The drama began sometime just after 4 a.m. when officers responded to a call of a single gunshot fired at an apartment at 22nd Avenue and East John Street, a Seattle police spokesman said.
When they arrived they were met by a visibly upset woman who told them that the shooting suspect was armed with a rifle in a second-floor hallway. She said the man had threatened to kill her.
As officers approached the apartment complex they could see the suspect standing in a second-story window holding a rifle.
Officers ordered the suspect to drop his weapon and come out of the apartment. Instead, the suspect threatened to kill the officers and then fired a shot at them, Witt said. The shot missed.
One of the officers returned fire and the suspect fell out of sight.
Meanwhile, other officers told residents to shelter in place and began shutting down streets as a SWAT team responded and entered the building. They found the suspect in a second-floor hallway and immediately began performing CPR.
Medics responded and took over CPR but could not revive the man. He was pronounced dead at the scene. No one else was hurt.
The officer who fired the fatal shot will be placed on administrative leave in accordance with police department policy.
Witt said it is unclear at this early point in the investigation what the relationship was between the woman and the suspect.