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UPDATED: One dead in reported home-invasion robbery in Pierce County

Post by Stacey Mulick / The News Tribune on Nov. 3, 2010 at 7:47 am |
November 3, 2010 10:20 pm
Investigators with the Pierce County Sheriff's Department work a scene of a reported home-invasion robbery this morning in the 6100 block of 72nd Street Court E. Joe Barrentine/staff photographer

UPDATE (5:35 p.m.): Detectives now believe the second robber accidentally shot his partner in the head, killing him. An autopsy showed the dead man’s gunshot wound was not caused by a shotgun, sheriff’s spokesman Ed Troyer said late this afternoon. Crime Stoppers is offering a reward for information leading to the capture of the second man. Reach Crime Stoppers at 253-591-5959.

PREVIOUS POST: One man is dead and another is on the run after an exchange of gunfire during a reported home-invasion robbery this morning in Pierce County.

Pierce County sheriff’s spokesman Ed Troyer said one of the suspected robbers was killed at the scene in the 6100 block of 72nd Street Court East, just west of the City of Puyallup.

The other suspect left from the scene, possibly in a burgundy or maroon-colored Honda. He’s described only as a man standing 6 foot to 6 feet 1 with a heavy build, Troyer said. Deputies searched for the second suspect but so far, have not located him.

Investigators believe the home-invasion robbery was not random, Troyer said.

“Usually houses are targeted,” he said.

The incident was reported shortly after 6:30 a.m. Two suspects forced their way into the home where a boyfriend and girlfriend were asleep.

The suspects wore masks, were dressed in all black and wielded handguns. They went into the couple’s bedroom, woke them up and demanded to know the location of a safe and jewelry, Troyer said.

As the suspects pistol-whipped the boyfriend, the woman reached under the bed, grabbed a shotgun and handed it over to the boyfriend, Troyer said.

“The homeowner and one of the suspects engaged in gun battle,” he said.

The robbers ran from the home. One made it about 20 yards, collapsed in the driveway and died, Troyer said. Deputies found a loaded handgun, jewelry and other items taken from the house around the suspect’s body.

“We don’t know who he is,” Troyer said. “He has a mask on.”

The boyfriend suffered minor injuries. The woman was not injured. A second man who lives in the home was not there at the time. Troyer described the man as a roommate.

The two were being interviewed by detectives about what happened.

The house is down the 72nd Street East hill, a short distance from Canyon Road East.

Staff writer Mike Archbold contributed to this report.

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