Calvary Lutheran Church in Federal Way. COURTESY PHOTO

Calvary Lutheran Church in Federal Way. COURTESY PHOTO

Federal Way man accused of shooting homeless man over stolen drugs

Occurred outside of Calvary Lutheran Church in Federal Way

A Federal Way man has been charged with murder after allegedly shooting a homeless man in the face over stolen drugs.

Michael Le, 28, was charged with second-degree murder on Nov. 16, according to charging documents from the King County Prosecuting Attorney’s Office. Le is being held in lieu of $2 million bail and his arraignment is scheduled for 9 a.m. Nov. 29 at the Maleng Regional Justice Center in Kent.

At about 6:43 a.m. Nov. 12, officers responded to Calvary Lutheran Church, 2415 S. 320th St., in Federal Way, for reports of a shooting. On scene, officers found a man who had been shot in the face.

The man was identified as 45-year-old James Sisk, who was fatally shot in the jaw. Bullet fragments lacerated his larynx and thyroid, branches of his carotid artery and were found lodged in his lungs, according to an autopsy by the King County Medical Examiner’s Office.

Prosecutors said Le displayed “pitiless and remorseless behavior” on Nov. 12 when he was upset at Sisk on “misguided suspicion” that Sisk stole narcotics from him, according to charging documents.

Documents state that on Nov. 11 Le allegedly did drugs with some of the transient individuals on the church property before passing out. In the morning, he realized his inventory of fentanyl pills had been stolen, documents state.

Calvary Lutheran Church offers a daily sack lunch program to those in need, and “a sizable number of transient people camp in the parking lot surrounding the building,” according to the charging documents.

Le allegedly retrieved a gun from his Federal Way apartment and about five minutes before the initial 911 call, a white Infiniti vehicle parks in the church’s parking lot.

The two occupants exit the vehicle and speak to several people camping along the church’s property and “appeared to be looking for a particular individual,” according to charging documents. The vehicle’s passenger speaks to another transient person on site as the driver Le, with the gun at his side, is seen walking toward a building’s alcove where Sisk is sitting.

Charging documents state the conversation between Le and Sisk lasted only a few seconds before Le allegedly raises his pistol and fires a single shot at Sisk.

“Another of the church’s cameras showed Sisk kneeling on the ground, holding his hands in a prayer-like manner, and pleading with the driver/shooter before collapsing,” documents state.

After Sisk was shot, Le allegedly rummaged through his pockets, grabbed his collar and yelled at him, asking where his drugs were, documents state. He then speaks to several other individuals and points his gun at one of the transients before driving off. The passenger is seen on video walking away from the church.

The passenger later tells police Le “developed the impression” that Sisk had stolen the drugs and retrieved his gun to go back to the church and “make an example” of whoever stole his drugs, documents state.

Just hours after the shooting, officers located Le’s Federal Way apartment and a white Infiniti matching the suspect vehicle’s description. They observed a woman, identified as Le’s mother, removed a spike strip near the vehicle, move items inside the car and then remove garbage bags from Le’s apartment and vehicle.

Le exited the apartment and was arrested.

During a search of Le’s apartment, investigators found a 9mm pistol under the living room couch. The pistol’s magazine was loaded with multiple cartridges, with a fired cartridge case found lodged in the action, according to charging documents.


Talk to us

Please share your story tips by emailing editor@kentreporter.com.

To share your opinion for publication, submit a letter through our website https://www.kentreporter.com/submit-letter/. Include your name, address and daytime phone number. (We’ll only publish your name and hometown.) Please keep letters to 300 words or less.

More in Northwest

Jennifer Brinkman
Renton suspect arrested for 1998 cold case homicide of Marysville woman

Jennifer Brinkman, 19, was found dead in her Marysville home with axe wounds over 20 years ago.

t
Sound Transit may suspend Sounder service due to national rail strike

Unless settlement reached or Congress intervenes, strike could start Dec. 9

Washington State Capitol Building in Olympia. File photo
Crime, climate, abortion on docket in legislative session warm-up

Washington lawmakers will hold 39 hearings this week. Nearly all will be conducted in person, which hasn’t happened in three years.

Police tape is shown in Toronto, Tuesday, May 2, 2017. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Graeme Roy
Detectives seek information on homicide, arson near Federal Way

King County Sheriff’s Office offers up to $10,000 cash reward for information leading to an arrest.

A file photo shows bags of illicit drugs seized by police. (U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration photo)
Renton man, 31, sentenced to 10 years in prison for drug charges

Worked as a debt collector, drug distributor and translator for leaders of drug ring

Police lights (File photo)
Woman found dead at Fairwood apartment complex

King County Sheriff’s Office deputies are investigating after shots were fired

File photo.
Renton Police report a murder-suicide shooting at The Landing

The shooter allegedly shot the victim four times before taking his own life.

t
Giving thanks while on stolen land in the Seattle area

Native American Heritage Day and Black Friday both fall on the day after Thanksgiving.

t
State’s Native American crisis hotline is first in the nation

The Native and Strong Lifeline provides culturally appropriate mental health support and referrals.

COURTESY IMAGE, WA Cares Fund
State long-term care fund projected to be solvent over long term

WA Cares Fund payroll tax to start in July 2023

Paine Field in Everett may be expanded as Sea-Tac Airport is nearing capacity; another brand-new airport could be built in Graham, Roy, or Thurston County to also add airport capacity. Photo courtesy Paine Field/Snohomish County
Aviation commission recommends new airport sites outside Enumclaw

Pierce and Thurston county sites under consideration