March 8, 2012 at 5:55 PM
Ravenna Park shooting victim was homeless man
The man who was fatally shot early this morning in Seattle’s Ravenna Park has been identified as Alpha Lake Rajai, 59. Rajai died from a gunshot wound to his chest, according to the King County Medical Examiner’s Office.
The shooting occurred about 4:15 a.m. after a confrontation between the victim and three other men, according to Seattle police spokeswoman Renee Witt. She said the victim, a transient who apparently lived in the park, is believed to have known the shooter.
A 26-year-old man has been booked into the King County Jail on investigation of homicide in connection with the shooting.
According to witnesses, the suspect and two other men came into the park from the south, near the intersection of 55th Avenue Northeast and Northeast 25th Street, and began arguing with Rajai, Witt said. He apparently challenged one man and was shot, she said.
The three men ran west out of the park. The suspect was later arrested at a nearby apartment building, Witt said.
Detectives are looking for the two other men as possible suspects or witnesses.
In March 2009, the suspect was involved in a fight in the University District and was arrested after officers found more than two ounces of marijuana in his backpack, court records say. He was sentenced to one day on a work crew, but ended up serving 11 days in the King County Jail after he failed to report, according to court records.
The Times is not naming the suspect because he has not been charged nor has appeared before a judge.
Rajai does not appear to have a criminal history in Washington, though he was arrested in September on a misdemeanor drug offense and was granted a conditional release after spending about 15 hours in jail, jail and court records show.
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The Today File is a general news blog featuring real-time coverage of Seattle and the Northwest. It is reported by the news staff of The Seattle Times and edited by Assistant Metro Editor Nick Provenza.
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