A Kirkland police officer shot and wounded a man who allegedly swerved toward him while trying to flee in an SUV at the Motel 6 in the Totem Lake area late Monday night.
According to a Kirkland Police Department press release, two officers on foot patrol near the motel heard a woman yelling for help just after 11 p.m., pointing to a man running through the parking lot. When an officer ordered the man to stop, he got into a vehicle and began driving at a high rate of speed.
When the suspect suddenly swerved toward one of the officers, an officer fired one shot, striking the man in the left shoulder. The man left the lot at a high rate of speed, but crashed the vehicle about four blocks away. He was taken into custody after a short foot chase.
The man was taken to Harborview Medical Center, where he is in custody and listed in stable condition. No one else was injured in the incident.
“We believe that he (the suspect) was trying to rob the woman,” said Kirkland Police spokesman Lt. Mike Murray, who added that he believes it is the first police shooting in Kirkland since the late 1970s.
The officer, a three-year veteran, definitely feared for his life when he fired the shot, Murray said. The officer has been placed on administrative leave, which is standard practice while a police shooting is being investigated.
“He’s doing pretty well for a young officer,” said Murray. “He’s with a union rep and we’ve provided him with peer support.”
The King County Sheriff’s Department Major Crimes Task Force was asked to investigate, and is doing so with the help of Kirkland police detectives.
Local televisions station showed photos of the overturned vehicle, an SUV, and said the woman approached police screaming. They also reported the man shot was 25 years old. For a report on the shooting by KING 5 television, click here.