EVERETT – A Snohomish County sheriff’s deputy fatally shot an Everett man today when he allegedly threatened him with a shotgun after a car chase.
The shooting occurred at about 12:15 p.m. after the driver of a car being sought by police crashed in the parking lot of Norpro, a kitchen supply company located in the 2200 block of of Merrill Creek Parkway.
A 31-year-old man died at the scene, Everett police Sgt. Cheryl Braley said.
The shooting ended a police pursuit that began when a Washington State Patrol trooper tried to stop a red car in south Everett, police said. The trooper initially chased the car, but stopped because the fleeing driver’s recklessness created a danger to others, Braley said.
A short time later, a sheriff’s deputy spotted the car in central Everett and attempted to stop the vehicle. The chase that followed ended when the fleeing driver lost control and crashed into parked cars in the Norpro parking lot.
Braley said the man was shot because he brandished a shotgun and was a threat to the deputy. She identified the man as the driver of the fleeing car, and said that he exited the vehicle with the weapon.
Witnesses said the man was a passenger in the car, and that he initially was not carrying the shotgun, but armed himself after the deputy attempted to place him under arrest.
Braley declined to discuss whether there were any other people in the car, saying the shooting was under investigation by a special team of detectives from different police departments around the community.
The shooting took place in front of Norpro employees who were in the parking lot on their lunch breaks. Here is what two witnesses said happened:
A red car shot off Merrill Creek Parkway and into the business’s parking lot, where it crashed through brush and hit a parked car.
A woman was driving the red car. A man was a passenger.
The woman shouted “Run! Run!” and the man dashed away.
The lone sheriff’s deputy who was pursuing the fleeing car chased the man to a corner of the parking lot. He ordered the man to the ground and when the suspect refused, blasted him with pepper spray.
Meanwhile, the woman reached into the car and retrieved a blue bag, which contained a shotgun, witnesses said.
The deputy was shouting at the man to get on the ground. Instead, the man ran toward the woman, who tossed him the shotgun.
Witnesses said they heard up to three gunshots, and saw the man with the shotgun fall to the ground, bleeding from the chest.
The deputy then subdued the woman with an electric shock from a stun gun.
More police and emergency crews converged on the scene in less than five minutes.
“I was kind of ducking and watching. I wanted to go inside but there were shots fired and police all around,” a man who said he watched the shooting said. The employee at Norpro said he was in the parking lot in his car when the incident unfolded.