Bauer found guilty of triple murder

Jury also finds him at fault for firearms violations

Dennis Marvin Bauer is escorted out of Clallam County Superior Court after he was convicted of a 2018 triple murder on Monday. (Rob Ollikainen/for Peninsula Daily News)

Dennis Marvin Bauer is escorted out of Clallam County Superior Court after he was convicted of a 2018 triple murder on Monday. (Rob Ollikainen/for Peninsula Daily News)

PORT ANGELES — Dennis Marvin Bauer committed a triple murder near Port Angeles on the morning after Christmas 2018, a Clallam County jury found Monday.

Bauer, 53, lowered his head as Superior Court Judge Lauren Erickson read the first of all 16 guilty verdicts near the end of his two-month trial.

The seven-woman, five-man jury deliberated for three days before convicting Bauer on three counts of first-degree aggravated murder, seven counts of first-degree unlawful possession of a firearm and six counts of possession of a stolen firearm.

A sentencing hearing was set for 9 a.m. Feb. 22.

Mark Nichols, Clallam County prosecuting attorney, said Bauer faces a sentence of life in prison without the possibility of parole.

According to the jury, Bauer and his accomplices shot and killed trucking company owner Darrell Iverson, 57; his son Jordan, 27; and Jordan’s girlfriend Tiffany May, 26, on Dec. 26, 2018.

Bauer remained silent during the reading of the verdicts and while he was handcuffed and led out of the courtroom by a Clallam County sheriff’s deputy.

“The defendant has been held accountable for his actions by a jury of his peers,” Nichols said in a Monday statement.

“While we recognize that nothing can replace the lives of Darrell and Jordan Iverson and Tiffany May, we nonetheless hope that the jury’s verdicts will provide some measure of peace to the victims’ families as well as the community at large.”

Investigators said Bauer and two accomplices — Ryan Warren Ward and Kallie Ann LeTellier — shot and killed the victims at Darrell Iverson’s home on Bear Meadow Road before taking weapons and other stolen property to Bauer’s ranch on Lower Elwha Road.

Ward, 40, is serving three life sentences without the possibility of parole for his role in the murders. He refused to testify against Bauer.

LeTellier, 37, is serving a 35-year prison term for May’s death. She agreed to testify against Bauer.

Bauer’s trial began with jury selection last Nov. 8.

It featured seven weeks of witness testimony, voluminous evidence and COVID-19 precautions.

“Our system of justice would break down if you guys weren’t willing to come here and put the time into this,” Erickson told the jury Monday.

“I know it was a lot of time, a lot of in-and-out of the courtroom and it went way longer than we anticipated.”

Jury members, attorneys, court staff and attendees were required to wear masks and observe physical distancing guidelines amid spiking rates of COVID-19.

“We are appreciative of the Superior Court for Clallam County for its efforts to facilitate a trial event of this magnitude in the midst of a global pandemic,” Nichols said.

“We are also appreciative of Ms. Karen Unger for her defense expertise and service on this case.”

Unger, Bauer’s attorney, was not immediately available for comment Monday afternoon.

She had argued that Bauer was a bystander to the murders carried out by Ward and LeTellier.

Michele Devlin and Jesse Espinoza of the Clallam County Prosecuting Attorney’s Office had argued that Bauer planned and helped carry out the murders because he owed money to Darrell Iverson, the alleged financier of drug activities.

Bauer, Ward and LeTellier had used methamphetamine with the victims in the weeks leading up to the shootings, according to testimony.

The bullet-riddled bodies of Darrell and Jordan Iverson were found under tarps in the driveway of the Iverson home on New Year’s Eve 2018.

May’s body was found in a folded position in a shed on the property later that day. She, too, had been shot multiple times, according to testimony.

The triple murder was described by local law enforcement as the largest crime investigation in recent memory.

It was investigated by the Clallam County Sheriff’s Office, Port Angeles, Sequim and Port Townsend police, Jefferson County Sheriff’s Office, Olympic Peninsula Narcotics Enforcement Team (OPNET), the State Patrol and its Crime Scene Response Team, FBI, U.S. Border Patrol, U.S. Coast Guard, Homeland Security and others, Nichols said.

“We are grateful to all involved for the countless hours that they put in to investigating this case,” Nichols said.

“We would also like to extend a special thank you to Healthy Families of Clallam County and Mariposa House for the support and services they provided to the victims’ families.”

“I am personally indebted to Chief Criminal Deputy Prosecuting Attorney Michele Devlin, Deputy Prosecuting Attorney Jesse Espinoza, Victim/Witness Coordinator Jillian Munger and Legal Assistant Melanie Reifenstahl for the countless hours they spent working on this case over the last three years,” Nichols added.

“Their performance epitomizes exemplary public service.”

A pre-sentencing report will be furnished by the state Department of Corrections prior to Bauer’s sentencing.

The first-degree aggravated murder counts carry sentences of life in prison without the possibility of parole, Nichols said in a Monday email.

“The firearm counts will have their own standard range, which will run concurrently with the LWOP (life without parole) but consecutive to one another,” Nichols said.

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Rob Ollikainen is a freelance reporter.

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