It was around 7 a.m. when two security officers approached a 15-year-old boy seen acting suspiciously in the building's parking lot, said Shari Ireton with the Snohomish County Sheriff's Office.
The teen ran away, but then came back a short time later and got into a car in the parking lot. As the security officers approached the car, the teen backed out and struck one of the security officers, who in turn fired at the car, Ireton said.
The teen sped off, and was involved in a hit-and-run accident about a mile away on state Route 527. He was then was tracked to his home, said Bothell police Sgt. Cedric Collins.
The teen had a gunshot wound to his foot and minor cuts to his face, Ireton said. Fire department medics took him to Evergreen Hospital in Kirkland where he was treated and released.
There was confusion throughout the day about whether the teen had actually been shot, as police made multiple contradictory statements on the matter.
Collins said the boy was held for detectives with the Snohomish County Multi-Agency Response Team, which took over the investigation.
It's not clear why the guard thought the teen was suspicious.
The two guards were under contract to the Federal Protective Service, a division of the Department of Homeland Security that provides security at federal buildings.
"The FPS is working with local law enforcement to investigate this incident," the agency said in a statement attributed to spokeswoman Jacqueline Yost.
The FDA laboratory, called the Pacific Regional Lab Northwest, analyzes samples of products for safety and compliance with regulations. It is located in a suburban business park
The teen is a student at the Secondary Academy for Success, an alternative high school adjacent to the FDA building, said Northshore School District spokeswoman Leanna Albrecht. The school was in a modified lockdown while some students were questioned by police.
The school and the FDA building are separated by a fence, and there's no history of problems between students and the FDA, Albrecht said.
Officials weren't saying how a 15-year-old came to be driving or what brought him to the attention of the security guards.
"Everything went downhill from there," Collins said.
The teen is being held in an Everett juvenile detention center for investigation of second-degree assault.