Would-be shooter from Coupeville pleads not guilty

Coupeville resident Esteban Guerro appears in court Monday. He’s accused of walking around the town with a saw-off shotgun in a backpack. - Jessie Stensland / Whidbey News-Times
Coupeville resident Esteban Guerro appears in court Monday. He’s accused of walking around the town with a saw-off shotgun in a backpack.
— image credit: Jessie Stensland / Whidbey News-Times

A 19-year-old man is accused of walking around Coupeville earlier this month with a sawed-off shotgun in his backpack, allegedly intent on shooting his mother’s boyfriend or, if he couldn’t find him, just firing at “someone walking along the sidewalk,” court documents alleged.

Prosecutor charged Esteban Guerro in Island County Superior Court Aug. 8 with the unlawful possession of a firearm and possession of an illegal firearm. He pleaded not guilty Aug. 20.

On Aug. 5, a Coupeville woman reported that her ex-boyfriend took her SUV without permission while she was in the hospital.

The next day, the woman contacted Lt. Mike Hawley with the Island County Sheriff’s Office. She said her son, Esteban Guerro, was very upset with her boyfriend, “Mugsy,” for stealing the vehicle and planned on killing him for “disrespecting his mother,” according to Hawley’s report on the incident.

The woman said Guerro and his friend left the home on foot to look for Mugsy. He was armed with a sawed-off shotgun, which he was carrying in a backpack, the report states. Before leaving, Guerro allegedly threatened to shoot a random person if he couldn’t find his mother’s boyfriend.

About an hour and a half later, Hawley found Guerro and his friend walking on Main Street. Guerro didn’t have the weapon, but led deputies to where he had hidden it in bushes near the library. The deputies found the backpack containing a sawed-off .410 shotgun with the stock removed, according to the police report.

In another case, Guerro was charged with second-degree burglary, malicious mischief and third-degree theft was allegedly breaking into the E-Z Tobacco store on Pioneer Way in Oak Harbor May 13. He and a friend were caught on video as they stole $685 worth of cigarettes, court documents show.

Guerro is currently being held in jail on $50,000 bail for each case.

In court, the judge agreed to lift a court order so that Guerro’s mother can now go visit him in jail.


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