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Couple's stolen poodle found at 'active crime scene'; suspect shot dead

A poodle named monkey was in a truck as it was stolen from a gas station in Black Diamond, Wash.{ } (KOMO News)
A poodle named monkey was in a truck as it was stolen from a gas station in Black Diamond, Wash. (KOMO News)
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BLACK DIAMOND, Wash. (KOMO) – A pickup truck and beloved pet poodle stolen from an Enumclaw couple on Friday have been recovered at an "active crime scene," and officials say the man suspected in the theft was shot dead by deputies.

The recovery of the couple's beloved dog and the shooting of the suspect unfolded early Monday afternoon in the 35200 block of Veazie Cumberland Road SE, in the small town of Cumberland.

Ryan Abbot of the King County Sheriff's Office says deputies tracked down the suspect, still driving the stolen pickup with the dog inside, and forced it to stop on the roadway.

The suspect then began ramming the a deputy's patrol car with the pickup, he said. Deputies and the suspect then jumped out of their vehicles and a physical fight ensued. The suspect was shot during the confrontation, he said.

The 4-year-old poodle named Monkey was not hurt in the incident and has been reunited with his owners, Carl and Stefanie Sanders.

No deputies were seriously injured in the incident.

The original theft happened Friday afternoon. Police say the poodle was in his owner's Ford pickup as he was filling it with gas when the suspect jumped in the truck and took off.

Surveillance video from the Cenex in Black Diamond shows the suspect hop into Carl Sanders' truck at the gas station.

“And our puppy staring straight at me and he (the suspect) just continued to rip out of the parking lot at a high rate of dangerous speed,” Sanders said.

Then, on Monday, Sanders said the couple received word that Monkey had been recovered. They drove to the Cumberland scene and were reunited.

Sanders said it appeared Monkey had little or nothing to eat or drink since he was stolen.

"He drank a whole gallon of water, and he ate a whole pack of pepperoni," he said.

Stefanie Sanders said she "cried buckets" with relief after hearing that Monkey had been found.

"I'm just so relieved that he's fine and that he's safe and were back with him," she said.

The couple later learned that one of their neighbors called 911 after spotting their stolen pickup heading along a local road at high speed, with the dog still inside. Carl Sanders said he believes that's what led deputies to find the suspect.

The Seattle Police Department is taking over the investigation of the case.

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The two King County Sheriff's deputies involved in the incident were placed on administrative leave per routine policy, according to the Sheriff's Office.

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