Arrest made in vicious downtown assault

Cpl. Nick Briggs, PIO

Thursday, September 23, 2021 at 4:33 p.m.

On 09-21-21 shortly after 4PM, SPD officers responded to the area of W 2nd Ave and S Jefferson St regarding an assault. SFD and AMR medical crews were on scene treating a severely beaten, and unconscious, adult female. The female was transported to a local hospital with life-threatening injuries.

SPD patrol officers spoke with witnesses and were able to locate multiple potential sources of video footage. The Spokane Police Department Technical Assistance Response Unit, officers specially trained in the processing and recovery of digital evidence, responded and helped retrieve needed data.

Video footage revealed a particularly despicable assault which concluded with the male forcefully kicking and stomping on the victim’s head, despite her already lying motionless on the ground. SPD immediately began working to identify the suspect and locate him.

In the afternoon of 09-22-21, less than 24 hours after the assault, SPD Downtown NROs on patrol located the suspect, later identified as 24-year-old Martay Ellis, and took him into custody without incident. He was booked into jail for assault 1st degree, a class “A” felony.

The victim remains in critical condition.

What precipitated the incident, and if Ellis and the victim knew each other, remains unclear and will continue to be investigated.

Ellis is a 5-time convicted felon with priors that include felony assault and robbery. 

This incident was particularly shocking due the brutality and it occurring in broad daylight downtown. Violence of this nature has no place in our community. SPD will dedicate the necessary time and resources to arrest violent offenders. SPD is thankful to witnesses who both provided valuable information, and attempted to chase the suspect as he fled. The safety of our community depends on an involved and caring citizenry.

Contact Police

For in progress crimes and emergencies call 911

To report a non-emergent crime contact:

To provide crime activity or suspect information that doesn't require immediate action contact:

For general police email contact:

For nuisance reports, including code violations (i.e. illegal camping, substantial litter in yards or alleys, graffiti, land use violations), parking complaints, and road condition issues contact:

Media Relations Contact

Julie Humphreys