Officer Involved Shooting In Royal City - Spokane, North Idaho News & Weather KHQ.com

UPDATE: Man Killed In Officer-Involved Shooting Identified

UPDATED PRESS RELEASE: Detectives investigating Monday's officer-involved shooting with one fatality at 200 Hemlock Avenue NW in Royal City today released the following confirmed information.

Grant County Coroner Craig Morrison today identified the deceased as Pedro Salgado Ceja, age 45 from Royal City. An autopsy performed Tuesday determined the cause of death is gunshot wounds of the torso. The manner of death is homicide. It's important to note the term ‘homicide' means a person died because of the actions of another person, and it does not mean a criminal act was committed.

At 5:10 p.m. on Monday Oct. 24, the Royal City Police Officer answered a call for a possible domestic violence assault at 200 Hemlock Avenue NW and to assist a domestic violence advocate with removing the domestic violence victim to a safe location.

During the course of that investigation, Officer Rey Rodriguez developed probable cause to arrest Ceja for second-degree assault and unlawful imprisonment. When Officer Rodriguez attempted to place Ceja under arrest, Ceja pulled away and would not comply with Officer Rodriguez's orders. Ceja grabbed a flat-bottom shovel which was on the ground outside the home and advanced toward Officer Rodriguez. Officer Rodriguez attempted to use two less lethal options, however, as the situation evolved he was unable to deploy either.

Ceja was wielding the shovel and chasing Officer Rodriguez on foot. Officer Rodriguez retreated at least 150 feet while ordering Ceja to drop the shovel. According to witnesses Ceja did not obey the commands and continued to close the distance with the officer. Officer Rodriguez fired six rounds from his sidearm, striking Ceja in the torso. 

At 5:18 p.m., Officer Rodriguez called for help on his two-way radio. Deputies and officers from multiple agencies responded to the scene. Firefighters and EMTs from Grant County Fire District #10 also responded to provide medical attention, but determined Ceja was dead at the scene.

In accordance with protocol, Officer Rodriguez has been placed on paid administrative leave pending the outcome of the investigation. Officer Rodriguez has two years of service with the Royal City Police Department.

Investigators with the Columbia Basin Investigative Team will complete their investigation as part of a protocol for officer-involved shootings. The evidence, which includes civilian witness statements, will be turned over to the Grant County Prosecutor for a determination on the legality of the shooting. This is the normal protocol for officer-involved shootings.

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