By Samuel Chamberlain
Published March 21, 2019
A road rage suspect who investigators say shot and killed a Washington state sheriff's deputy and wounded a police officer earlier this week was in the U.S. illegally, federal authorities said Thursday.
In an email to Fox News, Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) spokeswoman Tanya Roman said 29-year-old Juan Manuel Flores Del Toro, a Mexican citizen, entered the U.S. at Laredo, Texas, in April 2014 on a temporary agricultural worker visa.
Roman said ICE had no record of him leaving the United States or extending his visa after it expired.
Local police said Flores Del Toro lived in Ellensburg, a university city of 20,000 residents 100 miles east of Seattle in agriculturally rich central Washington.
Investigators say Flores Del Toro fatally shot 42-year-old Kittitas County Sheriff's Deputy Ryan Thompson and wounded 22-year-old Kittitas Police Officer Benito Chavez Tuesday night after they attempted to stop his vehicle following a driving complaint. He allegedly emerged from his vehicle and opened fire on the officers after a short pursuit.
The suspect was later shot by officers who returned fire, and was pronounced dead a short time later at Kittitas Valley Hospital.
Ellensburg Police Capt. Dan Hansberry said there were no warrants pending for his arrest, and officers do not know why he fled the attempted stop.
Police in the past "had limited contacts with him," but Hansberry described them as "nothing of real significance" without providing further details.
Thompson was married with three children and is the first law enforcement officer to be shot and killed in Kittitas County since 1927.
The Associated Press contributed to this report.