Judge stabbed and Deputy shot in Washington State


A judge was stabbed and a sheriff’s deputy was shot on March 9, 2012 at the Grays Harbor County Courthouse in southwestern Washington state, authorities say. 

A manhunt for Michael Thomas continues.

Update at 9:17 p.m. ET: The manhunt continues for the man suspected of the attacks, identified as Michael Thomas.

Superior Court Judge Dave Edwards, 63, and sheriff’s Deputy Polly Davin, 45, were released from the hospital this evening, The Seattle Times says.

Davin was shot twice with her own .45-caliber pistol, which the suspect wrestled from her, said Undersheriff Rick Scott. The gun is missing.

Edwards was stabbed in the neck with a small knife or a pair of scissors.

Update at 6:42 p.m. ET: Authorities now say the man captured in Tumwater, Wash., does not appear to be the suspect sought in the Montesano courthouse attacks, The Seattle Times is reporting. A manhunt is continuing.

Update at 6:11 p.m. ET: Superior Court Judge Dave Edwards and Sheriff’s Deputy Polly Davin are conscious and in satisfactory condition, Grays Harbor Community Hospital tells KING-TV.

Update at 6:05 p.m. ET: The suspect, identified as Michael Thomas, has been captured in Tumwater, Wash., the state police say.

Update at 5:29 p.m. ET: A KIRO-TV reporter says police fired tear gas into a home about 15 minutes ago and sent in a police dog. He also says there’s a report that a man detained in nearby Tumwater might be the suspect.

Update at 5:01 p.m. ET: The wounded superior court judge is Dave Edwards, who is in satisfactory condition, KING-TV reports. The unidentified deputy is also listed as satisfactory.

Police have surrounded a house in Montesano where they believe the suspect is holed up, the station says.

All county offices and schools remain locked down.

Update at 4:48 p.m. ET: The injuries suffered by the unidentified superior court judge and the sheriff’s deputy are not life threatening, KIRO-TV reports.

Four superior court judges handle criminal, civil and family cases in Grays Harbor County.

Montesano calls itself the “Home of the Tree Farm.”

Update at 4:39 p.m. ET: Deputies are searching several neighborhoods for the suspect, Grays Harbor County Undersheriff Rick Scott told The Seattle Times. No mention of the earlier report of a SWAT team surrounding a home.

Scott said it’s not clear why the suspect was at the courthouse. “It doesn’t appear he was here on any official business,” he said.

Still no word on the identities of the judge and deputy or the extent of their injuries.

Update at 4:25 p.m. ET: A SWAT team has surrounded a Montesano, Wash., home where the suspect, identified by state police as Michael Thomas, is believed to be hiding, KIRO-TV says.

Update at 4:05 p.m. ET: The superior court judge was stabbed in the neck and a female county jail deputy was shot in the shoulder, KIRO-TV reports.

Police had received a report of a suspicious person just after noon. The deputy approached the man and a confrontation began., the station says. It’s not yet clear who was attacked first.

The judge and the deputy have not been identified yet, and no word about the extent of their injuries.

The Washington State Patrol has identified the suspect as Michael Thomas, who is believed to be armed with a black handgun, KING-TV reports.

A police spokesperson described him as having short, sandy brown hair and wearing black slacks and a blue button-down shirt. He may have had a briefcase. No information about his age or height.

Grays Harbor Undersheriff Rick Scott said it’s not believed the suspect was scheduled to be in court.

Original post: Police are searching for a man who stabbed a judge and shot a sheriff’s deputy in southwestern Washington state this afternoon, KIRO-TV is reporting.

The attack occurred just after noon PT (3 p.m. ET) at the Grays Harbor County Courthouse in Montesano, about 100 miles southwest of Seattle.

The injuries to the judge and deputy were not immediately reported. A fire department dispatcher told KING-TV that one person was being taken to the hospital.

Grays Harbor Undersheriff Rick Scott said the suspect is a white male who is believed to be armed.

Attribution: USA Today

Chicago Tribune

The Olympian

William M. Windsor

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