Body found in trunk of burning car in Aeneas Valley

Officers involved in non-fatality shooting of suspect

TONASKET – An Okanogan County Sheriff’s Sergeant and Deputy were involved in a non-fatality officer-involved shooting (OIS) near the Aeneas Valley Store after responding to the scene of a vehicle fire where a body was found in the trunk on Monday, June 3.

Aeneas Valley Fire District 16 was toned to a report of a vehicle fire. Firefighters discovered a body in the trunk of the vehicle and contacted the Sheriff’s Office, according to a press release from the sheriff’s office.

Lance Bowers
Lance Bowers

“Investigation indicated an adult male was reportedly seen leaving the car fire which was reported at approximately 4:28 p.m. Information from citizens led Sheriff’s Office personnel to the vicinity of the Aeneas Valley Store where the suspect was confronted,” Hawley said.

“The suspect, who was armed with a firearm, did not comply with orders and displayed his firearm. Both the sergeant and deputy fired their weapons and the suspect was shot,” said the sheriff, adding that the incident occurred at 6:57 p.m.

Deputies administered first aid and summoned Lifeline Ambulance to assist in treating his injuries. The suspect, Lance R. Bowers, 37, was transported to Central Washington Hospital via Lifeflight, where he was treated and later released to law enforcement.

Bowers was booked into Chelan County Regional Jail on a weapons charge. He was transported to Okanogan County Jail on Tuesday June 4, 2019.

The two officers and K9 were unharmed during the incident. They are now on paid administrative leave during the investigation as a standard procedure, according to the sheriff.

“The North Central Washington Special Investigations Unit was contacted to investigate the OIS. Okanogan County Detectives continue to investigate the fire and death,” said Hawley.