By Natalie Johnson / firstname.lastname@example.org
An 18-year-old who allegedly stabbed another teen in the chest Thursday night at the Chehalis Walmart parking lot after a disagreement over marijuana is being held on $500,000 bail after making his first court appearance in the case Monday.
Jose F. Chagolla-Flores, of Onalaska, whose name was spelled incorrectly as “Chagollan” in an initial press release and on court documents, was officially charged with first-degree assault Monday afternoon in Lewis County Superior Court.
When being interviewed by detectives, Chagolla-Flores identified himself as a member of the Sureños gang.
“We’re not alleging this was a gang-related incident,” Lewis County Deputy Prosecutor Sara Beigh told the court Monday.
Beigh requested $500,000 bail, citing Chagolla-Flores’ statements about his gang affiliation, suspicion that he had ties to California and a sealed juvenile record. Defense attorney Rachael Tiller asked his bail to remain at $100,000, where it was set by a judge over the weekend.
Superior Court Judge Joely O’Rourke imposed the $500,000, but said her decision was based on a concern for community safety, rather than on his juvenile history or ties out of state.
According to court documents, police responded at 8:55 p.m. Thursday to the Chehalis Walmart in the 1600 block of Northwest Louisiana Avenue after receiving a report of two males fighting in the parking lot.
According to police, witnesses reported the males were in a fight but left in separate vehicles before police arrived.
Officers learned from dispatchers that a 17-year-old was taken to Providence Centralia Hospital with a stab wound to the chest. As officers responded to the hospital, the boy was being prepped for transportation to Harborview Medical Center in Seattle.
The victim “was not cooperative with officers,” according to court documents and later underwent surgery to repair the damage done by the stabbing.
Court documents do not specify what type or size of knife was used.
Officers continued to speak with witnesses, and located Chagolla-Flores, now identified as the suspect, the following day at a residence on Brockway Road outside of Chehalis.
They arrested Chagolla-Flores and impounded his vehicle pending a search warrant.
He told police he agreed to meet “a third party” at the parking lot to sell marijuana. He said he arrived and met the other teen, the alleged victim, who hit him in the face.
According to court documents Chagolla-Flores told police “he was tired from working and he hates to be hit in the face so he pulled out his knife and stabbed (the victim) in the chest.”
Police found the knife in a backpack Chagolla-Flores had in his possession.
Officers did not report seeing any injuries on Chagolla-Flores’ face, but noticed a knife cut on his hand.
As of Monday morning, the Chehalis Police Department reported the condition of the victim and the extent of his injuries were unknown.
Chagolla-Flores’ next court hearing is scheduled for Thursday.