UPDATE: Information on EGPD officer shooting incident

Investigators looking into the early Sunday morning officer-involved shooting have concluded preliminary interviews of all involved par...

Investigators looking into the early Sunday morning officer-involved shooting have concluded preliminary interviews of all involved parties and identified witnesses.  Following is a summary of the incident based on interviews and evidence obtained to this point.

Continued below
On January 30, 2011, three Elk Grove police officers responded to an address in the 8600 block of Callippe Way at 2:19 a.m. after receiving a call from a woman regarding her husband (later identified as John Hesselbein) at this location. The female caller indicated that her husband had been drinking, tried to punch out her car windows and threw a lighter at her vehicle when she was trying to leave their residence after physical altercation.  

The caller also indicated that Hesselbein had gotten into his vehicle and chased her while she was driving. Their 2½ year-old daughter was believed to be in the residence by herself.  

As officers responded, they received some information about the husband’s violent criminal and gang history.

When officers arrived, they contacted the caller a short distance away from the residence. She indicated that Hesselbein was possibly inside the residence along with her daughter. As the officers approached the residence to contact Hesselbein, he was seen in the front doorway of the residence. Hesselbein looked at the officers, slammed the front door, then turned out the porch light and interior lights. 

The officers backed off to determine their next course of action.

It was determined that Hesselbein needed to be contacted and the welfare of the child needed to be checked. As an officer approached the front door for a second time, he saw Hesselbein partially obscured, standing behind an open door behind a metal security door.  

The officer saw Hesselbein take a shooting position and heard him make an overt verbal threat towards the officer.  The officer communicated that information to other officers that Hesselbein was armed.  

Hesselbein closed the front door and began throwing items inside the house. Officers backed away from the door and established a perimeter around the residence treating the situation as an armed barricaded person.  
Several unsuccessful attempts were made to make phone contact with Hesselbein.  After a few minutes, he opened the front door and walked out of the house. Hesselbein was taken into custody, briefly searched and handcuffed behind his back. No weapon was found at that time. 

Once detained, Hesselbein was escorted to a nearby police vehicle where he was placed in the back seat without incident. Officers then conducted a protective sweep of the residence in an effort to locate the child and determine if there were any additional armed persons present.

During this sweep, officers located the child who was safe, but no obvious weapons were observed. 

Officers had started the process of destaging, when Hesselbein, who was in the back seat of the patrol vehicle suddenly started shouting that he had a gun and made quick movements as if he did. An officer who was seated in the driver’s seat using the computer immediately exited the vehicle and told the other officers that Hesselbein said he was armed.  

Officers in the immediate area of the patrol car took tactical positions around the vehicle.  One of the officers opened the rear passenger door and drew his duty weapon.  

Another nearby officer armed with a rifle moved up to cover the officer who had just opened the passenger door. Hesselbein continued to move in a manner attempting to reach his rear waist band. 

Officers gave him clear verbal commands to stop moving around and remove his hands from his waistband. Not complying with commands, Hesselbein stretched his body away from the officers and reached below the backside of his waistband where his hands were in his pants positioning as if he was aiming a weapon. 

Believing that Hesselbein was about to shoot a weapon and fearing for his safety, along with the safety of the other officers present, the officer with the rifle fired a single round that grazed the left side of Hesselbein’s face.  After determining that Hesselbein no longer posed an immediate threat, he was removed from the vehicle and paramedics were requested. No weapon was located after an additional search of Hesselbein and the patrol vehicle.  He was then transported to Kaiser for medical treatment.

While Hesselbein was at the hospital receiving medical treatment for his injuries, he became combative.  He removed the gauze from his face, threw it at the officers then stood up and began rolling the gurney around the medical treatment area causing damage to nearby medical equipment.  The two officers present attempted to gain control of Hesselbein and, during the struggle, an officer suffered a shoulder injury. 

Hesselbein was eventually restrained and handcuffed to the gurney where he was sedated. After being medically cleared, Hesselbein was transported to the Sacramento County Jail and booked.

Over the next several days, investigators will conclude the preliminary investigation and prepare reports for review by the District Attorney’s Office to determine whether any criminal violations will be charged. Following the review, an internal administrative review will be conducted by EGPD command staff for the purpose of determining whether agency policies, procedures, and training were followed.

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