SEATTLE — Neither of the Washington State Patrol troopers who shot a man who lit his pickup truck on fire before approaching the troopers with a knife on the Ship Canal Bridge have used deadly force before in their career, WSP officials said.
Meanwhile, the Seattle Police Department released the 911 calls of people reporting the truck on fire. One said, “He’s outside of his car and the car’s on fire … it looks terrifying.”
To listen to the 911 calls, click here to go to the SPD Blotter with audio at the bottom.
WSP officials said neither 29-year-old trooper Andrew Boyer nor 29-year-old trooper Christopher Kyle had previously used deadly force. They are both multi-year veterans of the state patrol. Andrew Boyer is the sone of Kitsap County Sheriff Steve Boyer.
Though it is believed their shooting of the 23-year-old man is justified, both troopers have been placed on administrative leave during a joint investigation of the incident by the Washington State Patrol and the Seattle Police Department.
The suspect, who died shortly after the shooting, has still not been identified.
According to the Washington State Patrol, the man stopped his pickup truck in the middle of the Ship Canal Bridge last night, blocking two of the center lanes. The man allegedly set fire to his truck and walked about 35 feet south on the bridge. One State Patrol trooper put out the fire, while another went to see to the driver.
The driver then took a can of green spray paint and made a circle that covered two lanes in the middle of the roadway, police said. One of the troopers ordered him to come back out of the road.
“The subject displayed a knife at our officers,” Washington State Patrol trooper Cliff Pratt told reporters. “Our officers tried to talk him out of getting that knife, or putting that knife down. The officer then Tased this person, or attempted to Tase him, which had no effect on this subject. And the subject continued with his knife toward the officers, and they were forced to fire off rounds at him.”
The man was taken to Harborview Medical Center where he died.