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Additional information on Seattle Police Officer murder investigation


It is with profound sadness that we must inform you that a Seattle Police Officer was killed in the line of duty last night.  Officer Timothy Brenton,  a Field Training Officer assigned to Third Watch, East Precinct, was shot to death while he and Student Officer Britt Sweeney, were parked in their patrol car in the 100 Block of 29th Avenue  last night shortly after 10:00 p.m.  The investigation thus far has shown that Officers Brenton and Sweeney had just completed a traffic stop and were discussing the stop as part of Officer Sweeney’s training.  Their patrol car was parked facing southbound in the 100 Block of 29th Avenue on the west side of the street.   Officer Sweeney was in the driver’s seat; Officer Brenton was in the front passenger seat.  As they were discussing training, a vehicle, described as a light-colored small car, also travelling southbound, pulled up next to the patrol vehicle.  The suspect(s) opened fire upon the officers.  The bullets went by Officer Sweeney’s head, grazing her in the back of the neck and tearing her uniform shirt and vest.  Bullets struck Officer Brenton in the head, killing him.  The suspect vehicle then fled northbound on 29th Avenue.  Officer Sweeney was able to exit the patrol car and return fire at the suspect vehicle.  The suspect vehicle may have been struck.  Officer Sweeney was able to get on the air and summon additional officers to the scene.  Officer Sweeney’s performance was exemplary under the most stressful and horrific call imaginable.

There was a massive response from all points of the city and beyond. Patrol, detectives, and the Hospital Response Team all responded and provided support for officers and the families.   Information is being developed as to possible suspect(s).  SPD Homicide detectives are responsible for this investigation.

There is no other way to describe what occurred last night to Officers Brenton and Sweeney other than this was a deliberate act of murder.   We have all the resources of the Department working on this investigation, and will not stop until we have those responsible answer for this heinous crime.  We owe it to Officers Brenton and Sweeney, their families, ourselves and the community.

Officer Brenton was 39 years old and a 9-year veteran of the Department at the time of his death.  He leaves behind a wife and two children.  Officer Sweeney is 33 years old and a recent graduate of the Washington State Criminal Justice Training Center.

Funeral arrangements are being planned and more information will be forthcoming.

This is a profound tragedy and shock to our senses.  We will take the time to grieve, reflect, and honor our fallen brother.  The Department’s Crisis Incident Stress Management Team will be available for all those who request it.

The Department has set up a tip line for the public to provide information that may assist the investigation.  That number is (206) 233-5000.

A bank account for Officer Timothy Brenton’s family is being set up at this time.  We will provide more information when the details become available.

Anyone with information regarding this incident is urged to call either 911 or the Seattle Police Homicide Unit at 206 684-5550, or the tipline at (206) 233-5000.  Those wishing to remain annonymous are encouraged to call Crime Stoppers at 1-800-222-TIPS (8477) or send a text to CRIMES (274637).  Your text message should include “TIP486”  to ensure proper routing.  If a tip leads to an arrest and the filing of charges, callers may qualify for a cash reward of up to $1,000.  An additional $20,000 reward is being offered by the Seattle Police Officer’s Guild, for a total of $21,000.  Calls are taken 24 hours a day.