Monday, November 30, 2009

Two Washington Police Shooting in less than 1 month (Story Credit: KOMONews)

Story Published: Nov 29, 2009 at 5:30 PM PST

Story Updated: Nov 29, 2009 at 5:36 PM PST

Two police tragedies in less than a month
SEATTLE -- The shock, anger and heartbreak unleashed by the shooting deaths of four Lakewood police officers on Sunday came less than a month after the execution of a Seattle police officer.

Police say the suspect in the previous shooting wanted to kill as many members of law enforcement as possible.

It was a Halloween night ambush. Seattle Police Officer Timothy Brenton and Officer Britt Sweeney were sitting in a patrol car following a traffic stop when a car pulled up next to the cruiser and opened fire.

Brenton died instantly. Sweeney was injured, but survived.

The key clue came from a dashboard camera, which yielded a grainy photo of a Datsun 210.

The crime scene became a place for people to grieve, comfort each other and remember a man known as a dedicated police officer, a husband and a father of two children.

On Nov. 6, as thousands gathered at Key Arena for an emotional tribute to Brenton, police converged on a Tukwila apartment complex where the sought Datsun was found under a tarp in the parking lot.

Police confronted suspected gunman, 41-year-old Christopher Monfort. When he tried to open fire, police said they shot and wounded him.

Inside Monfort's apartment, police found guns, bombs, booby traps and ammunition.

"His arsenal of weapons suggested both that he was ready to continue his attacks, and that he was preparing to make a final armed stand should he be discovered," said King County Prosecutor Dan Satterberg.

Investigators also found evidence to link Monfort to the fire-bombing of four police vehicles on Oct. 22.

"Christopher Monfort is responsible for planning and executing a one-man war against the Seattle Police Department," Satterberg said.

Monfort has been charged with five felony counts, including aggravated first-degree murder -- a key step toward the death penalty. Monfort was scheduled to be arraigned last week, but it has been delayed pending his release from the hospital.

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