Seattle Police launch criminal probe following officers opening fire on vehicle October 12, 2017
Still images from police video below. CLICK TO OPEN
(SEATTLE, WA.) -- The Seattle Police Dept. has launched a criminal investigation into use of lethal force by two police officers after they opened fire, in two separate volleys, on a stolen black Subaru Impreza in the Eastlake neighborhood last Sunday night.
Police have released a video (both police dash-cam and body-cam video) of the incident, below. It happened as officers were responding to reports of a “suspicious vehicle” in the 2200 block of Yale Avenue East.
The Seattle Times reported the probe, by homicide detectives, will determine whether a criminal violation occurred when the officers "fired dozens of rounds" at the stolen car as it sped away. The newspaper report was based on an unnamed law enforcement source.
The story also said the SPD's Force Investigation Team is conducting a separate investigation into the incident to determine if department policy was followed.
The officers said they opened fire with their service pistols in a defensive move as the driver of the vehicle drove it straight toward them, evidently in an effort to get away from police.
After the car was found a small amount of blood was found inside but the occupants were gone.
The Times report said at issue in the shooting is whether the officers’ actions (particularly the second round of gunfire) rose to the level of possible criminal conduct and whether any officer violated department policy by shooting at a fleeing vehicle.