Oregon man killed self after gunning down California deputy

AP News
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Posted: Jan 06, 2015 11:21 PM
Oregon man killed self after gunning down California deputy

PORTLAND, Ore. (AP) — An Oregon man who killed a California sheriff's deputy last year died from a self-inflicted wound during the ensuing shootout with a police officer, according to the Mendocino County District Attorney's office.

The finding follows contradictory reports over whether Ricardo Chaney, 32, died from an officer's bullet or his own. The report says the police officer from the Northern California city of Fort Bragg shot Chaney in the leg, but it wasn't fatal.

Chaney fatally shot Deputy Ricky Del Fiorentino on March 19 after killing a family friend in Eugene, Oregon, carjacking a vehicle and driving south.

The district attorney's findings were released last month and were first reported by The Press Democrat of Santa Rosa.

The 13-page report includes details about Chaney's criminal history and mental health.

A domestic violence arrest in 2006 derailed Chaney's effort to join the military. The ex-wife who suffered the abuse told investigators that Chaney struggled with depression and held extreme anti-government views. Chaney had only one job in the years she knew him, and quit after only two hours, she said.

She saw Chaney on March 17 and described him as acting strange, even by his standards, the report said. After a short visit with their daughter, Chaney told his ex-wife he would not be back for at least 10 years.

Shortly after midnight on March 19, Eugene firefighters responding to a blaze found the body of George Bundy Wasson, a retired University of Oregon anthropology instructor and Coquille Tribe elder. He was leaning in a dining room chair over a pool of blood, with gunshot wounds near the right temple and behind his right ear.

Wasson had been close friends with Chaney's father, a fellow anthropology professor who died in 1998.

The younger Chaney told his mother in 2002 that he had been molested by Wasson, the report said. He also mentioned it to a high school friend, with Chaney saying the abuse occurred around the time of his father's death. The report states that the accusations were never reported to police or substantiated.

After the father's death, Chaney's mother started a relationship with an attorney who told investigators that Ricardo Chaney was prone to "apocalyptic thinking" and would engage in physical workouts in an obsessive-compulsive manner. It was his opinion that the young man had undiagnosed bipolar disorder, the report said.

Also in the report:

— Chaney wore a ballistic vest at the time of his death and had two assault weapons.

— Chaney posted online in 2011 that he wanted to drive to Texas and kill a radio show host.

— In December 2013, Chaney and a woman formed a company that produced and sold pornographic movies.

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Follow Steven DuBois at twitter.com/pdxdub