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Trial date pushed to Oct. 23 for man accused of killing Devin Topps
The trial date for the 23-year-old man accused of killing Devin Topps in 2010 in Kent has been continued to Oct. 23.
Jorge L. Lizarraga had been scheduled to go to trial for the second-degree murder charge on Tuesday, according to the King County Prosecuting Attorney's Office. He remains in custody in the county jail at the Maleng Regional Justice Center in Kent. He pleaded not guilty to the charge in March 2011.
King County prosecutors claim Lizarraga shot and killed Topps, a former Kentridge High School student-athlete, at a Halloween party. Topps had signed in 2010 to play football at Eastern Washington University but didn't enroll in the school because of low grades.
According to court documents, Topps left a Halloween party at about 2 a.m. at a home in the 20200 block of 92nd Avenue South in northeast Kent. Topps walked out with other party goers and encountered a group of males standing in the street outside the home.
Witnesses told detectives that Topps got into a fight with another man after a verbal altercation. Lizarraga saw the fight and allegedly pulled out a gun, fired three shots into the air and then walked toward Topps and shot him once in the back as Topps fought with another man on the ground.
Topps died at the scene from a gunshot wound to the back.
Several weeks after the shooting, detectives searched a Des Moines motel room in 2010 where Lizarraga had stayed for about three weeks with a girlfriend. They found a Heckler & Koch .40-caliber handgun as well as ammunition for the gun in the room. The gun had been stolen just four days before the shooting during a residential burglary in Federal Way. Fingerprints from that burglary matched Lizarraga.
State Patrol Crime Lab investigators determined that the nine casings recovered from the murder scene had been fired from the stolen gun found in Lizarraga's motel room.
Police tracked down and arrested Lizarraga in December 2010 at a SeaTac 7-Eleven store. When detectives tried to interview Lizarraga about the shooting, he invoked his right to an attorney and did not speak with them.