Vallejo police officers on Wednesday night shot a 20-year-old man accused of driving recklessly and then ramming into patrol cars when trying to escape, who they had been trying to apprehend for the past week.
The man, identified as Kevin DeCarlo, was shot outside a house on the 4000 block of Ellis Road in Martinez.
Last Thursday, members of the Vallejo Police Crime Reduction Team tried to arrest DeCarlo for allegedly driving recklessly. They pursued and identified the slippery suspect, even though they were unable to catch him at the time, they said.
On Saturday, Vallejo police located DeCarlo, but said he drove into a patrol car and then took off.
Finally late Wednesday, police said they found DeCarlo in a Martinez home that they surrounded. Again, the suspect tried to escape by slamming his black Dodge Challenger into a squad car, police said. That's when officers opened fire.
DeCarlo was struck multiple times and taken to a hospital for treatment.
"We’re just sitting in the house, you know, doing normal people things and we just heard some gunshots and heard pops and screeching tires and then we freaked out, so we rushed over here," said witness Bobby Conklin. "By the time we got over here, the helicopters were flying around. There were about 13, 14 police cars.”
The suspect's father, Michael DeCarlo, lashed out at the Vallejo Police Department, claiming on Thursday that officers have ben targeting his son, with an intent to kill him. Kevin DeCarlo is in critical condition, he said.
"He's in fear for his life," Michael DeCarlo said. "They've been going around making comments about killing the kid. I mean ... would you stop?"
A Vallejo police officer sustained minor injuries and was treated and released.
Along with several evidence markers, footage from the scene showed a black Dodge Challenger that had veered off the road, crashed into a fence and had its windows shot out.
"Explain to me why all the bullets here," Michael DeCarlo said. "I mean ... it looked like they had him apprehended in the ditch."
Kevin DeCarlo's friend, Justin Caldwell, agreed, describing the scene of the shooting as a "war zone." Kevin DeCarlo wasn't armed, so "it's just not right" that police shot him," Caldwell said. Vallejo police have yet to confirm whether the suspect was carrying a weapon.
According to Michael DeCarlo, Vallejo police had it out for his son.
Officers have raided a few residences in Vallejo in recent weeks, he said. A woman who lives at one those houses allegedly told Michael DeCarlo that officers, on their way out, said, "When we see Kevin, you let him know we're going to shoot his a**."
Vallejo police have not yet responded to that accusation.
The Vallejo Police Department is investigating the officer-involved shooting along with the Contra Costa County District Attorney and sheriff's offices.
"He may be going through some tough times, but he's my brother, he's a good dude," Caldwell insisted.