Man shot by officers in Kennewick has been cited 169 times

Man shot by officers in Kennewick has been cited 169 times
KENNEWICK, Wash. -- A quiet neighborhood became a crime scene when officers opened fire on an ex-con who's been in and out of prison for years.

Deadly force was the decision Friday morning in Kennewick. Officers shot a man seen as a threat to their safety.

It's the first officer-involved shooting in Kennewick since 2009 when officers shot and killed a man downtown. This time the suspect lived.

Shocked neighbors watched it play out. What Chrissy Smith saw the the culmination of a tense morning for police.

"They pulled side-by-side. The lights were going. I looked out the window and police were flying in from all directions," Smith said.

It started an hour earlier at the Auto Zone on West 4th.

Police said workers knew right away 26-year-old Dennis Skellenger was up to no good. They said he'd shopped at the store before using a stolen credit card.

Workers said he was trying to get cash by returning those goods. So they called police and Skellenger bolted.

The chase was on. He bailed out of the car at 27th and Keller and ran through Canyon Lakes.

Officers found him at 29th Avenue and Anderson just feet from Horse Heaven Hills Park. Police dogs tracked Skellenger to this tractor. When officers ordered him out, they say Skellenger pulled a gun.

"I heard a noise that sounded like a gunshot. I jumped up, ran around and locked all the doors. I didn't know what was happening," a neighbor said.

Officers fired a single shot striking Skellenger in the lung.

Skellenger is a known criminal with a lengthy rap sheet. He's come in contact with police 169 times since 2000.