The shooting occurred after the Kent officer responded to a call about a stolen car in a parking lot.

Share story

A Kent police officer shot and wounded a suspected car thief, who was in stable condition Tuesday at Seattle’s Harborview Medical Center.

About 8:30 a.m. Tuesday, Kent officers responded to an apartment complex in the 1600 block of West Smith Street after receiving a report of a stolen vehicle with one occupant in the parking lot, according to Cmdr. Stan McCall of the Federal Way Police Department, which is handling the investigation. The 46-year-old officer confronted the driver, a 35-year-old man, who drove off as the officer fired at the vehicle, McCall said.

The vehicle crashed into another vehicle that was parked behind a bus, injuring a man and a woman, who were treated and released from a hospital, McCall said. The suspect continued driving, police said.

Kent officers “fanned out” and found the driver and the stolen vehicle a short time later in a commercial warehouse district in north Kent, less than two miles from where the officer had confronted the driver, McCall said.

“His car was extensively damaged in the crash — I think it’s as far as he could get,” McCall said of the warehouse area, located near South 220th Street and 68th Avenue South.

The suspect, who had two outstanding felony arrest warrants for possessing stolen vehicles, suffered at least one gunshot wound and was taken to Harborview with what appeared to be non-life-threatening injuries, McCall said.

The officer, a 21-year law-enforcement veteran, was placed on paid administrative leave, which is routine in officer-involved shootings, McCall said.

McCall couldn’t immediately say whether the car was headed for the officer when he opened fire. That will be a part of the investigation, he said.

Federal Way’s Criminal Investigations Unit is investigating the shooting and will determine the direction the vehicle fled, where the officer was standing when he fired, and other elements of the shooting, McCall said. The detectives’ report will be sent to the King County Prosecuting Attorney’s Office for review.

Sara Jean Green: 206-515-5654 or