Published March 22 2013
A wanted robbery suspect tried to run down Bellevue Police SWAT officers in Seattle early this morning. He was fatally shot in the process. No officers were injured during the attempted assault.
Just before 5 a.m., Bellevue Police SWAT officers -- in uniform with POLICE markings -- were serving a search warrant in support of a Bellevue Police investigation into a spree of armed robberies.
The suspects in these Bellevue cases live in Seattle, near 43rd Avenue South and South Hudson Street. Seattle Police were fully aware of this operation and Seattle Police robbery detectives were nearby to question the suspects. Seattle Police robbery detectives believe that these two suspects may be connected to armed robberies in Seattle as well.
Bellevue Police believed that both suspects were inside the home. Additionally, the tan Mercedes Benz belonging to the suspects was parked in the driveway.
As the SWAT officers approached the residence they noticed that one of the men they were looking for was sitting in the driver's seat of the Mercedes. The suspect noticed the SWAT officers, too. He put the car in reverse and backed up with such velocity and disregard that he struck a parked Ford F-250 pickup truck and pushed it several yards into the street. The Bellevue officers gave multiple commands for the suspect to stop. The suspect then switched the car into drive and stepped on the gas.
Concerned that the suspect would drive them over rather than surrender, three Bellevue Police officers fired their weapons at this man, wounding him fatally. One discharged a handgun and two discharged rifles. The suspect struck a second vehicle before coming to a stop.
Bellevue SWAT called for medics. Seattle Fire provided emergency treatment to the suspect in an effort to revive him. He was rushed to Harborview Medical Center but was pronounced dead upon arrival.
Bellevue Police Chief Linda Pillo requested that Seattle Police handle the officer involved shooting investigation. It is not unusual for another neighboring agency to conduct these types of investigations. Seattle Police SWAT responded and searched the home. No one was inside the residence. Seattle Police Robbery detectives will complete the search warrant service.
Unrelated to the search warrant, robbery detectives questioned and released a second man.
Seattle Police Homicide and CSI detectives continue to investigate. This information is preliminary and subject to change as the investigation proceeds.
Since the officer involved shooting is now an SPD case, additional information regarding the investigation will be released by the SPD Public Affairs Office. For questions regarding the robbery investigations and the administrative status of the Bellevue officers involved in the incident, please contact Bellevue Police spokeswoman Officer Carla Iafrate.