As is routine in such cases, King County Executive Dow Constantine on Friday ordered an inquest into the fatal shooting of a man by a sheriff’s deputy at Sound Transit’s Link light rail Sodo station in June.
Oscar Eduardo Perez-Giron, 23, was fatally shot after he wrestled with deputy Malcolm Elliott and then pulled a gun on him on June 30, according to the investigation conducted by the Seattle Police Department. King County Prosecutor Dan Satterberg recommended the inquest after his office reviewed materials from the investigation.
Around 4 p.m. on June 30, Sound Transit fare-enforcement officers contacted three men, including the 23-year-old, on a southbound train near the Stadium Station. Perez-Giron could not show proof that he had paid his fare and refused to show security officers his ID, Sound Transit spokesman Bruce Gray said after the shooting.
The officers then called for Sound Transit police officers to meet them at the Sodo Station. King County sheriff’s deputies serve as Sound Transit police and patrol the transit agency’s trains, buses, stations and platforms.
Video shows three men getting off a train at the station. Perez-Giron pulled a gun on Elliott, holding the gun in his right hand, according to a probable-cause statement. The two wrestled while Elliott grabbed Perez-Giron’s right wrist while drawing his own gun with his right hand. During the confrontation, one of Perez-Giron’s companions grabbed the deputy’s right wrist and arm from behind. Elliott shot Perez-Giron and managed to break free from the second man.
Inquests are fact-finding hearings convened to determine the causes and circumstances. They are convened anytime there’s a death involving an on-duty member of King County law enforcement, according to the County Executive’s Office. They are conducted by six jurors, who answer a series of questions to determine the significant factual issues involved in the case. They do not determine whether any person or agency is civilly or criminally liable.