Accused knife-wielding arsonist shot by deputies at burning motel identified

SPOKANE VALLEY, Wash. –  The Spokane Investigative Regional Response Team identified the man arrested after allegedly lighting a hotel room on fire, charging at officials with a knife and being shot by deputies.

Michael Kruse, 41, will likely face a charge of first degree arson, with additional charges expected.

On June 7, he allegedly lit a hotel room at the Motel 6 in the Spokane Valley on North Hutchinson Road. According to a release from the SIRR, first responders arrived at the motel, and began to evacuate guests but Kruse would not leave his second floor room.

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SCSO deputies found him on the second floor, armed with a knife. They said he shouted at them that they would have to shoot him and he was not leaving. SIRR said deputies reported they lost sight of Kruse as he retrated back into the smoke-filled hallway.

Kruse eventually came down the stairs to the first floor, still armed with a knife, officials said. The SIRR report said Kruse failed to obey commands and continued to “advance on deputies” before he was shot.

Kruse was still in the hospital as of Tuesday afternoon, the SIRR report said. No one else was injured during the fire and subsequent shooting.

Spokane County Sheriff Ozzie Knezovich said at the time of the incident, it was likely Kruse intended to commit suicide by cop.

© 2017 KREM-TV


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