BONNEY LAKE, Washington- Seattle station KIRO 7 says a woman was killed by a stray bullet fired during the theft of a vehicle in Bonney Lake.
Investigators say 61-year-old Linda Green was shot in the head as the owner of a Jeep Cherokee fired a handgun at a thief pulling out of his driveway shortly after 11 p.m. Thursday.
Law enforcement sources identify the Jeep’s owner as Tobin Panton. He was booked into the Pierce County Jail on suspicion of second-degree assault. That charge is expected to change following the victim’s death.
Eyewitnesses said the shooter stood on his front porch and opened fire as he watched his Jeep being stolen.
Spencer Ruggenberg was watching television when he heard the gunfire.
“It was rapid fire, boom, boom, boom, boom, boom,” Ruggenberg said.
Sheriff’s investigators said bullets sprayed the neighborhood, with at least one striking the Jeep.
Another went into the home of the 61-year-old woman.
She was found about an hour after the shooting by a family member, who saw blood and thought she’d had an accident.
“Thought maybe she fell out of bed because she was on the floor,” said Detective Sgt. Gary Sanders.
When an ambulance was called, medics determined the woman had been hit by gunfire.
“Upon further inspection, they find that she has a gunshot wound to the head and that there is a bullet hole in her window,” Sanders said.
The woman was pronounced dead at approximately 12:23 p.m. Friday.