SPOKANE COUNTY, Wash. – On Thursday, the Spokane County Sheriff’s Office released the radio traffic between authorities from the night a military veteran was shot and killed be deputies.
Investigators said 23-year-old Jedadiah Zillmer was making threats toward law enforcement on February 11 and led them on a chase into North Idaho then back to Spokane Valley.
Zillmer had three guns on him when he got out of his vehicle according to investigators. They said Zillmer had even more weapons inside the vehicle.
It ended with shots fired near the Spokane Valley Mall. Zillmer died in the shooting.
“He is heavily armed. He's currently saying he wants to be shot in the head. He'll shoot in the air until we shoot him. Says he doesn't plan to harm citizens unless we take too long to shoot him.”
Zillmer drove erratically on westbound Interstate 90 before taking his final exit and stepping out of his vehicle.
“It looks like he’s got a tactical vest on,” described one law enforcement officer. “Put SWAT on standby. We need Sullivan shut down, Indiana shut down...get medical on standby.”
Authorities said that is when an armed Zillmer started making threats and gestures.
The following can be heard in the radio traffic calls that were released:
“Shots fired. Shots fired. Shots fired. Sullivan and Indiana, shots fired. Suspect is down, but we can't clear due to some possible explosives. Let's start the bomb squad.”
The bomb squad was called out to the scene.
No deputies were hurt in the shooting. Detectives are continuing to investigate.
Zillmer served the U.S. in Afghanistan and was the recipient of a purple heart according to Sheriff’s Office officials.
Documents show Zillmer had sued the army for not getting a certain type of disability benefits after he was shot in the foot. A federal judge sided with the Army.
Zillmer was using benefits to get an education at Spokane Falls Community College.
Family members said they knew Zillmer was struggling, adding that he was seeking help. They said he was a good person going through a very rough time.