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Rancho Tehama Calif.—The peace was shattered in the small community of Rancho Tehama early Wednesday morning after a Tehama County deputy responded to a call about a suspicious vehicle.
A single gunshot rang out, prompting a swift reaction from the sheriff's office.
The original call for a suspicious vehicle came out at about 11:45 Tuesday evening, and, as the deputy was responding, the sheriff's office also got a call about a burglary, though they don't believe that was connected to this incident.
Around 1:15 early Wednesday morning, a Tehama County Sheriff's deputy responded to a suspicious vehicle call on North Mendocino Drive in Rancho Tehama.
The Tehama County sheriff said the deputy knocked on the door of a trailer home, and, after identifying himself, heard a single gunshot.
“He is not injured, he is not shot, but he does the right thing by retreating, maintaining some sort of perimeter on the place and calls for backup,” said Tehama County Sheriff Dave Hencratt.
The SWAT team also responded, though they did not get there until about 5:00 am, almost 4 hours later.
“The SWAT guys and gals are not on duty at the time for the most part, so they have to get out of bed, get dressed, get to their gear, and get deployed,” he said.
Sheriff Hencratt said there was never a standoff, and about an hour later 27-year-old Darin Anthony Madden was arrested without any problems.
He is now in custody for being a felon in possession of a firearm, and he also has several other felonies dating as far back as 2005, including arson, making terroristic threats, domestic violence, and vandalism.
The sheriff said the weapon was some kind of a long gun, and no one was hurt. They also don't know if the bullet even made it out of the trailer.
“So right now we don't know the intent or where the shot fired came into the whole mix as far as was there intent to shoot the deputy? Or was there intent to scare the deputy off? So we're still working on that part of the investigation.”
He said this type of situation is unusual, where someone other than an officer fires a shot out on a call, but it does happen.
He also said they get called of shots fired just about every day because it is a rural county and people enjoy their right to target practice, hunt, and shoot guns in general.
Investigators did find the suspicious vehicle and believe it is somehow involved in this incident.
No one was injured.