SWAT team serves search warrant in Hazel Dell

Staging area is at JM Plaza




Southwest Washington Regional SWAT Team officers served a search warrant Wednesday in Hazel Dell in connection with an Oct. 1 homicide.

The warrant was served about 5:30 a.m. at a three-story condo at 514 N.E. 85th Circle. Police staged at the nearby JM Plaza shopping center along Northeast Hazel Dell Avenue.

Officers did not find anyone inside the residence, said Sgt. Fred Neiman. Major Crimes detectives searched the place for evidence that Neiman said is connected to the homicide of Matthew Clark.

Detectives recovered a small amount of a controlled substance and a number of potential evidence items, Neiman said. No stolen property was recovered and no details on the recovered items were released.

Sheriff’s deputies also responded to the condo a few weeks ago after hearing of a possible connection to the homicide investigation, Neiman said.

“Patrol has been here a number of times for complaints and calls,” he said.

According to court documents, Clark was murdered after a dispute over stolen guns.

Two Vancouver men made their first appearances Monday morning in Clark County Superior Court in connection with the killing.

Judge Barbara Johnson set bail at $1 million each for Kirk M. Hernandez Sr., 42, and Darrell C. Fry, 33, and appointed attorneys Tom Phelan and Bob Yoseph to represent them, respectively.

Hernandez and Fry were arrested Saturday on suspicion of first-degree murder and first-degree burglary.

Clark’s family said that Matthew, 43, was a talented artist who enjoyed the river, playing his guitar and martial arts. He had a lifelong interest in reptiles.