3 deputies, motorist shot in California – 2 dead

By Drew Zahn

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An extensive manhunt in California for a “Hispanic” man who gunned down three sheriff’s deputies and a motorist and attempted a pair of carjackings in his getaway concluded Friday afternoon in the city of Auburn after a nearly six-hour search.

According to Placer County sheriff spokesperson Dena Erwin, the suspect, identified as Marcelo Marquez, 34, was captured hiding in an Auburn residence. He was not shot.

One of the shooting victims, Deputy Danny Oliver, 47, died at a Sacramento hospital from head wounds.

Sacramento County Sheriff’s Sgt. Lisa Bowman told Sacramento’s KXTV that Oliver, the first of the deputies, initially responded to a suspicious vehicle in the parking lot of a Motel 6 in Sacramento around 10 a.m., when someone inside the vehicle opened fire.

KXTV reported a blonde woman in a green dress and a Hispanic man, approximately 30 years old, wearing a checkered shirt, fled the lot and approached a separate driver, demanding the person’s car.

When the driver refused, Bowman said, the man shot the driver as well.

The fleeing couple then reportedly approached a red, 2002 Ford F-150 pickup truck belonging to Jose Cruz and demanded Cruz turn over the vehicle. Cruz provided the identifying details of the suspects and told authorities the man in the couple was brandishing a handgun but helped Cruz remove his tool chest from the truck bed before the carjacker sped away in the red pickup.

The condition of the wounded driver has yet been released.

The carnage continued a short time later, however, when scanner traffic indicated two Placer County sheriff’s deputies had been shot on Maidu Drive in Auburn, Calif., roughly 30 miles to the northeast.

Authorities recovered the abandoned Ford pickup truck and soon confirmed the shootings were related to the same suspects.

The condition of the second and third officers was unknown throughout the afternoon, but late in the day a spokeswoman announced one of them had died. The other sustained a wound to his arm. Both deputies had been hit by rifle fire.

Authorities also confirmed the blonde woman involved in the incident has been taken into custody, but the hunt for the male shooter continued for several hours. A handgun was found in the woman’s purse.

At about 1:30 p.m., the Sacramento Bee reported, authorities were searching near the Gold Country Fairgrounds for the suspect, as well as on Belmont Drive near Placer High School.

Hazel Haase, who lives on Belmont Drive, told the newspaper heavily armed officers came into her yard with guns drawn and appeared to be searching the nearby canyon that leads down to the north fork of the American River. Helicopters canvassed the area from the air.

“It looks like a TV show around here,” Haase said.

Story developing …

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