Residents of North Seattle were startled by blaring SWAT vehicles on Sunday afternoon, confused by the sounds of tire violently scraping across their familiar streets and sidewalks. Raymond Azevedo, a convicted felon, was the subject of an alarming police chase, which included the theft of three cars. At at around 2pm in front of the Northeast Public Library, the vehicle was halted by police officers and SWAT team members and a violent shootout took place in the usually quiet Wedgwood neighborhood. Azevedo was pronounced dead shortly thereafter.
The staff at a coffee shop at Pike Place reported a man gripping a gun and sweating nervously: Azevedo. He fled after they called the authorities, and proceeded to point a gun at an employee at the nearby Turkish Delight restaurant. Azevedo moved on through several more business, pointing guns at employees until he reached the Under the Needle tattoo shop, and drove off in a Volkswagen Golf. He then headed north, up to the Roosevelt, where he stole a black Camaro from a car rental lot from Roosevelt Way. He made a beeline through streets while shooting at officers until he reached Wedgwood, near Eckstein Middle school, and was surrounded by police cars. He then pointed his gun at the officers, which prompted them to open fire, leaving the suspect dead at the scene.
Wedgwood, being a neighborhood where many Roosevelt students reside, was boldly disrupted, leaving some locals feeling worried and stunned. Junior Emma Benson said, “It was scary because my little cousin was at home near the shooting. This kind of hit a little too close to home.” As a quiet, innocent-seeming part of the city, this event was distressing for the residents of the neighborhood.
While the pursuit was intense, many people in North Seattle were quite shaken by this unexpected event. So far, police are still investigating how Azevedo acquired the firearm he used in the first place.
Featured Photo: Following the shootout, police remained to ensure the situation was safe. Photo by Allison Bullard