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Spokane, Washington  Est. May 19, 1883
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News >  Crime/Public Safety

Prosecutor says police were justified in shooting of suspected car prowler later found to have died by suicide

Aug. 24, 2021 Updated Tue., Aug. 24, 2021 at 7:24 p.m.

A Spokane police officer was justified in using deadly force while attempting to arrest an alleged car prowler in April, the Spokane County Prosecutor ruled Tuesday.

At about 3:30 a.m. on April 17, Tryveon Lewis called 911 and told dispatch a person was in his car on the 500 block of South Cannon Street. When Lewis confronted the prowler, the man, later identified as Vadim Grishchuck, aimed Lewis’ gun from the center console at him, according to a news release from police.

When officers Brandon Roy and Chris Tangeman arrived, Grishchuck was still armed and in the car. Grishchuck fired the gun “almost immediately” after police arrived, according to a prosecutor’s office news release.

Roy returned fire.

After Grishchuck did not respond, officers approached the car with a ballistic shield to find Grishchuk nonresponsive in the passenger seat. Officers removed him from the car and began CPR, according to the prosecutor’s office. He was declared dead at the scene.

The Spokane County Medical Examiner determined Grishchuck, 38, died by suicide while inside the 911 caller’s car. None of the shots fired from Roy’s gun hit Grishchuck, according to the prosecutor’s office. A toxicology report showed Grishchuck had amphetamine and methamphetamine in his system.

The prosecutor’s office found Roy had reason to reasonably believe Grishchuck had shot at him.

The Spokane County prosecutor’s office has not found issue with any deadly use of force incidents in the county since 2013. Last year, there were eight police shootings in Spokane County. So far in 2021, Spokane police have fired their weapons twice.

The prosecutor’s office said they will not file criminal charges against Roy related to the incident.

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