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May 7, 2021

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Police: Attempted auto theft preceded fatal shooting at Vancouver waterfront

29-year-old Kin K. Bossy died in the shooting

By , Columbian Assistant Metro Editor

A man fatally shot by a newspaper carrier April 17 at the Waterfront Vancouver carried a hunting knife, police say, but court records do not indicate that he produced the weapon before he was shot.

The man, identified as 29-year-old Kin K. Bossy, had been attempting to steal the carrier’s car when he was shot multiple times, according to a search warrant affidavit filed Tuesday in Clark County District Court.

The Vancouver man died of a gunshot wound to the chest, according to the Clark County Medical Examiner’s Office.

An independent contractor newspaper carrier for The Columbian, identified by police as 35-year-old Justyn Vallandingham, reportedly fired at Bossy after finding him inside his vehicle.

Documents seeking permission to search Vallandingham’s white 2016 Chrysler 200 cite probable cause for second-degree murder. The search warrant was requested by Vancouver police Detective Dustin Goudschaal.

Vallandingham reportedly told police he saw Bossy turn toward the center console of his car and feared he was trying to grab a weapon, so he fired at him. Police previously said Vallandingham has a concealed pistol license.

He also reportedly told police there were no other weapons inside his vehicle, court records state, but there was a gun magazine.

Vallandingham has not been arrested in the shooting. The Clark County Prosecuting Attorney’s Office will review the police investigation to see if charges are warranted.

Police response

Police responded around 4:30 a.m. on a Saturday to the Waterfront Vancouver after several area residents called 911 to report hearing gunshots. Vallandingham also called to report a shooting, the affidavit states.

Dispatchers instructed Vallandingham to place his firearm out of reach and wait at the scene for officers to arrive. He was subsequently detained and taken to the Vancouver Police Department’s West Precinct for questioning.

Officers secured the pistol and found a man, later identified as Bossy, suffering from gunshot wounds, sitting in the driver’s seat of a Chrysler that was found to be registered to Vallandingham. Police pulled Bossy from the car and attempted life-saving measures, but he was pronounced dead at the scene, according to the affidavit.

The officers said they found a sheathed knife in Bossy’s pocket, court records state.

Vallandingham was delivering newspapers in the area, police said, and left his vehicle unlocked and running while he went to make a delivery at the RiverWest Building, 700 Waterfront Way. (According to the affidavit, Vallandingham has been a contract newspaper carrier for the past 10 years. The waterfront is part of his usual route.)

He told police he returned to his car after hearing his door shut. As he went to open the driver’s door, he saw a man sitting inside his car, he said. He pulled his concealed weapon and pointed it at the man before firing what he estimated to be three to four rounds, the affidavit states.

Vallandingham said he then “covered” near the public restrooms at the waterfront. He said he recalled hearing a man yell he “murdered him!” according to the affidavit.

That man was identified as Justin Neighbours, who was with Bossy at the time of the shooting, and also called 911, court records say. Neighbours also was taken to the department’s West Precinct to be interviewed.

Neighbours told police he and Bossy had used methamphetamine earlier that morning at the Grand Central shopping center, 2500 Columbia House Blvd., court records state, and then they went to the waterfront so Bossy could use the public restroom.

Neighbours – driving a white Subaru – parked in the oncoming lane of Waterfront Way near the restroom, he said. Another vehicle pulled up behind him and parked on the correct side of the road, he told police.

Bossy told Neighbours he was going to steal the car, Neighbours told police. He said he told Bossy it was not a “good idea,” but Bossy started to approach the vehicle anyway, according to the affidavit.

At the same time, Neighbours said he saw someone returning to the vehicle, draw a firearm and start shooting at Bossy, who was now in the driver’s seat. Neighbours began to slowly drive away, he said, but stopped when he heard the shots. He got out of the Subaru as more shots were fired and yelled at the shooter. He then drove away, he told police.

Neighbours said he did not believe Bossy carried a gun but said he may have had a Bowie knife, according to the affidavit.