Investigators are still processing the scene of this week's deadly fire and standoff in Washougal. A backhoe was tearing through the small trees, blackberries and assorted junk at the back of the property at 32nd and F Place on Friday. This while two buckets overflowing with spent ammunition sat near the mailbox along with a couple of burned up grenades. About a dozen investigators were still down in the hole where the home once stood carefully removing ash from everything it covered, including lawn chairs and looking for evidence. A wreath still hangs on a large evergreen tree on one side of the driveway. It is half burned from the fire that engulfed the house, leaving it a two-tone red and gray. As our reporter surveyed the scene, a large gust blew up some of the ash and temporarily made it difficult to breathe.
We've learned more about the armed man who kept police in a standoff for seven hours at his East Washougal home after setting it on fire and shooting at officers and neighbors. Steve Stanbary is apparently the same man who threatened
to kill himself, his wife and children during a standoff in Northern
Idaho in 1994. He was described then as a heavily-armed White Supremacist who
later served jail time for domestic violence. A police
report says Stanbary was diagnosed with delusional schizophrenia, felt the
end of the world was coming and wanted to stockpile weapons. More recently, he was under investigation for several sex crimes and had arranged through an attorney to turn himself in the day after.
Neighbors went to help, but the man inside refused and fired as many as sixty rounds from high-powered rifles and handguns. Five bullets hit a police car. One went through the windows and an officer was cut by shattered glass. Our reporter was told to take cover. There were several fires in the following hours, turning the neighborhood smoky and evacuating schools and businesses.
The house burned down. Stanbary lived there with his wife, Leona Mae Bolton and her twin sister. The family had been struggling financially. At least two sets of human remains were found. Investigators are sifting through the rubble and it will take days. A dead dog in the yard appeared to have been shot.