Crime

Man dies after he waves gun replica and authorities shoot him near Tachi Palace

A law officer in Kings County was wounded in an exchange of gunfire with an armed man Friday on the Santa Rosa Rancheria near Tachi Palace hotel and casino.
A law officer in Kings County was wounded in an exchange of gunfire with an armed man Friday on the Santa Rosa Rancheria near Tachi Palace hotel and casino. Fresno Bee file

A man who was brandishing his gun at people on the Santa Rosa Rancheria near Tachi Palace Casino in Lemoore is dead after he was shot at by a Avenal police officer.

Around 5 p.m. Friday, Dave Phoenix, 25, was spotted waving his handgun on therancheria near 17th Avenue and Coyote Court. Phoenix, who lived on the reservation, ran inside a home and threatened the resident before running off again, said Kings County Assistant Sheriff Dave Putnam.

When authorities attempted to arrest him, Phoneix turned and pointed his gun at them. Putnman added the Avenal officer, part of a multiagency task force, feared for his life and fired at the man. Officials performed life-saving measures before Phoenix was transported to Adventist Medical Center in Hanford, where he died from his injuries.

It was later discovered that the gun was a realistic-looking replica.

Family members said Phoenix was a tribal member from a reservation in Winnemucca, Nevada but had been living at the rancheria from time to time.

It was previously reported that the law officer involved was shot at. However, Putnman confirmed Saturday that he was not.

The Kings County District Attorney’s Office will investigate the officer-involved shooting.

Andrea Figueroa Briseño: 559-441-6074, @_AndreaBriseno

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