Kirkland Police Officer Shoots Man Swerving Toward Him in SUV

Hit once in the shoulder, the man is in stable condition at Harborview. Police believe he attempted to rob a woman at the Motel 6 in Totem Lake.


A Kirkland police officer shot and wounded a man who allegedly swerved toward him while trying to flee in an SUV at the Motel 6 in the Totem Lake area late Monday night.

According to Kirkland Police Department press release, two officers on foot patrol near the motel heard a woman yelling for help just after 11 p.m., pointing to a man running through the parking lot. When an officer ordered the man to stop, according to the release, he got into a vehicle and began driving at a high rate of speed.

When the suspect suddenly swerved toward one of the officers, an officer fired one shot, striking the man in the left shoulder. The man left the lot at a high rate of speed, but crashed the vehicle about four blocks away. He was taken into custody after a short foot chase.

The man was then taken to Harborview Medical Center, where he is in custody and listed in stable condition. No one else was injured in the incident.

“We believe that he (the suspect) was trying to rob the woman,” said Kirkland Police spokesman Lt. Mike Murray, who added that he believes it is the first police shooting in Kirkland since the late 1970s.

The officer, a three-year veteran, definitely feared for his life when he fired the shot, Murray said. The officer has been placed on administrative leave, which is standard practice while a police shooting is being investigated.

“He’s doing pretty well for a young officer,” said Murray. “He’s with a union rep and we’ve provided him with peer support.”

The King County Sheriff’s Department Major Crimes Task Force was asked to investigate, and is doing so with the help of Kirkland police detectives.

Local televisions station showed photos of the overturned vehicle, an SUV, and said the woman approached police screaming. Thye also reported the man shot was 25 years old. For a report on the shooting by KING 5 television, click here.


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Ron Olson September 20, 2012 at 05:25 PM
It was reported that the motel in question provided a list of guests to the police. The police then run the names of people on the hotel guest list for warrants, driver's license suspensions, previous drug arrests etc. With this information in hand, Kirkland police were on foot at the hotel specifically watching certain rooms and activity. Good police work, or invasion of privacy?
Greg Johnston (Editor) September 20, 2012 at 05:59 PM
Not sure you have the details right Ron. It has been the location of numerous incidents over the years and police tell me they work with management on a case-specific basis, not routinely. Also, look for an update to this story shortly.
Ron Olson September 20, 2012 at 06:10 PM
I want to know if my privacy is protected when I stay at a hotel. Are there any protections in place that deal with hotel staff providing guest register information to police, or anyone else for that matter, in the absence of a warrant?
Kirkland Tony September 20, 2012 at 06:58 PM
Ron, the State SC ruled in State v. Jorden that hotel registries are protected; the police need a warrant if prosecutors will use anything they find against the guests. I did a news.google search on "Totem Lake" + "Motel 6" and don't see the report you referenced, so I'm curious where you saw that the motel provided a guest list. This is the same hotel that a guest there for "non-legal activities" (my guess is a prostitute) was robbed in late August. Being the least expensive place for miles can result in a different class of guest.
Ron Olson September 21, 2012 at 02:29 PM
According to an employee that wishes to remain anonymous, information from the hotel guest list is sometimes released to the police, the police have never produced a warrant, and hotel staff does not request one. On another note, I was at 7-11 in Kirkland a few years ago and watched a Kirkland cop run license plates of all the cars that came and went from the lot. He would then pull over vehicles if the reported owner had a warrant or suspended driver's licenses. Not sure where this is all going, just thought it might spark some lively discussion. Most Kirkland citizens are aware of the tactics Kirkland cops use, but people in the newly annexed areas have some adjusting to do.
Greg Johnston (Editor) September 21, 2012 at 03:30 PM
Privacy issues aside Ron, some might call that good police work. As Tony says, any info gained from a hotel guest list w/o a warrant probably could not be used in court. Thanks for your comments!
bigyaz September 21, 2012 at 06:20 PM
They don't need a warrant if the hotel volunteers the information.
Ron Olson September 21, 2012 at 08:45 PM
The hotel has a bad reputation to begin with, so I would never stay there. Not sure if it's the fact that low lifes hang out there, of if people just don't want their privacy invaded. Either way, I'll stay elsewhere. If you have a revoked driver's license, a warrant, leave a tavern around closing time, or own an older car and are a young male....stay out of Kirkland.
Kirkland Tony September 21, 2012 at 10:56 PM
Ron wrote as if it were a -bad- thing... "If you have a revoked driver's license, a warrant, leave a tavern around closing time, or own an older car and are a young male....stay out of Kirkland." I realize this doesn't sound inviting-and-inclusive, but that's why I live in Kirkland rather than in Belltown or Sodo... because we don't have lots of troublemakers with revoked licenses, warrants, etc. I do see lots and lots of young people, including at the skateboard park put in for young people, and downtown in the evenings, but not seeing large noisy groups at 2am is, in my book, a "good" thing. ;)


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