A man shot in an apparently random road rage incident Thursday afternoon near Nine Mile Falls punched the shooter in the face and threatened him before the trigger was pulled, the Spokane County Sheriff’s Office said Friday.
The shooter called 911 after fleeing the scene of the shooting at the intersection of State Route 291 and North Seven Mile Road just before 5 p.m. Thursday, according to a news release. Spokane County Sheriff’s detectives questioned and released him without requesting criminal charges, determining the man who was shot to be “the predominate aggressor” in the altercation.
That man, who was also not named in the news release, was struck in the chest and taken to the hospital. He was listed in serious, but stable, condition on Friday afternoon.
The shooter told police he’d stopped at the intersection, where the man he would later fire upon was yelling and flipping him off, according to the news release. That man was a passenger in a Toyota sedan that also carried two women. The man left his car and walked up to the shooter, who grabbed a handgun in his car and loaded it. The man who was later shot continued yelling and punching the shooter in the face, the shooter told police, despite warnings he would be shot.
The shooter told police he fired when he believed the man was reaching for his handgun. He left the scene after the man he shot stumbled back to the Toyota.
Spokane County Sheriff’s Cpl. Mark Gregory said it did not appear the two men knew each other prior to the incident. The investigation closed a section of State Route 291 for some time Thursday evening.
The office is asking anyone who may have witnessed the incident but has not yet spoken with law enforcement to contact Spokane County Sheriff’s Detective Mike Drapeau at (509) 477-6921.
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