Suspect killed himself after robbing Spanaway Walmart, medical examiner says
SPANAWAY, Wash. - The suspect who robbed the Spanaway Walmart store at gunpoint early Monday died from a self-inflicted gunshot wound, and was not shot and killed by deputies as first thought. the Pierce County Medical Examiner's Office has determined.
The incident unfolded just before 2 a.m., when police received a call reporting that a man wearing a camouflage outfit had entered the store in the 2030o block of Mountain Hwy. E. and demanded money while armed with a gun.
According to the Pierce County Sheriff's Office, the suspect robbed cashiers and then proceeded to walk around with his weapon inside the store. A responding deputy contacted the man as he was leaving the store, and the suspect refused to listen to the deputy's demands to surrender.
As the suspect ran toward the deputy, shots were fired and the suspect ran away from the store. As he was running, two other deputies spotted him and more shots were fired. The suspect was found dead in some bushes in the woods near the Shell gas station across from the Walmart.
A preliminary investigation found that the man may have been shot by the deputies. But an autopsy and further investigation determined that the man took his own life as he fled from deputies.
The continuing investigation also determined that the suspect was a 30-year-old man from Graham. His name was not immediately released.
Detectives found a gun in the man's hand and cash in his pockets.
No deputies were injured during the gunfight and pursuit.