Aaron Bassler: A Lethal and Deadly Engagement
The Mendocino Co. Sheriff Tom Allman announced tonight that Aaron Bassler was killed at 12:23 this afternoon.
According to Allman, yesterday another burglary was reported outside of the 6 square miles that law enforcement had encircled. A garage/shop was broken into. Ammunition and food items, as well as matches and other items were stolen. The MO fit Bassler. A canine unit, a bloodhound, was brought in and followed the trail. Darkness fell. And they had to regroup. They used the information gathered to imbed tacticle teams in the newly expanded area which was on private property.
After 12pm, a trio of officers from Sacramento, 2 miles from most recent burglary, observed a man wearing black clothing and carrying a rifle in his right hand. By his clothing, gun, and facial features, they recognized the man as Aaron Bassler. The officers were 40 yds away and 25 higher in elevation than the suspect. There was brush between the officers and Bassler. Although there was no verbal contact, at least two of the officers fired. Bassler fell to the ground. There were seven shots fired. All seven hit in the upper torso. The suspect did not fire any shots. Allman said that suspect “raised his rifle towards their location…He had his finger on the trigger…” Later, it was determined that a round was in the chamber and the safety was not on.
No law enforcement officers injured. Allman fully supports what happened. Additional personnel sent by Sacramento in the last days allowed more law enforcement to be in the area. Allman added, ” We thought we had him encircled,” Allman said. Then added that if the burglery had not been reported, he doubts that they would have found him today.
“I fully support the manner in which this happened,” Allman stated firmly. Bassler’s previous actions “…clearly led us to belive that any contact with law enforcement would lead to lethal and deadly engagement. ”
Photo from Mendocino Sheriff Dept.