The teenage son and namesake of convicted triple murderer Brent Luyster is facing an allegation of attempted murder after police say he slashed at and threatened to kill a man.
Although he’s being held at the juvenile detention center, Vancouver’s Brent Luyster III appeared Wednesday morning via video in Clark County Superior Court. In addition to attempted second-degree murder, the 16-year-old is facing potential charges of second-degree escape, felony harassment and resisting arrest. Luyster was automatically remanded to adult court based on his age and the nature of the allegations.
The teen wore a dark-colored sweat suit, cloth mask and gloves. His speech was muffled by the mask, but he answered “Yes, sir,” to most of the judge’s questions.
Judge Daniel Stahnke granted the prosecution’s request to set bail at $250,000.
According to the prosecution, Luyster was released from a state juvenile detention facility April 14. He has previous convictions for first-degree robbery (2018), second-degree robbery (2017), malicious mischief (2016), unlawful possession of a firearm (2016) and fourth-degree assault (2016).
Defense attorney Michele Michalek did not argue bail during the hearing. She did say that the attempted murder allegation seemed to be “pushing it,” considering the allegations.
After the hearing, Luyster refused to sign his paperwork and asked about his bail.
“All right, well, you guys have a nice day, sir,” he said, as he was escorted from the jail room.
He will be arraigned May 19.
Vancouver police were dispatched about 6:30 p.m. Tuesday for a disturbance involving a weapon at the intersection of East 27th Street and Grand Boulevard.
Multiple callers reported that a young, white male, who was described as being bald and wearing a black jacket, pulled a knife on a man and tried to attack him, according to an affidavit of probable cause.
The victim, Deven Mantanona, and his girlfriend, Logan Fox, had left the nearby Subway store and were walking north on Grand from Fourth Plain Boulevard. Luyster, who was across the street, would not stop staring at Fox, which prompted Mantanona to say, “What up?” the affidavit says.
Luyster then got off his bike, pulled a knife from his pocket and sprinted across the street toward Mantanona. He chased the man, slashing at him while saying, “I’ll (expletive) kill you, Crip!” the court document states. (Vancouver police spokeswoman Kim Kapp said police have no information at this time that the incident was gang-related.)
One witness told police that he thought Mantanona “was going to get stabbed if he didn’t jump back. He swung the knife about five to six times,” court records say.
Luyster got on his bike and left. However, he returned seconds later with the knife in hand. He again ran at the victim but stopped when he heard police sirens and ran away, according to the affidavit.
Neither Mantanona nor Fox were injured.
Luyster was detained near Fourth Plain and Fairmount Avenue. Police said a large, fixed blade was found on him.
Handwritten notes on Luyster’s court paperwork indicate that he attempted to escape while he was being taken to the detention center.
Eyewitness to murders
In November 2017, Luyster, then 13, was held in contempt of court after refusing to testify at his father’s triple-murder trial. The ruling prompted an explosive outburst from the teen outside the presence of the jury.
Luyster Sr. was on trial for the July 2016 slayings of his best friend, Zachary David Thompson, 36; friend Joseph Mark LaMar, 38; and LaMar’s partner, Janell Renee Knight, 43, at LaMar’s home southeast of Woodland. He also shot Thompson’s partner, Breanne Leigh, then 32, in the face, but she survived.
The boy was an apparent eyewitness to the shootings.
Following several refusals, the judge lifted the contempt order. Luyster Jr. had been transported to Clark County, for the purpose of testifying, from a juvenile facility where he was serving time in an unrelated case, according to The Columbian’s archives.
A jury later convicted his father of three counts of aggravated first-degree murder, attempted first-degree murder and one count each of first- and second-degree unlawful possession of a firearm. The elder Luyster received three life sentences without the possibility of parole, plus another nearly 54 years to run consecutively.
The violent, known white supremacist was then convicted a year later on federal firearms charges and sentenced to serve another 10 years. A state database shows he is currently incarcerated at the Washington Corrections Center in Shelton.