One of two armed civilians who confronted and ultimately killed a carjacking suspect outside a Walmart store in Washington state on Sunday has come forward to tell his story.
Jesse Zamora, 37, says he was shopping with his wife at the big box store in Tumwater, southwest of Tacoma, when the sound of gunfire and scrambling shoppers led the Kennewick resident to draw his handgun and run toward the suspect, who was later identified as 44-year-old Tim Day, KOMO-TV reported.
"The first thing I did was reach for my gun and I told [my wife] to run," Zamora told the station.
"The first thing I did was reach for my gun."
In addition to Zamora, a 47-year-old local pastor, also carrying a gun -- whom police identified only as a resident of Oakville -- followed Day to the parking lot, where they saw him shoot a driver twice while attempting to carjack a vehicle, the Olympian reported.
The driver was able to hit the gas and spin the car away from Day before he could shoot again, the paper reported. As Day went deeper into the parking lot to find another car, Zamora and the Oakville pastor went after him before he could shoot someone else.
The Oakville pastor told Day to “put your gun down” and then fired the shots that ultimately killed Day, Zamora told the Olympian. Zamora said Day “gasped for air” and stared at him after being shot.
Day, whom investigators said had a criminal history, was later pronounced dead at the scene.
"I think we both had a mutual understanding that, 'Let's just do what we have to do to protect all these people here.'"
Zamora said he and the pastor both seemed to be thinking alike about how to handle the situation.
"I think we both had a mutual understanding that, 'Let's just do what we have to do to protect all these people here,'" Zamora told KOMO-TV.
Before Day’s rampage at the Walmart, he had tried to carjack a vehicle in Olympia, crashed his own car in Tumwater and fired shots while trying to steal another vehicle in the area, the paper said. A bullet grazed a 16-year-old boy’s thumb during that incident. (The teen had been misidentified as a girl in early reports.)
The man Day shot twice in the Walmart parking lot was identified as 48-year-old Rickey Fievez, according to reports. He was airlifted to Harborview Medical Center in Seattle in critical condition.
A GoFundMe page, set up by Fievez’s son Tyler, said the elder Fievez remained paralyzed from the neck down with bullet fragments in his spine. The post said the second bullet went through his kidney. The family expected the grandfather to undergo spinal surgery to remove the fragments.
As of early Wednesday, the page had collected about $14,000 toward a $50,000 goal.
Tyler Fievez hailed the armed Good Samaritans as heroes, telling Q13 Fox that if they “didn’t have [a gun], then it would have been a lot more chaos than what happened.”