The scene of the officer-involved shooting on the 600 block of Mercury Drive in Lompoc | Credit: Santa Barbara County Sheriff's Office

The Santa Barbara County Sheriff’s Office has revealed that the man shot by deputies during a confrontation on February 23 did not have a weapon, despite making what deputies called a “shooting stance,” which prompted the deputies to fire at him. 

Lompoc resident Rudy Angel Delgadillo, 24, was shot by Deputy Ross Van Tassel and Deputy Yeshella Jimenez after three witnesses that the Sheriff’s Office has identified called 9-1-1 reporting a dark-colored truck driving erratically and colliding with a residential fence on the 3800 block of Celestial Way before fleeing on foot. Witnesses gave a description of the driver that deputies believed matched Delgadillo. After that collision, and prior to contact with the deputies, surveillance video from the area shows the suspect trying the doors of two parked cars and entering a third vehicle.

Van Tassel contacted Delgadillo in the 600 block of Mercury Avenue. The deputies said they gave Delgadillo several verbal commands, which he did not comply with. They say Delgadillo then made several sudden movements, including what the deputies perceived as a “shooting stance” toward Van Tassel. No weapon associated with Delgadillo was found at the scene, according to Sheriff’s Office Public Information Officer Raquel Zick. In response, Van Tassel fired 10 rounds and Jimenez fired one round at Delgadillo. He was wounded with a single gunshot wound to the shoulder area and transported to an area hospital for treatment before being released and booked at the Main Jail. Neither of the deputies were injured during the shooting. 

Anyone with information about this incident is encouraged to contact Sheriff’s detectives at (805) 681-4150. Anyone who wishes to remain anonymous may provide information by calling the department tip line at (805) 681-4171 or visiting

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