Video: Calif. LEO fatally shoots man reaching for replica gun

The deputy, responding to multiple calls about a suspicious person, fired at a man he believed was carrying a handgun

Vincent Moleski
Sacramento Bee

HERALD, Calif. — The Sacramento County Sheriff’s Office released 911 calls and video Sunday afternoon of the deputy-involved shooting that took place on a rural gravel road in Herald on Oct. 6 that left one man dead.

The 55-year-old man who was shot and killed identified himself as Maurice Holley to a deputy who responded to multiple 911 calls reporting a suspicious person in the 13000 block of Bennett Road.

Dashcam video released by the Sheriff’s Office shows the deputy asking Holley a few questions but abruptly opening fire at close range and shooting nine times after the man’s hand drifted toward his waistband, which the deputy believed contained a handgun.

Holley was hit multiple times and crumpled on the patch of grass where he had been sitting.

Deputies later learned that the man had been carrying an airsoft gun.

In 911 audio released by the Sheriff’s Office, callers said Holley was passed out on Bennett Road near several houses.

One caller who had run into the man before said he had previously been seen armed.

“This gentleman you guys have been called about before,” the 911 caller said. “I don’t know that he lives out here, but he stays out at one of the neighbor’s houses, but he’s been called on because he carries a machete, he’s been caught with guns in his car, he’s patrolling, but now he’s out in front of our house. I don’t know if he has a weapon or not but he didn’t leave.”

The caller said the man had a record of unstable behavior.

When the responding deputy arrived, Holley was seen lying down on the right shoulder of Bennett Road. He sat up to talk to the deputy.

Video shows the deputy taking Holley’s name and asking if he was on parole or probation. After noticing what appeared to be a gun, the deputy grabbed his own service pistol, pointed it at Holley, and told him to “get on the f------ ground.”

Sheriff’s Office spokeswoman Tess Deterding said the man reached for the airsoft gun in his waistband, prompting the deputy to open fire.

The deputy reloaded his sidearm with the barrel still pointed at Holley before approaching him to put him in handcuffs.

He checked Holley’s vital signs and determined that he was dead. He then saw that Holley actually had an airsoft gun.

“F---, BB gun,” the deputy said.

Deputies later determined that Holley had two airsoft guns with him and had two outstanding misdemeanor warrants and a criminal record in four states.

The deputy who shot Holley is a 19-year veteran of the Sheriff’s Office and has 17 years of patrol experience, Deterding said.

Deterding said it is common practice for Sacramento County sheriff’s deputies to respond without a partner to calls in rural areas.

McClatchy-Tribune News Service

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