Police have identified 68-year-old Willem Van Spronsen as the man shot and killed by officers on Saturday at an Immigration and Customs Enforcement detention center in Tacoma, Washington, the Seattle Times reports. Spronsen was allegedly armed with a rifle and throwing molotov cocktails at the Northwest Detention Center, a privately run facility that holds migrants, when he was shot by responding officers. Police said Spronsen was arrested last year during a protest at the same ICE center, when he was found to be carrying a collapsible baton and knife in his pocket after he wrapped his arms around a police officer’s throat in an alleged attempt to free another protester.
According to police, Van Spronsen returned to the center on Saturday, tossing lit objects at vehicles and buildings, causing one car fire, and unsuccessfully trying to ignite a propane tank. Soon after officers arrived they reported “shots fired,” according to Tacoma police spokeswoman Loretta Cool. It remains unclear who fired first, or if Van Spronsen fired at all. The four responding officers were all uninjured.