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The Times' criminal justice team looks behind the scenes and behind the headlines.

April 20, 2011 at 6:46 PM

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UPDATED: Man shot on Metro bus near Kent

Posted by Jill Kimball

UPDATED INFORMATION: A 30-year-old man suffered gunshot wounds in an altercation on a King County Metro Transit Wednesday afternoon, adding to a series of violent bus incidents in recent years.

The man was transported to Harborview Medical Center, Kent police spokesman Pat Lowery said, and his condition was unknown.

According to Lowery, a route 169 bus driver heard a “commotion” between two men in the back of the bus at around 6 p.m. as it drove in East Hill-Meridian near Kent.

The two had been in an argument, witnesses told police. One man seemed to be getting off the bus when he suddenly pulled out a gun. The bus was approaching the 20600 block of 108th Avenue Southeast when the driver heard gunshots.

The 30-year-old victim, who police said is from Sea-Tac, appeared to have been shot twice in the torso. The shooter, estimated to have been between 17 and 22, then went to the front of the bus, pointed the gun at the driver and demanded to be let off. The driver opened the doors, and the shooter fled across the street to an apartment building.

Police searched the area but did not find the shooter, though they may have found the weapon. They are asking for the public’s help in looking for him. Lowery said he is about 5-foot-7, black and wearing a black and red NASCAR-style jacket.

In January 2010, on Metro Route 124 in Tukwila, a 15-year-old punched and knocked out a Metro bus driver while two other teens beat down the rear door, because the driver refused to let them off.

Last August, a 10-year-old boy accidentally shot himself in the arm as he reached into his backpack, where he was carrying a gun, in Rainier Beach while riding the Route 7 Metro bus.

In 2007, two 17-year-olds were assaulted by an angry mob of 25 or 30 teenagers shouting profanities on the same route in Columbia City.

EARLIER POST: A teenage boy was shot Wednesday on a King County Metro Transit bus in East Hill-Meridian near Kent Wednesday at about 6 p.m.

According to Metro Transit spokesman Matt Reichmann, the route 169 bus driver told authorities there was a commotion in the back of the bus at around 6 p.m., as the bus was approaching the intersection of 108th Avenue Southeast and Southeast 204th Street.

The driver said a group of teenage boys was the source of the commotion, which turned violent when one of the teens fired shots at another. The victim is thought to be between 15 and 17, Reichmann said, and is believed to have been shot twice in the chest. The shooter’s age is unknown.

The shooter then went to the front of the bus and pointed his gun at the driver, according to Reichmann. The driver opened the bus doors and the shooter fled to an apartment building nearby.

The teenage shooter is still at large, and the victim’s condition is unknown. Kent police are investigating the cause of the shooting.

More information will be added as it becomes available.

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