$600K spent treating suspects in police shootouts

BELLINGHAM — Two shootings involving Bellingham police officers have led to costly treatments for two men now in jail awaiting trial.

The Bellingham Herald reports that taxpayers are on the hook for more than $660,000 to pay for doctors, hospitals and overtime for corrections officers who guarded one suspect at the hospital.

In the two separate August incidents, authorities say the suspects fired shots at police officers and that officers fired back. Whatcom County Sheriff Bill Elfo says the inmates aren’t insured, so their medical bills are being paid by local taxpayers.

Elfo says the final cost of treating the two defendants is not yet known.

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