A woman was flown to Harborview after exchanging gunfire with a Washington State Patrol trooper along Interstate 5 in Lewis County Tuesday night.
According to the Washington State Patrol, the incident occurred at about 8:45 p.m. on southbound Interstate 5 near milepost 70, in the Napavine area.
“During the contact, gunfire was exchanged between the pedestrian and the trooper. The trooper was able to take cover behind his patrol vehicle, suffering minor scrapes. The pedestrian sustained injuries and was taken to Harborview Medical Center in Seattle,” according to a statement from the state patrol.
Chief Deputy Jason Dracobly of the Mason County Sheriff’s Office, commander of the Region 3 Critical Incident Investigations Team, told The Chronicle the trooper pulled over on I-5 near milepost 70 to contact a woman walking along the side of the freeway.
“As soon as he gets out of the car the pedestrian engaged in gunfire,” Dracobly said, based on a preliminary interview with the trooper.
Dracobly said the woman was shot near her mouth.
“Where we’re at right now is she is injured, she’s at Harborview getting her jaw wired. We’ll attempt interviews with her when possible,” Dracobly said Wednesday morning. “We’ve got some search warrants to serve on a vehicle that we discovered about a mile down the road that appears to be hers and just some more processing of the scene.”
Currently, Dracobly said they believe the woman fired on the officer, however, it is still undetermined if there was any exchange of words between the woman and the trooper before shots were fired.
Dracobly added that they have not fully interviewed the trooper involved yet.
The WSP indicated it would not comment further on the active investigation. The trooper has not been named.
“I’ll leave that up to the state patrol to identify their employees,” Dracobly said.