A little after 9:30 a.m. on August 30, 2017, members of the Sacramento County Auto Theft Task Force were conducting an investigation near the Ramada Inn located in the 2600 block of Auburn Boulevard in Sacramento. The task force is comprised of investigators from the California Highway Patrol, Sacramento County Sheriff’s Department, and Sacramento County Probation Department.
Investigators located a stolen vehicle in the parking lot of the Ramada Inn. Two adult females entered the car. Officers attempted a vehicle stop on the suspect car, when a pursuit ensued. The pursuit terminated in Elk Grove, and both the females were taken into custody.
As detectives investigated further, they found one of the females to be on searchable probation and was registered to a room at the Ramada Inn. Detectives returned to the Ramada Inn to search the room. They gave knock and noticed and announced themselves as law enforcement in case anybody else was inside the room. A suspect inside the room fired multiple shots through the front door and walls of the room. Two California Highway Patrol investigators were struck by gunfire from the suspect.
There were Sacramento Sheriff’s deputies positioned on the back side of the motel room. The suspect then attempted to exit through the back balcony of the motel room holding a high powered assault rifle. The suspect engaged the deputies in gunfire, striking one deputy. The suspect fled from the balcony into a nearby car.
The armed suspect led officers on a pursuit south on Fulton Avenue and then east on El Camino Avenue. The suspect crashed the vehicle just west of Watt Avenue, and engaged pursuing officers. The suspect was struck by gunfire and detained. He was taken into custody and transported to a local hospital, where he is in currently in critical condition.
Sheriff’s Special Enforcement Detail and Sacramento Police Department’s SWAT team established perimeter on the motel. They isolated the room where the shooting took place, not knowing whether there were additional suspects inside the room. Residents of the motel were directed to shelter in place. After several hours, the tactical teams entered the motel room and deemed it safe. The scene was handed over to Homicide detectives.
The two wounded California Highway Patrol Officers are being treated at a local hospital. They are in stable condition and expected to survive.
Sacramento Sheriff’s Deputy Robert French, 52, died of his injuries enroute to the hospital. Deputy French was a 21 year veteran of the Sheriff’s Department, and assigned to the North Patrol Division. Deputy French leaves behind three adult children, grandchildren, a sister, and live-in girlfriend.
The investigation into the incident will be conducted by the Sheriff’s Homicide Bureau and Professional Standards Division, which is standard practice for any officer-involved shooting that occurs in the Sheriff’s Department’s jurisdiction. Independent review of the officer involved shooting will be conducted by the Sacramento County District Attorney’s Office and the Inspector General. In accordance with the Sheriff’s Department policies and procedures, the six other deputies involved in the shooting will be placed on paid administrative leave pending the investigation.