Witnesses tell how JBLM soldier was fatally stabbed

by: Chris Legeros Updated:

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LAKEWOOD, Wash. - 20-year-old soldier Tevin Geike was celebrating the end of his military service when he was killed early Saturday.

He was walking along Pacific Avenue Southwest in Lakewood with two other soldiers, Matthew Barnes and Brian Johnson.

That's when a car passed by and they heard yelling. Johnson said, "One of the guys in the back seat yells something like white and cracker." Barnes said he yelled back, "So this is how we treat combat veterans now?" The car came back and five black men stepped out. They demanded to know what Barnes had said and he repeated himself.

Four of the five then backed off, but the fifth attacked Tevin Geike and stabbed him. Barnes struggled to stop the bleeding. He said, "I was sitting there, holding my hand on his chest and then called 911 with my left, screaming at them and telling them exactly where we were and they need to hurry and hurry and hurry."

Brian Johnson ran to tell other friends what had happened, but by the time he got back, Geike was dead. Johnson said, "We weren't out looking for trouble and trouble found us anyway." Lakewood police are looking for the killer. Geike's friends say they will remember him as a brother in arms and a man who was unflinchingly loyal to his friends.