Sheriff’s deputy in shooting named
Officer says man threatened him with knife, yelled ‘shoot me’
The Spokane County sheriff’s deputy who shot and killed a man Sunday night in Spokane Valley was identified Wednesday as Rustin Olson.
Olson, who was involved in a nonfatal police shooting last November, has been with the Sheriff’s Office since March 2006 and began his law enforcement career in August 1998 with the Weber State University Police in Utah.
In an interview with investigators on Tuesday, Olson said he shot Quentin D. Dodd, 50, after Dodd yelled “shoot me, shoot me, shoot me,” then tried to stab Olson and charged at him.
Olson and Deputy Todd Miller had spotted Dodd dressed in black and carrying an obsidian knife on Valleyway Avenue near Progress Road, about a block from the halfway house where Dodd was staying at 507 N. Sommer Road.
Dodd repeatedly yelled at Miller to shoot him and refused the deputy’s commands to drop the knife. Dodd continued walking west and ignored commands made over the police public-address system to drop the knife.
Olson and Miller exited their patrol cars, and Dodd held the weapon over his head and made a stabbing motion toward Olson. Dodd again ignored commands to drop the knife and threatened to stab Olson while repeating “shoot me,” police said.
Dodd ran toward Olson, paused when he was about 10 feet away, “then aggressively charged at Ofc. Olson, who was attempting to retreat,” according to a news release from the Spokane Police Department, which is investigating the incident.
“When Dodd was within 6 to 8 feet of Ofc. Olson, Ofc. Olson fired his duty weapon three times, striking Dodd. Dodd fell to the ground, and while Ofc. Miller provided cover, Ofc. Olson was able to handcuff Dodd,” according to the news release.
Dodd, who was reported to be suicidal in July, was pronounced dead at a hospital. Witnesses told police Dodd had used drugs in the past few days but weren’t certain if he was high on Sunday.
Deputies had responded to the Sommer Road duplex a day earlier, after a roommate complained about Dodd’s music being too loud. Deputies persuaded Dodd to turn down the music without incident, police said Wednesday.
Olson was involved in a shooting on Nov. 28 at an apartment at 8910 E. Broadway Ave. Olson and Deputy Ryan Walter shot Donald Lafavor after Lafavor opened his apartment door with a gun pointed at the deputies.
“Deputy Olson thought Walter was about to be killed,” according to an investigative report, which The Spokesman-Review obtained through a public records request. “He stated his only thought was to draw his gun.”
Walter drew his gun, too, and fired eight shots. Olson fired three.
Three struck Lafavor, who was released from a hospital about three weeks later. He was charged with two counts of second-degree assault for allegedly pointing a gun at the deputies.
Walter later told investigators: “I’m glad we have good training.”
Olson was a police officer in Heber, Utah, and in Ogden, Utah, before joining the Sheriff’s Office. Miller worked for the Moscow (Idaho) Police Department from December 1999 until March 2007, when he joined the Spokane County Sheriff’s Office.