A 21-year-old Olympia man pleaded guilty to second-degree murder Monday for his role in the October stabbing death of Matthew Samlock in a homeless encampment off Cooper Point Road. He was sentenced to nearly 23 years in prison.
Jason Beeson admitted in his guilty plea that he gave co-defendant Jakob Curtis a knife during an altercation on Oct. 12. Curtis then used the knife to stab Samlock in the heart. Olympia police found Samlock, 37, on the sidewalk off Cooper Point Road; he died at the scene.
Deputy prosecuting attorney Joseph Wheeler said in court Monday that Beeson knew Curtis was going to use the knife in the altercation with Samlock but gave it to him anyway.
Curtis, also 21, was sentenced in February to 33 years in prison after pleading guilty to first-degree murder.
Beeson, who had just been released from jail at the time of the fatal stabbing, apologized to Samlock’s family during Monday’s hearing before Thurston County Superior Court Judge Gary Tabor.
Two of Samlock’s brothers and a sister-in-law spoke about their grief in losing a loved one and asked that Tabor hand down the maximum sentence.
Samlock’s older brother, Michael Barnhardt, said his deceased brother had a generous heart and was a good friend. “We hold on tight to our memories, because they are all we have,” he said. “My heart breaks to think of my baby brother spending his last few breaths alone.”
Jeremy Pawloski: 360-754-5445 firstname.lastname@example.org