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The Spokesman-Review Newspaper
Spokane, Washington  Est. May 19, 1883

Court docs: 11-year-old Airway Heights girl, shot in chest by mom’s husband, ran to neighbor for help

Spokane County Sheriff’s deputies take measurements at the scene of a shooting Tuesday morning in Airway Heights that left one woman and her young daughter hospitalized.  (DAN PELLE/THE SPOKESMAN-REVIEW)

Airway Heights police on Wednesday were still searching for the man suspected of shooting his wife and 11-year-old stepdaughter on Tuesday, sending both to the hospital after the wounded girl tried to seek help from neighbors, court documents say.

Around 4 p.m. Wednesday, police sent out a news release again asking the public for tips on the location of 38-year-old Zion Carter, who’s suspected of shooting his wife, 35-year-old Stephanie Luke, and stepdaughter.

Deanna Hines, an insurance agent who lives close to Luke and her children, said the daughter knocked on Hines’ door after being shot, though it was so early Hines did not hear her.

Police reviewed another neighbor’s Ring doorbell camera and saw the girl arrive at around 3:30 a.m., according to a search warrant.

“I keep wishing I had been awake,” Hines said. “To think she was out here alone … ”

According to the search warrant filed in Spokane County Superior Court, Airway Heights Police Department investigators believe a dispute between Carter and Luke at 1013 S. Aspen St. in Airway Heights began late Monday night.

Carter and Luke allegedly started arguing upstairs, the daughter told police. She went to use the bathroom and then heard two gunshots, according to the warrant.

The daughter told police she was in the bathroom when Carter forced his way in, took her phone and shot her in the chest, according to the warrant. She told police she heard more gunshots upstairs, and that’s when she ran to her neighbors to get help.

Detectives found several droplets of blood on Hines’ front porch, Hines said. She used hydrogen peroxide to get rid of the stains, but she could still see them Wednesday afternoon.

The daughter was unable to rouse her neighbors. Then, she told police, she saw Carter leave in what police said was Luke’s car, a silver 2018 Nissan Rogue with a Washington license plate, BQT0555.

At around 3:45 a.m., the doorbell camera caught what police believe was Carter leaving the scene, according to court documents.

The daughter went back inside and found her mom suffering from gunshot wounds, she told police. According to the warrant, Luke had been shot twice in the chest.

Both victims underwent surgery Tuesday and were alert and talking, according to family members.

Police are investigating Carter for first-degree assault, first-degree robbery and first-degree unlawful possession of a firearm, the warrant stated. He has been convicted of other felonies, including assault and robbery, according to the warrant.