Deputies shoot and kill man on 215 Freeway in Riverside County after pursuit

Site of fatal shooting
A man who authorities said was armed with a handgun and wanted for assault was shot by Riverside County Sheriff’s deputies on the 215 Freeway in Menifee on Tuesday after a pursuit that at times veered into oncoming traffic.
(Los Angeles Times )

A man who authorities said was armed and wanted was shot by deputies Tuesday while trying to flee by foot on the 215 Freeway in Menifee after a confrontation involving the U.S. Border Patrol and the Riverside County Sheriff’s Department.

Plainclothes Border Patrol agents driving unmarked vehicles and working routine patrol around 4:40 p.m. spotted a man identified in an assault with a deadly weapon in Ventura County, Riverside County Sheriff’s Sgt. Deanna Pecoraro said in a news release.

Agents followed the man for several minutes as he drove south on the 15 Freeway near Lake Elsinore before he exited and parked at a gas station, where they confronted him, Pecoraro said.


When agents tried to take the man into custody, he drove his vehicle toward them, striking two patrol cars as he fled, according to the release. Border Patrol then asked for assistance from the Riverside County Sheriff’s Department.

Sheriff’s deputies tried to stop the driver about 10 minutes later in Temecula, according to an incident report, but the man sped away.

While heading north on the 215 Freeway, the man stopped his car near the center median, just south of Ethanac Road, according to the report. He then exited the vehicle armed with a handgun and began fleeing on foot, authorities said, jumping over the center median and running into the southbound lanes of the freeway.

Two deputies fired at the man, who has not been identified, according to Riverside County Sheriff’s Sgt. Albert Martinez. He was transported to a local hospital, where he later died from his injuries, officials said.

It was not immediately clear what prompted the shooting, based on the report, and a sheriff’s spokesperson declined to comment further.

The names of the deputies involved in the shooting have not been released. Both have been placed on administrative leave, in accordance with department policy, Martinez said.