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Seattle-area sniper apparently acted alone

The Seattle Times –

SEATTLE — The sniper who opened fire in the woods northeast of Arlington, Wash., on Sunday, wounding one man and peppering vehicles with gunfire, apparently acted alone, according to the Snohomish County Sheriff’s Office.

The gunman, armed with a rifle equipped with a scope, shot a man in the leg around 1:30 p.m., sparking an hours-long standoff that ended when the suspect’s body was found about 8 p.m.

Sheriff’s deputies, as well as police from Everett, Lynnwood and Edmonds, then launched a search for a possible accomplice, but the search was called off around 11:30 p.m.

The Sheriff’s Office has not said whether deputies shot the man or if he died from a self-inflicted gunshot wound. Deputies did fire on the man during the incident, according to the Sheriff’s Office.

The man’s name has not been released.

Detectives returned to the area in the 17000 block of Jim Creek Road on Monday to process the scene and gather evidence, said Shari Ireton, director of communications for the Sheriff’s Office. Area residents, who were evacuated during the standoff, have been allowed to return home.

The incident began when a 26-year-old man walking near Jim Creek was hit in the calf by gunfire and then reported hearing multiple gunshots coming from the woods in the sparsely populated area. The man was taken to Cascade Hospital in Arlington, where he was treated and released.

Within 10 minutes, a sheriff’s SWAT team arrived. Sheriff’s spokesman Steve Dittoe said an armored vehicle brought in to use in the search for the man was hit by several rounds of gunfire.

The man also fired on vehicles in the area, the Sheriff’s Office said.

Tabitha Spoiala reported a bullet went through a boat being trailered.

“It went right in through there, on that side of the boat, and then it went through the cooler,” she told KOMO-TV.

Residents who believe their vehicles were struck by bullets or who may have other information on the shooting are asked to call the sheriff’s anonymous tip line at 425-388-3845.

Throughout much of the afternoon Sunday, authorities tried to determine where the shots were coming from and whether more than one person was doing the shooting. Civilian vehicles struck by gunfire were found with bullet holes on more than one side.

Dittoe said several area homes were evacuated and people were urged to steer clear of Jim Creek Road between the 15000 and 25000 blocks. Even after the body of the suspected gunman was found, authorities could be heard asking for police dogs to help explore the surrounding area.

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