Additional details also released in investigation of the death of 21-year-old Kevin E. Peterson Jr.
Investigation into the Oct. 29 officer-involved shooting that resulted in the death of Kevin E. Peterson Jr. is ongoing. With the interviews of the involved officers now completed, the investigative team is able to release more information regarding this incident.
The involved deputies have been identified as:
- Detective Jeremy Brown, age 46, a 14-year veteran of the Clark County Sheriff’s Office, currently assigned to the Drug Task Force.
- Detective Robert Anderson, age 42, a 13-year veteran of the Clark County Sheriff’s Office, currently assigned to the Drug Task Force.
- Deputy Jonathan Feller, age 46, a 2.5-year veteran of the Clark County Sheriff’s Office, currently assigned to the patrol division. Deputy Feller has approximately 14 years of previous law enforcement experience in South Dakota.
According to a news release issued by the investigative team Tuesday, on Oct. 29, detectives with the Clark County Regional Drug Task Force were attempting to purchase Xanax from a black male driving a Mercedes. Detectives had identified the subject by his Snapchat profile. Detectives identified the vehicle and occupant when it pulled into the Quality Inn parking lot at 7001 NE Hwy 99, Vancouver. Detectives were driving unmarked cars, but activated their emergency lights as they contacted the vehicle. The detectives were wearing tactical vests bearing law enforcement identification.
Detectives stated they attempted to contact the male driver and sole occupant of the vehicle, now identified as 21-year-old Kevin E. Peterson Jr, who immediately fled on foot. Detectives ordered Peterson to stop but he continued to run and dropped a handgun while running. Detectives saw the handgun and ordered Peterson not to pick it up, but Peterson picked up the handgun and continued to flee. Detectives did not pursue further due to Peterson being armed and advised other units by radio that Peterson was armed with a handgun.
Radio traffic from the incident indicated Peterson was seen walking south, still carrying the handgun in his hand. Peterson continued around the Quality Inn property, exited through a tree line and continued south through the U.S. Bank lot at 6829 NE Hwy 99, Vancouver.
As Peterson continued to the southeast corner of the U.S. Bank property, deputies contacted him and gave commands for him to stop. Deputy Anderson stated Peterson had a cell phone in his hand at this time. Peterson did not comply with commands, turned north and pulled the handgun out of his sweatshirt pocket. Deputy Anderson ordered Peterson to drop the gun, but Peterson continued northbound. Deputy Anderson told investigators he believed Peterson was a threat to the public and to the containment units coming in from the north.
Deputy Anderson told investigators he fired his duty pistol at Peterson as he continued north toward incoming units. Deputy Feller stated Peterson pointed the handgun at him while running northbound. Deputy Feller fired his duty pistol at Peterson at this time.
Video from U.S. Bank showed Peterson fall, then sat up and pointed a handgun. Deputies stated Peterson was pointing his handgun at Deputy Brown at this time. Deputies Brown and Anderson fired at Peterson when Peterson pointed his handgun at Deputy Brown. Deputy Brown advised investigators that by the time he fired, Peterson was pointing the handgun at him and Deputy Brown did not know if he had been shot.
Deputies gave Peterson commands to drop the gun. Peterson eventually set the handgun down and continued to make some movements. Radio traffic from the incident includes deputies advising that a shooting had occurred and they requested aid respond to the scene. Deputies called for additional units to approach Peterson with a shield, due to Peterson having a handgun within reach. Deputies made contact with Peterson approximately five minutes after shots were fired and immediately rendered first aid.
Peterson was in possession of an iPhone and a Glock model 23, .40 caliber semiautomatic handgun. Investigators conducted a round count from the Glock handgun and noted one round was chambered and one round was missing from the magazine. At this time, detectives do not have evidence that Peterson fired the handgun while in the U.S. Bank lot, based on involved deputy interviews. Additionally, no .40 caliber casings were recovered at the scene.
Investigators have conducted numerous interviews, including civilians in the area and law enforcement officers who responded to the call. Video evidence has been collected from businesses in the area. A search warrant was executed on Peterson’s vehicle. Investigators located several pre-packaged amounts of pills that were presumptively identified as Xanax. An ATF trace was conducted on the firearm found in Peterson’s possession. Investigators tracked the firearm to one of Peterson’s relatives, who sold the firearm to Peterson in August.
Investigators are working to complete the investigation at this time. Anyone with further information about this incident can contact the investigative team at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Information provided by city of Battle Ground.