Man tells parents, 'I love you,' charges at deputies with chainsaw, then shot dead

KOMO photo

GRAHAM, Wash. - Sheriff's deputies shot a chainsaw-wielding Graham man to death shortly after he told his mom and dad, "I love you. Goodbye," officials and witnesses said.

The drama unfolded about 7:15 a.m. Tuesday when a woman called 911 to report that her 36-year-old son, who had a history of assaulting her and her husband, was trying to get into their home while armed with a chainsaw.

According to the woman, the son refused to leave and said that deputies would have to shoot him. She said her husband was prepared to shoot the son in self-defense if necessary.

When deputies arrived at the home, in the 9000 block of 262nd Street East in Graham, they confronted the suspect who refused to put down the running chainsaw. Deputies stunned the man with a Taser, and he fell to the ground, but he immediately got back up, officials said.

Then he charged the deputies with the running chainsaw. Deputies opened fire, and the suspect was struck and fell to the ground, the Pierce County Sheriff's Office said.

Deputies rendered first aid, but the suspect died.

Officials said it is not yet clear how many deputies fired their weapons.

Court records show the man was in and out of Western State Hospital and had pleaded guilty to felony harassment for threats against a former girlfriend in 2013 and against his parents last year. He reportedly told his mom he feared the Mafia was watching him from outer space.

His family said he was a methamphetamine user. He had a history of assaulting his parents and threatening to kill them, the Sheriff's Office says.

His parents obtained a restraining order against him last week, but deputies didn't have a chance to serve it on the son because they couldn't find him.

Still, before he confronted the deputies he told his parents, 'I love you. Goodbye."

A neighbor, Margaret Sutton, told KOMO News she could hear the chaos unfolding nearby.

"The screaming and the yelling and the revving of the chainsaw, and then seven shots - and then total silence," she said.

A deputy at the scene who was not involved in the shooting said, "Essentially when you're running at deputies with handguns and firearms drawn at you, and you come at them with a chainsaw, unfortunately that's what the result is."

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