Ex-air force sergeant gets life in prison for murdering deputy sheriff

0
25

SANTA CRUZ, Calif. — A former Air Force sergeant associated with an anti-government extremist movement who attacked law enforcement officers in 2020 during protests over the murder of George Floyd has been sentenced to life in prison without parole for the murder of a US Army Sergeant. sheriff of Northern California.

Steven Carrillo, 33, pleaded guilty to all nine charges, including murder, in June for the murder of Santa Cruz County Sheriff Sgt. Damon Gutziller. Also in June, a federal judge sentenced Carrillo to 41 years in prison for the murder of David Patrick Underwood, a federal security officer who was attacked along with a colleague while guarding a federal building in Oakland.

Prosecutors said that on June 6, 2020, Carrillo ambushed sheriffs deputies in Santa Cruz County responding to a report of a van carrying firearms and bomb-making equipment. Gutzwiller, 38, was killed and several other law enforcement officers were injured.

See also  'America's Got Talent' judge Simon Cowell remembers Queen Elizabeth II: 'I have so much respect for her'

Carrillo, of Santa Cruz, was arrested after ambushing officials in the Ben Lomond community.

At the time of his arrest, Carrillo was the leader of a team of highly trained security forces from the Air Mobility Command.

According to information released by the Air Force Personnel Center in June 2020, Carrillo was assigned to the 60th Security Forces Squadron at Travis Air Force Base in California, where he served as team leader of Phoenix Raven.

See also  UK Saturday morning news briefing: today's top headlines from The Telegraph

Steven Carrillo, 60th SFS Defender and Raven Apprentice spars with a Raven in a sparring suit September 26, 2018, at Travis Air Force Base, California Raven apprentices train prior to attending the Phoenix Raven curriculum at Joint Base McGuire-Dix- Lakehurst, New Jersey. (Pilot 1st Class Jonathon DA Carnell/Air Force)

Prosecutors said Carrillo, of Santa Cruz, had ties to the “boogaloo” movement, a concept embraced by a loose network of gun enthusiasts and militia-style extremists connecting online. Experts say the group started out in an internet alt-right culture with the belief that there is an imminent American Civil War.

In February, Carrillo pleaded guilty to Underwood’s murder and admitted to posting on Facebook a day before May 29, 2020, shooting in Oakland and asking someone if they were “down to arc” and saying he was ready. was to act and not just talk. He also admitted to firing 19 shots with a homemade AR-15 rifle from the back of a white van driven by a man he interacted with online.

See also  COVID is still killing hundreds a day, even as society begins to move on

“I joined the anti-government movement and wanted to take violent action against federal law enforcement in particular,” Carrillo said at the time.

An image captured by a security camera during the shooting at the Oakland federal courthouse on May 29, 2020, shows the white van's door open as Steven Carrillo fires at officers in a guardhouse, far right.  (United States District Court for the Northern District of California)

An image captured by a security camera during the shooting at the Oakland federal courthouse on May 29, 2020, shows the white van’s door open as Steven Carrillo fires at officers in a guardhouse, far right. (United States District Court for the Northern District of California)

Carrillo fatally shot Underwood after he opened fire on a guard booth as hundreds marched on the streets against police brutality following the May 2020 murder of Floyd, a black man, by a white Minneapolis police officer.

In the California case, Robert Alvin Justus Jr., of Millbrae, was driving the van, according to prosecutors. He faces federal charges of murder and attempted murder in the case.

A week after the Oakland shooting, officers arrested Carrillo shortly after he killed Gutzwiller.

LEAVE A REPLY

Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here