Police: Man accused of shooting catalytic converter thief, dragging body behind his truck

LAKEWOOD, Wash. — A man suspected of trying to steal a catalytic converter died after he was shot and dragged behind a truck in Lakewood early Saturday morning.

At about 3:45 a.m., a witness reported a suspicious Ford F-150 dragging an unknown object through the parking lot of a business at the intersection of Sharondale Street Southwest and Halcyon Road Southwest.

According to probable cause documents, the “object” that the truck was dragging was a person.

When officers arrived, they searched the area and found the victim at a nearby field.

The victim was dead and appeared to have several signs of trauma to his body, which were consistent with being dragged, investigators said. Police also noticed two gunshot wounds on the man’s body.

Officers located the truck and the owner, who was later identified as Michael Scott Campbell.

According to investigators, Campbell told police he was sleeping in his truck when he woke up to a noise. He told detectives that someone was trying to saw the catalytic converter from under his truck.

Probable cause documents indicated that he opened the passenger door and fired multiple times straight down at the person under his truck.

The person who was under the truck tried to get back in his own car but fell.

“He said he lashed the victim’s hands above his head and tied him to the ball hitch on his F-150, then dragged him through the field,” detectives said.

Campbell told police that the victim was still alive and talking as he tied him to the truck, and was still alive when he untied him and abandoned him in the field, according to probable cause documents.

Carol Williams was asleep in her van with her two German Shepherds when she heard the shots ring out from across the street Saturday morning.

“I heard the bang, I saw a flash,” Williams said. “I heard the shots, I peeked out the back window and I didn’t see anything but I did hear a man screaming… I did hear him say, you know, ‘I’m bleeding.’”

“I wasn’t trying to be known,” Williams continued. “It’s just insane that somebody would kill somebody over something like that.”

Campbell was booked into the Pierce County Jail on suspicion of second-degree murder.

The identity of the victim has not been released.