Serving Franklin County, WA

Three officers placed on leave

Names of officers remain withheld

HATTON – Three Adams County Sheriff’s Office deputies have been placed on administrative leave in connection with shooting death of a suspect Sunday, June 25.

According to Sheriff Dale Wagner, two road deputies and a sergeant were placed on leave following the death of Ramon O. Morfin, 29, of Warden.

The names of the officers involved in the shooting have yet to be released publicly, Grant County Sheriff’s Office spokesman Kyle Foreman said. An Othello police officer was also involved.

Morfin was shot and killed by the law enforcement officers at about 2:30 p.m. Sunday, June 25, near the intersection of state Highway 26 and Kulm Road.

The Columbia Basin Investigative Team is conducting an independent investigation of the officer-involved shooting and lethal use of force.

Morfin was wanted in connection with an Othello harassment case and on an outstanding state Department of Corrections warrant at the time he was shot and killed, records show.

On June 25, the four law enforcement officers went to Morphin’s place of employment in the 700 block of South Kulm Road to try to take him into custody, records show. When law enforcement arrived at 2:20 p.m. Morfin was outside.

Deputies tried to arrest him, but he pulled out a gun and fired at them, records show. The officers returned fire and Morfin was hit in the shootout.

Paramedics declared Morfin dead at 2:30 p.m., records show. His next of kin was notified that night.

None of the law enforcement officers were shot, records show.

Investigators have yet to say how many times Morfin had been struck by bullets.

Records show the officers were equipped with body cameras.

Video footage from body and any other cameras will be reviewed by investigators before being released publicly.

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Roger Harnack, Publisher

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Roger Harnack is the co-owner/publisher of Free Press Publishing. Having grown up Benton City, Roger is an award-winning journalist, photographer, editor and publisher. He's one of only two editorial/commentary writers from Washington state to ever receive the international Golden Quill. Roger is dedicated to the preservation of local media, and the voice it retains for Eastern Washington.


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