Two men face charges after Kent shooting in Lowe’s parking lot

Two men face charges for unlawful possession of a firearm after their involvement in an undercover police sting last Friday in the Lowe’s parking lot in Kent when one man was shot and injured by an undercover ATF agent.

Omar Abdullah, 22, and Abdirashid Haret, 18, each face one count of unlawful possession of a firearm because of felony convictions, according to U.S. District Court probable cause documents released Tuesday by the U.S. Attorney’s Office.

Information in the documents break down what led up to the shooting of Abdullah and Haret by a federal bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (ATF) agent at about 5 p.m. in the Lowe’s parking lot at the southeast corner of Pacific Highway South and South 240th Street on the West Hill.

A confidential informant working for ATF on the Friday afternoon of Oct. 20 came into contact with Haret at a 7-Eleven store in SeaTac. Haret reportedly told the informant that he had firearms he was looking to sell, according to court documents. Haret said he had stolen the guns from a police officer’s residence and showed a pistol to the informant.

The informant took a photo of the gun with his smartphone and after parting ways with Haret electronically sent a copy of the photo to his ATF handlers. The confidential informant works for the ATF in exchange for money and has a criminal conviction for unlawful transport of a firearm in 2008.

ATF agents told the informant to contact Haret and arrange to purchase the firearms. The two talked by phone and agreed to meet later that afternoon in the parking lot at Lowe’s home improvement store, 24050 Pacific Highway S.

The undercover ATF agent accompanied the informant to the parking lot. At about 4:53 p.m., Haret arrived in a grey Dodge Charger with Abdullah driving and Haret in the front passenger seat. The agent and informant walked over to the Charger and entered the back seats.

But instead of selling the firearms, Abdullah and Haret brandished firearms and demanded money. The agent and informant gave over their cash. They then said they had more cash in their car and exited the Charger to get their money.

Shortly thereafter, the agent drew his firearm and fired several rounds into the Charger. Abdullah was hit by several bullets. As of Monday, he remained in Harborview Medical Center in Seattle.

Haret fled on foot, running toward Pacific Highway South with a gun in his hand. He threw the gun to the ground just prior to reaching the highway, where he was hit by a vehicle and suffered minor injuries. Paramedics transported him to Valley Medical Center in Renton. Police booked him later that night in the King County jail for investigation of robbery, vehicle theft and unlawful possession of a firearm.

Both men could face additional charges after a grand jury considers the case and what happened inside the car, said Emily Langlie, spokeswoman for the U.S. Attorney’s Office.

Haret reportedly admitted to agents after the incident that he and Abdullah had discussed robbing money from the men rather than selling them guns. He also admitted to brandishing his gun after the two men entered the Charger.

Agents recovered two guns, a Smith & Wesson .40-caliber semiautomatic pistol that was found by police at the crime scene that Haret reportedly tossed away. Agents also found a Masterpiece Arms 9mm semiautomatic pistol on the front passenger side floorboard of the Charger, after police received a search warrant to search the car. Both of the firearms were manufactured outside the state of Washington and therefore traveled in interstate commerce. Federal law bans gun sales between people from two different states who are not Federal Firearm Licensees.

In addition to violation of interstate gun laws, Abdullah has a 2015 conviction in King County for second-degree robbery, according to court documents. Haret has convictions in the last year for second-degree assault and third-degree assault in King County. People convicted of felonies cannot own a gun in Washington state.

Kent Police assisted with the undercover operation and have an officer who serves on the ATF task force, Chief Ken Thomas said.

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