Ian Patrick Williams, a 25-year-old college senior studying computer science, was charged Wednesday by King County prosecutors with second-degree murder and held on a $2 million bail for stabbing a man only seconds after encountering him outside a Bothell apartment complex, according to court documents.
Bothell police said Williams — who has no criminal record — is seen on video surveillance suddenly lunging and stabbing 29-year-old John Huynh 45 seconds after Williams allegedly made an obscene gesture at Huynh, who had never met Williams before, according to witnesses.
“I know there have been a lot of questions regarding motive, and this investigation is just in its beginning process,” said Bothell police Capt. Bryan Keller.
According to police documents, Huynh was leaving a Bothell apartment along with several people, including his wife, while Williams — who lived in the apartment building — was standing outside near the door.
Witnesses told Bothell police that Williams immediately “gave the middle finger” to Huynh, who was leaving the building.
Witnesses told police that Huynh then asked Williams if he “flipped him off or waved at him.” A witness told police seconds later, he saw “Williams pull out a knife and stab the victim in the heart.”
Police said a lot of witnesses at the apartment building and at restaurants across the street with outdoor seating saw everything that happened.
“Easily, 10, if not more,” Keller said. “I would think there would probably be in the ‘more’ category right now.”
Bothell police said immediately after the stabbing, Williams ran to his third-floor apartment he shared with his mother. Williams’ mother told police her son was “very excited and told her an anti-masker had attacked him,” according to court documents.
Police said Williams was found in a bedroom of his apartment with bloody cuts on his hands. Williams also told officers where to find this folding knife with a 3-inch blade, which police believe is the murder weapon, in a bathroom nearby. Williams’ mother told police her son carried the knife to open boxes.
Williams refused to make a statement after his arrest, according to police.
A GoFundMe page has raised more than $60,000 for Huynh’s widow to pay for funeral expenses, which include transporting the body to Pennsylvania, where Huynh was born.
A vigil for Huynh was planned for Friday in Bothell, but was canceled out of respect for his family.
Cox Media Group