A man in Maple Valley killed a suspected vehicle prowler during a shootout early this morning.
King County sheriff’s investigators were called to the 21800 block of Southeast 236th Place and found a man in his 20s dead, said Deputy Charlie Akers. The vehicle owner had taken a dog out for a walk and found the stranger inside his truck. Both men drew their guns and started firing, Akers said.
“The suspect and the truck owner produced handguns, we don’t know who … fired first,” Akers said. “In the exchange of gunfire, the suspect was hit. The (suspect’s) girlfriend, who was caught in the middle, escaped without a scratch.”
Deputies found the girlfriend and booked her into the King County Jail in connection with an outstanding warrant for burglary, Akers said. Her role in the vehicle prowl overnight is still under investigation.
Akers declined to identify either the man killed or the girlfriend. He said that deputies know the identity of the man and that he has several addresses in Southeast King County.
The vehicle owner was still being questioned by deputies at mid-morning. It’s unclear whether he lived at the house or whether he was there for a party, Akers said.
“He was taken into custody, as is standard procedure, and interrogated. It’s my belief he will probably be released pending the wrap up of the case,” Akers said.
Kristin Hague, of Maple Valley, identified the gunman as her nephew, Keenan Hague, according to KING-TV.
Hague said that Keenan, a Marine, spotted the alleged thief and his girlfriend and confronted them.
“All I heard were gunshots, then I came outside and the man and woman were trying to drive away but the car wouldn’t go,” Hague said, adding that the male passenger stood up with a weapon.
“Keenan yelled ‘gun’, and he pushed me to the ground to protect me,” Hague told KING-TV. “He did it to protect me. He loves his aunt.”
Hague performed CPR on the suspected thief and put pressure on his bullet wounds, but he did not survive.