Officer Dead, Suspect in Custody after Carjacking in Ben Lomond

Deputies reported suspect was lobbing “bombs” at them

A SWAT team moves into position along Highway 9 in Ben Lomond Saturday afternoon after a Santa Cruz County Sheriff’s deputy was shot and killed following two carjackings. PHOTO: TARMO HANNULA

A suspect is in custody and a Santa Cruz County Sheriff’s deputy is dead after a standoff in the 10000 block of Highway 9 in Ben Lomond.

Deputies responded to a report of a carjacking that occurred at 2:15pm on Saturday, June 6, where a man reportedly took a white 2000 Toyota Camry while armed with an assault rifle, emergency dispatchers said.

As deputies approached, they reported that the suspect was lobbing “bombs” at them, then called for a retreat and cordoned off the area.

As the suspect fled in the stolen car, he shot two deputies who were on foot, according to emergency dispatchers. One was taken by air ambulance to a trauma center in critical condition and has died, a police source confirmed. The second suffered minor injuries and did not need medical attention.

The suspect, described as a Hispanic man in his 30s wearing a blue shirt and khaki pants, reportedly abandoned the vehicle at 10065 Alba Road, and left on foot. Witnesses later said they saw blood in the car.

The suspect later used the rifle to steal a second car—a dark green Porsche 911.

Santa Cruz Police Department has deployed its BearCat armored vehicle and is working with Santa Cruz County Sheriff’s deputies and the California Highway Patrol. Multiple police cruisers from agencies in neighboring Monterey County, including King City and Soledad, were seen speeding north on Highway 1 to the scene. Officers were called to the scene from as far away as South San Francisco.

Police established a command post at the Red Gables Church in Felton.

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