Coroner Identifies Chehalis Man Killed by Police After Allegedly Stabbing Centralia Officer 


The Lewis County Coroner’s Office has identified the man who was shot and killed by police in Chehalis Friday after he allegedly stabbed a Centralia officer. 

The cause of death for Murdock J. Phillips, 32, Chehalis, was determined to be a perforating gunshot wound to the torso and the manner of death was listed as a homicide, according to the coroner’s office. 

Detectives from the Pierce County Sheriff’s Department had attempted to arrest Phillips — described as a suspect in a child rape case —  in the 400 block of Northeast Adams Avenue in Chehalis at approximately 10:15 a.m. on Feb. 18.

Phillips reportedly appeared to reach for a weapon and one of the Pierce County detectives discharged their firearm, according to the Lewis County Sheriff’s Office. Phillips then fled on foot.

Someone who heard the officer fire his weapon called the Chehalis Police Department with a shooting complaint. The Chehalis Police Department then dispatched officers to the scene and, after making contact with the Pierce County detectives, Chehalis police called in the Centralia Police Department and the Lewis County Sheriff’s Office to help locate the suspect.

Centralia Police Department K9 Samson and paired officer Stephen Summers tracked Phillips across Market Street into the 100 block of Southwest Alfred Street, where K9 Samson located him at about 12:15 p.m.

That’s when Phillips allegedly stabbed Summers. He was then shot and killed by Centralia police. 

The name of the officer who shot the suspect has not yet been released by the Lewis County Sheriff’s Office, which is leading the investigation into the incident.

Summers was transported to Providence Centralia Hospital with serious injuries, while Phillips was declared dead at the scene despite lifesaving efforts, according to the Lewis County Sheriff’s Office. Summers was released from the hospital the following morning.

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This story will be updated.