Butte County Deputies Fatally Shoot Man Suspected of Trying to Kill His Estranged Wife

BUTTE COUNTY — Deputies shot and killed a man Monday in Butte County after he was suspected of trying to kill his estranged wife.

At 12:21 p.m., the Red Bluff Police Department began searching for Richard Moulton, who was wanted in connection to an attempted murder from earlier in the day.

The Butte County Sheriff’s Office reports the 52-year-old had gone to his estranged wife’s home and began arguing with her. The woman later told investigators Moulton “slapped her, bit her face, choked her, attempted to gauge out her eyes and threatened to kill her.”

He then went to his pickup truck and retrieved a handgun, which he forced into his estranged wife’s mouth.

The victim ran from Moulton, who fired nine shots toward her but could only hit her home, according to the sheriff’s office.

Moulton drove his Ford F-150 away from the scene and was later spotted by Butte County deputies in Durham. Deputies chased him until he stopped along Highway 162 and Aguas Frias Road.

That’s when the sheriff’s office says Moulton pulled out his gun and put it to his head before lowering it and stepping out of his pickup truck. He pointed his gun at the deputies, who fired at him.

Officials attempted to save Moulton but he died at the scene.

Nine deputies have been placed on paid administrative leave as Butte County investigators look into the deadly shooting.

The sheriff’s office reports they are still asking people who may have witnessed the incidents prior to the shooting to call them with any information.

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