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Sunday, December 09, 2018  Spokane, Washington  Est. May 19, 1883
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News >  Crime/Public Safety

Suspect jailed in connection with October shooting that injured 3 at Zip’s in Cheney

UPDATED: Thu., Dec. 6, 2018, 4:59 p.m.

Investigators from the Spokane County Sheriff’s Office fly a drone over the scene of an Oct. 27, 2018, shooting that injured three people at the Zip’s Drive-in in Cheney. A suspect in the shooting, Kevin D. Clay, 21, was arrested on Nov. 28, 2018, while leaving his residence in Kent, Washington, the sheriff’s office said in a news release. (Dan Pelle / The Spokesman-Review)
Investigators from the Spokane County Sheriff’s Office fly a drone over the scene of an Oct. 27, 2018, shooting that injured three people at the Zip’s Drive-in in Cheney. A suspect in the shooting, Kevin D. Clay, 21, was arrested on Nov. 28, 2018, while leaving his residence in Kent, Washington, the sheriff’s office said in a news release. (Dan Pelle / The Spokesman-Review)

Federal agents have arrested a Western Washington man in connection with an Oct. 27 shooting that injured three people outside the Zip’s Drive-in in Cheney.

Kevin D. Clay, 21, was arrested on Nov. 28 while leaving his residence in Kent, Washington, the Spokane County Sheriff’s Office said in a news release Thursday. He attempted to run from agents with the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives, but was “quickly apprehended after a brief foot pursuit,” the sheriff’s office said.

Clay is being held in the King County Jail on a $500,000 bond. He could face three counts of first-degree attempted murder, three counts of first-degree assault, and charges of drive-by shooting and unlawful possession of a firearm. Spokane County Detective Mike Ricketts prepared the warrant for Clay’s arrest on Nov. 21, the sheriff’s office said.

While searching Clay’s residence and vehicle, agents seized a .38-caliber pistol, 9 mm ammunition, a cellphone and other pieces of evidence, the sheriff’s office said. Clay, who has a prior felony conviction for second-degree robbery, is prohibited from having guns and ammunition.

In Thursday’s news release, the sheriff’s office said: “Due to the substantial threat to individual safety, threat to effective law enforcement and the possibility that disclosure could jeopardize the ongoing investigation, the affidavit filed in support of the arrest warrant was sealed by the issuing judge, and the disclosure of Clay’s arrest was not immediately publicly released.”

Clerks at Spokane County District Court, where Clay’s case is pending, said Thursday afternoon they had received no order to unseal the charging documents. It was not immediately clear when he would appear before a judge.

The shooting happened around 4 a.m. Oct. 27 in the parking lot of the Zip’s fast food restaurant at 911 First St. Witnesses reported hearing between four and 15 gunshots, police said at the time. Many people were in town that weekend for a homecoming football game at Eastern Washington University.

The three victims were men in their early to mid-20s who were not EWU students and did not live in Cheney, police said. None received life-threatening injuries. Police at the time said the shooting may have been related to a massive brawl earlier that morning on Alki Street, which had about 500 people present.

At least one other person has been arrested in connection with the incident. Thaishaun J. Hunter, 29, was booked into the Spokane County Jail on Nov. 5 on several charges, including possession of a stolen firearm. He’s being held on behalf of federal authorities, according to the jail’s online inmate roster.

The agents who arrested Clay last week are part of the ATF’s Puget Sound Regional Crime Gun Task Force. The Spokane Regional Safe Streets Task Force, which focuses on gang activity, has also taken part in the ongoing investigation.


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