A man who was shot by a Pierce County Sheriff’s deputy on Friday night when he tried to get inside a patrol car while armed with a knife has been identified by the Pierce County Medical Examiner.
William Langfitt, a 28-year-old from Spanaway, was killed after his friend called 911 to report that he seemed to be having a mental breakdown in the middle of the road, according to the Pierce County Sheriff’s Department. The incident took place near 253nd Street East and Mountain Highway East in the Elk Plain area.
During the 911 call at about 9:30 p.m., dispatchers heard the caller yell “Stop it” and let go of me now,” sheriff’s spokesman Ed Troyer told The News Tribune. The woman then told the dispatcher that Langfitt had a knife and was heading east on 252nd Street East. Another person called 911 as deputies responded and said the man tried to get in his vehicle.
Troyer said Langfitt tried to get into at least two cars before deputies arrived.
“The suspect had reportedly refused multiple commands from the deputy at gunpoint, then entered the deputy’s patrol vehicle, at which point the deputy fired at the suspect,” Troyer said.
The man was pronounced dead at the scene. The deputy was placed on paid administrative leave, which is standard procedure after a police-involved shooting.
Stacia Glenn: 253-597-8653