Deputy, Ride-Along Passenger Shot In Dollar General Parking Lot Gunfight
Los Molinos, CA – A deputy was shot multiple times, and his ride-along passenger was grazed by a bullet, in the parking lot of Dollar General on Saturday.
The Tehama County Sheriff’s Office said the incident began at about 7:30 p.m. on July 7, when a deputy stopped a suspicious vehicle in the store’s parking lot after he saw the driver switching license plates, KNVN reported.
Several minutes after the deputy contacted the driver, the man pulled out a gun and began shooting at him. The deputy returned fire and a gun battle ensued, according to the sheriff’s department.
Then the suspect fled the Dollar General parking lot in his vehicle, a dark grey Honda, and headed northbound on Highway 99E, kicking off a pursuit by other law enforcement officers, KNVN reported.
As officers began to catch up with the suspect vehicle on Interstate 5, the driver lost control and crashed north of Red Bluff near Jellys Ferry Road.
The driver of the Honda was killed in the wreck, KNVN reported.
The deputy who was shot during the incident had a ride-along passenger in his vehicle, as well as his K9 partner.
The female passenger and the deputy were transported to the hospital, and were both expected to survive and make a full recovery, according to KNVN.
The K9 officer was not injured by the gunfire.
Initially, witnesses reported seeing someone flee the passenger side of the car with an AK-47 rifle after the crash, and police launched a massive manhunt to find the second suspect, the Redding Record Spotlight reported.
Police sent out a warning message via broadcast call to the community on Saturday night, as more than 100 officers began a door-to-door search in the neighborhoods nearby where the crash occurred.
However, after investigators finished interviewing witnesses and the deputy who was shot, neighbors were notified via broadcast call on Sunday that the search had been cancelled.
“After speaking with witnesses at the original scene in Los Molinos, including the deputy, plus reviewing the physical evidence we currently believe that there was not a second suspect involved in this incident,” the Tehama County Sheriff’s Office told the Red Bluff Daily News.