Death on a Deadline

His family called him Lennie, after the large, lumbering character from the Steinbeck classic Of Mice and Men. A simple-minded man who is usually unaware of how his actions affect everyone around him.

It’s easy to see how that moniker fell onto Donald Dunn.

His final hours of freedom were filled with a series of errors that seemed par for the course in his life.

At 23, Dunn already had a couple of kids by two different women, and he had convinced his 17 year old girlfriend, Vanessa, to run away with him to California.  She had a troubled past of her own, and was living with eight brothers and sisters at the end of a country road on the east side of King County, just outside the city of Snoqualmie.

So, on June 2nd, 1993, they stole a Volkswagen Van. But, they hadn’t even made it out of town, when they ran out of gas.  They hopped out and hopped into another stolen car.  Donald was apparently intent on having that van, though. They filled up a jerry can at the gas station and headed back towards the Volkswagen.

They were just yards from reaching it, when they were pulled over by police. Dunn was on the run, with Vanessa in tow, sprinting toward the van. That’s where Donald would make his final stand and Vanessa would take her final breathe.

Hostage Negotiator Jim Fuda takes us back to the Scene of the Crime to walk us through those final moments. He also takes us with him to prison, where he tries to answer the age-old question… WHY did Lennie do it?

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