Man who killed sheriff’s deputy, injured police officer was in the country illegally


The man who shot two law enforcement officers Tuesday night in Kittitas has been identified as 29-year-old Juan Manuel Flores Del Toro of Ellensburg.

Del Toro died in the shootout shortly after taking the life of Kittitas County Sheriff’s Deputy Ryan Thompson and wounding Kittitas Police Officer Benito Chavez.

U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) issued a statement Thursday saying Juan Manuel Del Toro was illegally in the country.

According to ICE, he entered the U.S. from Mexico in 2014 on a temporary agricultural worker vise and they have no record of him leaving or extending his visa after it expired.

Thompson, 42, was a Walla Walla native who attended Central Washington University and had worked in law enforcement in Kittitas County since 2004.

He is survived by his wife and three children. Chavez, whose wife is expecting, is recovering in a Seattle hospital from a bullet wound to his leg. He has been with the department since last July.

Thompson was responding to a road rage incident in the Badger Pocket area of Kittitas County about 7:42 p.m., that led to a pursuit into Kittitas, where Del Toro exited his vehicle firing at Thompson and Chavez.

The Ellensburg Police Department is investigating the shooting.

Meanwhile, GoFundMe pages have been set up for both men. By Thursday afternoon, more than $38,000 had been raised for Thompson’s family and about $6,100 for Chavez.