Man fired at deputies before being shot

The Washington State Patrol has identified a man who was shot by Kitsap County Sheriff's Office Deputies in Port Orchard during the afternoon of New Year's Eve and say that he initiated the gunfire.

Trooper Russ Winger, a WSP spokesman, says that James C. Mathes, 44, exited a residence on Bethel Burley Road armed with a revolver and fired first at deputies.

The incident took place shortly before 1 p.m. while deputies were responding to a possible protection order violation. While responding to the home, deputies had additional information that Mathes had a history of violence toward a protected female victim and was possibly armed with a gun.

"Once on scene, deputies approached the residence and were confronted by the suspect who had come out of the residence and was armed with a revolver style handgun," Winger wrote in a press release. "Two of the deputies verbally challenged Mathes to drop the handgun."

At that point, Mathes "shot at the deputies with the revolver and both deputies returned fire, striking him multiple times in the upper torso," according to Winger.

Neither deputy was injured in the exchange of gunfire. Deputies immediately secured Mathes and rendered aid while awaiting EMS arrival. Mathes was transported to St. Joseph Medical Center for the gunshot injuries where he remains under guard by a pair of deputies.

The use of lethal force investigation is continuing by WSP detectives as well as WSP Crime Lab personnel.

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