The Thurston County Sheriff's Office has arrested two men on suspicion of first-degree murder for the slaying of Randen S. Robinson, 25, of Rochester. He was found dead of a gunshot wound to the head Tuesday in a wooded area off an unpaved road in Capitol State Forest.
Christopher R. Havens, 30, of Olympia, and Kevin M. Cleman, 23, of Littlerock, were being held Wednesday at the Thurston County Jail.
Cleman initially told deputies that Havens killed Robinson, but Cleman now also faces a potential murder charge in Robinson’s death.
“The investigation indicates that Mr. Cleman was directly involved in the victim’s death and (was) not a simple witness that was forced to be involved,” reads a news release from the sheriff’s office.
Sheriff’s spokesman Lt. Chris Mealy said two suspects and the victim were involved in methamphetamine and had been having disputes lately.
According to court papers, Cleman reported to sheriff’s deputies March 17 that two days earlier Havens had forced him, at gunpoint, to drive Robinson to Capitol State Forest. He said Havens then shot Robinson in the head, killing him.
On March 17, deputies searched an area off of Bordeaux Road in Capitol State Forest where Cleman had said Robinson had been killed, but Robinson could not be found.
Robinson’s family and friends had last seen him alive March 15.
Deputies went to a trailer home on Martin Way on March 17 to speak with Havens about Robinson’s disappearance, but Havens ran away, Thurston County Chief Criminal Deputy James Chamberlain said.
When deputies caught Havens, he was carrying several baggies of methamphetamine, and he was arrested on suspicion of possession of methamphetamine with intent to distribute, Chamberlain said.
A state Department of Natural Resources employee found Robinson’s body Tuesday afternoon in the same general area of Capitol Forest on an unpaved road off Bordeaux Road.
When deputies interviewed Havens in jail Tuesday night, he confessed to being involved in Robinson’s murder, Mealy said.
Cleman was in jail on an unrelated charge Wednesday when he was arrested on suspicion of being involved in Robinson’s death.
The sheriff’s office has recovered a handgun thought to be the murder weapon, Mealy said.
The sheriff’s office also has impounded the vehicle used to transport Robinson to Capitol Forest. It belongs to Cleman.
Jeremy Pawloski: 360-754-5465