Search for shooter continues after woman shot dead while driving in Spanaway

Mar 28, 2024, 8:00 AM | Updated: 8:08 am

Spanaway woman shot dead...

Pierce County Sheriff deputies arrive at the scene of the crash in Spanaway. (Photo courtesy of Pierce County Sheriff's Department)

(Photo courtesy of Pierce County Sheriff's Department)

New details are emerging after a 47-year-old woman was shot dead in Spanaway, causing her to hit another driver head-on early Wednesday morning.

Pierce County deputies now believe the shooter was on foot and fired from the woods nearby. They do not believe the suspect targeted the woman, who was driving to work on Spanaway Loop Road when she was hit near the downtown area.

The crash was first reported just after 4:30 a.m. near 17400 Spanaway Loop Road South. Pierce County Sheriff’s Department (PCSD) deputies arrived to find the two cars, but only moderate damage to each, indicating the crash had not involved high speeds. The male driver of the second car involved in the accident was not hurt and deputies quickly determined he was not the shooter.

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While circumstances surrounding the woman’s death remain unclear, PCSD Public Information Officer Sgt. Darren Moss Jr. confirmed the crash did not kill her.

“We’re not 100% sure who a suspect could be, or who may have fired a gun at this woman,” Moss told KIRO Newsradio. “What we know is just that she was in her vehicle. The other driver said she started drifting across into his lane, he slowed down and then they collided. We don’t have anyone that called in as a witness to the shooting.”

A SWAT team canvassed that part of Spanaway Loop Road for several hours Wednesday. They are working to determine if a nearby homeless encampment could be connected to the crime. Moss said the passenger side window of her car was shattered, making it difficult to determine how many rounds may have entered the car.

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Because that stretch of road is often busy during the morning commute, deputies are now asking for information from anyone who may have seen or heard something suspicious on Spanaway Loop Road or 17600 St. South early Wednesday morning. Those who wish to remain anonymous can submit a tip through Crimestoppers online or by calling (800) 222-TIPS (8477).

This is a developing story. Check back for updates.

You can read more of Kate Stone’s stories here. Follow Kate on X, formerly known as Twitter, or email her here.

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