Court file: Teen says 'nothing is going to happen' before fatal shooting

Gala Zuehlke

EVERETT, Wash. - The 16-year-old boy suspected in the shooting death of 17-year-old Gala Zuehlke of Edmonds said "nothing is going to happen" just before he pulled the trigger and killed her, court documents say.

The documents, filed in Snohomish County Superior Court, also say there is probable cause to charge the teen suspect with second-degree murder in the case.

According to the case file, Gala Zuehlke and the teen suspect were in Zuehlke's bedroom at her apartment, along with another teenage girl who is Zuehlke's best friend, when the shooting took place. The teen suspect fled after the shooting.

The best friend checked Zuehlke for a pulse and realized she was dead, so she ran to her father's house and told him what had happened. The father called 911 and police responded to Zuehlke's apartment.

The best friend at first told police she wasn't at the apartment when the shooting happened, and found Zuehlke's body later. But she later admitted that she had been there and witnessed the shooting, court documents say.

The best friend told investigators that the teen suspect brought a revolver to the apartment, put a bullet in one chamber and was pulling the trigger while aiming at different objects in the room, according to the court file. She said the boy apparently didn't realize that the cylinder advanced the bullet each time he pulled the trigger.

Both girls told him to take the bullet out, but the case file says "he ignored their requests and said something to the effect of nothing is going to happen." The last time he pointed the gun at Zuehlke and pulled the trigger, the gun fired, according to the court file.

The teen suspect had been reported missing several days earlier by his family, and he remained missing after the shooting.

Investigators eventually tracked him down at a friend's house north of Bothell, where he was staying while preparing to flee to Oregon, court documents say.

Police staked out the house, and the teen suspect was arrested as he and his friend were preparing to drive away, the court file says.

The boy was questioned by investigators, and he told them he knew there was a bullet in the cylinder, but he didn't think it was in a position to fire. He cocked the hammer back, pulled the trigger, and the gun fired - hitting Zuehlke in the face, the court file says.

The teen suspect remains in custody, and no charges have yet been filed.

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