The Stanislaus County Sheriff’s Department released a critical incident review of the deadly April 2012 shooting of a Sheriff’s deputy and a locksmith, and the ensuing standoff.
The 122-page report goes into great detail about the days leading up to the shooting and standoff, the incident itself and the days after, as well as the psyche of gunman James Ferrario.
Investigators say Ferrario shot and killed Deputy Robert Paris and locksmith Glendon Engert. The shooting spawned a standoff with law enforcement that lasted late into the evening, ending with Ferrario’s Chrysler Drive apartment burning down and Ferrario dying inside.
According to the report, Paris was warned that Ferrario was likely very dangerous.
“Be very cautious,” a Stanislaus County Sheriff’s Department Court and Civil Services Legal Clerk reportedly warned Paris, the day before the shooting. According to the report, Paris replied, “Whatever.”
The report also says Paris and Engert hadn’t noticed surveillance cameras that were installed at Ferrario’s home. Paris was carrying paperwork full of warnings about Ferrario, the report says.
The clerk reportedly had written several warnings like “Be very cautious”, “very weirdo”, “ex-military/militia”, “multiple guns M-16 type” and “violent”.
Neighbors believed Ferrario had military police training, and described him as a paranoid recluse.
Ferrario had lived in the apartment with his father until 2008, when his father died. Ferrario’s father allegedly taught him to go on armed patrols. His father’s death “contributed to his anger and paranoia,” according to the report.
The report says his father’s death also further alienated Ferrario from the rest of his family as financial problems began to mount.
Ferrario had illegally rigged electricity in his home because he was unable to pay for it.
Paris and Engert were shot with 7.62-caliber rounds as they were drilling the locks to Ferrario’s apartment. Paris was struck in the head and torso, and Engert was hit as he was running away from the door.
Ferrario was prepared for the ensuing standoff. According to the report, he had 30 rifles, handguns, shotguns, as well as a gas mask, body armor and chemical weapons.
Ferrario called 911 that evening, at about 7:35 p.m., according to the report. He identified himself as “Jim” and claimed he thought Paris and Engert were burglars.
“I apologize, I didn’t know it was the police until after I started shooting because I thought it was a burglar, I do apologize,” Ferrario said.
A fire started at the building less than two hours after the 911 call from Ferrario. The fire was later determined to be caused by Ferrario.
Investigators say Ferrario took his own life by shooting himself in the abdomen and head. No drugs or alcohol were found in his system.
To read the full report, click here to download the .PDF file.