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Crow killings, Mountlake Terrace
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How suspect in serial crow killings made it ‘much easier’ for police to find him

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The Mountlake Terrace Police Department believes it has finally identified the man responsible for a recent spate of crow killings.

Reports of the killings first began to surface in early February. Authorities believe as many as 75 crows have been killed over that period, and were able to identify a suspect from a video of a man in a red truck caught in the act.

“We know who he is and we have not filed charges because it’s still an ongoing investigation and we still have a little bit of evidence to process,” Mountlake Terrace Police Commander Pat Lowe told KIRO Radio’s Dave Ross. “It’s pretty obvious that this guy just appears not to like crows and he’s going around and shooting many of them throughout the community.”

Neighbors were able to help local investigators after video revealed the man’s license plate. Police then reached out and had “several conversations” with the suspect. During that time, though, Lowe said he “kept being vague and putting off dates and times that he originally agreed to meet at.”

“He was kind of playing coy with us and and didn’t really want us to look at his truck,” Lowe described.

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Police later found out that the suspect had removed several identifying features of the truck — including its canopy and mud flaps — and then exchanged it with a nearby dealership. That allowed authorities access to the vehicle, where they found evidence of “various pellets, 22 [caliber] shell casings, and some other things that would lead us to believe that this person is definitely someone who was shooting at crows.”

According to Lowe, the suspect selling his truck ultimately helped MTPD’s investigation.

“He made it much easier,” Lowe said.

Police still aren’t sure whether the suspect was using a BB-gun or a 22-caliber firearm to kill the crows, but hope to determine that soon. In the meantime, charges are likely to be filed “within the near future.”

“We’re still working with Fish and Wildlife to come to the most appropriate charges for this guy,” Lowe said. “Ultimately, we just want them to stop because not only do we want these crows to not be killed anymore, but we don’t want anyone to get hurt — that’s a huge concern.”

“We want to get a resolution to this as soon as possible,” he added.

Listen to Seattle’s Morning News weekday mornings from 5 – 9 a.m. on KIRO Radio, 97.3 FM. Subscribe to the podcast here.

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