Fort Lewis soldier fatally stabbed on Lakewood street

SEATTLE — A soldier out with his friends was fatally stabbed alongside a Lakewood street early Saturday, and investigators were examining whether the attack was a racially motivated hate crime.

The 20-year-old was walking with two of his friends from Joint Base Lewis-McChord when a car drove by and someone inside shouted a racial comment toward the white soldiers, the Lakewood Police Department said. The soldiers shouted something back, and a group of five black men from the car stopped and surrounded the soldiers, authorities said.

Police said the men in the car began to leave when one of them realized the soldiers were combat veterans, but one of the suspects appeared to bump into the victim as he walked past. As the car left, the soldier fell to the ground, and his friends discovered he had been stabbed.

The soldier died at the scene. Authorities declined to release his name until family members could be notified.

The initial remark that started the encounter was a brief comment about “white guys” that seemed derogatory in nature, said Lakewood police Lt. Chris Lawler. He said it was too early to say that race was the motivating factor, but investigators were exploring whether the killing should be classified as a hate crime.

“We are certainly considering it, for sure,” Lawler said.

Detectives were in the area Saturday looking for businesses or others who might have video from around the time of the stabbing. Lawler said the person who stabbed the soldier should come forward and show remorse now.

“He’s going to get caught,” Lawler said. “Nobody’s going to give up until we catch up.”

Authorities said the suspects are in their 20s and were in a dark blue sedan with tinted windows and low-profile tires.

———

Follow Mike Baker at https://twitter.com/MikeBakerAP .

More in Local News

‘Come talk to me. Don’t jump, come talk to me’

State Patrol trooper Yaroslav Holodkov just happened to be driving by when he saw a suicidal man.

Marysville educators reach out to a newly traumatized school

Several affected by shootings in 2014 offered to talk with counterparts in Eastern Washington.

Serial killer wannabe admits trying to kill man she met online

She told police she planned to rip out her victim’s heart and eat it — and would continue killing.

Hurry! Target will take your old car seat, but not for long

The seats will be taken apart and the various materials recycled.

Sheriff’s Office receives national recognition

Sheriff accepts award “notable achievements in the field of highway safety” over the past year.

Edmonds-Woodway High School briefly locked down

A student tried to stop a fight and a boy, 16, responded by threatening the student with a knife.

Study considers making it legal to grow marijuana at home

The Liquor and Cannabis Board is considering two scenarios for allowing a minimal number of plants.

Minutes mattered the day Pat Ward was brought back to life

The Mukilteo police and fire chaplain died at breakfast. She got a second chance thanks to a waitress.

Front Porch

EVENTS Return of the Salmon celebration All are invited to Sultan on… Continue reading

Most Read