TEHACHAPI, Calif. -- The Kern County Sheriff's Department shooting review board said that Deputy Chris Strunc was not within policy when he discharged his firearm Jan. 3.
Officials said that on Jan. 3 at about 11 p.m., Strunc, a 3-year veteran of the Kern County Sheriff’s Office, attempted to stop a vehicle for vehicle code violations in the area of Tucker Road and Highline Road in Tehachapi.
The vehicle, a blue late 80s Chevrolet S-10 Blazer, was occupied by two white male adults, deputies said.
Deputies said the driver of the vehicle refused to yield and a pursuit was initiated by Strunc.
Strunc pursued the vehicle for about three minutes, at which time the vehicle turned onto a dead end cul-de-sac dirt road at Summit and Erie roads.
As the vehicle reached the end of the cul-de-sac it turned around and rammed the front end and driver side area of Strunc's vehicle, deputies said.
Strunc fired three rounds at the suspect vehicle, which continued to flee, deputies said.
Strunc continued to pursue the vehicle.
Patrol units from the sheriff’s department, Tehachapi Police Department, and the California Highway Patrol assisted in the pursuit of the vehicle. The suspect vehicle continued to flee and after approximately fifteen minutes officers lost sight of the vehicle and the pursuit was terminated, deputies said.
The vehicle was located abandoned in a vacant field in the Golden Hills area on Jan. 4, deputies said.
On January 18, the Kern County Sheriff’s Office Incident Review Board convened to consider the use of force by Strunc.
After a review of all the facts in this case, the Incident Review Board determined that the use of force by Strunc was not within Sheriff’s Office policy.
No word yet on what, if any, disciplinary actions will take place for Strunc.
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