The Mason County Sheriff’s Office reported Wednesday that a 25-year-old suspect who led Thurston County deputies and Washington State Patrol troopers on a pursuit that ended in Grand Mound last week pointed a firearm at officers before he and a K9 were shot, according to a press release.
The chase occurred just after 8 p.m. Jan. 13. It began when a deputy attempted to stop the suspect, who was allegedly driving recklessly, in Tumwater. The driver, who still hasn’t been officially identified, led law enforcement officers on a chase on Interstate 5 that ended at Exit 88.
“The stop quickly turned into the suspect exiting his vehicle and immediately pointing a firearm at officers,” the Mason County Sheriff’s Office wrote in a press release Wednesday. “Five Thurston County sheriff’s deputies and one Washington State Patrol trooper immediately fired their weapons at the suspect. During the shooting, the suspect was struck by gunfire. Also injured by gunfire was K9 Arlo.”
According to the Mason County Sheriff’s Office, the suspect refused to cooperate after being shot, delaying deputies’ ability to “make the scene safe and secure.” First aid was eventually administered by officers and later medics. The suspect was transported to a hospital, where he remained as of Wednesday, according to the press release.
K9 Arlo was initially treated by Dr. Brandy Fay in Chehalis before being transported to Oregon State University for surgery. The dog returned to Thurston County on Tuesday and is continuing to recover.
"K9 Arlo continues to improve every day,” the Thurston County Sheriff’s Office wrote in an update on Facebook Wednesday. "He’s at home resting and getting lots of attention from Deputy Turpin and his family. We appreciate all of the support which has been overwhelming and he is receiving thousands of gifts and treats from people. We appreciate the donations, but currently we have more than K9 Arlo and Deputy Turpin can possibly handle. We would love to thank each and every individual who donated personally; however there is just so many messages and donations and emails and cards that it would be impossible. Our community is so amazing. Thank you.”
A pistol believed to have belonged to the suspect was recovered from the scene, and the state patrol has dash camera video of the shooting. All law enforcement officers who fired their weapons were placed on administrative leave, per normal protocols.
Region 3 Sheriff’s Critical Investigation Team is conducting the independent investigation. The member agencies include the Washington State Patrol, the Thurston County Sheriff’s Office, the Lewis County Sheriff’s Office, the Grays Harbor County Sheriff’s Office and the Mason County Sheriff’s Office, which is taking the lead in the investigation. The state patrol and the Thurston County Sheriff’s Office are not involved in the investigation.