Investigation continues into death of man shot by Lynnwood officer

A Snohomish County Multi-Agency Response Team (SMART) investigation into the death of a man who was shot by a Lynnwood officer on Saturday night continues. More details were released Tuesday morning.

The incident began when a woman called 9-1-1 saying her 44-year-old boyfriend had threatened her. They went to the man’s Everett residence to contact him, when a confrontation ensued and the officer shot the man. Witnesses said the suspect reached for the officer’s gun before shots were fired.

Investigators have gathered new evidence showing the man had contacted his girlfriend several times that day with threatening phone and text messages.

“The messages also indicated that he would kill police,” said Shari Ireton, Snohomish County Sheriff’s Office spokeswoman. The Snohomish County Sheriff’s Office is one of the agencies participating in the SMART investigation.

Evidence also indicates that the man was not at the woman’s residence, in the 17500 block of 54th Place West in Lynnwood, at the time the threats were made. However, the suspect did imply he was in the area, watching the woman speak to responding officers.

Two civilian witnesses saw the later confrontation between the Lynnwood officer and the suspect in the 3900 block of Grand Avenue in Everett.

“Witnesses stated that the suspect threw objects as he approached the officer, while the officer gave verbal commands to the suspect,” Ireton said. “Witnesses also stated the suspect did not follow the officer’s commands and he continued to advance towards the officer, reaching for his gun.”

Two heavy metal balls were recovered as evidence in the area near the scene, but no other weapons were found.

It has not yet been confirmed whether the suspect and officer struggled physically before the shooting.

“The other two Lynnwood officers in the area told investigators they heard the confrontation between the police officer and suspect, but did not visually witness it,” Ireton said.

Identification of the man who was shot, as well as cause and manner of death, will be determined by the Snohomish County Medical Examiner.

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