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Tuesday, October 28, 1997 - Page updated at 12:00 AM

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Puget Sound Newswatch

Man Guilty In Pickax Assault

NORTH BEND - Rejecting charges of attempted murder, a King County Superior Court jury yesterday instead found Darryl Easterly guilty of assault in striking a friend with a pickax three times.

The jury also found the 18-year-old North Bend man guilty of first-degree burglary and use of a deadly weapon in the Feb. 19 attack on 16-year-old Ryan Frayo as Frayo slept on his mother's couch in her North Bend apartment.

Easterly's attorney had argued that the case was one of mistaken identity. Jeff Piercy initially had been arrested and jailed for the attack. Charges against him were dropped in May after he had spent more than two months in jail.

Prosecutors said Easterly had attacked Frayo because he thought he was another youth whom he had fought with at a party earlier that night.

Easterly could be sentenced to up to 16 years in prison.

Copyright (c) 1997 Seattle Times Company, All Rights Reserved.

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