March 9, 2013 in City

Seattle parks employee accused in shooting

Manuel Valdes Associated Press
 

SEATTLE – A woman suspected of shooting and critically wounding a 65-year-old man inside a Seattle parks department building was arrested at her home Friday, hours after fleeing the scene.

The shooting prompted the city to shut down all community centers and put nearby schools in north Seattle on high alert. The woman, a parks employee, had keys to city facilities, Deputy Police Chief Nick Metz said.

Police initially characterized the shooting as workplace violence. A motive hasn’t been determined.

Seattle police identified the suspect as 46-year-old Carolyn Piksa. The Seattle Times reported that she works as an assistant coordinator for community centers and has been a Parks and Recreation Department employee since 1986.

After the shooting, she drove to another city facility where she confronted an employee with a handgun and exchanged words but left without incident, police said.

Metz declined to give further details on what she told the employee in the verbal confrontation.

Using her cellphone signal, police tracked her to her suburban Burien home, just south of Seattle, where she was arrested, Metz said.

The wounded man, identified as Bill Keller, was at Harborview Medical Center in critical but stable condition with a shot to the chest, spokeswoman Susan Gregg said. Keller is the executive director of the Associated Recreation Council, a nonprofit group that works with Seattle Parks Department.

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