A Covington homeowner is being investigated by the King County Sheriff’s Office (KCSO) after shooting an alleged car prowler early Thursday morning.
The homeowner, who identified himself as “Patrick” to television news crews, told Kiro 7 reporters he shot the man because he saw “what appeared to be a pistol.”
KCSO Sgt. Cynthia Sampson said the Covington police are investigating the car prowler portion of the incident while sheriff deputies are investigating the shooting.
Sampson said 911 dispatchers received a call from the homeowner’s neighbor at 2 a.m. on Thursday, July 25. The neighbor heard a gunshot and heard “Patrick” yelling for someone to call 911. Police were directed to the 1600 block of 250th Court.
“The homeowner at some point was alerted that he had prowlers outside of his house,” Sampson said. “He was armed. And what he found was two prowlers in one of his vehicles. One suspect ran off … The one that remained on scene, the homeowner shot him. According to (the homeowner) he felt threatened or there was some sort of action that made him feel threatened or that he was in danger, and he shot that subject.”
The suspect who ran from the scene is still at large, and KCSO is searching for him. Sampson said the homeowner wasn’t able to give deputies a thorough description. The suspect is described as about 5-feet 10-inches tall man wearing dark clothing and a baseball cap.
The suspected car prowler who was shot by “Patrick” is a 33-year-old man. He was sent to Harborview Medical Center by sheriff deputies. Sampson said last she was told the suspect was in stable condition.
Sampson said “Patrick” was not arrested at the scene but the KCSO Major Crimes Unit is investigating his role in the incident.
“Essentially, they are investigating the shooting portion of it. The detective with the Covington PD will be investigating the car prowl portion. That is still under investigating, regarding all the evidence they found on scene,” Sampson said.
A handgun was recovered at the scene from the wounded suspect. Detectives have determined the weapon was stolen during a car prowl in the City of Kent five days ago, according to a KCSO press release sent on Thursday afternoon.
“Patrick,” who chose not to give his last name, briefly spoke with The Reporter on Thursday afternoon. He said he didn’t wish to comment any further on the shooting itself since KCSO is still investigating. He said he is shaken from the experience.
“It was a scary day,” he said. “But I am glad I am still here and am still walking around.”
The homeowner was interviewed by Kiro 7 early Thursday morning.
“I came out, saw the guys … caught them literally red-handed with the car … and the guy turned around and he had what appeared to be a pistol in his hand and he hid behind the vehicle. And I just took cover behind the (Toyota) Rav 4Runner and had to put him down,” the homeowner told Kiro 7.
Washington State is one of many states that has a self-defense statute, also known as a “stand your ground” law.
RCW 9A.16.110 states “no person in the state shall be placed in legal jeopardy of any kind whatsoever for protecting by any reasonable means necessary, himself or herself, his or her family, or his or her real or personal property, or for coming to the aid of another who is is in imminent danger of or the victim of assault, robbery, kidnapping, arson, burglary, rape, murder, or any other violent crime…”
Sampson said the investigation is ongoing.
Investigators ask that anyone who may have been the subject of a car prowl in Covington to please call 206-296-3311 to report it.
This is an ongoing story. It will be updated once more information is available.