Ex-mayor of Seattle suburb arrested in death of officer called to his home
The Associated Press
BRIER, Wash.- A police officer died in a struggle with the ex-mayor of this Seattle suburb while responding to a call for aid at the man's home, authorities said Wednesday.
The death occurred after emergency dispatchers got a report that a diabetic man needed medical treatment, according to papers filed in Snohomish County District Court.
A dispatcher told the officer that the man seeking medical attention "had a history of being aggressive to officers and aid workers while in this condition," the document said.
Gary Lee Starks, 55, was booked into jail on suspicion of third-degree assault and released on his own recognizance after a court appearance, officials said.
Investigators confirmed that Starks is a former mayor of Brier, a city of 6,400 about 12 miles north of Seattle.
He was appointed in 2003 after a mid-term resignation and did not seek re-election when the term expired last fall.
The officer, Edwanton A. "Eddie" Thomas, 28, died Tuesday and had been on the force since January, said Sgt. Boyd Bryant, spokesman for the Everett Police Department.
It was not immediately clear how Thomas died, though reports indicated a gun was involved. The Snohomish County medical examiner's office said the manner of death needed more investigation.
The officer was pronounced dead at a hospital, Bryant said.
Starks did not immediately return a phone message left by The Associated Press on Wednesday.