Police arrest man in murder of woman found dead on Burke-Gilman Trail

by: Natasha Chen Updated:


SEATTLE - Police say they have a confession from the man who shot a young woman at point blank range and left her body near the popular Burke-Gilman Trail.

32- year-old Uriel Deshawn Boyd is a felon with a rapsheet that includes charges related to drugs, guns, and prostitution.  He also lived just blocks from the victim, Jowanna Gooden.

Court documents say the last place Gooden was seen alive was R Bar in Renton.  A witness at the bar says she voluntarily went with him to his car late on the night of October 3rd.  The next morning her body was found with a single gunshot to the forehead in the 2400 block of North Northlake Way, along the trail.

When KIRO 7 went to R Bar, we found people who recognized Gooden and said she had been a fairly regular customer since the summer.  Chris Stephens said, "She seemed like a nice young lady, but lonely I think."  He explained that Gooden would walk around in the area quite often, and she was known to many people in the area as a prostitute.  "Everyone was just assuming that she had gone, picked up some guy to go out and he had killed her," Stephens said.  "It's awful."

Gooden lived on Petrovitsky Road, just a few blocks from R Bar and just a few blocks from the suspect's apartment.  The two were seen together on different occasions by different people, but the nature of their relationship is unclear.  The first documented time they interacted was when Gooden reported that Boyd assaulted her near his apartment three weeks before her murder.  Both were seen together at R Bar afterwards.

According to police, Boyd has admitted to shooting Gooden near Gas Works Park in Seattle.  He says it was because they got into an argument about damage done to his car.  He blamed her. He claimed he pulled out a gun just to "scare her" and it just "went off."

Members of Gooden's family went to court Wednesday, but Boyd waived his court appearance, and they never saw him.  They called him a coward.  They say they don't know him. They're just glad he's off the streets. They spent their words remembering Jowanna.  "She was very loved and is very missed," said an aunt. "She didn't deserve to die that way. No one deserves to die that way.”

Boyd is being held on one million dollars bond.