APD Releases Name and Photo of Suspect; Also Says Police Cam Caught Suspect Exit Car and Point Gun at Officers

Press release from Arcata Police:

Ervin Sweat JrOn September 9, 2017, at about 1:25 a.m., the Arcata Police Department received a 9-1-1 call reporting a group of males physically fighting in the street near 9th and H Streets. Officers from Arcata Police and University Police Departments arrived on-scene at 1:27 a.m. When the officers arrived they did not see anyone involved in a fight. While they were in the area investigating, a bystander reported to an officer that one of the people involved in the fight had brandished a handgun. The bystander pointed out a vehicle with which they believed the person to be associated.

An Arcata Police in-car camera captured video showing 26-year-old Ervin Eugene Sweat Jr. from Antioch, Tennessee, get out of the rear passenger seat of the vehicle and immediately point a handgun at the police officers. The video does not capture the entire incident.

Initial reports indicate Sweat fired two shots at the police officers, one of which struck University police officer Louis Altic in the upper right leg. Officer Altic and Arcata police officer Matthew O’Donovan returned fire with nine total shots, all of which hit Sweat. The handgun used by Sweat to shoot Officer Altic was recovered at the scene. The handgun, a .40 caliber semi-automatic Smith & Wesson was reported stolen from a local sporting goods store in 2015.

Immediately after the shooting, police officers began life-saving efforts on Sweat. Arcata Ambulance transported Sweat to the Mad River Community Hospital where he was pronounced dead.

Officer Altic was transported to Mad River Community Hospital where he was treated and released. Although his injuries are serious, he is expected to make a full recovery. Officer Altic has 12 years of law enforcement experience, the last two years with University Police. Officer O’Donovan was not physically injured. He is a five-year veteran of Arcata Police Department. As is normal protocol in officer involved shooting cases, both officers have been placed on administrative leave.

This investigation is being led by the Humboldt County Critical Incident Response Team (CIRT). CIRT is a multi-agency team comprised of local law enforcement agencies that train and respond to officer involved injuries and deaths. In the case of incidents where an officer is involved in a shooting, it is the best practice for outside agencies to conduct the investigation.

The Humboldt County Critical Incident Response Team for this investigation includes the Eureka Police Department, Humboldt County Sheriff’s Office, Humboldt County District Attorney Investigators, Fortuna Police Department, California Highway Patrol and the Department of Justice Crime Laboratory. The results of the CIRT team investigation will be forwarded to the Humboldt County District Attorney for review.

Anyone who may have information about this case is asked to call the Arcata Police Department, (707) 822-2426.


Earlier Chapters:



  • Hit him with all 9 shots this guy shot at the wrong cops

  • Honeydew Bridge C.H.U.M.P.

    Taking the room temperature challenge….

    Don’t sweat it.

  • shawn the fisherman

    The officers sure saved us tax payers alot of money! Natural selection going strong in Arcata.

  • Sad, but now there is one less POS on the streets

  • JustWantToHeartheEndoftheStory

    If this guy had gotten the three years for his behavior in Fortuna, he’d still be alive…


    • I remember that guy......

      Not a completely nice guy at all!
      I remember seeing him a couple years ago at Oysterfest. He got into some kind of scuffle inside of Toby and Jacks. He, and his “dance partner”, were hauled outside by the bouncers, where he threw a fit that his dad needed to be told he was being kicked out. Than he made nice with the guy he was having his fight with, and walked away. After a few minutes he snuck back over, landed a sneak attack haymaker right on the back of the head of the guy he was having a fight with, and ran for it. They caught him. There are a few appropriate dirty words to describe this guy, but I’m gonna stick with schmuck for now. Almost kinda fitting that this all went down where he knocked out a guy from behind.

      • If your story is factual, it just adds to how urgent it is to change our laws that are letting criminals out of jail. There should be 0 bail for this guy, and should go directly to jail without passing ‘GO’.

  • Good to see this shooting is being investigated by totally neutral parties. Not.

    • Here, I’ll investigate……
      Officer shot
      Officer returns fire hitting suspect
      Stolen gun recovered from suspect
      Suspect is guilty
      Case closed

    • Good point. Maybe Sophia Pereira, Elijah Chandler, Michael Moore, and Bernie Sanders could do it. Who would you like as nuetral investigators? Who understands police use of force procedures? You might contact the team and offer your services.

  • Justice for Eugene!

  • Arcana has gone to pits

    Wow how many stolen guns is that now. Or better yet how many crimes have been committed with those guns that were stolen from the outdoor store 2yrs ago.? Better yet wonder how many violent crimes and murders have been committed with those stolen guns. That haven’t been reported or solved. ?. Interesting to see where and whose hands these guns that were stolen from the outdoor store have landed in.
    Nothing but uber criminals it seems so far. Find the source or the person who stole the guns. That guy has got to be a real Gem.

    • If you think this case of stolen guns is interesting, you should look into Fast and Furious and I don’t mean the movie.

    • The majority of handguns used in gun crimes (excluding domestic violence) are stolen from legal owners. Since there are no laws requiring that firearms be secured responsibly, that is the cycle we are stuck with. As a former burglar alarm installer, I noted that the most coveted target for intruders is firearms. Firearms are more sought after by thieves than jewelry or electronics. This is because there are fairly effective laws preventing criminals from buying firearms legally.

      On your person or in a safe. If we follow this rule, there will be much fewer criminals with handguns and less pressure for passing additional gun laws.

      • perhaps they should think about locking thieves up for more than a week and being in possion of a stolen gun should have some serious consequences, as well as felon in possession. There are some laws in place for securing firearms as well as having to report stolen ones.

  • Louis, I hope you have a speedy recovery…

  • Good riddance, no sympathy here.

  • fuckwalterwhite.com

    Does his house/cell get investigatd?

  • That’s what happens when you hold the gun sideways with on hand and hold your pants up with the other.

  • “Officer Altic and Arcata police officer Matthew O’Donovan returned fire with nine total shots, all of which hit Sweat.” Not easy to do in a gunfight! Good shooting Gentlemen! Glad you came out on the winning side, and no innocent parties were caught in the crossfire!

  • These two officers need to be hired by the city of Eureka and field train how to react and place accurate and deadly force when needed without putting citizens at risk. Job well done !!!

  • Why in God’s name would you exit your vehicle shooting at the cops,because you know their firing back

  • This Information Is Legit

    Just to add some relevant info. to the story. Talked to a woman who says the original fight broke out, because a white woman was with a group of black guys, including the one that got killed & these white guys started yelling racial slurs. She said they were jealous a sexy white woman was with guys of different color. Unfortunately the original fight that started this whole thing was over race. I think she said they were in Sidelines bar when it started. She said she quickly left the group when the fight started and wasn’t there for the shootout. This is the honest truth from a person who was with the group of people the dead guy was hanging out with that night. Please don’t delete. This is credible information from the source. Racism is a BIG problem in Humboldt County.

    • Generally, credible information comes from folks who are willing to put their name on it and doesn’t come second hand from someone else. However, if this is true and you know this woman, I would like to talk to her. My email is mskymkemp@gmail.com

    • Then he went to his car and pulled out his loaded stolen gun and shoots a cop. Sounds like a perfectly reasonable response.
      Racism is a cancer on society and comes in many forms, but violence will never solve anything. Not buying it.

  • Rumors around Arcata that he had pulled a gun out at the bar a couple weeks before. AND that he was a suspect in a couple strong arm farm robberies in south county in the past couple months.. Kym any info? A friend heard this from an APD officer…

  • “An Arcata Police in-car camera captured video showing 26-year-old Ervin Eugene Sweat Jr. from Antioch, Tennessee, get out of the rear passenger seat of the vehicle and immediately point a handgun at the police officers. The video does not capture the entire incident.”

    So the video just cuts off right then and there or What ?? Fuck yall who have no sympathy. As much of a criminal as he is, his mother and friends are still mourning his death. They could be reading yall insensitive comments and feeling pain. Fuck all yall i hope you lose the person closest to you

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