Walmart shooting leaves 2 dead, 2 hurt

2011-01-24 09:00
Port Orchard - A shootout in front of a Walmart in Washington state left two people dead and two sheriff's deputies wounded on Sunday afternoon, a sheriff's spokesman said.

One of the dead was a man who shot at deputies, said Scott Wilson of the Kitsap County Sheriff's Office. The other victim was a young woman who died after she was taken to a Tacoma hospital, he said.

Tacoma police said the deputies were both shot in the torso and were in satisfactory condition. They were being kept overnight at a hospital.

Details were still sketchy on Sunday night, but the sheriff's office received a call about a suspicious person at the store in Port Orchard, Wilson said. The man ran and started shooting when three deputies tried to talk to him, he said.

The deputies, including the two men who were wounded, returned fire, Wilson said.

Destany Droge, 22, and Emmili Jones, 20, told The Seattle Times newspaper that they noticed two deputies confronting a heavyset man in the parking log. The man, they said, took off running toward a wooded area. Then, in midsprint, he pulled out a gun and fired behind his back without turning.

The officers were about 9 to 12m behind the suspect when he started firing, witness Ray Bourge told KOMO-TV. "Five or six shots were fired. ... I just went and took cover," he said.

Witness Victor Meyers told the station that he heard the first shot, then six more in rapid succession.

No other suspects


"I heard one shot, which I thought was a car backfiring, and then several more reported back, which I knew to be gunfire," Meyers said.

He said he saw a female deputy running toward a victim on the ground before he and other witnesses were hustled from the scene.

The man who ran from the deputies died of his wounds in the parking lot, Wilson said.

Wilson said no other suspects were involved in the incident. He didn't know whether the woman was an innocent bystander or if she and the man knew each other. The woman appeared to be in her late teens but the identities of the two haven't been released.

The store was immediately locked down. Customers in the store were being allowed to leave after investigators questioned them, and the store closed for the night, Wilson said.

The investigation "is real basic right now", he said, adding that officers don't know why the man fled and began firing.

"The big question of why is unanswered now," he said.

- AP
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