Vancouver woman accused in credit union robbery

By Jessica Prokop, Columbian Courts Reporter



A Vancouver woman is accused of purchasing the getaway vehicles in a June armed robbery of an iQ Credit Union that led to an officer-involved shooting and the suspect’s death.

Kathleen P. Fisher, 48, faces one count of first-degree robbery in connection with the June 6 incident at 15705 N.E. Fourth Plain Blvd. The suspected bank robber, 50-year-old David W. Hamilton of Centralia, died of multiple gunshot wounds after exchanging gunfire with police.

Witnesses said a man, later identified as Hamilton, ran into the credit union wearing a ski mask and holding an assault rifle. He pointed the rifle at several employees and demanded money. He then fled with a large amount of cash and sped off in a white Volvo Georgia. He drove to a nearby parking lot and switched vehicles to a purple Nissan, leading responding officers on a chase east on Northeast Fourth Plain Boulevard into a rural area, according to the Vancouver Police Department.

Officers used a special maneuver to strike Hamilton’s car, bringing it to a stop near the intersection of Northeast 182nd Avenue and 73rd Street. Hamilton then exchanged gunfire with three officers. He died at the scene. No officers were wounded, police said.

Investigators later learned that Fisher had arranged to purchase both the Volvo and Nissan for Hamilton, paying in cash. She reportedly told people that Hamilton was the dead robbery suspect, before law enforcement had identified him, according to a probable cause affidavit.

After being questioned, she told detectives that Hamilton had asked her to buy him a car and that she recognized the car on the news after the robbery. However, in another interview, Fisher admitted to buying both getaway vehicles and said she knew Hamilton was going to use them to rob a bank. He did not tell her which bank, she said, but he planned to arm himself with a rifle and body armor. She denied helping Hamilton stage the vehicles for the getaway, the affidavit states.

Fisher’s bail was set at $40,000 on Wednesday. She will be arraigned Oct. 5.