs apartment complex in north Juanita after a 19-year-old woman was stabbed to death there early Wednesday morning.
Kirkland Police Lt. Mike Murray said at the scene that the woman lived in the complex with her 19-year-old boyfriend, who called 911 at about 2:50 a.m. Wednesday to report she had a neck wound.
Dispatchers instructed the boyfriend in performing CPR, but it was to no avail.
“An aid crew got her down to the aid car, but in the process she passed away,” said Murray, who added that the boyfriend is not now considered a suspect.
“He’s considered a witness at this time,” Murray said. “We don’t know if it was self-inflicted. Right now we’re waiting. A search warrant should be here soon.”
The boyfriend was cooperating with police, he added.
The apartment complex is tucked behind the Juanita and a Starbucks store, and by mid-morning a Washington State Patrol team was on the scene, combing an area of asphalt behind the Safeway around garbage dumpsters.
“We found some possible evidence back behind the Albertsons,” Murray said. “It might be something and it might not. We’re looking at everything right now.”
He said the victim remained at the scene and that police were attempting to check possible surveillance video at the Albertsons and Starbucks.
Police were not identifying the victim or the boyfriend Wednesday morning.