Sacramento police officer dies after shooting during domestic call

Sacramento County Sheriff's Department deputies near where an armed man fired on police Wednesday.
Sacramento County Sheriff’s Department deputies near where an armed man fired on police Wednesday.
(Daniel Kim / Associated Press)

A Sacramento police officer who was shot and seriously wounded Wednesday evening by a man with a rifle who blasted away at officers trying to rescue her has died, police said.

Tara O’Sullivan, 26, died at UC Davis Medical Center hours after a gunman opened fire on her, Deputy Chief Dave Peletta said during a news conference early Thursday.

Several officers were on a domestic disturbance call, helping a woman collect her belongings and leave a home in the North Sacramento neighborhood, when the officer was wounded, Sgt. Vance Chandler said. The woman wasn’t hurt and the relationship between her and the gunman wasn’t immediately known.

O’Sullivan lay in the backyard of a home, and officers couldn’t reach her because the gunman kept firing, Chandler said.

“Our officers maintained cover in safe positions until we were able to get an armored vehicle in the area,” he said.


It took more than 45 minutes to get the officer to the hospital, he said.

Peletta said O’Sullivan was partnered with a training officer when she was shot just before 6 p.m. He did not offer any more information.

According to city records, O’Sullivan had been working for the city since January 2018, The Sacramento Bee reported. She was part of the first class of graduates of Sacramento State’s Law Enforcement Candidate Scholars program in 2017 and went on to the Sacramento Police Academy.

The man kept shooting for at least two hours, and as of late Wednesday night, Chandler said negotiators hadn’t been able to contact him.

Heavily armored police from several agencies swarmed the residential neighborhood, where a couple of dozen marked and unmarked police cars had gathered.

Police warned residents by loudspeaker to stay out of the area near the intersection of Redwood Avenue and Edgewater Road. Officers were keeping media and onlookers out of sight of the scene.