A three-day attempted murder trial ended in a hung jury for one charge Friday in Cowlitz County Superior Court after jurors couldn’t decide whether the defendant was going to carry out the act before it was prevented by police.
Adam Diggins, 45, of Happy Valley, Oregon, was found guilty Friday of two other felonies and a misdemeanor: harassment by threatening to kill or cause bodily harm, cyberstalking by threatening to kill and using drug paraphernalia.
After the verdict was announced, Cowlitz County Prosecuting Attorney Ryan Jurvakainen said it was too early to say whether Diggins will be retried for premeditated attempted murder in the first degree. The court set a review date on the case for Dec. 2.
Cowlitz County Sheriff’s deputies Friday arrested a Happy Valley, Ore., man on suspicion of attempted murder, cyberstalking and harassment aft…
During closing arguments Thursday, the prosecution said Diggins planned to murder his ex-girlfriend’s male roommate based on his own admission. The prosecution showed messages from Diggins to his ex, repeatedly describing his intentions to kill her roommate. He then drove more than 60 miles from Gresham, Oregon, to Longview in the spring to do so, the prosecution said.
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The defense argued Diggins’ actions were an attempt to convince his ex-girlfriend to talk to him — not to actually carry out a murder.
Cowlitz County Prosecutor Eric Bentson said Diggins was motivated by jealousy when he drove to the roommate’s home May 7 with a firearm and ammunition. Bentson said Diggins repeatedly messaged his ex of over a decade, stating he didn’t want her to be with her roommate and asked if she was seeing him.
Cowlitz County Public Defender Kevin Blondin said Diggins’ actions weren’t those of someone planning a murder because he repeatedly announced the plans and delayed taking action. Blondin said Diggins repeatedly told his ex about the plan; he sent her a photo of her roommate’s street once arriving; and stayed in the vehicle for several minutes before he was approached by a deputy who already was at the location.
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“If you were going to commit a murder, you don’t tell someone you’re going to do it, and then show up at the residence, tell someone you’re there, then sit stagnantly in your car,” Blondin said.
Cowlitz County deputies arrested Diggins on May 7 in the 200 block of St. James Place in Longview, outside the home of his ex’s roommate. The probable cause statement that led to Diggins’ arrest said deputies found an unloaded firearm and spare magazine in Diggins’ vehicle, as well as methamphetamines and “tools commonly used in disposing of a body,” like a shovel, pickaxe and hatchet.
Deputies say Diggins was repeatedly texting and sending Facebook messages to his ex-girlfriend for two days about threatening to kill her roommate and himself. Messages included videos and photographs of Diggins’ penis and notes such as “I’m going to kill him and I will never forget you,” according to the probable cause statement.