King County Sheriff detectives tell KIRO 7 it appears that a wild New Year’s Eve shootout between four men, which left two dead and one injured, is a case of self-defense.
They say it appears that an armed 50-year-old man was killed while trying to protect 20 people inside the house at the New Year’s Eve party in Renton. The man who shot him was also killed. Another man was wounded, and is expected to survive.
Detectives analyzed the shooting scene with bullet-riddled cars, tires, even a nearby street sign was hit. Detectives call the scene a real ballistics puzzle. They say it could take days of crime lab testing to figure out where all the bullets came from.
Family members of the 50-year-old victim say he was the father of the woman who was hosting the party. They say the trouble began with a confrontation on the front porch, when both the father and his son armed themselves when they confronted a group of party crashers outside the front door.
“He told him to leave, the party was over,” said Bob Newman, who is related to the homeowner. “One of the men he told to leave pulled a gun and shot him.”
King County detectives say it appears the man fired back, and that set off a gun battle and a hail of bullets between the two groups.
Residents of the house say the party-crashers were complete strangers to them, and they came “looking for a fight.”
Detectives believe the people who belonged at the party were well within their legal rights using guns to protect themselves, but others wonder why this had to end so tragically.
“I don’t know why police weren’t called right away,” said Newman. “If the police had come and told those people to leave, I don’t believe this would have happened.”
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