Sen. Tim Sheldon, D-Potlach, said the death of Washington State Patrol Trooper Tony Radulescu, who was fatally shot during a traffic stop early this morning near Gorst, is a tragic loss for his loved ones, the State Patrol and the larger community.
“This is a tragic and sobering reminder that the troopers who work around the clock ensuring the public’s safety are at the same time putting their lives on the line at any given moment, day and night,” Sheldon said. “We owe Trooper Radulescu and his family our utmost respect, thanks, regrets and condolences. Washington state has lost a leader and a defender and a hero.”
Radulescu, 44 and a veteran trooper of 16 years after having served in the military prior to that, was apparently shot while making a traffic stop. Radulescu had stopped a pickup truck and radioed the vehicle’s location and license plate number but dispatchers did not hear back from him after that. A Kitsap County sheriff’s deputy responded and found Radulescu wounded at the scene. He was later pronounced dead at St. Joseph Medical Center in Tacoma. The owner of the pickup truck was later found wounded at his home. Members of a SWAT team heard a single shot from inside the house as they approached the door, went inside and found him wounded by a self-inflicted gunshot.
In a press conference earlier today, State Patrol Chief John Batiste said that Radulescu worked out of the Bremerton patrol office and was immensely popular with his peers and throughout the community, to the point he was regularly requested as a speaker at local schools. Batiste said also that Radulescu is survived by a son serving in the military.