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Burlington Gas Station Murder Investigation Update

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Burlington, WA– The identity of the 23-year old man  murdered on December 6th, 2019 at Skagit Big Mini Mart in Burlington has been released as well as details leading up to his shooting death.

According to Probable cause affidavits of arrest obtained by SkagitBreaking.com through a public disclosure request, on December 6th, 2019 at approximately 11:24 a.m. Burlington Police Officers were dispatched to the Skagit Big Mini Mart located at 157 South Burlington Boulevard for reports of a gunshot victim in a vehicle near the gas pumps.   Dispatch advised incoming Officers that another caller stated a male driving a maroon Ford Explorer was seen leaving the gas station driving Westbound on West Fairhaven Avenue after the shots had been fired.

Arriving Officers located a male, later identified as 23-year old Douglas J Gunter, pictured below, in a black 1994 Honda Civic. Gunter had been shot and was treated on scene by Paramedics but later died  from his injuries.

Photo Credit: Facebook

During the course of the homicide  investigation, Burlington Officers observed security footage from the Skagit Big Mini Mart and observed the shooter arrive at the Skagit Big Mini Mart in a maroon Ford Explorer. The suspect then entered the Skagit Big Mini Mart and walked around the store but didn’t purchase anything. The suspect then exited the store as the black Honda Civic driven by Gunter arrived. As the suspect exited the store he looked at the Honda and immediately pulled out a pistol from what appeared to be his right shorts pocket. The suspect is then seen on surveillance video walking up to the driver’s side of the vehicle and he began firing into the vehicle through the driver’s side window at Gunter.  Gunter  is seen on video attempting to  move away from the Shooter. After shooting Gunter, the suspect ran South around the Skagit Big Mini Mart and around the backside of the building and back to his vehicle. The suspect can be seen on video returning the gun to his right shorts pocket. Once back in his vehicle, the suspect drover around the South Side of the Skagit Big Mini Mart, toward the west, then along the north side of the building where he exited Westbound onto West Fairhaven Avenue.

Photo: Skagit Breaking

Officers sent an image of the suspected shooter from the Surveillance video to all Skagit County Law Enforcement Officers in an attempt to identify him. Officers recognized the suspect as 19-year old Christian Manuel Flores of Sedro-Woolley.   Flores has a last known address in the 700 block of Reed Street in Sedro-Woolley.  In the surveillance video, Flores can be seen wearing a gray beanie, black Nike Sweatshirt, blue shorts, a blue bandana hanging from his shorts, white socks pulled up to his knees, and white shoes.

Photo: Burlington Police Department

Local Schools, including the Burlington Edison High School as well as Westview Elementary School were placed on precautionary lockdown as Officers attempted to locate FLORES and his vehicle. Officers quickly located a marron Ford Explorer parked in the Northwest Corner of the Norris Place Apartment complex, approximately five blocks away from the Skagit Big Mini Mart. The vehicle was still warm but unoccupied.  A check of the vehicle registration returned to Christian Manuel Flores and an opened case of Pepsi was observed on the driver’s side floorboard of the vehicle.

Photo: Skagit Breaking

Officers from several surrounding agencies, including the Mount Vernon Police Department, Sedro-Woolley Police Department, Skagit County Sheriff’s Office and the Washington State Patrol responded to the area to set up containment. A K-9 was brought in to track FLORES.   The K-9 was able to track FLORES to the Southeast corner of the Norris Place Apartment Complex and located a black Nike Sweatshirt underneath a vehicle. The sweatshirt matched the sweatshirt that FLORES was seen on Video wearing in the Skagit Big Mini Mart Security footage.   Flores vehicle was impounded by Detectives and taken to a secure building  awaiting a search warrant. Officers noted the words “SURENO X3” scratched into the side of the impounded vehicle.

Photo: Skagit Breaking

During the course of the investigation,  Court documents show that Detectives were able to obtain surveillance video from the apartment complex and FLORES vehicle was seen pulling into the complex at 11:27 a.m., roughly three minutes after the reported shooting.  The video showed FLORES still wearing the grey beanie, blue shorts, high white socks, and white shoes walking west along the South side of the apartment complex carrying a black garbage bag in one hand and what appeared to be a can of Pepsi in the other hand.  The suspect was then observed on video shoving the garbage bag he was carrying deep into the dumpster. Detectives learned that FLORES asked an unknown male for ride outside the apartment complex and the two subjects left the area in a vehicle prior to Officers locating FLORES.

Photo: Skagit Breaking

According to Court Documents, Officers later searched FLORES Facebook Page where his profile states he is a Member of the “Kings” Gang.  His photos show multiple “known” King’s Gang Members throwing up  gang signs. The photos included a 2017 photo with a known Kings Gang Member, Christian Alexander QUIJAS.  15-year old QUIJAS  and 17-year old Daniel GRACIDA, both pleaded guilty in 2017 to shooting and killing rival gang member, 16-year old Angel Estrada in Burlington on March 20th, 2017.  Estrada was allegedly  murdered by QUIJAS and GRACIDA for dating QUIJAS sister.

Photo: Skagit Breaking

Detectives later learned that prior to the shooting at Skagit Big Mini Mart, FLORES had communicated with his ex-girlfriend and mother of his child. He told her that he was going to kill an innocent person if she didn’t come and see him. Detectives have learned that fellow Kings Gang Members are allegedly  attempting to transport FLORES to Mexico.

Photo: Skagit Breaking

Family and Friends of Douglas Gunter, known as Dougie Doug on Social Media said he appeared to have been shot and killed because he was in the wrong place at the wrong time, wearing the wrong color shirt.

Photo: Skagit Breaking

 

“Dougie Doug had barely pulled up to the gas station to get a Gatorade so he could go play football with his friends when he was shot. He hadn’t even gotten out of his car yet”, said one witness who asked to remain anonymous.  “Doug was a member of the Swinomish Tribe, he was loved by many and will be greatly missed.”  Doug  had previously had addiction issues that he had been seeking treatment for but he was not a gang member or a gang banger  said the witness.  “They shot him because of the color of his shirt.” 

Photo: Skagit Breaking

The Family and Swinomish Community held an All Denominational Prayer Service for Douglas James Gunter on December 9th, 2019. A funeral service was held at 10:00 a.m. on December 10th at the Swinomish Youth-Center.

Photo: Skagit Breaking

Flores  is being sought by the Burlington Police Department for Murder in the First Degree with a firearm enhancement. If anyone has information on the whereabouts of Christian Manuel Floresthey are asked to contact the Burlington Police Department at (360) 428-3211 or call 9-1-1. FLORES is considered armed and dangerous. Reference Homicide Case number 19-B08781

 

About the Author

Skagit Breaking Staff
I'm a long time Skagit County Resident. I believe in doing the right thing and helping others when you can.

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