Man charged in Orting 'treehouse' murder

Troy Joe Chute was charged with murder and assault on Tuesday in a shooting outside Orting. (Photo: KOMO News)

TACOMA, Wash. -- A 42-year-old man, accused of murder and assault in the death of one man and wounded of another who were shot in a so-called "treehouse" along the Carbon River near Orting, pleaded not guilt in Pierce County Superior Court on Tuesday.

Troy Chute was arrested Monday in Orting along the banks of the Carbon River.

Pierce County deputies responded to a 911 call Monday morning to find a burned treehouse with a dead body and rifle sitting in the ruins.

According to court documents, Chute reportedly climbed up the treehouse and got into an argument with a man and woman over a stolen motorcycle.

“We’re still sorting this case out but it appears to be another unfortunate example of a relatively trivial dispute escalating into violence,” said Pierce County prosecutor Mark Lindquist.

The male victim was shot once in the chest.

Deputies say the suspect found his way across the Carbon River and sought out help for the woman, who he reportedly shot in the foot.

The woman talked to police before being transported to a nearby hospital.

Chute’s next court date is March 27.

His bail was set at $2,000,000.

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