Clark County deputies who fatally shot carjacking suspect identified; bodycam shows confrontation, shooting


The Clark County Sheriff’s Office on Friday publicly released the names of the four officers involved in the fatal shooting last week of a suspected carjacker in Vancouver. The office also released body-camera footage showing the shooting.

Deputies Jim Payne, Michael Gonzalez and Enrique Cordero, along with Sgt. Fred Harrison, confronted Benjamin Steven Woods in an American Legion hall in Vancouver on April 13, according to the sheriff’s office.

After chasing Woods into the building, Payne and Gonzalez fired on Woods after the suspect appeared to point a gun at them. The sheriff’s office named Cordero and Harrison as witnesses.

All four deputies were placed on critical-incident leave immediately after the shooting, which is standard procedure for the sheriff’s office.

Body camera footage released Friday by the sheriff’s office shows deputies Payne and Gonzalez follow Woods into the American Legion building after he refused officers’ commands to stop and give up in the property’s parking lot. The deputies, along with a police dog, pursue Woods through a building packed with people. Their guns drawn, they corner Woods near a bathroom. In the footage, Woods steps toward the officers and points what appears to be a gun.

Payne and Gonzalez shoot Woods multiple times, according to the video.

The bodycam footage then shows deputies providing first aid to Woods. Medical first responders declared Woods dead shortly after they arrived.

The Vancouver Police Department’s Independent Investigative Response Team (SWIIRT) is investigating the shooting.

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