Everett police officer released from hospital after being shot in the head responding to robbery
EVERETT, Wash. - An Everett police officer was shot in the head and a suspect is dead following a robbery investigation early Wednesday morning. Authorities say three other robbery suspects remain at large.
According to Courtney O'Keefe of the Snohomish County Sheriff's Office, officers were called around 3:10 a.m. to the report of a robbery with a weapon near Evergreen Way and 75th St. SE. When officers arrived, they began searching for multiple suspects who fled the scene.
Officers found one suspect near Evergreen Way and Casino Rd. Police said as an officer approached the scene in his car, the suspect fired multiple shots, striking the officer.
A witness, Lisa Mieugford, told FOX 13 she was roughly 20 feet away when shots were exchanged. She witnessed the suspect on a scooter – a detail confirmed by a business owner who had caught the incident on his surveillance video system.
"I don't know why they were chasing him, but that's when he whipped out a gun," said Mieugford. "It was loud and fast, looked like he had a smaller handgun."
She estimated hearing 6 to 9 gunshots, noting that the officers were returning fire.
It was around that time that an officer could be heard talking to dispatchers over police radio transmissions, noting that the suspect was down – and that the Everett Police officer had been shot.
"I have our officer victim in my car," an officer can be heard during those frantic moments. "I will be driving to Providence."
The officer was discharged from Providence Regional Medical Center on Thursday. He has been identified as officer Chad House, who has been with the department for four and a half years.
"Our focus right now is on supporting our officer and his family as he recovers from his injuries but ask our entire community to please keep not only our officer and his family in their thoughts, but all members of the Everett Police Department," said Everett police chief Dan Templeman.
FOX 13 Seattle
A large crime scene remained in place for hours near the Fred Meyer store on Evergreen Way on Wednesday.
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The Snohomish County Multiple Agency Response Team (SMART) has shut down Evergreen Way in both directions from East Casino Road to Holly Drive. It re-opened a little more than 12 hours after the incident.
Eddie Hemp, a business owner who owns the automotive shop next to the Fred Meyer gas station, told FOX 13 that he was shocked by the shooting. However, he admitted the area has changed a lot over the 42 years he's been working in his building – first as an employee, and later as the owner.
"I mean, gunfire a month ago just behind us," said Hemp, noting the area is not unfamiliar with shootings. "It's getting to the point I'm thinking about getting a concealed weapon."
Hemp noted that he fears for his kids, who he hopes to turn the business over to in the coming months.
His daughter was the one who obtained security camera footage for investigators. They instructed him not to release the video. He declined to go into too much detail about what he saw, but he told FOX 13 it was hard to watch.
"I'm not really going to say much about what I've seen, just a lot of gunfire back-and-forth," he said. "Yeah, it's hard to look across the street and see someone covered up. See this area that I've seen change a lot."
As for investigators, they're still attempting to track down the three other suspects tied to the initial robbery. According to a SMART public information officer, those individuals do not appear to be tied to the shooting. No suspect descriptions have been released.
SMART responds to incidents to investigate involving police use of force.
In a statement, Everett police chief Dan Templeman said:
"This morning a member of our Everett police family was senselessly shot while investigating a robbery complaint in south Everett. Both Mayor Cassie Franklin and I have the utmost respect and admiration for the difficult and dangerous work our law enforcement professionals perform, day in and day out. Our focus right now is on supporting our officer and his family as he recovers from his injuries but ask our entire community to please keep not only our officer and his family in their thoughts, but all members of the Everett Police Department."
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This is a developing story, and will be updated when more information becomes available.