Armed suspect arrested on lower South Hill after extensive search

Ofc N. Briggs #1177

Tuesday, July 10, 2018 at 2:34 a.m.

Armed suspect arrested on lower South Hill after extensive search

On 07-09-18 a little before 4:30PM, SPD received a call from the STA plaza indicating a male at the location had threatened to ‘shoot the place up.’ The suspect was not on scene when Officers arrived, and efforts to locate the male were immediately commenced.

Just before 6:00PM 911 began receiving phone calls from a male who indicated he was armed with a gun and was intent on killing law enforcement officers. The male made numerous phone calls and threats indicating his intent to shoot police. Investigators were able to link the STA threat incident with the phone calls and it became clear they were perpetrated by the same individual.

A little after 7:30PM SPD received a call from a citizen in the 2000 block of W 8th indicating an unknown male standing in the alley had pointed a gun at the citizen. Officers immediately swarmed to the area, but the male was not immediately located. Again officers were quickly able to associate this incident with the other two.

The suspect had threatened to cause mass casualties at a busy downtown location, had threatened the lives of police, and had escalated to brandishing a firearm at innocent citizens. The subject posed an immediate threat to the community, and efforts to apprehend him were exhaustive. Dozens of officers swarmed to the neighborhood where the suspect was last seen. Additionally specialized resources from the SWAT team and hostage negotiators were utilized along with detectives from the Major Crimes Unit.

An extensive search for the suspect concluded just before 11PM when SPD Officers located the male on S Ash St, near 7th Ave. The subject was taken into custody without incident. The suspect was armed with a firearm and several knives when he was taken into custody.

28-year-old Matteaw Smith was booked into Spokane County Jail for nine counts of assault 1st degree, and two counts of telephone harassment.

SPD would like to thank the numerous citizens in the area that assisted in providing information, as well as those who quickly followed officers’ suggestions and sought refuge during the potentially dangerous situation. The cooperation of citizens helped mitigate the risks to officers and the public during this incident.

SPD is committed to keeping the community safe by apprehending those willing and capable of committing violent acts against innocent persons.

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