Suspect in police slayings killed in Rainier Valley

Maurice Clemmons, suspected of gunning down four police officers in a coffee shop in Lakewood, was shot and killed by a lone officer on Tuesday, Dec. 1, in the Rainier Valley, Assistant Police Chief Jim Pugel said.

The lone officer, Benjamin L. Kelly, was on a routine patrol early Tuesday morning when he saw a car with its hood up and its engine running, police officials said. Kelly ran the license plate and determined the car had been stolen.

As he did paperwork, a man who the officer recognized as matching the description of Clemmons came up to the patrol car’s driver side door. The man’s identity was later confirmed as Clemmons. The officer asked him to stop and show his hands, which Clemmons did not.

It was when Clemmons reached into his waist area and moved that the officer fired several shots
at him, according to a written statement from the department. Clemmons was pronounced dead at the scene.

The officer who shot Clemmons was not injured.

Clemmons, who was allegedly helped by relatives and friends while eluding the police, apparently had no tie to the residents on the block where he was killed, said Pugel.

The Rainier Valley neighborhood is said to be the most culturally and economically diverse neighborhood in the Pacific Northwest. According to the U.S. Census Bureau, the neighborhood’s population is predominately Asian with a large Black population. ♦

Information from The Associated Press and The Seattle Times contributed to this report.

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