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John Charlton charged with 1st-degree murder of Renton mom

John Charlton has been charged with murder in the first degree. (Grant Hindsley/ via AP)


John Charlton was charged with murder in the first degree and theft Wednesday afternoon.

Charlton is accused in the murder of Ingrid Lyne, 40, whose partial remains were found in a recycling bin in Seattle’s Central District on Saturday. The defendant allegedly killed the victim, dismembered her body and drove to Seattle where her remains were discarded. Charlton is also charged with theft of a motor vehicle for taking Lyne’s automobile, which was found in downtown Seattle on Monday night. If convicted as charged, the defendant could face a sentence range of at least 21 to nearly 28 years in prison.

“The tragic murder of Ingrid Lyne has left a family and community in a spiral of grief and anguish,” said King County Prosecuting Attorney Dan Satterberg.  “We may never understand why she was killed, but the police and prosecutors working on this case have done a tremendous job of piecing together a solid case against the person we believe to be responsible for her death.”

Charlton remains in jail with bail set at $2 million. With today’s filing of charges, a second court appearance which was scheduled for Thursday will be canceled. The defendant will return to court for arraignment at the King County Courthouse on April 27 at 8:30 a.m.

The King County Medical Examiner has also definitively identified the remains found Saturday in a Seattle recycling bin to be those of murdered Renton mother.

While police were confident based on a visual identification, the medical examiner had to make a legal identification with DNA and dental records. They’ve also formally ruled her death a murder caused by homicidal violence.As for when she died, and more specifics on how, that’s still under investigation.

As for when she died, and more specifics on how, that’s still under investigation.


Grisly new evidence brought to court convinced a judge Tuesday to hold John Robert Charlton on $2 million bail.

It was last minute evidence not even the defense had seen. A prosecutor said forensic teams searching Ingrid Lyne’s home found traces of blood and a near empty container of trash bags matching the kind found with Lyne’s remains.

Blood was also found in Lyne’s car.

Police say Charlton, 37, admitted that he’d been dating Lyne about a month and they’d come home late from the Mariner’s game Friday. But, Charlton claimed he was so drunk he didn’t know how they got back to Lyne’s home or what happened that night and woke up on a sidewalk Saturday morning. He said he believed he and Lyne had sex but that Lyne was acting “weird,” but could not provide further details.

Charlton was arrested Monday in Snohomish County and had his bail hearing at the King County Jail. He is accused of killing Ingrid Lyne, 40, who’s body of was found in pieces Saturday in a Central District recycling bin. Lyne was a mother of three girls and a nurse at Swedish Medical Center.

During a search of Lyne’s bathroom, investigators also found a 15-inch pruning saw near the bathtub.

During his interview with police, Charlton denied having any injuries, but detectives observed an abrasison to his forehead, and injuries to his lip and chin. He also had scratches on his chest and an abrasion on his left hand.

A second court appearance is scheduled for April 14, which is also the deadline for a charging decision.

How did they meet?

Police have not elaborated exactly, though one of Lyne’s friends wrote on Facebook that they met online. She wrote that Lyne went on a date to the Mariners game, and Lyne’s family responded to that post with Facebook screengrabs of Charlton’s page. KIRO 7 has been sent an online dating profile for the site Plenty of Fish that appears to be Lyne, though that is not posted here because police have not confirmed that profile or said how Lyne and Charlton met online. Charlton had a profile on Plenty of Fish.

When was Lyne last seen?

Friday, April 8, before the Mariners home opener at Safeco Field. Police said her cell phone records were crucial in the investigation. Her ex-husband told police her cell phone was left at her Renton home. Search warrant documents elaborating on the investigation have not been made public. Search warrant affidavits and returns are filed in King County Superior Court and will eventually be available.

What do we know about Charlton’s history?

  • Charlton was born in Idaho.
  • In spring 1997, Charlton was convicted of marijuana possession, with the condition that he could have the charge deferred by completing alcohol information school within 90 days, among other conditions. He complied with the alcohol information school, however the deferred sentence was revoked later that year because of another violation in Auburn.
  • The Auburn case was a domestic violence assault case (fourth-degree) filed May 21, 1998, in Auburn Municipal Court. KIRO 7 has requested copies of the case documents.
  • In summer 1998, Charlton was arrested for DUI in Washington. That case led to a convicted for first-degree negligent driving, according to court records.
  • In 2006, Charlton was convicted of aggravated robbery in Utah.
  • In 2009, he was convicted of felony theft in Montana.
  • In October 2015, Charlton was found guilty in Lynnwood Municipal Court of driving without insurance.
  • In February 2016, Charlton was stopped for driving a Ford Taurus with expired tags. He listed his address in Seattle’s Ravenna neighborhood.


Is Charlton a serial killer?

Police have not said that. Ray and JoAnn Charlton said their son had taken the movie “Hannibal” — about a serial killer — from a shelf in 2006 and told his mother she should watch it and “beware.”

What about the reports that Charlton’s parents feared him?

Ray and JoAnn Charlton said in a filing for a restraining order that he had tried to provoke a fight with them while he was drunk and abusive in 2006. That’s where described the “Hannibal” moment. They also said he had told them “life was putting too much pressure on him” and he felt he was becoming mentally unstable. The restraining order was later dismissed at the parents’ request.

Is Charlton linked to other missing persons cases?

Police had not linked Charlton to any additional cases as of noon Tuesday.

What about the Mountlake Terrace death of Cheryl DeBoer?

Mountlake Terrace police said there was no evidence DeBoer’s death was a homicide. The 53-year-old mother was found in a culvert last February after a days-long search.

She died of asphyxia from a plastic bag over her head and freshwater drowning, authorities said. Follow this link for additional details about DeBoer’s case.

KIRO 7 contributed to this story.


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