UPDATED 6:43 p.m.
Sacramento County deputies fired an “excessive” and “unnecessary” number of rounds during the fatal shooting of Mikel McIntyre in May of last year, according to new findings by the inspector general.
The report also states that deputies put the general public “at risk” when they shot at McIntyre 18 times near Highway 50, and when they fired additional rounds in a Rancho Cordova parking lot.
The 32-year-old black man was fleeing on the freeway’s shoulder when he was struck seven times and killed.
The report is scheduled to be released on Thursday, but CapRadio independently obtained a copy and confirmed the authenticity of a version published by The Sacramento Bee.
The inspector general, who is retired Sacramento Police Chief Rick Braziel, recommends that deputies receive additional training on less-lethal force options.
According to the report, a family member reported McIntyre to law enforcement for “combative” behavior on the afternoon of May 8, 2017, and again later that evening, when he allegedly assaulted his mother in the parking lot of a Ross clothing store.
A deputy arrived on the scene and chased McIntyre through the parking lot. After tripping and falling, witnesses say McIntyre assaulted the deputy in the head with a rock.
The “dazed” deputy stood and fired two rounds at McIntyre as he fled toward a Hooters restaurant.
Additional deputies eventually arrived and followed McIntyre onto a freeway on-ramp and onto Highway 50, where he was killed.
The report says that deputies fired two dozen rounds at McIntyre during the pursuit, which lasted seven minutes.
In his recommendations, Braziel says that despite the “chaos” of the chase, the deputies’ “ability to make sound and reasonable decisions is essential.”
A statement by Sheriff Scott Jones, which was given to CapRadio in response to the Sacramento Bee article, questioned Braziel’s credentials to investigate the shooting.
“The opinion of the Inspector General is just that, a lay opinion, based on his own personal context and experience,” Jones wrote. “It is not, and cannot be, a legal opinion or conclusion like it appears to purport.”
Jones also criticized Supervisor Phil Serna, who told that Bee that he would be watching the sheriff “very carefully” to see if he would discipline his deputies.
“It is highly unusual, suspect, and in fact unprecedented for a Supervisor to ... collude with the media and others for personal political reasons, while recklessly placing the County—and the pursuit of truth—at risk,” Jones wrote.
McIntyre family attorney John Burris commended Braziel for issuing the report and hoped District Attorney Anne Marie Schubert would file charges against the two deputies who fired the shots that killed McIntyre.
“I don’t hold my breath on it,” Burris added. “I don’t think they have that kind of courage, with the symbiotic relationship between the district attorney’s office and the police. I have no reason to believe they will prosecute given they haven’t prosecuted in other cases which have been equally egregious.”
Burris argued that “everyone was aware that [McIntyre] had mental problems and, as a consequence of that, efforts should have been made to de-escalate the situation, and to try to catch up with him at a time, other than shoot him down like a mad dog."
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