The AMC Theater at the Kent Station shopping center. COURTESY PHOTO, Kent Station

The AMC Theater at the Kent Station shopping center. COURTESY PHOTO, Kent Station

19-year-old man fatally shot inside AMC Theatre at Kent Station

Detectives say they have ‘solid leads’ on a suspect in what police chief described as ‘chaotic incident’

Kent Police said they have “solid leads” into finding the man who fatally shot a 19-year-old Tukwila man inside the AMC Theatre at Kent Station.

Officers responded at about 12:19 a.m. Tuesday, June 13 to the theater at 425 Ramsay Way in response to multiple 911 calls that a shooting had occurred, according to a June 13 Kent Police statement.

Officers arrived within a minute of dispatch and observed a crowd of patrons exiting the theater. Officers were waved over to the south entrance where they found a man just inside the doors. He had an obvious wound to his chest area and was receiving CPR from one of his friends, according to police.

Officers began lifesaving efforts, including CPR and placing a chest seal over the visible wound, according to police. The location of the shooter was unknown, so the officers carried the man out of the theater to a safe location where medics had just arrived. The man died at the scene.

“This was a chaotic incident for both patrons and responding officers,” Kent Police Chief Rafael Padilla said in a prepared statement. “I want to commend the officers for their quick response in providing immediate aid to the victim, while simultaneously evacuating the theater. We have solid leads in this investigation, and I am hopeful that we will identify and apprehend the suspect soon.”

Additional officers arrived and began to search inside for the suspect while providing cover for patrons evacuating the theater. Kent Police requested officers from neighboring departments to assist with managing the crowd while search efforts continued.

The suspect was described as a dark-skinned male about 5 feet 11 inches tall wearing a ski mask, according to police. The suspect was not located and is not yet identified.

Police impounded three vehicles that may have been involved in the incident.

Detectives do not believe this is a random incident, according to the police statement.

Padilla wasn’t sure if it was a gang-related shooting.

“We are looking into that possibility, but it’s to early to confirm that either way,” Padilla said in a June 13 email.

If you have any information about this incident or what led up to the shooting, please contact the Kent Police Department tip line at 253-856-5808 or email KPDTipLine@kentwa.gov. If your tip is time sensitive, please call 911 and reference case number 23-7685.

AMC Theatres statement

Kansas-based AMC Theatres issued the following statement:

“Our deepest sympathies are with the family of the victim,” according to the statement. “The safety and security of our guests and associates is AMC’s top priority, and comprehensive security measures are in place at all AMC locations. We are cooperating fully with the investigation.”

The Kent Station location would be closed on Tuesday, June 13, according to AMC Theatres.

Ninth homicide this year

This is the ninth homicide in Kent in 2023. Kent had 11 homicides in 2022, 14 in 2021, eight in 2020, four in 2019 and seven in 2018.

It is the second homicide in a week. Baba Jawara, 18, of Kent, died June 5 from a gunshot wound of the chest, according to the King County Medical Examiner’s Office. Officers responded at about 11:15 p.m. June 4 to the area of 11300 SE Kent-Kangley Road in response to a 911 call of a shooting.

Police have not made an arrest, but detectives said it was not a random incident.


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