Family: 'Manic episode' preceded trooper shooting of man on I-5 near Everett

EVERETT — Marvin Arellano was known for his generosity, his older brother said.

He sold Ferraris, Lamborghinis and other luxury cars to make a living, Gilbert Arellano recalls. Marvin Arellano, 31, often used the cars to drive homeless people around their hometown of Nampa, Idaho.

“He was extremely, extremely generous,” Gilbert Arellano, of Nampa, said earlier this month. “He was always helping people, he was always giving them a hand. »

Family members say Marvin Arellano suffered from a mental illness that ultimately led to his death.

Last month, a Washington State Patrol trooper fatally shot Marvin Arellano on the side of I-5 near Everett after he attacked construction workers in what authorities described as road rage. .

Relatives said the incident stemmed from a diagnosis of bipolar disorder made years earlier. Gilbert Arellano believes his brother was going through a “manic episode.”

Before his death, Gilbert Arellano said it was becoming increasingly difficult for the family to care for Marvin.

“I don't know much about this mental illness, I'm not sure what was going through his mind,” Gilbert Arellano said. “We tried to help him as best we could.”

People diagnosed with bipolar disorder may act out in ways that are unlike them — often without recognizing their harmful effects, according to the National Institute of Mental Health.

The Snohomish County Multiple Response Team, also known as SMART, continued its investigation into the fatal shooting this week. The team includes a group of detectives tasked with examining police use of force. The team has provided weekly updates on the investigation, but has not released any significant new information since late May.

On May 16, around 4 p.m., Marvin Arellano was driving northbound on I-5 near Marine View Drive when he crashed into a state Department of Transportation contractor's elevator on the shoulder of the road, SMART spokesperson Courtney O'Keefe wrote in a press release. Two road workers were in the elevator.

Marvin Arellano got out of his car and attacked one of the contractors, the release said. The police went to the scene.

Marvin Arellano got into the contractors car and grabbed a rotary hammer chisel. He fought again with a trooper who, at one point, used a Taser on him, according to SMART.

The end of the confrontation with the police officer was reportedly filmed by a witness.

In the footage, Marvin Arellano, wearing black shorts, approaches a police officer on the shoulder of the highway, shouting. He runs away from the soldier and shouts at him.

He turns to face the soldier.

“I’m not hurting anyone,” Marvin Arellano tells the officer twice, with his arms raised in the video.

“Turn around! Don’t face me! Turn around, now!” asks the soldier.

“I’m the boss, mother-(expletive)!” Marvin Arellano screams and comes back at the soldier.

The footage shows the trooper firing several shots at Arellano, who was pronounced dead at the scene.

“It’s very, very unfortunate the way he was portrayed in his final moments,” Gilbert Arellano said. “She was just such a good person.”

The shooting paralyzed traffic for hours on many roads in Snohomish County.

The officer had not been identified Thursday.

A person who identified themselves as a family friend of the Arellanos called the Daily Herald but did not respond to several requests for follow-up interviews.

“Yes, he did not follow orders, and it’s unfortunate that this happened,” she said. “But the police should have known he wasn’t well.”

She noted that the family had previously reported Marvin Arellano's concerning behavior to Idaho police.

Gilbert Arellano wasn't sure why his brother was in Everett.

According to his social media, Marvin Arellano has traveled often in recent years – to destinations like Las Vegas; Scottsdale, Ariz.; and Cancun, Mexico. At home, he spent his days with his Golden Retriever, Maple.

Other family members, many of whom reside in Idaho, declined interviews with the Daily Herald.

After Marvin Arellano's death, his friends and family mourned him on social media.

“I think I’ll see you at the next family reunion. I have a feeling you'll come through the door to say hello to everyone. That I will hear your laughter,” one family member wrote. “Other times it becomes so real and I feel anger because you were taken from us too soon.”

Family members had difficulty understanding the way the media portrayed Marvin Arellano.

“There's not a lot of support for mental health in this country,” Gilbert Arellano said. “It’s unfortunate that this was reported as one thing, when all the facts are there.”

Maya Tizon: 425 339-3434; [email protected]; Twitter: @mayatizon.

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