Denise Yun, left, is running against incumbent Federal Way City Councilmember (Position 7) Linda Kochmar, who is also the current council president. (File photos)

Denise Yun, left, is running against incumbent Federal Way City Councilmember (Position 7) Linda Kochmar, who is also the current council president. (File photos)

Denise Yun still in race for Federal Way City Council against Linda Kochmar

Despite theft accusation, Yun says that she has not quit her campaign and does not intend to do so.

Federal Way City Council candidate Denise Yun, accused by a local hardware store owner of theft, said she is still running to unseat current Council president Linda Kochmar.

During a phone call July 27, a reporter understood Yun to have said “I quit my campaign.” The Federal Way Mirror first reported that detail and others about the alleged theft last week.

Yun said in a follow-up email this week that she has not quit her campaign, and does not intend to do so.

She is still campaigning and meeting voters: “I am confident I will win this race,” Yun said in an email.

“I look forward to when all the facts of this incident, which I feel is character assassination and politically motivated to damage my campaign, I will be vindicated and hope the citizens of Federal Way understand being accused does not mean one is guilty,” Yun said in an email.

Yun was accused this month of shoplifting two hammers and attempting to take a third from the Trinity Ace Hardware on Pacific Highway on July 18. The store owner, Nick Rose, points to video evidence of Yun putting the hammers in her purse and said voters should be aware of the incident.

Yun maintains her innocence. She said she took the hammers out of her purse before leaving, and claimed the owner made a racially offensive comment about her running for office as a Korean before she left.

Rose denied making that comment, and said he didn’t even know who Yun was, what her ethnicity was, or that she was a candidate for office before Yun had already left the store. Rose learned her identity afterwards, when an employee passed along a campaign phone number that Yun had given that employee, he said.

As of Aug. 1, Yun has not yet been criminally charged over the incident.

Kent city prosecutor on the case

Police finished investigating the case in late July and sent it to the Federal Way city prosecutor for review. Because Yun is running for office against a sitting council member, and to avoid the appearance of bias, Federal Way gave the case to the Kent city prosecutor, Federal Way city spokesperson David Solano said Aug. 1.

“We are still in the process of receiving and reviewing the discovery in this matter,” City of Kent chief prosecuting attorney Sara Watson said in an email Aug. 1. “No filing decision has been made at this time.”

Talk to us

Please share your story tips by emailing

To share your opinion for publication, submit a letter through our website Include your name, address and daytime phone number. (We’ll only publish your name and hometown.) Please keep letters to 300 words or less.

More in Northwest

Jeffrey Nelson at his trial May 16, 2024. (Photo by Ken Lambert / The Seattle Times / Pool)
Murder trial begins for Auburn Police officer Jeffrey Nelson

First officer in Washington to face a murder charge following the passage of Initiative 940.

Men serving halal food on Eid Mubarak 2024. Photo By Joshua Solorzano/Federal Way Mirror
Washington state passes Halal Food Consumer Protection Act

Federal Way Muslim activist details how this bill came about and why it is important

Head-on collision kills 31-year-old woman in Auburn

The fatal collision occurred May 11 in the area of I Street Northeast in north Auburn.

A screenshot of King County Councilmember Reagan Dunn speaking about a proposed amendment for the proposed $20 minimum wage ordinance. (Screenshot)
King County approves $20.29 minimum wage for unincorporated areas

Councilmember Reagan Dunn and more than a dozen business owners argued tips and health care expenses should be a part of the new wage. The council passed the ordinance without the amendment.

Reyna Hernandez (right) with her mother. Photo Courtesy of Ivonne Carillo-Hernandez
Friends of Renton's Reyna Hernandez detail her cheerful character

Friends in Renton considered her family and saw some warning signs of abuse prior to her murder.

Maleng Regional Justice Center in Kent. FILE PHOTO
Man receives one month jail sentence in fatal Renton hit-and-run

2020 crash killed 16-year-old boy on motorcycle along Interstate 405; mother objects to plea deal

Investigators bust drug trafficking operation in King County

Thousands of fentanyl pills reportedly were kept at a Federal Way storage facility.

Is state school board association seeing a conservative takeover?

Anonymous members say changes in the group’s voting rules are allowing anti-LGBTQIA+ measures

Food in a foam takeout container.  file photo
Foam coolers, takeout containers will be banned in WA

The prohibition on the sale and distribution of these products will take effect June 1 under a law the Legislature approved in 2021.

Federal Way Public Market concept receives $75,000 for study

The home of the envisioned project is off South 320th Street and 23rd Avenue South.