Transgendered "drifter" shot by Washington State police

By Advocate.com Editors

Originally published on Advocate.com December 28 2002 1:00 AM ET

A transgendered woman who was shot and killed Monday by a Kittitas County, Wash., sheriff's deputy has been identified as Timothy Mayhugh, a former Portland, Ore., resident who had become a drifter.

Undersheriff Rob DeGroot said that Mayhugh, 49, had had a history of mental illness and violent behavior and had gone by the name Sarah for at least eight years. Mayhugh had had breast implants and, at the time of the shooting, was wearing women's clothing.

Mayhugh was shot and killed by Deputy Tom Gow after he responded to a call for help from Washington State patrol trooper Bart Olson. Olson had made initial contact with Mayhugh on Interstate 82 south of Ellensburg after Mayhugh had become involved in a minor traffic collision.

Olson reportedly tried to forcibly remove Mayhugh from her vehicle, but Mayhugh pepper-sprayed him. Gow responded by reportedly shooting Mayhugh when she approached the deputy in a threatening manner with a claw hammer.

The Yakima Police Department is conducting an investigation of the incident.