Christopher McDaniel shot by deputies in Oildale after chase

Officials released identity of man after one week

OILDALE, Calif. - Kern County Sheriff's Officials released the name of a man shot by deputies in Oildale March 26 and details of the incident.

Christopher McDaniel, 41, was shot and killed by deputies after they chased him through the streets of Oildale.

READ RELATED | Man shot, killed by deputies in Oildale after chase

Kern County Sheriff Donny Youngblood said Wednesday two veteran sheriff deputies both fired three rounds from their handguns that shot and killed McDaniel on March 26, 2014.

"A deputy was confronted with a firearm in his face about five feet and responded with deadly force," Youngblood said.

The incident started when a deputy assigned to the Sheriff’s Gang Suppression Unit observed a single rider on a 1998 Honda VTR 1000 motorcycle driving at a high rate of speed in the residential neighborhood near Beardsley Avenue, Michael Whorf with Kern County Sheriff's Office said in a statement

When the deputy attempted to stop the motorcycle, the driver of the motorcycle, later identified as McDaniel, failed to yield to the officer’s red lights and siren, Whorf said.

The deputy pursued the motorcycle on several residential streets through Oildale.  Additional deputies joined the pursuit, including a canine unit.  McDaniel led deputies on several residential streets where he drove with wanton disregard for the public, by driving with excessive speed, failing to stop at posted stop signs or traffic lights, and driving the motorcycle on pedestrian sidewalks, Whorf said.

The deputies lost sight of McDaniel in the area of River View Park.  While deputies searched the area of River View Park other deputies began monitoring intersections near the area where McDaniel was last seen, Whorf said.

Deputy Aaron Warmerdam and Deputy Jeffrey Kelley began monitoring the intersection of Beardsley Avenue and S. Plymouth Avenue for McDaniel.  A short time later Deputy Kelley observed McDaniel driving the motorcycle north bound on South Plymouth Avenue towards Beardsley Avenue.  As McDaniel entered the intersection of South Plymouth and Beardsley he lost control of the motorcycle and crashed, coming to rest in the middle of Beardsley Avenue, Whorf said.

After the crash McDaniel stood up and began running east bound on Beardsley Avenue directly towards Warmerdam.  Wamerdam pulled out his baton and attempted to arrest McDaniel and at the same time Kelley deployed his Canine partner, Luke, Whorf said.

McDaniel then pulled a hand gun from his waistband and pointed it at Warmerdam, who was about five feet away from McDaniel.  Both Warmerdam and Kelly then fired three rounds each from their handguns at McDaniel, causing McDaniel to drop his gun and fall to the ground, Whorf said.

Deputies immediately began administering first aid to McDaniel.  McDaniel was then transported by ambulance to Kern Medical Center where he was pronounced dead shortly after arrival, Whorf said.

There was evidence at the scene that showed McDaniel fired one round from his firearm during the incident. The entire incident lasted less than four minutes, Whorf said.

The motorcycle had been stolen Jan. 30 and belonged to Jeffrey Rutledge, a veteran in Taft.

McDaniel was previously convicted for a stolen vehicle, possession of a loaded firearm in a vehicle and was arrested for grand theft in 1991.

READ | Local veteran from Taft says stolen motorcycle involved in chase and deadly shooting belongs to him

A K9 was also stuck by gunfire. Sheriff Youngblood said they believe McDaniel's gunfire struck the dog.

"There's no absolute proof of who shot the dog and we're not alleging that we know that for a fact but we're looking at the most likely scenario of what occurred," Youngblood said.

The canine was transported to an emergency veterinarian, and has undergone at least one surgery, and is expected to survive.

While transported the injured dog, a sheriff's helicopter was damaged in a hard landing in Tehachapi.

ALSO RELATED | Kern County sheriff's helicopter forced to make hard landing

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