Deputies said that 36-year-old Montague, California resident Luke L. Sanders was shot by deputies following a confrontation on Tuesday.
The SCSO said prior to the shooting, Sanders sustained a serious, self-inflicted wound. Reports indicated he purposely cut off his own hand, and he may have had a firearm. Witnesses tried to help Sanders, but his erratic behavior prompted them to call 911.
SCSO said a California Highway Patrol officer and two SCSO deputies arrived on the scene to assist.
Deputies said Sanders became confrontational and posed a threat to the officer, deputies, and citizens. Based on the perceived threat, two deputies fired their weapons, wounding Sanders. He eventually died from his injuries.
According to a preliminary investigation, Sanders was armed with an ax at the time of the confrontation, not a firearm.
Siskiyou County Sheriff Jon Lopey said in a statement, “As previously reported, this incident was a very tragic and traumatic event for all concerned. Mr. Sanders was known by some members of the department and his family is also well-known and respected members of the local community. Evidence suggests Mr. Sanders may have been suffering from a temporary mental health care condition but there is more information that must be gathered and analyzed from the autopsy and further investigation. Additionally, toxicology tests will not be completed for two to three weeks. Our thoughts and prayers go out to all involved in this incident.”