Mountlake Terrace man suspected in Seattle Pacific University shootings

The suspect's home in Mountlake Terrace Thursday night.
The suspect’s home in Mountlake Terrace with an unmarked Seattle Police Department vehicle Thursday night

Updated with statement from Edmonds Community College.

The Seattle Police Department has identified the suspect in the Thursday, June 5 shooting at Seattle Pacific University as a 26-year-old Mountlake Terrace man.

Aaron R. Ybarra was booked into King County Jail Thursday night, and is expected to be charged in King County Court with one count of murder and numerous counts of assault with a deadly weapon.

Ybarra was taken into custody by the Seattle Police Department shortly after three people were shot Wednesday afternoon in Otto Miller Hall on the SPU campus. A 19-year-old man identified as an SPU student died from gunshot wounds, while a 20-year-old woman was in critical condition at Harborview Medical Center. A third victim, a 24-year-old man, was in satisfactory condition.

Using unmarked police vehicles, members of the Seattle Police Department arrived at the Mountlake Terrace home of Ybarra in the 4300 block of 238th Place Thursday night to serve a search warrant. Later in the evening, several Seattle television news crews set up outside the home.

According to our online news partner The Seattle Times, no motive was immediately given for the shooting. The suspect carried extra shotgun shells, and also a knife, police said.

“He was hellbent on a killing a lot of people today,”  a law-enforcement source briefed on the investigation told The Times.

The Times reported that Ybarra has had a few minor encounters with police in the past – for drunken driving and operating a vehicle without insurance – but he’s never been arrested for anything violent.

Edmonds School District (ESD) spokesperson DJ Jakala told the Mountlake Terrace High School student newspaper, The Hawkeye, that Ybarra was not a graduate of any ESD school.

Ybarra also was a former Edmonds Community College student, and Edmonds CC President Jean Hernandez issued the following statement Friday morning:

“I am shocked and deeply saddened by the news of yesterday’s shooting at Seattle Pacific University. Our thoughts and prayers go out to the victims of this tragedy, their families, and the entire SPU community.

“All of us in higher education grieve together when an event such as this occurs on a college campus. The fact that the shooter was a former student at our college brings it even closer to home.

“I have reached out to SPU president Daniel Martin since hearing the news and have offered my condolences and any assistance we can provide.”

You can read the complete Times story here.

— Story and photo by Doug Petrowski

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