Deputies Condition Upgraded to Good
On the morning of August 1, 2017 the Yuba County Sheriff's Department received a call about the Rastafarian Church in the 9000 block of Marysville Rd., Oregon House. The complainant Sugarleaf Rastafarian Church leader Heidi Lepp said she received a call from church members who live on the marijuana farm saying a newly arrived worker had become erratic, was ripping up plants and holding a gun. Lepp said she called the sheriff's office and told the men on the farm to leave immediately
. Upon arrival the two deputies responding pursued a suspect matching the description they were given into a mobile home. As they were clearing the home they were met with gunfire, both were hit twice, and returned gunfire. While unknown at the time it was believed that they hit the suspect. The two deputies, Phillip Bronson, 14 years with Yuba County Sheriff’s Office (YCSO) and Andrew Everhart, 10 years with (YCSO), were dragged to safety by a third deputy, Daniel Harris, 22 years with (YCSO), who had been watching the back of the home. Harris called for officer down and backup. The two deputies were flown to Sutter Roseville where they underwent extensive surgery.
Multiple Yuba County Deputies, SWAT team members, Detectives, and Hostage Negotiators responded to the scene, along with many neighboring law enforcement officers and other first responders. Nearby residences were evacuated, a perimeter was established, and attempts to communicate with the barricaded suspect were initiated. Just before 2pm, SWAT personnel deployed diversionary devices into the home followed by tear-gas deployment, and then entered into the residence. Once inside, SWAT members located the suspect and determined the suspect was deceased and had suffered multiple gunshot wounds.
The suspect was later identified as Mark Anthony Sanchez, 33, originally of Gilroy, Ca. It is believed that Sanchez was living and working as a caretaker at the marijuana garden. Sanchez was a previously convicted felon that had served time in California State Prison for multiple violent felonies including carjacking and assault with a deadly weapon, as well as burglary and possession of stolen property. It was also discovered that Sanchez had two active warrants out of Gilroy for Robbery and Disturbing the Peace at the time of his death.
An autopsy was completed the morning of August 3 and the official cause of death was listed as “multiple gunshot wounds”. Official manner of death is pending conclusion of the shooting investigation, however it was determined that the suspect was struck multiple times by return gunfire from the two injured deputies. It is not conclusive at this time whether the fatal shot was self inflicted or the return fire from the deputies.
The two wounded deputies are still recovering and their condition has been upgraded from Fair to Good