Charges filed in alleged torture

Four in Port Townsend accused of kidnapping, assault, robbery with cruelty

PORT TOWNSEND — The four Port Townsend men who allegedly kidnapped and tortured another resident were charged Tuesday with three Class A felonies.

Zachary James Barbee, 44, Giuseppe D. Glanz, 20, Robert John Cuevas, 19, and Isaiah William Peoples-Morse, 18, appeared in the Jefferson County Superior Court on Tuesday after reportedly kidnapping, assaulting and robbing resident Dennis Shaw on Nov. 10, 2020.

Each of the four were charged with first-degree kidnapping with deliberate cruelty, first-degree assault with deliberate cruelty and first-degree robbery with deliberate cruelty by Deputy Prosecuting Attorney Anna Phillips.

As Class A felonies, each is punishable by up to life in prison and/or a $50,000 fine, Jefferson County Superior Court Judge Keith Harper said.

Cuevas elected to be arraigned and also entered a not-guilty plea on Tuesday. His next court dates include April 23 for an omnibus hearing, May 13 for a pre-trial hearing and a three-day trial scheduled for May 24-27.

The other three are expected to enter pleas during their arraignments at 8:30 a.m. Friday in the Superior Court.

Bail is set at $100,000 for each of the four.

Attorneys for Barbee and Peoples-Morse asked to have bail reduced to $20,000.

Harper denied both requests.

“It doesn’t get any worse than it is,” said Harper to Peoples-Morse, describing the heinous actions the group allegedly conducted.

Harper said the four reportedly “tortured and nearly killed another individual.”

Harper’s denial of the bail reduction also included his ruling that, while Peoples-Morse was a minor when the alleged incident occurred — he turned 18 in January — the act was extreme and Peoples-Morse already has pending charges for residential burglary and second-degree theft.

Shaw was found injured Nov. 10 along Anderson Lake Road. He told deputies he had been kidnapped, beaten and then dumped, but he refused to provide names because of death threats from the four, according to the probable cause report by Detective Jon Stuart of the Port Townsend Police Department.

Last week, Shaw came forward to name the four as his attackers.

On Nov. 10, Shaw said he left a residence in the 500 block of Hendricks Street early in the morning and returned about mid-morning, when he said he was confronted and assaulted by the four, who accused him of “stealing items from them,” Stuart’s report said.

The four allegedly trapped and beat Shaw for several hours in the house, hitting him with fists and clubs. They debated killing him, according to Stuart’s report.

During the altercation, Shaw reportedly was shot with a BB or airsoft gun 15-20 times, Stuart said.

Barbee allegedly shot Shaw in the right eye, and that caused him to lose 75 percent of his vision, Shaw told Stuart. He said he now is able to see only light through it.

Shaw also was burned by cigarettes. He said Peoples-Morse put Suboxone strips into his mouth, Stuart’s report said.

Glanz also reportedly pointed an assault rifle at Shaw before putting it down and using the airsoft gun, according to the report.

Eventually the victim was forced to change clothes and lie down in the back of a pickup, Stuart’s report said. He was driven about 8.5 miles from the residence and dumped on or near Anderson Lake Road, where he was found by a person who called 9-1-1.

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Jefferson County reporter Zach Jablonski can be reached at 360-385-2335, ext. 5, or at [email protected]

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