“I’ve Got a Pistol, Too” Man Tells Police Before Officer-Involved Shooting

After leading Washington State Patrol (WSP) troopers on a high-speed chase from Tacoma to Seattle, a 35-year-old suspect ditched his truck ran through yards the Beacon Hill neighborhood. There, he hid inside a shed, and warned approaching officers “I’ve got a pistol, too.”

After the suspect refused to step out from inside the shed into the darkened yard of a home in the 6400 block of S. Eddy Street, officers saw the man holding what they believed—and he had told them—was a handgun.Gun1

The suspect pointed the gun at police, and one officer—a 6-year veteran—opened fire, fatally striking the suspect. Police were then able to recover the man’s weapon, which turned out to be a realistic-looking pellet gun.

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Audio of the incident—with officers repeatedly asking the man to identify himself and exit the shed—is posted below. He can be heard telling officers he is armed with a pistol at the 1:32 mark. Portions of the audio are somewhat garbled due to the officer’s distance from his patrol car.

We’ve also included audio from police dispatchers and a frightened Beacon HIll neighbor who called 911 during the incident.

A WSP infrared camera-equipped plane, Smokey 3, also captured footage of the chase and lengthy search for the suspect, as WSP troopers, and SPD patrol and K9 officers combed the neighborhood.

The officer who fatally shot the suspect has been placed on paid administrative leave, as per standard department policy.

Police have not yet determined why the suspect fled from state troopers, but have learned he was wanted on felony and misdemeanor warrants for failing to appear in court for forgery and drug charges.

A woman who was in the suspect’s truck during the high-speed freeway chase was taken to Harborview Medical Center with minor injuries sustained during the pursuit. She was later released from the hospital and is not considered a suspect in the case.