Deputies shoot knife-wielding man

An autopsy performed Tuesday, Feb. 7 on Chad Terrio, the 22-year old Hurleton man fatally shot by Butte County Sheriff’s deputies three days earlier, will help determine if the shooting was justified, District Attorney Mike Ramsey said this week. Ramsey heads up the regional team that investigates all officer-involved shootings in Butte County.

The latest such shooting occurred Feb. 4, when deputies responded to the remote village of Hurleton, a mountain hamlet between Bangor and Rackerby, to investigate reports of a man with a knife acting strangely. The call was placed by Terrio’s aunt and uncle, with whom he lived, Ramsey said.

The two deputies who responded were Jason Louis, a field training officer, and Tim Langer, a new recruit who had been on the job only a few days.

After a short search deputies encountered Terrio on North Stoney Oaks Loop and attempted to talk with him, according to a Sheriff’s press release. Terrio allegedly produced a pocket knife, prompting the deputies to draw their weapons and order Terrio to drop the knife. Terrio then allegedly lunged toward the deputies and was shot three or four times. Deputies performed CPR and called for medical assistance but by the time help arrived it was too late.

Relatives of Terrio told local media that the deputies also zapped him three times with a Taser and set a police dog on him before resorting to lethal force, but that could not be confirmed with investigators before press time.

More details of the incident will emerge as the investigation continues, Ramsey said.

Terrio apparently had mental problems, possibly resulting from brain damage he sustained in a fight when he was 17, Ramsey said.