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2 dead / 4 wounded. Another reason to always carry

Discussion in 'General Firearm Discussion' started by cash$$cow, Jul 18, 2010.

  1. cash$$cow

    cash$$cow Eastern Wa Member

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    by KING 5 News

    NWCN.com

    Posted on July 17, 2010 at 9:56 PM

    Updated today at 11:30 AM

    Related:
    •11 p.m. live report on the shootings
    •KCSO Sgt. Urquhart interview from cell phone video
    •KCSO Sgt. Urquhard phone interview on fatal shootings
    Gallery
    .See all 2 photos »

    ISSAQUAH, Wash. - Two people were killed Saturday night in a multiple shooting at Lake Sammamish State Park.

    According to the Washington State Patrol, dispatchers received a call from a park ranger about multiple shots fired in the park at around 9 p.m. According to the Patrol, shots could be heard during the park ranger's call.

    The King County Sheriff's Department says the shootings broke out near the beach area. Sergeant John Urquhart said violence erupted as a group of people were having a party in the park, but he added that authorities still don't know what led the shooting.

    As police flooded the scene, they found parkgoers hiding in park buildings to get away from the gunfire.

    Urquhart said two were killed and four were hurt. He said all of the victims were male. Three of the wounded were taken to Harborview Medical Center in Seattle, a fourth was taken to Overlake Medical Center in Bellevue.

    Early this morning, one man was in serious condition and the other two were in satisfactory condition, Harborview's nursing supervisor told the Seattle Times.

    Urquhart said he is not sure if the dead were involved in the shootings or were bystanders.

    "Our victims, we don't know if they're innocent victims, people caught in a crossfire, suspects, other shooters, we don't know," Urquhart said. "It's quite possible there was more than one shooter."

    Deputies said a lot of weapons were found. A gun was found near the shooting scene and a car with several guns inside was stopped inside the park.

    Urquhart said several people are in custody. He says deputies are not searching for any more suspects. Six to ten people were being questioned by deputies.

    Dawn Hilliker said she and her two teenage sons spent the day at the park, celebrating a friend's high school graduation. They were packing up their car to leave when they heard several loud bangs from 250 yards away.

    "There was one man that ran from the other side of the park where the shots fired, down by our park and he was running into the bushes and the cops were chasing him. I think they caught him," said Riley Hilliker. "There were several people that were running around that they found and arrested."

    "I saw three guys get arrested, and I seen cops running around everywhere," said Austin Hilliker.

    The family waited two hours to leave the park, as police stopped every vehicle on the way out, Dawn Hilliker said.

    The Sheriff's Office will keep the park closed for most, if not all of the day today, said Urquhart. Detectives will be at the park collecting evidence and diagramming the crime scene. They believe several guns were stashed in the park immediately after the shooting. Urquhart says it is imperative that detectives recover any weapons left behind.

    The Patrol said it believes the shootings were gang related but that has not been confirmed by the King County Sheriff's Office, which is the lead investigating agency.

    Hilliker said she taught her sons to stay away from places where they might encounter gang violence.

    "You don't think coming to a graduation celebration at a state park that you would enter into that kind of environment. We came here to celebrate and ended up a part of chaos."

    Owen Lei / KING 5 News and the Associated Press contributed to this report.
     
  2. Dyjital

    Dyjital Albany, Ore Flavorite Member Bronze Supporter

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    Wonder how true that statement is...???

    Sad to see that these acts of violence have moved from neighborhoods to public areas that should be seen as a 'sanctuary'.
     
  3. biggie24420

    biggie24420 Beaverton Oregon Well-Known Member

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    Yeah well this is why I CC 95% of the time. If I can help it I don't go to places where they don't allow guns..... as far as being in an environment where it's a GUN FREE ZONE I will not comment on anything lol.
    We must remember that just because you pack, it doesn't mean that you will win in a gun fight.... you have better odds of defending yourself when you pack, and you probably wouldn't need to wait for police to come rescue you. Good read........ sucks that people can't be adults about things and have to use deadly force.
     
  4. DAE51D

    DAE51D Redmond, WA Member

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    Local News | Men killed in Lake Sammamish State Park gunbattle identified | Seattle Times Newspaper

    Justin is the brother of my very good friend. My thoughts and prayers go out to him and his family.

    I have known his brother Heath since 1998 and he is far from a gang member or affiliate. I met Justin one time at their parents home and he was a polite and cordial man. I just got off the phone with Heath and he is just disgusted with the way the sensational media and the user's comments are painting the situation.

    The short story I was told is that Justin was there with some friends and family celebrating a child's 5th birthday. The neighboring thugs were picking a fight with someone and Justin went over to try to diffuse the situation (and defend the guy that was being ganged up on) and explaining they were there having a family event and this wasn't the place or time to act like they were. The situation escalated and a fist fight ensued. Justin was winning the fight when several of the thugs then opened fire and Justin took a hit. He returned fire and struck & killed Keovongphet. Justin was also shot Justin in the chest at the same time.
     
  5. matt_w

    matt_w Hillsboro, OR Active Member

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    Don't think having a gun in this situation would do much good...I would much rather get away as soon as possible! I'm not going to get involved in a fight where both parties are armed and firing indiscriminately, and just watching means you could get hit by a stray round...
     
  6. deen_ad

    deen_ad Vancouver, WA Well-Known Member

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    know who is armed before the shooting starts? You're x-ray vision must be better than mine!

    This is bad timing for concealed carry in city parks in WA as the state court upheld the State law on preemption, but Federal court said the city has the right to ban guns in parks. Both cases are being appealed. Sure hope the State preemption law is upheld!! I'd hate the patchwork of laws that would spring up as a result!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    Deen
    NRA Benefactor/Recruiter
    WAC Member
    SWWAC Member
     
  7. deen_ad

    deen_ad Vancouver, WA Well-Known Member

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    respect "sanctuary" ANYWHERE. The only ones that have respect for laws are the law abiding citizens.

    I carried into a county park that was posted because I knew the state preemption applied and it was legal for CPL holders to carry, but not for criminals. But, being a criminal already means they don't follow the laws.

    Deen
    NRA Benefactor/Recruiter
    WAC Member
    SWWAC Member
     
  8. cash$$cow

    cash$$cow Eastern Wa Member

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    [Sorry to about the loss. Growing up, I spent every 4th of July and Labor Day at this park. None of us leave home knowing how the day is going to unfold.
     
  9. DAE51D

    DAE51D Redmond, WA Member

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    Carpe Diem.
     
  10. madcratebuilder

    madcratebuilder Ardenwald, OR Well-Known Member

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    Gun laws only effect law abiding citizens, criminals do not follow the letter of the law.

    Did any of the people involved in this shooting have a carry permit? 99.9% chance they did not.
     
  11. DAE51D

    DAE51D Redmond, WA Member

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    Odd. The Seattle Times used the same link and put a whole new story there! That doesn't seem right for the press to do. They should make a NEW page with the updates, not just yank out all their old "reporting". Anyways, this one does reflect what I said earlier more accurately:

    Local News | Mourning families: What went so wrong at Lake Sammamish State Park? | Seattle Times Newspaper

    Mourning families: What went so wrong at Lake Sammamish State Park?

    Two men slain during Saturday's gunbattle at Lake Sammamish State Park were remembered Monday as loyal friends and loving brothers whose deaths have left their families stunned and searching for answers.

    The deaths of two men slain during Saturday's gunbattle at Lake Sammamish State Park have left their families stunned and searching for answers. Both are remembered as being true friends to those who knew them and loving family members.
    Justin Cunningham, 30, of South Seattle, is believed to have fatally shot Yang Keovongphet, 33, after a fistfight broke out between two groups picnicking at the park around 9 p.m., according to a source close to the investigation. Someone from Keovongphet's group returned fire, killing Cunningham, authorities said.
    Four other people were wounded by gunfire.
    Nobody had been arrested in connection with the shootings as of Monday as King County sheriff's investigators continued to sift through evidence gathered from the popular park. Authorities hope ballistics tests will lead detectives to those responsible, another source said.
    Investigators have recovered four guns and 20 bullet casings.
    The Sheriff's Office said members of both groups have gang affiliations, and investigators are trying to determine whether that played a role in the shootings.
    However, relatives of the slain men said Monday that neither was a gang member.
    Keovongphet's stepsister, Sakorn Keopanya, said she was frustrated that people were saying her stepbrother was in a gang. She said he was killed because he was trying to break up a fight that erupted between the two groups.
    "That is all being spun up so that it will be a bigger story," Keopanya said. "What people need to remember is that he was a person and now he is gone."
    According to court documents, Keovongphet was sentenced to four years in prison after he pleaded guilty to two counts of second-degree assault with a handgun in 1994. Cunningham had no felony convictions.
    Cunningham's sister, Heidi, said she didn't know who her brother was with at the park and insisted he was not in a gang.
    "He was just a good kid. He was caught up at the wrong place at the wrong time," said Cunningham's brother-in-law, Marcus. Cunningham's sister and brother-in-law asked that their last name not be published out of fear for their family's safety.
    The King County Medical Examiner's Office said both Cunningham and Keovongphet died of multiple gunshot wounds. Both deaths were ruled homicides.
    Cunningham's sister and brother-in-law choked back tears as they remembered the slain man as a comedian, a doting uncle, an expert at cooking chicken wings and the champion at their family croquet tournaments. The youngest of three children, Cunningham grew up in Boulevard Park and graduated from Evergreen High School, Heidi said.
    He was a heavy-equipment mechanic who talked to Heidi weekly and had several groups of friends, his brother-in-law said.
    Marcus said Cunningham "was just a fun-loving guy who looked out for people." He said his brother-in-law went by the nickname "Juice" and was someone who "had a strong distaste for bullies" and "bully types."
    But, Marcus added, Cunningham was "a nonconfrontational, diplomatic guy who often sought to resolve disagreements through words."
    "He liked to party, but he's entitled to. He liked his friends, he supported them and was someone they could rely on," Marcus said. "He was just a good kid. He was caught up at the wrong place at the wrong time."
    Keopanya remembered Keovongphet as "a father of four and a great person." Keopanya told KOMO-TV that her stepbrother was at the park with friends.
    Cunningham and Keovongphet were with groups that had staked out areas near one another at Lake Sammamish State Park on Saturday. Someone from one of their groups walked over and taunted members of the second group, King County sheriff's spokesman Sgt. John Urquhart said. The reason for the taunting is unclear.
    A fistfight erupted around 9 p.m., and someone from one group apparently fired a gun into the air as a warning, Urquhart said. Members of both groups — described by Urquhart as heavily armed — then exchanged gunfire.
    Investigators recovered a gun next to Cunningham's body, the law-enforcement source said. An unidentified member of Keovongphet's group is believed to have shot and killed Cunningham, the source said.
    Urquhart said the groups were made up of people of mainly Asian descent. Keovongphet was of Laotian descent, his stepsister, Keopanya, said. Cunningham was white.
    The park, which was closed Sunday during the investigation, reopened Monday.
    Sandy Mealing, spokeswoman with the Washington State Parks and Recreation Commission, said Monday that the agency is waiting to review the Sheriff's Office investigation into the shootings to determine if park policies need to be changed.
    Visitors can bring handguns into state parks if they have a concealed-weapons permit, Mealing said. The Sheriff's Office has not said whether the two men killed or the others who were armed had legal permits.
    Alcohol is permitted in most state parks, but only in campsites and picnic areas. The two groups were in such an area, Mealing said. Authorities said the groups had alcohol with them.
    Seattle Times staff reporters Christine Clarridge, Jill Kimball and news researcher Miyoko Wolf contributed to this report, which includes information from Times archives.
     
  12. gcban

    gcban Tukwila, WA Active Member

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    I heard on the news this morning that according to a family member, the 30 year old man from Kent (Justin I believe) had a WA CPL. Sounds like he was at the park to attend a friends kids birthday party. According to the interview with his brother, he was a law abiding citizen and always carried LEGALLY, and was not connected or involved with any gang activity. Sounds like he may have tried to step in to break up a fist fight between 2 rival gang members/groups that were pinicing fairly closely to each other at the park. When the guns came out he was unfortunatly in the middle of it and had to try and protect himself or someone else's life. (If that's the case, then bless you for your sacrifice young man, RIP).

    I truly hope that is the case. I will wait to hear ALL the facts after the authorities figure it out before I make any further comments.
     
  13. DAE51D

    DAE51D Redmond, WA Member

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    gcban, thank you for actually READING the story and taking in the facts before jumping to conclusions and focusing on the buzzwords as so many other commentators did (not necessarily here, but on the main story link). It's frustrating. People are so quick to judge and condemn. I hope I'm never in a situation where one of these know-it-alls is on a "jury of my peers"...
     
  14. clearconscience

    clearconscience Vancouver, WA Well-Known Member

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    Obviously I wasn't there and can't comment as a witness. But it seems like this Justin kid was someone who got caught in a bad situation, and as much as the other guys family wants to promote him as a "good person" he sounds like a piece of crap. I hope the facts come out clean and Justin gets his due (I'm assuming) recognition as a respectful CPL holder, and positive member of that community. And I hope whoever was wrong in this event gets what should be coming to them, severe jail time or worse.

    It's sad that these pieces of crap get to control society. And instead of calling it what it is, the people who make the laws will use this as an excuse to ban guns in parks, if not every where, But the fact is the guns will still be there. Who knows what would have happened if Justin and whoever else wouldn't have intervened.

    R.I.P JC.
     
  15. clearconscience

    clearconscience Vancouver, WA Well-Known Member

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    A 16-year-old Renton boy was wounded in the shooting at Lake Sammamish State Park Saturday night that left two men dead, according to the King County Sheriff's Office.

    The teen's injuries were not life-threatening, said Sgt. John Urquhart, a sheriff's spokesman.

    The teen and two others wounded in the shooting were treated at Harborview Medical Center. The other two wounded were a 20-year-old North Bend man and a 22-year-old Seattle man. The names of the three weren't released.

    A fourth victim was treated at Overlake Hospital in Bellevue. He was beaten after the shooting, and his injuries are not serious, according to Urquhart.

    The shooting occurred after a verbal disagreement between two groups escalated into a fist fight and then gunfire at the park.

    "Everyone who was shot was part of these one or two groups," said Urquhart.

    In Washington state parks such as Lake Sammamish it is legal to consume alcohol and carry a handgun. Authorities have said alcohol may have played a role in the shootings.

    The dead men have been identified as Justin Cunningham, 30, of south Seattle, and Yang Keovongphet, 33, of Kent.

    So far, sheriff's investigators have recovered four handguns and 25 spent cartridges, Urquhart said Tuesday. Two of the guns were in a car stopped leaving the scene. One gun was found in a marsh area near picnic tables, and the fourth was found near Cunningham's body.

    Detectives do not know who shot Cunningham or Keovongphet, Urquhart said. There are several possibilities, but until ballistic evidence is analyzed by the State Patrol Crime Lab, no definitive conclusions should be drawn, he said.

    A fourth victim was treated at Overlake Hospital. He was beaten after the shooting, and his injuries are not serious.

    Detectives are interviewing witnesses and preparing evidence for the Crime Lab. Anyone with additional information is asked to call the Sheriff's Office at 206-296-3311.