Lakewood, Washington (CNN) Four Lakewood police officers were fatally shot Sunday in what police said was an ambush in a coffee shop.

The officers were sitting in the coffee shop before the start of their shifts, reading on their computers, when the shooting occurred, Sheriff’s Department spokesman Ed Troyer said. Authorities believe the officers were meeting and going over cases or doing paperwork, he said.

A gunman came inside and shot all four officers, Troyer said. Two coffee shop employees and other customers inside the shop were unharmed, said Troyer, who said the shooting “was a targeted, selected ambush.”

“As you can imagine, they are traumatized,” he said of those inside the coffee shop. “Some are in shock.”

Families of the officers have been notified, Troyer said. All of the officers — three males and a female — were in uniform, wearing vests and had marked patrol cars parked outside, he said.

A $10,000 reward was offered for information leading to an arrest, Troyer said.


One of four police officers killed in an ambush at a coffee house Sunday fought with the gunman and may have wounded him before the officer died just outside the doorway, a sheriff’s spokesman said.

Pierce County sheriff’s spokesman Ed Troyer told reporters that investigators were asking area medical providers to report any people wounded by gunshots.

Troyer said investigators believe two of the officers were shot dead while sitting in the shop, and a third was killed after standing up. The fourth apparently struggled with the gunman out the doorway and “gave up a good fight,” getting off a few shots before he was either shot there or succumbed to earlier wounds.


Troyer said authorities are seeking Maurice Clemmons, 37, of Pierce County as part of their investigation, though he did not identify Clemens as a suspect.

“We believe he is intentionally avoiding us,” Troyer said, identifying Clemmons as a “person of interest.”

Clemmons has “extensive violent criminal history from Arkansas, including aggravated robbery and theft,” the sheriff’s department said in a statement. He also was recently charged in Pierce County for assaulting a police officer and the rape of a child, according to the statement.

  1. Greg Allen says:

    Is this killing an unforeseen consequence of “three strikes”?

    I’m listening to Seattle (conservative) talk radio and callers are raising this as a possibility.

    The theory is that this guy knew he was a “lifer” because of Three Strikes” and that he wanted to increase his “prison cred” before he went in.

    I have no idea if this is true, but it is a alarming angle on the story.

  2. Greg Allen says:

    >> ochreous said, on November 29th, 2009 at 8:01 pm
    >> Huckabee just got his Willy Horton.

    I doubt it.

    Liberals understand that the “Willy Horton” smear is not fair…

    … and conservatives gave-up any attempt at intellectual consistency a long time ago.

  3. station agent says:

    [Comment deleted – Violation of Posting Guidelines. – ed.]

  4. soundwash says:

    DONT LOOK OVER HERE….! background history on the cops.

    I don’t care how loopy you may be, if some guy goes in to a coffee shop and is rational enough plan out the assination of 4 cops…and level headed to only target his objectives, he had good reason for doing it.

    My heart to the families..

    i reserve judgment on the officers and the accused until full “untainted” background is revealed on the officers as well as their boss. We already know the accused will be painted as a monster.


  5. rhino_rex says:

    expect more of this in the future. unemployment among ex-military is double what it is for civilian. (or so i have read) and not all of them (ex-military) are becoming cops. but now there are four positions open.

  6. meetsy says:

    yep, indeed Huckabee fell for the saps “oh, I’m a good Christian now, pray thee, give me a break” The letter is pandering to the former Gov’s too Christian weak side (the blind faith that “people can change” because they SAY so, and say it in the right coded wording).
    At the first hint of OOOPS, reverting to his old ways, the guy should have had his 180 year sentence re-instated. But, WA state is in a budget crunch, so the legal system has been hampered by cuts, and prisons that are bursting at the seams. Meanwhile, it’s near impossible to get a 72hour insane hold, and/or you cannot “commit” people any longer (laws, and civil rights) no matter how much they rape small children, claim they are Jesus, strip and dance around, throw rocks at the neighbors, attack people, or go bat-shit-f*cking CRAZY telling everyone that the end is near, and to ‘watch the news’ and that cops are going to die. It wasn’t enough that he punched a sheriff in the face a few weeks ago….someone in his loony family circle put up $100k bail bond. (oops, someone just lost 10k)
    …yeah, no warning here at all.

  7. meetsy says:

    “he had good reason for doing it.”
    Yeah, he was bat-shit-f*cking LOONEY!

    As for the cops deserving it. You are, my friend, an ass.

    Sure, okay…sure. I’ll agree, there are some idiot cops. No problem with that. However, to shoot four people from a town where he does NOT live and has no history…..after being let out loose, by an idealistic, loser of a politican (the dude had 180 year sentence….how do you get that? Bad attitude? I think not). Ex cons and guns are never a good idea…and ex cons who like to rape small children and throw rocks at the neighbors cars and their dogs….yeah, he’s your hero?

  8. meetsy says:

    Three strikes is a stupid idea, always WAS a stupid idea, and should go away. The ZERO Tolerance, where the law is used unjustly for no apparent reason should stop. The insanity that makes a 17 year old a “dealer” for having more than an ounce of a drug on them…with a mandatory 30 year sentence…is idiotic. The states cutting PUBLIC Defenders (aka private defenders) and then “retiring out” the Prosecutors with brains and experience, so they can use the budget to hire three idiot, law school D students instead of keeping the smart, efficient one — is a crime. Railroad justice is no justice at all…when people are coerced (lack of money for an attorney, lied to, fake evidence, etc) to pleading guilty.
    Yeah, our justice system is screwed up, but people only care when they are involved in it. We should NOT be cutting back the budget of public defenders, while increasing the budgets of prosecutors. It should be balanced. But the legal system is, currently, a way we suck $$$ out of people, and fill jails (which are a huge line item budget, and now that they are independent corporate for-profit entities…..with huge kickbacks to our elected officials).
    But, none of you care about that, I’m sure.
    Consider: at midyear 2008, there were 4,777 black male inmates per 100,000 U.S. residents being held in state or federal prison and local jails, compared to 1,760 Hispanic male inmates per 100,000 U.S. residents and 727 white male inmates per 100,000 U.S. residents
    So, no skin off your nose, right?

  9. Ralph, the Bus Driver says:

    Whenever there is a case of police brutality, there seems to be a plethora of idiots wanting something like this to happen. Yes, it happened.

  10. soundwash says:


    -i love how people see what they want see. *no where* did i say they deserve it. nor did i infer such.

    If you believe anything you see on tv, you’re naive, if not gullible.

    *nothing* in the media is the truth. it is all scripted and spun for to set an polarized bias, new legislation or both. In fact, all i hear on the radio in relation to this case is the repeated a playback of grieving woman saying “they have to change the law”

    -given that the obvious intentions of this congress (more than any other) is to change *every* law on the books and add hundreds of new ones a month to continue bush’s police state policies, -if not down write rewrite the very nature of the constitution itself, i’d say the intent to exploit this tragedy is obvious.

    In fact, I get 18,614 *news* hits in the past hour for police+officer+killed in google, yet only 3 pages of results.

    I set it to past day and get 18,230 hits. (and access to all links)

    past week: 17,667 -hits
    past month: 17,688 -hits

    -‘xcuse me?

    Google is obviously “memeering” and messing with the hit counter to create the illusion of a “serious” event to polarize people/opinion. It is almost RULE #1 in all media: polarize the people. (ie, divide them, -left-right, good-evil etc..)

    $1 bet, -a new law gets named in relation to this incident. -if the case or cops are not found to be corrupted. (not that matters anymore)

    Criticize all you want. Just make sure you have a good (and *real*) understanding of what’s going on lest you end up looking like the ass yourself.


    -its *all* scripted.

  11. The flip side says:

    Well, I’m sure it’s someone who is fed up with cops who are above the law and seem to cover up and get away with breaking the law on a regular basis. It’s hard to give a shit when u see cops break the law and cover it up with no consequence carma is a bitch gilt an innocence should be based on that and not money. And a badge doesn’t give cops the rite to break the law and I know a few that do. I don’t feel bad for the cops but I do feel bad for their families and will say a prayer for them. Maybe he or she needed a donut and the cops had eaton all of them. That would piss anyone off. Ok that’s harsh my bad.


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