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

Man shot by ATF agent last week had illegally owned firearms before

Spokane police Chief Craig Meidl speaks to the media after a law enforcement officer was shot in November 2021.  (DAN PELLE/THE SPOKESMAN-REVIEW)
By Kip Hill and Colin Tiernan The Spokesman-Review

A man suspected of getting into a shootout with an undercover federal agent at a Spokane motel last week had recently been released from federal prison after serving nearly two years for firearms charges.

Randy Holmes, 24, attended a federal court hearing virtually Friday from the Spokane County Jail. He wore a standard yellow jail jumpsuit and answered Magistrate Judge James Goeke’s questions in a soft, high voice. He sat in a wheelchair, presumably due to injuries he sustained during the shootout, and was pushed into the videoconferencing room by a detention officer.

Assistant U.S. Attorney Caitlin Baunsgard said after the hearing Holmes had been shot in the chest. 

According to court documents, the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives planned an undercover operation involving Holmes on Nov. 5. An undercover ATF agent agreed to meet Holmes in the late afternoon at a Motel 6 west of downtown Spokane.

It isn’t yet clear what happened during the meeting, but Holmes and the undercover ATF agent ended up trading gunshots. Baunsgard said Holmes allegedly shot the undercover ATF agent, who has since been released from the hospital.

Baunsgard only discussed Holmes’ probation violations during the Friday hearing.

Neither Baunsgard, nor Holmes’ attorney Steve Roberts, discussed the undercover operation or shootout. Baunsgard said after the hearing that a federal indictment against Holmes, which will deal with more than just his alleged probation violations, is expected to come out next week.

Holmes will likely face charges far more serious than probation violations. Baunsgard said he could potentially face life in prison for shooting a federal officer.

But Holmes’ alleged probation violations are serious, too, and could be punishable with up to six years in prison.

Baunsgard said Holmes, who was released from federal prison on Sept. 17, first violated his probation on Oct. 18 when he was involved in a hit-and-run crash. Holmes was arrested and appeared in Spokane Municipal Court. He was released without bond.

Holmes also violated his probation both by having, and using, a gun Nov. 5, Baunsgard said.

Roberts said Holmes is denying each of the U.S. Attorney’s Office’s three petitions against him for probation violations.

The U.S. Attorney’s Office had previously identified Holmes as a member of a street gang in Moses Lake. A previous felony conviction barred him from owning a firearm.

Holmes had pleaded guilty to an indictment alleging that he’d been in possession of a handgun and ammunition when pulled over by a Grant County Sheriff’s deputy in August 2017. Holmes was one of several passengers in the truck, and his fingerprint was lifted from the gun, according to court documents.

Court documents filed earlier this week indicated Holmes traveled with two other men to the Motel 6, where they were to conduct a transaction.

Vincent Petrushkin, one of the men in Holmes’ car, was charged earlier this week with being a felon in possession of a firearm.

Holmes was booked into the Spokane County Jail just before 5 p.m. Thursday, according to jail records.