Seattle police release video of car chase, shootout

AP News
|
Posted: Dec 08, 2015 3:11 PM

SEATTLE (AP) — Seattle police have released dash-cam videos showing a carjacker speeding the wrong way up a one-way street, firing at a pursuing patrol car and finally spinning out his stolen, wrecked Camaro in a cloud of smoke as officers shot and killed him.

No bystanders or police suffered significant injuries in the events Sunday afternoon, which began when workers at a Pike Place Market coffee shop called 911 to report there was a man with a gun inside.

In a chronology released Monday night, police said the 35-year-old suspect ran in and out of several businesses, brandishing guns at staff, before fleeing out the back of a tattoo shop and stealing a Volkswagen at gunpoint. He drove to the University of Washington Athletic Center, where he stole a minivan at gunpoint, and then stopped at a rental car lot and forced two employees to turn over a Chevy Camaro.

The suspect sped the wrong way up a one-way street in the University District, and a pursuing officer rear-ended him when he stopped for cross traffic on a major street. The jarring crash disabled the cruiser, and the officer got out and ran after the Camaro as it cut through a parking lot.

As police continued chasing him through North Seattle at 70 mph, he started firing back at them: "Shots fired. He's shooting at us," an officer calmly reports. Another directs them to back off.

The chase came to an end as the suspect tried to drive around a barricade of police vehicles and an officer plowed into him head-on, with another cruiser ramming the Camaro quickly afterward. Officers took cover behind their vehicles and opened fire as the Camaro started moving again, spinning out in a cloud of smoke before stopping for good.

The suspect — identified by police as a felon — was found to have two guns with him. The federal Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms was tracing the weapons, police said. The suspect's name was expected to be released by the King County Medical Examiner's Office.

A dozen officers involved were put on routine administrative leave pending a review of the shooting — so many that the department said commanders had to develop a staffing plan to ensure 911 response and neighborhood patrols were not compromised.