Marysville police are looking for multiple individuals who opened fire at suspected shoplifters leaving the Marysville Coastal store on Dec. 22.
“About 2 p.m. Saturday [Dec. 22] reports of shots fired at the Coastal store came in to our department,” said Cmdr. Mark Thomas, one of the Marysville Police Department’s public information officers.
“Obviously getting reports of shots fired a couple days before Christmas in a public place is going to have a very significant police response,” he said.
Police arrived at the scene shortly and interviewed witnesses, said Thomas.
“One individual tried to intervene to stop the shoplifters,” and followed the suspected shoplifters out to their car, he said.
According to Thomas this individual drew his weapon and placed it in the “low-ready position” which would be visible but pointed toward the ground.
“The passenger told the driver ‘he’s not going to shoot us,’ and they drove off,” said Thomas.
As the two suspected shoplifters left they struck the individual with their car. That particular individual never fired his gun and stayed at the scene to deliver a police statement, said Thomas.
“However a couple of other individuals were around and did take out their firearms and shot at the vehicle,” he said.
As the vehicle was leaving the tires were flattened because of the shots. Because of that the car was not able to get far and after a K9 search the two suspects in the shoplifting were apprehended.
Many of the suspected stolen items were in the car, while a couple of the other items were recovered outside, near the vehicle, possibly thrown out at the time, said Thomas.
The two suspects are now being held and charged with robbery instead of theft. “As soon as they struck the individual with the car it becomes robbery because they are using force or the threat of force,” said Thomas.
The customers who opened fire on the suspected shoplifters left the scene of the incident are now being asked to contact the Marysville Police Department for a statement.
“They left before police arrived and we can see on security camera footage one of them leaving just as police are getting there, so there was certainly an opportunity to stop and contact an officer,” said Thomas.
Thomas said that gun owners must stick around to talk to police officers when they use their weapons.
“If you’re a lawful gun owner and you use it in defense of yourself or others, it is your responsibility to stick around and talk to the police,” he said.
“Anytime someone is firing a weapon in a crowded public place, that is a grave concern,” he said.
The police department has put a lot of work into investigating the shooting, said Thomas.
“We have spent lots of man hours on this because we take it very seriously, and we would not have had to had these individuals remained at the scene to answer questions,” he said.