Tacoma shooting justified, report says

Three Tacoma police officers were justified when they shot and killed an armed, suicidal man outside The Ram restaurant in October, Pierce County Prosecuting Attorney Mark Lindquist announced Monday.

The death of 63-year-old Kenneth Wickham was “regrettable, but the officers at the scene used commendable restraint and only fired their weapons when Mr. Wickham pointed his handgun in their direction,” Lindquist said.

Sgt. Peter Habib and officers Scott Harris and Matt Verkoelen fired a total of 17 rounds at Wickham after he yelled at police to shoot him and eventually pointed a loaded .45-caliber handgun in their direction.

Authorities have not said how many bullets hit Wickham, a Gig Harbor man and father of three who was distraught over problems with his ex-wife.

There will be no medical examiner’s inquest, authorities said, because no facts have been disputed about the Oct. 30 shooting in the parking lot of the Ruston Way restaurant.

Alarmed patrons called 911 about 8:30 that evening to report Wickham was standing near his car, holding a gun and saying he wanted to kill himself.

Officers with their guns drawn approached Wickham and used parked cars for cover. They repeatedly asked him to put down his weapon and shot him after he pointed his gun at them.

Stacia Glenn: 253-597-8653 stacia.glenn@thenews