Shooting on Metro bus in SoDo scatters passengers

Passengers scrambled for safety on board a King County Metro bus when a man opened fire.

Seattle police say a 51-year-old man violently pushed another man, who is 88, as both stood on the bus. The older man then pulled out a weapon and shot him.

The two men were taken to the hospital. Investigators are searching for answers as to what started the confrontation. The 51-year-old later died, and as of Tuesday morning, the 88-year-old was in satisfactory condition.

The 51-year-old was later identified as Ronnie Tyler.

The shooting occurred just after 11:15 a.m. Saturday near 4th Avenue South and South Walker. The bus was in the middle of its Rapid Ride trip from West Seattle to Pioneer Square when it was forced to stop.

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Sean Edwards was still shaky as he relived what occurred on this bus ride.

"Somebody's firing a gun," said Edwards, "yeah, you're going to hit the floor and try and get away."

He said he was riding near the back of the bus when he noticed a commotion up front.

"It was just a bunch of people," Edwards said. "And you could tell two of them were kind of tussling a little bit. And that was it."

"I remember hearing some gunshots," said a passenger who didn't want her face shown. "I don't exactly remember how many. And then people were running towards the back of the bus."

The 20 passengers on board took cover and crawled to safety.

"And then the shooter actually fell down the stairwell on the bus, causing a head injury to himself," Det. Mark Jamieson. "So both people had injuries. So they were both transported by Seattle Fire to Harborview."

Det. Jamieson says they are still trying to figure out what started the confrontation.

But what happened on this sunny, January Saturday left even seasoned Metro riders, rattled.

"I'm going to take a Lyft home," said the female passenger.  "And might be a couple days before I get back on the bus. But I don't have another option."

Seattle police say they recovered a weapon. They say they have not been able to talk to the two men because both are still at Harborview.

They are reviewing video from inside the bus as they work to decide who, if anyone, to take into custody.