Maurice Clemmons, the man suspected of the shooting deaths of four police officers in a coffee shop near McChord Air Force base in Washington state, has been shot and killed after a late-night run in with police.
Assistant Police Chief Jim Pugel told the AP that Clemmons was spotted in a “working-class south Seattle neighborhood” near a stolen car around 2:45 am. A Seattle policeman recognized Clemmons near an idling car with the hood up:
The officer called in a report on the vehicle, which turned out to be stolen. He was sitting in his patrol cruiser, writing up paperwork, when he saw Mr. Clemmons approaching from behind.
The officer, a seven-year veteran, recognized Mr. Clemmons “immediately,” Mr. Diaz said, and noticed that the suspect was trying to pull something from one of his pockets. He ordered Mr. Clemmons to put his hands up, but he refused and began to move away from the officer. The officer shot at least twice, Mr. Diaz said. Mr. Clemmons was pronounced dead at the scene.
Police concede that the ending was not ideal, but also that it appeared that the officer in question handled the situation appropriately. As is customary, the officer, who has not been named, is currently on administrative leave. Clemmons was on bail at the time of the shootings for the alleged rape of a 12-year-old relative. Police indicate that they expect several arrests by the end of the day, citing relatives who may have helped Clemmons avoid capture following Sunday’s shooting.