LAKEBAY, Wash. – An attempted invasion robbery at a home on Key Peninsula that housed a large marijuana grow operation turned into a gun battle between the owner and the robbers Thursday night. One robber is dead, at least two other people are wounded and as many as four people may be on the run in the neighborhood.
It happened around 8:30 p.m. near Tiedman Road and Herron Road in Lakebay. Pierce County Sheriff's Department spokesman Detective Ed Troyer says there is a "substantial" marijuana grow operation in the home.
Troyer says as many as seven people may have been involved in the invasion.
"The homeowner was armed. We have a large amount of suspects, not just a few. We believe possibly up to six, seven suspects came to the residence to do a drug rip or residential robbery. The homeowner fired and there was a large gunbattle," said Troyer.
Two suspects and the homeowner were shot. One of the suspects died at the scene. The alleged getaway driver and the homeowner were wounded. Their conditions were not immediately known.
Troyer says handguns and shotguns were used and there are 50 to 100 rounds of spent ammunition at the scene.
Another three to four suspects are on the loose. Some of them may be armed. They may also be wounded.
People in the neighborhood are being urged to stay inside, lock their doors and not answer the door.
"...the part that we're concerned about is we still have three, maybe four suspects at large. We don't know if they've been shot or not. (They were) on the side of the road. They took off on foot and (are) armed. We want the neighbors in this area to keep their doors locked," said Troyer. "We're sure they're just trying to get away after what happened. But, we don't want anyone else to become a victim. We don't want them going to look for refuge somewhere and someone unintentionally becoming a victim. So just be alert, call 9-1-1. We have a ton of people out here that will get to your location very quickly."
"This is unbelievable," said neighbor Diana McGee. "It could be the neighbor kids. I'm not sure which house it is, but it's our road."
A woman at a nearby gas station said she heard as many as 15 gunshots.
Deputies have closed off Tiedman Road at Herron Road. The Washington State Patrol says it is assisting the sheriff's department.
Stay with KING 5 News for the latest on this developing story.
KING 5's Chris Daniels and Drew Mikkelsen contributed to this report.
by KING 5 News
Posted on October 7, 2010 at 8:59 PM
There is a brief news video embedded on the news story linked above.
Also news video of a sheriffs department press conference here: http://www.king5.com/video/featured...ence-on-home-invasion-shootout-104553559.html