Malott man in custody for suspected homicide


(Compiled from a report by Okanogan County Sheriff Tony Hawley)

MALOTT – A 34-year-old Malott man is in custody at the Okanogan County Jail in connection with a homicide committed Monday afternoon, June 10, at Central Street and Old Highway 97.

Okanogan County Sheriff Tony Hawley said that Okanogan County deputies, Malott Fire Department and Lifeline Ambulance responded to a call at 2:44 p.m. to a report of a female being stabbed by a male.

“Deputies were in the area within seven minutes and began searching the area for the suspect who had fled on foot,” said Hawley.

Bystanders assisted the deputies by pointing out an area along the Okanogan River where the suspect was hiding, where deputies then established a perimeter. Deputies then contacted the suspect.

“He resisted arrest and attempted to disarm one of the deputies of his firearm,” said Hawley. “Deputies and the suspect were in the river during the struggle to arrest him.”

Hawley said the suspect, Jose Mejia, was in custody about 20 minutes following the report.

The suspect’s mother, Juana Ferreria Demejia, 64, died at the scene. Mejia was transported to Mid-Valley Hospital for treatment of a hand injury and later booked into the Okanogan County Jail.

The Washington State Patrol Crime Lab assisted detectives with evidence collected at the scene.

“Okanogan County Sheriff’s Office appreciates the assistance of those residents of Malott who guided deputies to the area Mejia fled,” said Hawley. “Their assistance made his quick apprehension possible.”

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