Sexual assault suspect kills self at traffic stop

OKANOGAN – A Texas man wanted on a felony warrant was stopped in Okanogan County and killed himself on Wednesday, April 18, according to County Sheriff Frank Rogers.

“An attempt to locate had been put out on a suspect wanted out of Texas by Texas Marshals. The suspect was wanted on a felony warrant for Sexual Assault of a Child out of Texas and was considered armed,” said Sheriff Rogers.

The suspect was identified as Eric A. Morgenroth, 32. His vehicle had been spotted early in the morning on April 18 in the Chelan area, possibly heading north toward the Canadian border, speculated the sheriff. At 8:10 a.m. that morning deputies from the Sheriff’s Office, officers from the Washington State Patrol and state Department of Fish and Wildlife spotted the suspect’s vehicle, a 2015 Jeep Wrangler, on Highway 97 near the south access into Okanogan.

“They initiated a stop on the vehicle; the vehicle slowly came to a stop and the driver of the vehicle ignored the orders from deputies on scene. Three minutes after the stop the suspect put a pistol to his head and shot himself,” said Rogers.

Morgenroth was transported to Mid-Valley Hospital where he died from the self-inflicted gunshot wound, according to Rogers.

“There was no one else in the suspect vehicle, the suspect did not point his weapon at the deputies or officers on scene and law enforcement did not fire their duty weapons,” said Rogers.