Man shot by police was sex offender with long criminal history

Chassady LeClair (Washington state Department of Corrections)

EVERETT — A man who was shot and killed by police in Everett on Dec. 17 was a sex offender with a lengthy criminal record.

Detectives allege that Chassady LeClair, 44, was harassing an ex-girlfriend before they confronted him, according to new court papers.

LeClair, a repeat felon, had a warrant for his arrest from the state Department of Corrections. He was under supervision for sexual exploitation of a minor, a conviction from Cowlitz County. He pleaded guilty in that case in 2008 after initially being charged with child molestation.

His former girlfriend called police about 6 p.m. Dec. 17. She said he was threatening to come to her home in Lynnwood and kill her. She said they had dated for about six months, but they broke up more than a year ago, according to search warrants filed recently in Snohomish County Superior Court.

The woman had made a similar police report in October, saying LeClair broke into her apartment and assaulted her.

On Dec. 17, he reportedly sent her pictures of copper balls, leading her to believe they were bullets, and a knife. He allegedly told her that he planned to kill her new boyfriend and any police officers who showed up.

Lynnwood police reviewed her text messages when they got to her house that evening. LeClair was listed in her phone as “Psycho.” One message read, “U will suffer before I let u die.” Another was, “Pigz can’t be there all the time.”

While the officer was looking at the woman’s phone, LeClair reportedly called. The woman put him on speakerphone and he allegedly said, “I’m gonna kill you. You’re gonna die.”

He called again and said he was watching her and could see her talking to police. He reportedly told the officers on speakerphone that, “I got a bullet for you!” He said he would shoot them when they were in their vehicles.

They didn’t learn until later that he may have been bluffing about his location.

The officers obtained court permission to conduct an emergency trace of LeClair’s phone. The phone pinged in the area of his new girlfriend’s house along Friday Avenue in Everett. The Lynnwood officers headed north.

In Everett, “while attempting to take him into custody, a struggle ensued and LeClair was shot by the police,” according to the search warrant. That happened about 11:30 p.m.

Witnesses later reported that LeClair threw what appeared to be metal balls at the officers. There are unconfirmed reports that he was reaching for the officer’s gun before the officer opened fire, said Shari Ireton, a spokeswoman for the Snohomish County Multiple Agency Response Team. The team is tasked with investigating cases where police have used fatal force.

The former girlfriend from Lynnwood was interviewed again last week. Detectives asked her to turn over her phone as well, or they would get a search warrant. At that point, she reportedly began deleting files from her phone. She struggled with officers before they took the phone.

Multiple women have accused LeClair of domestic violence, court records show. One former partner told a Snohomish County judge in 2014 that his relationship with his children was limited by his probation restrictions on contact with minors. Years earlier she had accused him of choking her, shocking her with a stun gun and threatening to kill her. She later recanted some of her statements.

He was convicted in King County in 2007 with domestic violence assault and harassment involving a different woman. He also has convictions in Oklahoma for assault and burglary from the 1990s.

The Lynnwood officer who shot LeClair is 30 years old. He has been with the department about four years and previously worked in Arizona, Ireton said.

The officer’s name has not been made public. He was put on leave, which is standard procedure.

SMART investigations often take six months to a year to complete. After that happens, Prosecuting Attorney Mark Roe will be asked to conduct a review to determine whether the use of force was justified.

Rikki King: 425-339-3449; rking@heraldnet.com. Twitter: @rikkiking.

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