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Prosecutor will not seek death penalty in double-murder case

Clallam County Prosecutor Deb Kelly has announced she will not seek the death penalty against Patrick Drum, accused of murdering two Sequim-area men in June.

 

Drum is suspected of shooting Gary Blanton Jr. and Jerry Ray to death because they were both registered sex offenders. Charged with two counts of aggravated first-degree murder, the sentencing options for Drum, 35, of Sequim, if convicted, are the death penalty or life without parole.

 

Kelly said she will pursue life without parole.

 

In a statement Kelly said:

 

"Vigilanteism has no part in a civilized society and will not be tolerated by law enforcement or prosecutors in this county. I have been appalled by comments suggesting premeditated murder is somehow praiseworthy. Anyone taking the law into their own hands in Clallam County will face vigorous investigation and prosecution for any crime they commit."

 

Kelly said she reviewed reports and information by law enforcement, stand-by defense counsel and other sources and spoke with the grieving members of the Blanton and Ray families.

 

"Based upon the information now in my possession, I have concluded that a jury would likely find mitigating circumstances warranting leniency in the defendant’s life history," she said.

 

Drum will appear in court for a status hearing July 13. He is representing himself.

 

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