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Car-prowling suspect shoots at Orting resident who gave chase

By Alexis Krell, Puyallup Herald
Published: February 26, 2024, 7:28pm

PUYALLUP — A car prowling suspect fired shots at an Orting resident who gave chase earlier this month, according to police.

Someone in the Village Green neighborhood saw teenagers prowling cars just after midnight Sunday, Feb. 18, a news release from the Orting Police Department said Monday night, Feb. 19.

“Some teens fled the scene in a car that had recently been stolen from a home in the same neighborhood,” the release said. “The victim, who interrupted the teens, gave chase in their vehicle and began following the suspects through the neighborhood.”

Police said someone in the stolen car shot at the victim, then left the car and took off in the 900 block of Washington Avenue.

“The teen suspects were located at the Orting Middle School, hiding near the main parking lot,” the release said.

Police said they searched the grounds of Orting Middle School and Ptarmigan Ridge Elementary next door for a firearm with help from other city and school district officials, but didn’t find one.

“While we are confident that school grounds are free of any dangerous items based upon the thorough search performed, students and staff should remain vigilant and are encouraged to report any suspicious objects discovered in an abundance of caution by calling 911 or immediately reporting to a school administrator,” the release said.

The release said to contact Police Chief Devon Gabreluk with questions. Chief Gabreluk responded to a News Tribune reporter’s phone call Tuesday, Feb. 20, with an email that said: “I was told you called regarding our juvenile incident from early Sunday morning. Unfortunately, I don’t have any additional information that I can share about the case at this time beyond what was put out yesterday evening as the case is still active. I will, however, include you specifically for any additional info we may put out about the incident in the future.”

The News Tribune asked in a follow-up email whether anyone was hurt, how many teenagers were arrested, what crimes they were arrested on suspicion of, and whether they were in custody at Remann Hall, Pierce County’s juvenile detention facility.

“We had multiple teens in custody for various property crimes the morning of the incident; however, we were unable to immediately book them into Remann Hall due to those crimes being property related,” Gabreluk responded. “We are still actively investigating the reports of shots being fired.”

He said no one was injured, and that police arrested four boys ages 15 to 17.