Sheriff’s Office investigates fatal shooting of allegedly suicidal man by Ritzville Police
RITZVILLE, Wash. — The Grant County Sheriff’s Office has shed light on the details of the fatal shooting of a man by Ritzville Police on Saturday.
The Sheriff’s Office says 48-year-old Shawn Lee was traveling with a family member when his car broke down in Ritzville. Lee was towed to the Love’s Travel Stop near the junction at State Route 261 and Highway 395.
Throughout Saturday, Ritzville Police reportedly got three calls about Lee, including two from Lee himself.
The Sheriff’s Office says Lee’s family called from out of the area to tell them that Lee had a sword and was suicidal. Police went to Love’s to check on Lee, who denied having a weapon, and the family member with him said everything was fine, so the police left.
Late Saturday night, that family member went into Love’s to call police.
Ritzville Police Officer Jeff Lane and WSP Trooper Nate Romaneschi arrived, and Lee allegedly got out of the car and was swinging a machete around. Officers told him to drop the machete, and Lee’s family member tried to intervene, but the Sheriff’s Office says Lee started walking toward them.
Officer Lane tried tasing Lee, but when that failed to stop him, he shot Lee from ten feet away.
The officers then attempted first aid on Lee while ambulances arrived, but he was later pronounced dead at the hospital.
The Sheriff’s Office says the confrontation was captured on police dash cams, but they are not releasing the footage yet. The investigation of this case is now in the hands of the Columbia Basin Investigative Team, with a Grant County detective and a Moses Lake Police detective assigned to this inquiry.
COPYRIGHT 2020 BY KXLY. ALL RIGHTS RESERVED. THIS MATERIAL MAY NOT BE PUBLISHED, BROADCAST, REWRITTEN OR REDISTRIBUTED.