Grays Harbor County Sheriff's Office Seeks 'Armed and Dangerous' Homicide Suspect

Mar. 14—Law enforcement officials are seeking an "armed and dangerous" suspect after a 59-year-old man died from gunshot wounds on Monday, according to the Grays Harbor County Sheriff's Office.

Rufas A. Phelps III, 62, was identified as the suspect after allegedly fleeing the scene prior to the arrival of investigators.

Grays Harbor County deputies responded to the 100 block of Otis Avenue in Moclips at about 1:40 p.m. Monday to a report of a shooting. Deputies located a 59-year-old man, who was suffering from gunshot wounds.

"Officers from the Hoquiam Police Department, Quinault Police Department and the Aberdeen Police Department all arrived on scene to assist in securing the scene, gathering statements and attempting to locate the suspect," according to the news release from the sheriff's office. "A deputy from the Grays Harbor County Sheriff's Office, an officer from the Quinault Police Department, and personnel from Fire District 8 began life-saving efforts on the male victim but were unsuccessful and the man died shortly after being transported from the scene."

The victim has not been identified by the sheriff's office.

Through interviews of neighbors and witnesses, deputies were able to identify the suspect as Phelps III.

Phelps fled the scene shortly after the incident, according to the sheriff's office. Investigators believe an argument began over a property dispute, which led to the shooting. Detectives finished searching the scene early Tuessday morning.

The sheriff's office is currently following up on leads attempting to locate Phelps.

"Phelps should be considered armed and dangerous," the sheriff's office wrote. "Please do not attempt to approach him. If you see Phelps or know where he is located, please call 911."

Information on the case can be provided to detectives via sodetectives@grayshabor.us.