The sheriff’s deputy who fatally shot a 20-year-old Vietnamese-American last month was involved in a car accident early this morning that killed one pedestrian, a King County Sheriff’s Office spokesperson said. The Fife police department confirmed that the victim is a male, but would not release additional information.
Sheriff’s Deputy Cesar Molina was driving home after his shift when he struck a pedestrian in Fife. Moments after the collision, another car hit the pedestrian, who died at the scene.
Molina has been placed on administrative leave, per department policy. The collision happened less than a month after Molina fatally shot Tommy Le, a Career Link alternative high school senior who was about to graduate. There was no evidence of impairment due to drugs or alcohol on Molina's part, according to Sergeant Cindi West, media relations officer for the sheriff's office.
The Fife police department is investigating the incident.
Le was reportedly holding a pen before Molina fired three shots at him, contradicting an earlier statement that he brandished a knife or “some short of sharp object.” Seattle Weekly first reported the discrepancy between the department’s accounts of the shooting.
Molina partook in a critical incident stress debriefing and met with a mental health professional after the shooting, according to a statement. A psychologist approved his returning to work on June 30.
Le’s death marked the first of at least three fatal police shootings in the region in June. Five days after Molina shot Le, two Seattle Police officers opened fire on Charleena Lyles, a 30-year-old pregnant mother of four, in Sand Point. Near the end of the month, a Kent police officer fatally shot Giovonn Joseph-McDade, a Green River College student, during a pursuit.