November 28, 2011 in City

Man shot, killed at Spokane hotel

By The Spokesman-Review
 
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A 21-year-old man was fatally shot Sunday morning during a dispute at a Spokane hotel, and the suspected gunman is in custody.

The victim, whose identity was being withheld, was rushed to a local hospital, where Spokane police say he died from his injuries.

The attack occurred about 2:40 a.m. at the Quality Inn, 110 E. Fourth Ave., authorities said. Police found the gunshot victim in an elevator surrounded by friends and learned that the suspected assailant had just fled.

The suspect was spotted in a vehicle by a responding officer and stopped at Hartson Avenue and Hatch Road, but he ran from the traffic stop and was apprehended after a foot chase, according to police. Facing a murder charge in connection with the attack is 27-year-old John A. Castro, who was booked into the Spokane County Jail. Police said no other suspects are being sought.

The victim may have been part of a group from Moses Lake that had rented out a block of rooms at the hotel.

Steven Tramp, the manager of Quality Inn, said a tour group originating in Moses Lake was occupying a dozen rooms at the hotel after attending a concert in Spokane.

“Just before 3 a.m. our front desk staff noticed that there was a gathering of people in a hallway and they went to check it out,” said Tramp, who’s worked at the Quality Inn for 7 years. “When our staff got up there they noticed there was some mischief going on and called police.”

Officers responded within minutes, Tramp said, adding that the young man had been shot by the time police arrived.

The Quality Inn is equipped with surveillance cameras and staff has extensive safety training, Tramp said.

“Our staff is very well trained in taking care of the welfare of our guests,” Tramp said. “I always thought this would happen to someone else – not here.”

Detectives interviewed several witnesses at the hotel, and the Spokane Violent Crimes Gang Enforcement Team assisted in the investigation. The name of the victim will be released after the autopsy scheduled for this week.

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