Thurston County Man Arrested After Shooting at Officer With Air Rifle


A 47-year-old Yelm man was booked into Thurston County Jail on Wednesday, April 7, after shooting at his family with a slingshot and later firing at a Yelm Police Department officer with an air rifle. 

Michael K. Diehl was arrested by Yelm police on two counts of second-degree assault, domestic violence, charges and one charge of first-degree assault against an officer. 

His bail was initially set at $5,000, according to the Thurston County Jail roster, for fourth-degree and third-degree assault charges. 

Officers were originally dispatched around 8 p.m. to the 9500 block of Longmire Court on calls of a domestic dispute. According to police reports, dispatch stated Diehl had shot at his sister with a rock and slingshot and that he was armed with a BB gun. 

Upon arrival, officers spoke with the sister, who told officers that Diehl lived in a detached dwelling unit behind their house. 

As officers were clearing the sister and her roommate from the area, one of the officers reported that he’d been shot at by a pellet. According to the officer’s supplemental report, he saw Diehl from about 40 yards away point a black, full-sized rifle at him. The officer reported hearing the sound of the rifle go off and the pellet hitting the area in front of him. 

Officers set up a perimeter around the unit and were reportedly able to reach Diehl by cellphone. He was provided with an order to exit the unit with hands visible and to obey officers’ commands. Diehl eventually agreed to come out after some time. 

Once outside, officers approached Diehl with intentions of detaining him, but he began dropping his hands and motioned back toward the unit’s door. 

“From inside the shed, I could hear him say, ‘OK, OK,’” a Thurston County deputy’s supplement read. “Michael then exited the shed with his hands up and empty and initially complied with verbal commands. He took a couple steps towards us, but then said, ‘No those aren’t real cops,’ and turned around and took several steps back towards the shed.”

A Thurston County deputy then fired at Diehl with a bean bag gun, which hit his waist area. 

Officers arrested Diehl and transported him to Capitol Medical Center where he was reportedly cleared by doctors of any injuries. He was then transported to the Thurston County Jail. 

Four air guns, including two pistols and two rifles, as well as a wrist slingshot and CO2 cartridges were logged into Yelm Police Department evidence following the incident.