The 41-year-old man shot and killed by deputies last week had led law enforcement on a high-speed chase through Oildale and, after crashing his motorcycle, pulled a gun from his waistband and pointed it at a deputy's face standing five feet away.
Two deputies then opened fire, striking and killing Christopher McDaniel of Bakersfield, the Kern County coroner's office announced Wednesday. In a press conference later in the afternoon, Sheriff Donny Youngblood said McDaniel fired one round during the incident, which lasted less than four minutes.
A sheriff's K-9 was also shot during the incident.
Youngblood said it's still unclear whether McDaniel or deputies shot the K-9.
He said it took authorities until Wednesday to release McDaniel's name because they had been unable to notify next of kin.
The incident began at 10:11 p.m. when a deputy saw a motorcyclist driving a 1998 Honda VTR 1000 at a high rate of speed through a residential neighborhood near Beardsley Avenue. The deputy tried to stop the driver, later identified as McDaniel, but he continued driving on residential streets through Oildale, Youngblood said.
McDaniel allegedly led deputies on a chase where he drove with "wanton disregard for the public" by speeding, failing to stop at posted stop signs or traffic lights, and traveling on pedestrian sidewalks. Deputies lost sight of him in the area of River View Park.
Numerous deputies searched the area and began monitoring intersections where McDaniel might appear. Deputy Aaron Warmerdam and Deputy Jeffrey Kelley kept watch on the intersection of Beardsley and South Plymouth avenues.
A short time later, Kelley saw McDaniel drive south on South Plymouth toward Beardsley. McDaniel reportedly lost control of his motorcycle and crashed in the middle of Beardsley.
He stood up and began running east on Beardsley toward Warmerdam, Youngblood said. Warmerdam pulled his baton and tried to arrest McDaniel while Kelley deployed his K-9, Luke.
McDaniel then pulled a handgun and pointed it at Warmerdam, Youngblood said. He said Warmerdam fell backward and pulled his gun.
Both Warmerdam and Kelley fired three rounds each from their handguns and McDaniel dropped his gun and fell to the ground. McDaniel's gun did have an spent cartridge, leading law enforcement to believe he fired his weapon at least once, Youngblood said.
Deputies began administering first aid. McDaniel died about a half hour later at Kern Medical Center.
During this time it was discovered that Luke had been shot. He has undergone at least one surgery and is expected to make a full recovery.
Youngblood did not know the caliber of the guns and did not disclose where McDaniel was shot.
The motorcycle McDaniel was driving was reported stolen Jan. 30. Youngblood did not know who the owner was but said it would eventually be returned.
Both Warmerdam, an eight-year Sheriff's Office veteran, and Kelley, a six-year veteran, are on routine administrative leave pending a review from the Lethal Force Review Board. Youngblood said he did not know if either of the deputies had been involved in a previous deputy-involved shooting.
The investigation on the use of lethal force is done by employees of the Sheriff's Office.
"If the public trusts us to go out with a gun and a badge to go out and arrest people and take their liberties away, then they have to trust that we will do a proper investigation and a transparent investigation of what occurred," Youngblood said. "If not, we would be dishonest. As a sheriff I would be dishonest. And I'm not."