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Inquest ordered into fatal Kent Police shooting of armed man at Kent Transit Center
King County Executive Dow Constantine Friday ordered an inquest into the May 4 shooting death of Robert Raucci by a Kent Police officer.
The 58-year old Kent man was fatally shot in a confrontation with police involving a shotgun at the Kent Transit Center in the 300 block of Railroad Avenue in downtown Kent.
King County Prosecutor Dan Satterberg recommended the inquest after his office reviewed materials from the Federal Way Police Department, which conducted the investigation at the request of Kent Police, according to a media release from Constantine's office.
Inquests are fact-finding hearings conducted before a six-member jury. Under a standing Executive Order they are routinely called to determine the causes and circumstances of any death involving a member of any law enforcement agency within King County while in the performance of his or her duties.
Inquests provide transparency into law enforcement actions so the public may have all the facts established in a court of law. The ordering of an inquest should carry no other implication. Inquest jurors answer a series of interrogatories to determine the significant factual issues involved in the case, and it is not their purpose to determine whether any person or agency is civilly or criminally liable.
King County District Court Presiding Judge Barbara Linde has assigned King County District Court Judge Rick Bathum to conduct the inquest. Linde also will set a date for the inquest.
The ordering of inquests is a function vested in the county executive under the King County Code.
Two officers responded to a 911 call from a taxicab driver about a man with a rifle or shotgun at the Metro bus transit center, according to police.
Raucci reportedly refused to put down his gun after verbal commands from the officers and one of the officers shot him in the head.
The taxicab driver picked up Raucci and noticed after he was in the car that he had a gun with him. He drove to the transit station, exited the cab and called 911 to report the man with a gun.