$1M bail set for woman in Seattle parks dept. shooting

SEATTLE — A King County judge set a $1 million bail on Saturday for a woman accused of shooting a 65-year-old man inside a parks department building in Seattle.

Parks department employee Carolyn Piksa waived her right to a court appearance Saturday. The judge found probable cause to first-degree assault and set the bail, said King County prosecutor spokesman Dan Donohoe.

The 46-year-old Piksa is accused of wounding co-worker 65-year-old Bill Keller in the chest at a Parks and Recreation Department maintenance building, then driving to a city community center to confront a co-worker with a handgun.

The co-worker was able to get away and Piksa left with the woman’s purse. Meanwhile, a wounded Keller called 911 for help, documents said.

The shooting sparked a citywide search. City officials ordered the lockdown of all community centers because Piksa had keys to many facilities. Schools near the site of the shooting were put on high alert. Initial reports said the woman was on the loose and armed.

The search ended at Piksa’s home, where she was arrested unarmed. Seattle police were able to track her to the home using her cellphone’s signal.

Authorities said Piksa was questioned after her arrest and she acknowledged shooting Keller and confronting the woman.

Piksa worked as an assistant coordinator for community centers and has been a Parks and Recreation Department employee since 1986. Keller is the executive director of the Associated Recreation Council, a nonprofit group that works with Seattle Parks Department.

The motive for the shooting has not been determined.

Piksa is due back in court on Wednesday, which is the day prosecutors will decide what charges to pursue.

On Saturday, Keller’s condition improved from critical to serious, according to the nursing supervisor at Harborview Medical Center.

The Seattle Times reported that Saturday’s court hearing was attended by Keller’s family members, but they declined to comment.

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