San Diego

Investigators Release More Information on Deputy-Involved Shooting in Vista

The August shooting left a documented gang member, wanted for a 2015 SWAT standoff, dead.

San Diego County Sheriff's officials (SDSO) have released more information about a deputy-involved shooting last month that left a documented gang member dead. 

The pursuit that lead to the deputy-involved shooting happened on Aug. 11, when SDSO Deputy Peter Myers and Deputy Christopher Villanueva spotted Sergio Weick, a documented gang member wanted in connection with a SWAT stand-off in 2015. Officials said they had a warrant out for his arrest. 

Deputies say they spotted Weick driving near the intersection of North Santa Fe Avenue and Knapp Drive. Deputies recognized the driver of the Lexus as a known gang member who had an active felony warrant for his arrest.

Investigators say Weick refused to pullover for the deputies, leading them on an 8-minute chase that ended in a town home complex in the 100 block of Bronze Way. 

Authorities say Weick crashed and continued on foot and “at some point along the narrow walkway, the suspect and deputies became involved in a confrontation,” the original press release stated.

At one point during the foot pursuit, Weick "stopped and was beginning to turn to face them (the deputies)," said SDSO Lt. Nelson. 

Deputies could see a metal object in Weick's waistband and "could see him reaching for it and trying to pull it out of his waistband," Lt. Nelson said.

The deputies made that "split second decision" and fired multiple rounds, according to Sheriff's officials. Deputies said at that time, Weick was "less than 20 feet" away from them, Lt. Nelson said. 

The metal object turned out to be a knife, Lt. Nelson said.

Shortly after the incident, detectives completed their search of the car Weick was driving. They found “a sawed-off shotgun, multiple knives, a sword, additional ammunition for the shotgun and drug paraphernalia” inside the car.

 Weick went to the hospital in critical condition and later died. Homicide investigators say the autopsy report showed the cause of death was “trauma from multiple gunshot wounds.”

Lt. Nelson did not have an exact number of times Weick was shot, but did say authorities removed seven bullets from his body during the autopsy. He did not have additional information on where the bullets were or exactly where he was shot. 

However, Weick’s cousin Johnny Hoyt, said Weick’s body was riddled with 26 gunshot wounds.

Sheriff's officials are still waiting on the San Diego County Medical Examiner's office to complete an autopsy report. They will then hand the case over to the District Attorney's office for review. 

At a rally on Saturday, loved ones remembered Weick as a husband and father of five children who had kids as young as 18 months old and as old as 14 years old.

“What they did was wrong,” Weick’s widow, Nena, said of the deputies involved. “They have killed, they have murdered their father. They will go on with life without their father.”

Myers is an 8-year veteran of the department. Villanueva had been with the department for two months at the time, in addition to two years’ experience as a police officer with another law enforcement agency.

The deputies were placed on administrative leave following the shooting, but have since been cleared to come back to work. 

Lt. Nelson said there were no body worn cameras during the incident, and authorities did not find any video of the incident. 

Detectives are working on a "thorough, transparent investigation" to then present to the DA, Lt. Nelson said. The goal is to have the reports in and presented to the DA within 90 days of the incident, in mid-November, Lt. Nelson said.

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