Sunday, November 9, 2008

Police shot co-owner of home, not burglar


EVERETT -- The owner of an Everett house where a 31-year-old man was shot and killed by police early Saturday says the man was a co-owner of the house and lived there.

"It's devastating. He didn't deserve to die," Bear Whalen told The Everett Herald.

Whalen described the slain man as his friend who was a good person who cared about his community and was a volunteer.

"He never even got a ticket. He respected the law," Whalen told the newspaper.

Three Everett police officers responding to a report of a burglary shot and killed Whalen's roommate at the home. Investigators found a shotgun next to the man's body, officials reported Sunday.

Snohomish County sheriff's spokeswoman Rebecca Hover said someone in the neighborhood called police just before 2 a.m. Saturday to report that someone was breaking windows and kicking in the door of a nearby house.

Hover said three officers arrived and said they were confronted by a man with a gun, standing in the doorway of the home.
Officers said they repeatedly ordered the man to drop his weapon but he refused. The three officers fired multiple shots at the man. Hover said he died at the scene.

The Snohomish County Medical Examiner's Office had not released the slain man's name.

The officers involved in the shooting have been placed on paid administrative leave, while a team of detectives from throughout the county investigates.

The officers were a 24-year-old woman who has been with the Everett Police Department for 2 1/2 years, a 33-year-old man who has been with the department for 2 years and a 29-year-old man who has been with the department for 1 1/2 years, Hover said.

Whalen, 28, said he went with the man who was slain with some friends to a bar Friday night.

Whalen said his roommate went home about 1 a.m., while he said he spent the night at a friend's house.

Gunnar Nelson, 26, a neighbor, told The Herald: "I just wish my friend was back. I don't know how long it's going to take to get over this."

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