Shooting suspect succumbs to injuries

By Sara Bruestle | Mar 26, 2014

A man accused of shooting two on Camano Island and later taking aim at officers in Mukilteo has died.

Riley Leif Ottersen, 34, of Camano Island, was shot by police following a high-speed chase that started near Stanwood on Sunday, Feb. 16. He succumbed to his injuries on March 17.

“That last week, he was still on a ventilator and unable to talk, so detectives were not able to interview the suspect,” Edmonds police Sgt. Mark Marsh said.

The exact cause of death will be determined by the Snohomish County Medical Examiner’s office.

A man shot on Camano Island, Bret Berlin, 44, died March 6 at a Seattle hospital, Marsh said. A woman who was also shot on the island was not seriously injured.

Ottersen led officers on a chase down I-5, across SR-526, and into Mukilteo at speeds of up to 100 miles per hour. It ended in a shootout near 88th Street S.W.

If he had recovered from his injuries, Ottersen would have faced charges in both Snohomish and Island counties, Marsh said.

The Snohomish County case involved second-degree assault, whereas the Island County case involved Berlin’s death and first-degree assault of the woman.

The woman was shot in the arm by the same bullet that went through Berlin’s head and neck, Marsh said.

The Snohomish County Multiple Agency Response Team, with detectives from all over the county, continues to investigate the police pursuit and shooting. Island County detectives are investigating the double shooting there.

“I don’t have anything additional to add yet,” Marsh said of the SMART investigation.

Witnesses of the shootout at the intersection of 88th Street S.W. and 53rd Avenue W. in Mukilteo said Ottersen pulled a gun on officers before they open fire.

The Camano shooting was reported around 3:15 p.m. on Feb. 16.The man and woman were shot at the 500 block of Michelle Drive. Ottersen reportedly fled the scene in a gold Toyota Camry.

Not long after a 911 call about the shooting, a Washington State Patrol trooper spotted the vehicle on Highway 532. Snohomish County sheriff’s deputies soon joined the pursuit.

The chase continued southbound on 1-5, until Ottersen exited the freeway at Highway 526, Marsh said. It was then that Everett police joined the pursuit.

The chase ended at the 5300 block of 88th Street S.W. in Mukilteo, when the suspect’s vehicle ran off the road and into a ditch. That was about 3:50 p.m.

Surrounded, Ottersen exited his vehicle. Witnesses said he grabbed a handgun from his waist and leveled it at police.

Police opened fired, striking Ottersen and critically injuring him, Marsh said.

It is unclear how many times he was shot or if he shot at police. No officers were injured.

A weapon believed to belong to Ottersen was later recovered from the scene, Marsh said.

One Everett officer, one state trooper and two deputies were involved in the shooting, he said. The four are now on paid administrative leave, as is standard procedure.

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