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Tag: sonomo county

FBI Clears Deputy Who Shot ,Killed Teen Who Had Replica AK-47

Andy Lopez

Andy Lopez

By Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com

Sonomo County Sheriff’s Deputy Erick Gelhaus had a split second to decide whether to pull the trigger when a teenager pointed what appeared to be an automatic weapon at him.

The 24-year veteran of the department squeezed the trigger eight times, killing the 13-year-old boy who turned out to be holding a replica AK-47, the San Francisco Gate reports.

On Wednesday, the FBI and U.S. attorney’s office alerted Sheriff Steve Freitas that they’ve concluded that the deputy did not commit any federal civil rights violations in the shooting death of Andy Lopez.

The federal investigation follows a decision by Sonoma County prosecutors to clear Gelhaus of any criminal wrongdoing.

The shooting happened after deputies in a patrol car spotted Andy from behind and thought he had a real automatic weapon.

Deputies said Andy responded to them by raising his hand with the plastic weapon, prompting the shooting.