A driver was arrested on suspicion of vehicular assault and driving under the influence of drugs after crashing a van into a crowded Ross Dress for Less store in Burien on Monday night, injuring 11 people, according to the King County Sheriff’s Office.
The crash occurred around 9:15 p.m. in the Five Corners Shopping Center in the 15700 block of First Avenue South.
A 2-year-old boy, his 41-year-old grandfather and a man in his 30s were critically injured, said sheriff’s spokesman Sgt. Ryan Abbott. They were taken to Harborview Medical Center. The child’s mother, who was in the store but not injured, is at Harborview with her family, Abbott said.
The boy remained in critical condition in the intensive care unit Tuesday evening, along with his grandfather who is in serious condition, said Harborview spokeswoman Susan Gregg. The other man was in satisfactory condition.
The rest of the injured people were taken to local hospitals, some as a precaution, Abbott said. Seven were taken to Highline Medical Center and one was taken to Valley Medical Center.
The Sheriff’s Office earlier provided differing estimates of the number of victims, but determined by late Monday night that there were 11.
According to the Sheriff’s Office, a woman shoplifted from the store and got into the passenger seat of the van. The driver then accelerated forward at a high speed, hitting an unoccupied car before careening into the store, Abbott said.
“It’s unknown exactly why at this time,” Abbott said.
Shoppers fled as the van hit multiple people and pinned a stroller the 2-year-old was in against items in the store, Abbott said. The child had to be pulled out by responders.
The 51-year-old driver was arrested on suspicion of vehicular assault and driving under the influence of drugs, according to the sheriff’s office. The female passenger was arrested on an unrelated warrant and on suspicion of shoplifting. The two had minor injuries, Abbott said.
Detectives will review surveillance footage and were at the scene Monday night where a white van could be seen inside the store, surrounded by glass.
The Ross store typically closes at about 10 p.m., but was scheduled to remain open until 1:30 a.m. for holiday shoppers.
On Tuesday morning, one window of the store was covered with plywood. Employees declined to speak with reporters.
Seattle Times staff reporter Christine Clarridge contributed to this story.