PORTLAND, Ore. (KOIN) — An armed robbery suspect was shot and killed by police officers in Salem on Monday morning after “gunfire was exchanged” when the suspect was confronted by officers, authorities said.
Salem police say the officers were called to the scene of an armed robbery and carjacking in progress in the parking lot of a Walmart store on Commercial Street SE and that the suspect then “moved north” to a nearby Planet Fitness as officers arrived on the scene. The suspect, later identified as 27-year-old Michael James Compton, was allegedly attempting to steal a different vehicle.
Compton then ran to a nearby Napa Auto Parts Store, where responding officers “confronted the suspect in the parking lot and gunfire was exchanged,” according to Salem police in a press release Monday afternoon.
Compton fired at least once at the officers and hit the windshield of a patrol car, authorities said.
Compton died at the scene, police said. It was later determined Compton had multiple warrants for his arrest in both Clackamas and Lane counties.
Multiple agencies, including Marion County Sheriff’s Office and Oregon State Police, responded to the scene. KOIN 6 News crews at the scene saw multiple evidence markers placed around the area between Kuebler Boulevard and Barnes Avenue Southeast.
Salem police said that Justin Carney, Kristy Fitzpatrick, Reece Mathis and Robert Acosta were the officers involved in the incident.
At the scene, witness Rosendo Corral said he saw a man attempting to break into vehicles in the area before a shooting broke out between the man and police.
“He turned around and he shot a couple times and the cops shot back,” said Corral. “He fell to the ground, he got back up, he didn’t get totally back up, he was just leaning back up and started shooting again. Then the cops started shooting him about six or eight times and really hit him, really knocked him down. He was gone.”
According to Salem police, the northbound lanes of Commercial Street were closed at Barnes Avenue Southwest and the southbound lanes were closed at Kuebler Boulevard during the initial investigation.
KOIN 6 News will have more information as it develops.