Update: Merced County deputy hurt, suspect killed after shots are fired in Winton
A Merced County sheriff’s deputy was hurt and a male suspect killed after authorities say gunfire was exchanged during an altercation Saturday afternoon in Winton.
The incident occurred about 1:20 p.m. at Suzie Street and Walnut Avenue, according to a social media post by the Merced County Sheriff’s Office.
Deputies were making an investigative stop that resulted in a pursuit, according to Merced County Sheriff Vern Warnke.
The vehicle crashed at the intersection.
“They took off running,” Warnke said. “One of the deputies confronted a suspect who was armed. The suspect fired and struck the deputy, however, the deputy returned fire and struck the suspect.”
Deputies performed life-saving efforts on the suspect, the Sheriff’s Office said in an early-evening update, but he succumbed to his injuries.
The deputy was taken to an area hospital and is expected to make a full recovery.
Investigators remained on the scene and the Sheriff’s Office asked people to avoid the area.
Warnke says it’s infuriating when one of his deputies is shot in the line of duty.
“We’re still strapped with the restrictive laws that we have to try to enforce and this is what it’s coming down to because there are no penalties; these guys are feeling pretty brazen, running around with assault weapons,” Warnke said.
“That’s what we’re dealing with so, yeah, when one of mine gets hurt because of stuff I’m not a happy man,” Warnke added. “Fortunately, I have a deputy who will live to come out and protect again.”