EVERETT — Everett police Officer Dan Rocha, 41, died Friday after a man shot at him several times and later drove over him while fleeing, said Courtney O’Keefe, spokesperson with the Snohomish County Sheriff’s Office.
The shooting came after Rocha approached a 50-year-old man for suspicious activity in a Starbucks parking lot around 2 p.m., O’Keefe said.
An altercation between Rocha and the man ensued, but it was not entirely clear what led to the altercation, she said.
The suspect fired several shots striking Rocha, then fled, O’Keefe said. An assistance call was sent out and officers located the suspect shortly, leading to a pursuit.
The pursuit ended in a multiple-car collision at 35th Street and Rucker Avenue.
As the suspect fled in a dark blue Mini Cooper, he drove over Rocha, O’Keefe said.
It was not known whether Rocha was alive when the suspect drove over him, she said.
“It’s absolutely tragic,” she said. “It’s devastating. And our thoughts and prayers are with his family and the Everett Police Department.”
O’Keefe did not offer details on the nature of the “suspicious activity” and said she did not know how that activity was reported.
Asked whether the suspect used his own gun or the officer’s gun, O’Keefe said, “Under investigation. I do not have that information at this time.” O’Keefe said she did not have information about whether the officer fired at the suspect, but said the suspect “does not have any injuries.”
The suspect was taken to the hospital and evaluated, O’Keefe said.
Rocha had lived in Everett for more than a decade and served with the Everett Police Department since 2017, the department said in a statement. He first worked in parking enforcement and in 2018 became a fully commissioned police officer.
“We are heartbroken, and honor Officer Rocha’s memory, legacy, and ultimate sacrifice in service to our City,” Everett Mayor Cassie Franklin said in a statement.
“On behalf of Snohomish County, we offer our deepest condolences to the entire community shaken by this loss of life and those police officers who will be out keeping our community safe, even under the shadow of this tragedy,” Snohomish County Executive Dave Somers said in a statement.
The investigation surrounding Rocha’s death is being conducted by the Snohomish County Multiple Agency Response Team.
The suspect will be booked into Snohomish County Jail.
The shooting occurred as a memorial was underway for slain Pierce County Deputy Dominique “Dom” Calata in Tacoma.
Calata, 35, was shot and killed last week during a SWAT operation in which Sgt. Rich Scaniffe was shot and wounded.
A procession began Friday morning at the Washington State Fairgrounds, following a route that concluded at the Church for All Nations in Parkland. A memorial service started around 1 p.m. at the church.
Information from The Associated Press was included in this report.