Seattle police have opened a criminal investigation into the actions of the two officers who opened fire on the car in the Eastlake neighborhood Sunday night after they said the driver suddenly drove toward them.
A 20-year-old man and 46-year-old woman have been arrested in connection to Sunday’s shooting in the Eastlake neighborhood in which officers fired at a stolen car they said suddenly drove toward them.
Seattle police reported the arrests Friday afternoon. No further details on the investigation or suspects were available.
The incident unfolded around 9 p.m. Sunday, when officers responded to a report of a “suspicious vehicle” in the 2200 block of Yale Avenue East.
Homicide detectives are investigating to determine whether the officers committed a criminal violation when they fired dozens of rounds at the Subaru Impreza as it sped away. In addition, the department’s Force Investigation Team is conducting a separate investigation into the shooting to determine if department policy was followed.
At issue, a source said, is whether the officers’ actions — particularly the second round of gunshots — rose to the level of possible criminal conduct. Also at issue is whether they violated department policy by shooting at a fleeing vehicle, the source said.
The Police Department identified the two officers as Kenneth Martin and Tabitha Sexton.
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Dashboard-camera and body-camera video and audio of the shooting, released by Seattle police, shows officers moving toward a car as an officer asks, “Is that them right there?” Officers then yell for the person to get on the ground, but the person runs toward the car.
The video then shows four officers running toward the car, with one of them standing in front of the car and moving out of the way as someone drives out of the parking stall and down an alley.
Officers initially open fire as the car pulls out. The driver briefly stops the car twice as officers open fire again with numerous gunshots. The driver then turns the vehicle right and drives off.
Officers from the Seattle Police Department, U.S. Marshals Office and other regional agencies coordinated to arrest the suspects, Seattle police said Friday.
Martin, 27, was hired by the Police Department in 2015. Sexton, 32, was hired in 2007. Both officers have been placed on paid administrative leave, as part of normal policy.