Last updated: about 1 year ago
"Investigators have learned that deputies from the Transit Services Bureau came in contact with a man believed to be a transient. The suspect suddenly armed himself with a wooden stick," Pope said.
"He advanced toward the deputies with the wooden stick overhead. A deputy-involved shooting occurred and the suspect was transported to a local hospital where he was pronounced dead."
Civil rights attorney Brian Dunn, who represents Stockton, told KPCC that he believed many shootings like Atkinson’s could be avoided if officers called for backup and waited out volatile situations.
“What happens is the officer closes the distance, the officer draws some kind of weapon,” Dunn said. “And what you have is a showdown between one person who’s armed with a weapon — a gun usually — and one person who’s disobeying them.”
Dunn said the deputies, who were with the county’s transit bureau, had stopped Atkinson earlier for riding his bicycle on the sidewalk. After letting him go, they followed him to the freeway underpass, according to Dunn.
No mention of the earlier encounter was included in the summary to the board, which offered contradictory statements about whether there was a reasonable way out of what became a deadly situation.
February 2016 Settlement $375,000