SWAT end standoff at Chief Joseph Village

BY MATTHEW BRUNSTETTER | Evergreen reporter

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Whitman County SWAT provided assistance to end a standoff in Chief Joseph Village university housing early Tuesday morning.

WSU Police Department Assistant Chief Steve Hansen said WSU police tried to pull over a car that was speeding. The driver pulled into Chief Joseph, and then the suspects got out of the car and led police on a foot pursuit.

The suspects fled into Building C and then to Building E while police made a perimeter around the buildings.

SWAT was called in for assistance after officers found a knife that had been dropped by one of the suspects.

SWAT entered the building and apprehended the suspects: two males, one 17-year-old and one 20-year-old, Jason Fuhr-Turner.

Both suspects are residents of Seattle and are not WSU students.

The 17-year-old had two prior warrants to his arrest in Colfax and King County and was arrested with two obstructions and driving with a suspended license. The 20-year-old was charged with rendering criminal assistance.

Students in the apartment complex reported hearing the police presence in the area along with knocking on residents’ doors at about 10:30 p.m. Monday.

Adam Ziegler, Chief Joseph resident and WSU student, said the police knocked on his door repeatedly throughout the night. The police had been knocking on multiple doors in the apartment complex.

“It wasn’t until about the sixth time that I realized, ‘Oh shit, the police are the ones doing this,’” Ziegler said.

Police eventually knocked on the window of Ziegler’s roommate, Gage Graham, to get their attention and ask them to exit their apartment.

“We walked out, and I saw three SWAT guys with assault rifles,” Graham said. “I was pretty scared. I was just expecting the police.”

Ziegler and Graham said the police had located the suspects in the apartment directly next to them in Building E. They were escorted to a laundry room nearby.

Outside, they saw an armored vehicle, they said.

Ziegler said when he and Ziegler checked if it was OK to return to their apartment they saw SWAT members enter the neighboring apartment to find the suspects.